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La Sportiva Testarossa Vibram XS Grip2 Climbing Shoe

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    53 Reviews


    For overhangs and technical face climbs.

    La Sportiva designed every inch of the Testarossa Vibram XS Grip2 Climbing Shoe to give you an edge on hard sport routes. The aggressive shape includes a down-turned toe to keep you glued to super steep pitches, and the full-length laces ensure a precise fit.
    • Aggressive shape for superior performance on the most technical routes
    • Dual-material upper uses a combination of Lorica (doesn't stretch) and leather (does stretch) in a specific bi-lateral stretch pattern for edging
    • Vibram XS Grip2 for serious edging performance, smearing performance, and durability
    • 3D cupped hytrel midsole under the toes flows into the high-tension figure-eight rand to help with overall grab
    • Full-length laces ensure a precise fit
    • Item #LSP0159

    Tech Specs

    Upper Material
    leather, Lorica
    HF (synthetic)
    4mm Vibram XS Grip2
    Asymmetrical Curvature
    Claimed Weight
    [single] 7.44 oz
    Recommended Use
    bouldering, sport climbing
    Manufacturer Warranty
    1 year

    Tech Specs

    • Reviews
    • Q & A

    What do you think about this product?

    Have questions about this product?

    Perfect quiver shoe

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    I've been using this shoe bouldering on steep NE crimp faces and these things shine. Toe box is perfect for me, heel fits perfect (I have low volume heel), very down turned, great edging while still super sensitive. Had a pair of Miura VS's, but wasn't happy with the sensitivity. Had a pair of futura's also, didn't like the no edge, heel, and general sensitivity. I find that I really prefer unlined shoes.

    Downside is the toe hooking isn't great, but that's what you get with a super downturned shoe with laces. I bring a pair of these and a pair of pythons with me and I have everything I need for 99% of boulder problems. Grab a pair of these discounted ones if you can find your size.

    -Street: 10 (43.5)
    -Pythons: 41.5
    -Testarossa's: 42.5
    -Mythos: 42


      These will do almost everything. I’ve sent super overhanging 5.10s in the gym. But when I started saving them for outdoors they killed it on technical face. They edge, smear, and are also relatively sensitive. Btw: I sent my first 5.10b outdoors in them yesterday. I can’t stress how amazing these shoes are.


      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      These shoes are badass. The reality is, that I don’t climb a lot of what these shoes are designed for. That being, steep, and overhanging, caves. The toe box on these are intense, and my toes are curled up into claws. I do a lot of smearing, but not with these. Like I said, it’s a badass shoe, I guess .. I’m.. just.. not.

      Claws On Your Feet

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      These things grab super well in the steep. The stiff toe box also makes them great for over-vertical edging. They're not as stiff as the Miura VS, but they still do really well on steep edging. Really solid in cave-style roofs where grabbing is key. The heel is really sensitive, too, which I enjoy.

      Great Sport climbing shoes!

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size

      I wear a 45.0 in La Sportiva's trail running/approach shoes, and a 43.0 in the Testarossas. In terms of fit and performance, I think that the Testarossas work best downsized one or two sizes.
      Mine haven't stretched much, and they broke in quickly.
      I think that the Testarossas are probably best on steep sport climbs, but I know that a lot of people like them on slabby stuff too. They edge well, feel powerful, and, despite some reviewers not loving them on boulders, I think they seem pretty sensitive, too.
      Rock climbing shoes are kind of hard to review because fit/performance preferences differ quite a bit from one individual to another. That said, if you're looking for an aggressive lace-up with a solid downturn, a narrow heel, and a somewhat wide toe-box, the Testarossa is probably worth a look.

      Sizing Update

      • Fit: Runs large

      I have heard from a few of my customers that the sizing on the Testarossa has changed from previous years. Both customers used to climb in a 44 and are now in a 42.5 and they fit the same. Keep that in mind if you have owned older models of the Testarossa and are buying a new pair.
      Contact me directly if you have any questions.

      Looking for a size suggestion since there is nowhere around me that I can try these on. My street shoe is 44.5 and the only pair of La Sportiva's I have or have ever had are TC Pros size 42.5 (a comfy fit). Looking for a tight fit in these. Thoughts?

      Great shoe after break-in period

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: 44.5
      • Height: 6'3"
      • Weight: 176lbs

      I purchased the Testarossas since I was looking for a more agressive shoe (down-turned toe) than my previous pair which were nearing the end of the useful life and were my first pair of climbing shoes. I have a somewhat wide foot and these were recommended to me by my brother who has even wider feet (but wears a smaller size). We now both have the Testarossas in our street shoe sizes, and they fit very well, with the laces allowing for a really fine tuned fit. The fit felt correct on my foot when I first tried them on; however, the first couple climbing sessions (bouldering in the gym) left me with a lot ache in my big toe knuckle. It wasn't until my fourth or fifth time climbing with them that they finally broke in, and now they feel fantastic.

      As for performance, they serve to be precise and confidence-inspiring! An overall well designed and fun climbing shoe.

      My Cinderella slipper.

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Height: 5'10"
      • Weight: 140lbs

      Cinderella is to me as the Testarossa is to a glass slipper, which means La Sportiva is my Prince Charming....

      What I'm trying to get at is that this shoe fits me perfectly. This is my third (or fourth) pair and I don't think I'll ever search for another. This shoe simply works for everything. It's super aggressive at first, and I can climb the hardest overhung boulder problems and sport routes with the utmost performance.

      Going above and beyond the boulder/sport specifications however, this shoe also excels at crack climbs, multi pitches, and slabs once worn in, and I mean really worn in. This shoe magically forms to my foot after a few months of climbing every day. That being said, I size this shoe a half size smaller than my shoe size, which is unheard of in the aggressive climber philosophy of today. I don't think it interferes with my sport climbing or bouldering, and allows me to climb cracks without much pain. My toes have probably gone numb at this point though, because a friend tried doing the same and wanted to cry on a multi pitch. So I guess this life hack isn't for everyone.

      best shoes ever!

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

      i dont know why people complain about the heel hooking
      they are the best heel hooking shoes i have ever had. the heel is not as thick as solution. you can really feel the rock your heel is on. very very precise


      • Size Bought: 38.5
      • Height: 5'8"
      • Weight: 135lbs

      I demoed these along with a group of other shoes. The Testarossa were an absolute stand out.They were may favorite aggressive shoes, by far. This is the most comfortable down-turned shoe I have ever worn. Others push into the top of your toes, but these give your feet the room to bend, with out putting unnecessary pressure on the tops of your toes. They felt like gloves, honestly. Plus, they really delivered and edged and toed like a charm!

      I like these primarily for bouldering and steeping sport climbing. For slab, I would want something far less down-turned, like the Katana Lace-Ups or the Lace-Up Miuras.

      I wear a 38.5 in most La Sportiva, female shoes. My street shoe is a 9.0 in women's, so that's a 40.5 in Euro. Techincally, I could go to a 38 in these, but it's just too painful for me, and they won't stretch because they are synthetic leather. So, the 38.5 in these is the solid choice.


      Purpose built for specific applications

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: Runs small

      These shoes are awesome for small edges, steep climbing, and anything that requires your foot to be perfectly cinched down in the shoe. I do find they are fairly specialized in their capabilities; the lack of extended toe rand rubber makes them borderline awful for toe hooking and the under protected heel cup makes for very frustrating technical heel hooking.

      If you're looking to own a single pair of high performance shoes for bouldering, get the Solutions. If you want a pair for sport climbing, get these ones.

      Not for the faint of heart

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size

      They absolutely murder my toes if I leave them on too long but it's so worth it. Very soft, extremely precise, edge like a champ; love them. They're my go-to shoe when I need a bit of extra help on a hard boulder problem. The Grip rubber gives a noticeable increase in grip compared to the Edge rubber on my Miuras. The only other shoe that might beat these for me is the new Genius.

      For reference, I wear a 44 Miura Velcro (could easily go to a 43.5) and a 42.5 in the 'Rossas. I'm a 12.5-13 street shoe.

      Performance fit without wanting cut...

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size
      • Height: 5'10"
      • Weight: 155lbs

      One thing I love about Sportivas (I have the Testarossa and the Solution) is the fit, at least on my foot, is absolutley perfect. These shoes deliver driving performance on steep terrain without making you feel like you have just cut your toes off. The lacing system is durable, functional, and great for dialing in the perfect fit. The heel cup fits my average volume heel well although I would say that it is not as good as the heel on the Solutions. Overall, this is my go-to shoe for steep sport routes.

      Chadbourne Crag - The Clam

      The Testasrossa thrives on routes like this one, but I've recently climbed multi-pitches and cracks now that they're ridiculously worn-in. I'm pretty sure this is the first pair I'll purchase for a second time in the decade I've climbed. Thanks La Sportiva!

      Chadbourne Crag - The Clam

      Great for steep sport climbing

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: 44
      • Height: 6'0"
      • Weight: 160lbs

      In echoing what many other have already said, these are ideal for steep sport climbing routes. I have traditionally used the Solution in the past for bouldering and sport climbing, but decided to try these on a recommendation from a friend. I must say, for overall versatility, I prefer the Solutions, as they are perfect for bouldering and great for sport climbing. As the Testarossas aren't quite as stiff they are more comfortable, but that comes with a price when bouldering in them. The other downside is that I have found that these wear out on the toes much more quickly than my Solutions have in the past, despite being a similar design and using the same materials.

      Ultimately, the takeaway for these shoes for me is that they are great for sport climbing, can edge well on vertical faces, and are mediocre for bouldering. The lace up option is great to get a nice precise fit, but if you are looking to boulder with them as well, you are better off in the Solutions. That being said, they are extremely comfortable for a climbing shoe, especially a down turned one, and they are LaSportiva so you know they are quality!

      Favorite Sportiva shoe ever

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Size Bought: 37
      • Height: 5'10"
      • Weight: 140lbs

      Of all the Sportiva shoes I've owned, this is by far my favorite. I can size them way down and still have great feel on the tiniest of holds.
      I will definitely be getting another pair when these wear out.

      Street shoe size 8.5

      Best climbing shoe

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: True to size

      On my 2nd pair of Testarossa's and they keep giving back like no other climbing shoe I've tried. I use these for bouldering and sport climbing. I find these shoes shine the most on over hanging climbs, but I can edge on small vertical stuff as well. The heel is the only part I find lacking in this shoe. The material is more slippery than the rubber up front and can slip off really technical heel hook situations.

      Best climbing shoe
      Unanswered Question

      So for tech face climbing, how do you compare these to Genius? I really need to try no-edge in face climbing... have you?

      i wear 44 street shoes, and my feet is a little bit wide, and i am a new climber. which size should i order base on the La Sportive size system??? plz help!

      You should go at least a full size down so 43, if not 42.5. These shoes are leather so they will stretch. If you are a new climber I would look at something that is not so aggressive, even if sized correctly they wont be that comfortable.

      Feel free to hit me up at or 801-736-6398.

      I wear a 39.5 in Miura Laceups and have...

      I wear a 39.5 in Miura Laceups and have wide feet. Is 39.5 the way to go for Testarossas?

      I wear a 39.5 in the Tesstarossa and the Miura Laceup in my performance shoes. One pitch at a time type of stuff. I have a 40.5 pair of the Miuras for longer routes where I need a bit more comfort. I also wear a size 9 US shoe in my regular shoes, to give you an idea of how much I'm downsizing.

      since this shoe is part synthetic and part...

      since this shoe is part synthetic and part leather, how much is it going to stretch? and how does this size out of the box compared to the solutions?

      Best Answer

      It doesn't really stretch that much but it does mold to your foot in a really nice way. Out of the box these things are painful but way easier to get on and off and made to be a bit more comfortable than the Solutions because of how much lacing there is on these. I tend to lace em loose until they break in and then start cranking them down once they are molded to my foot.

      I have a pair of solutions (size 38) and...

      I have a pair of solutions (size 38) and was just wondering if anyone has had both solutions and testarossas and how they each compare to one another? And should I get a different size for the testarossas or should I go with the same size I have in solutions?

      I wear a 43 in street and wear a 40.5 in both of these, and I have a very similar experience. I prefer the Solutions for bouldering so you can easily take them off and put them back on between tries, but for a sport route the precision fit of a lace-up is better.

      great for sport and bouldering. I used to wear Miura VS and the sizes transferred so I didn't have to change sizes. I would think you would have to change sizes if you went to a less aggressive shoe but since you came from solutions you'll be ok.

      where could i resole the testarossa's with...

      where could i resole the testarossa's with the same rubber?

      No resolers I know of carry the XS grip2, but if you're ok with XS edge you have a lot of options.

      The Rubber Room in Bishop, Rock n' Resole in Colorado, and Tom in Berkeley all have the XS edge and are great. Positive Resoles in Colorado is the only place I know of that carries XS Grip, but not XS Grip2. They're likely your best bet.

      I honestly can't feel TOO big of a difference between the XS grip and XS edge, but others I've talked to swear they can. I guess it's really personal preference. Good luck!

      I currently use the Miura VS and love them....

      I currently use the Miura VS and love them. However, my second toe is longer than my big toe so the aggressive fit means I can't wear them for a long time. Looking at the image of the testarossas from the top, it doesn't appear as uncomfortable as the Miuras. How do they compare fit-wise? Also how do they compare performance-wise?


      Best Answer

      Hi m holyman,

      This answer may be a little late but here goes. I own both pairs. I love the Miuras but I have the same issue, my second and third toes are longer than my big toe. The testarossa is a bit more comfortable than the Miuras. The laces help for that. Also I didn't size down as much in the testarossas. The Miuras felt sloppy unless I really sized down in them. You should try a couple of pairs on to find the size but I think you'll love these shoes. I think they perform on pretty close to the same level.

      I'm looking for a new rock shoe and I'm...

      I'm looking for a new rock shoe and I'm not sure which one would be better. I'm in doubt about La Sportiva Testarossa, Katana Lace, and Five Ten Anasazi Verdi. I'm a sport climber and I want a rock shoe for overhang sport routes. So What u guys recomend?


      I did climb both, the Anazazi and the Katana Lace for a long period of time. I also tried the Testarossa. My foot fit all three models (not the case with some other brands). I'm a fairly technical climber and use my feed a lot, also on very small edges (smears). The Testarossa is really agressive and THE weapon for hard routes including overhang but might be to sportive for longer routes. Plus its sole is the thinnest of the three models and wears accordingly fast. The Anazazi is a good shoe too but gets stinky pretty fast and streches more than the two others. Due to the velcro it's faster in and out but not as tight. My favorite, current and also next model is the Katana Laces. Absolutely top performance in the gym, on the rock, boulder problems, routes long and short, heal or toe hook. Not quite as aggressive as the Testarossa but unless you are a boulder champion no disadvantage there. I really love it!

      Hope this was kind of helpful.

      My pair does not have a cut out circle on...

      My pair does not have a cut out circle on the bottom. Is that normal?

      hi I saw your shoes brand on zappos .com...

      hi I saw your shoes brand on zappos .com and I was wondering where is your brand from? usa. or outside the usa, could you please let me know.

      Anyone know any key differences between...

      Anyone know any key differences between the Mammut Samurai's and the Testarossa's beyond color?

      I can see the heel is slightly different, as is the shape of the rand material, but everything else seems identical. . or at least very very comparable.

      La Sportiva is a SHOE company for a reason. There is also a reason that the Mammut Samurai's is 80 bucks. The thing in this industry you will pay for quality. Any La Sportiva shoe that i have worn ive had no complaints. The testerossa and Shaman are very different. The Shamans have a synthetic upper so you will get no stretch. With the testerossa the whole shoe will stretch. There is nothing like wearing a full leather shoe. If you get them sized right they will perfect conform to your foot. The testerossa's are a softer shoe once you get them broken in. The shamans feel a bit cheap to me. In all reality it depends on what kind of climbing your doing.

      It's hard to explain but anytime youre comparing different company's shoes youre talking about pretty significant fit differences. From what I've seen, people that wear evolvs dont wear sportivas and vice versa. Maybe 5.10 & sportiva. Maybe evolv and madrock. But even in those pairings...the way each company generally shapes their shoes is just different.

      It's like asking how a Honda and Toyota compare... They're both reliable car company's. Both foreign, Asian, manufacturers. Both have full lines. But there's a pretty clear difference when youre sitting in a Honda vs sitting in a Toyota. Make sense?

      Go try them on...but like dan said...Sportiva is a SHOE company. I'm a sportiva fan, they fit my foot... well crafted, quality. I'd buy $175 testarossas over $50 mad rocks every day...and im not rich...

      How do these compare to the Solutions?

      How do these compare to the Solutions?

      The solution has a thinner sole, its slightly more curved (not noticeably so), and is kind of a velcro/slipper hybrid. The Testarossa is a lace. The Testarossa's lacing allows you to dial in the fit, and they are slightly less sensitive underfoot. They are all-in-all a pretty similar shoe though. Hope that helps!

      Best Answer

      I used to wear the Testarossa and I loved them. I have a pretty narrow heal but these hold great on very agressive heal hooks. And they are relatively comfortable considering how agressively downturned they are. The only thing I'm crazy about is having to lace them up when bouldering so I ended up replacing them with the Solution. I was told that the Solution is basically just the velcro version of the Testarossa. Not so.

      Whereas the Testarossa was comfortable, the Solutions are unbearable. I'm not sure exactly what the differences are. However, suffice it to say, they are not the same shoe. If one of the two works for you, my advice is to stick to what you like.

      I've tried to answer this several times beyond the obvious velcro/slipper vs. laces dichotomy. After owning both of them I ultimately chose the Testarossa's and have stuck with them through three pairs now. The Testarossa's are hands down a much better edging shoe, while still maintaining much more sensitivity than the Solutions. They flex in a way that allows you to paw the holds much more, in addition to being better through tech slab sections. The Solutions are just plain aggressive from the get-go, you slip them on and it's go time, but the Rossa's are the most laid back aggressive shoe you can get. I don't even lace up my shoes half the time (I wear a 40 in La Sportiva and 10.5/11 running shoe) and yet they are there for me 100% through heel hook, smear, thin edges, etc. That being said, I am going to order a pair of Solutions again for a couple hardcore toe/heel-hook intensive problems that I want to send when the snow melts.

      Im looking to buy these and i was wondering,...

      Im looking to buy these and i was wondering, i wear a size 10 1/2 street shoe, and to be more exact my feet are a little over 10 and a half inches. so i was wondering how these would fit? should i go with a 9 or a 9 1/2 or just go a half size smaller? i know the norm is a whole size but these are more agressive looking then the last pair i have owned so im not to sure. Thanks.

      im looking at this chart. should i go with the 42 1/2 or 43? im just not sure.

      How the shoe will fit is a much more complicated than how big your foot is or what street shoe size you were. There are several aspects to consider. Your foot shape and your climbing style are two that make a big difference. These shoes are a somewhat sizable investment to be making without doing proper homework, so my suggestion is go to your local shop and try them on. After that, try everything else they have on as well. Unfortunately this will really be the only way you can guarantee a good fit for you.
      That being said, here is what I can tell you. In my experience La Sportiva's tend to run slender, I have wide feet with low arches and La Sportiva’s don’t fit me very well. Another very key aspect of this shoe to keep in mind is that though part of the upper is leather, it is backed with a synthetic lining. Meaning the shoe will not stretch like a conventional full leather upper shoe. You mentioned dropping down to a 9 or 9 ½. I would guess this is too small.
      My guesstimated size for you would be around a 43. For a more aggressive fit, the toe box of the shoe should be small enough that your toes do not extend out from your foot, but they should not be crushed. Think of the way you curl your toes under before trying to stand on your tippy toes. If the shoe is too tight it may be too painful to put your full weight on your toes, and you won’t be able to wear them for long periods. The shoe will break in some, so a little tightness is ok, but don’t count on them stretching.

      I wear a 11.5 street shoe, and I sized my Testarossas at a 42. You don't want these shoes to be loose or sloppy at all, and even though they are lined, they stretched quite a lot. I would not have gone any larger with mine at all. They are perfect. If I was you, I would with a 41.5, or even smaller. These shoes are super aggressive, and should be sized as such. My advice would be to try a bunch of sizes on, find the one that feels the way you want it to fit, then downsize 1.5 sizes. If you want a more comfortable shoe, you should go with something less aggressive. There is nothing worse than a sloppy climbing shoe. I hope that helps!

      They will stretch and break in, I wear a 46 in street shoes, size 12, and I ordered a 44.5 in the testarossas and I wish i had gone another half size down. La Sportiva shoes always need to be sized down a bit in order to get the tightness that you want. If you can wiggle your toes separately, then the shoe is too big and should be sized down a little. I have a normal to wide foot and these fit great because of the laces, which allow you to customize the tightness of the shoe to make them fit like a glove. These shoes will hug your feet and I only lace them up when I am about to try something serious, because otherwise they just work so well loose laced. Hope this helps.

      Unanswered Question

      how do these compare to baraccudas? i...

      how do these compare to baraccudas? i have a pair and want to find a substitute for the amazing edging it provides. Would these be good? Suggestions on the size difference (i have very small feet)? any other suggestions to look into?

      does anyone know how these size compared...

      does anyone know how these size compared to the cobras?

      I have a pair of Cobras (couple years old now), and have tried on a friend's testarossas which happen to be the same size. They fit perfectly! if you're happy with the way your cobras fit you, go for the same size in testarossa, they ought to be great once they break in.

      I have two pair of cobras euro 40 and 41. Well 41 fits well but heel may pop on some hooks. 40 is hell to wear until break in but it stretchs a lot and is a very soft shoe so it is bearable to wear up to 20 mins. Anyways i go with size 41 in testarossa and fit is superb for both sport and bouldering..BTW i wear size 44(us 10.5) street

      Hi. Can't find these locally... Can anybody...

      Hi. Can't find these locally... Can anybody tell me about their fit compared with miura laces or miura vs?? Thanks

      I went down a 2 sizes (from 43 to 41) from miuras to testarossa, but that's partly because I wanted a much tighter fit. Since these are more aggressive shoes than the miura, you shouldn't worry too much about going down a size or so.

      You'll LOVE these shoes! Get 'em asap and prepare to be amazed.

      what would be better for bouldering,...

      what would be better for bouldering, testerossas or soultions?

      It mostly depends on what you like. Both shoes have a pretty similar shape as far as how they're downturned and the way they grip, but the Testarossas are lace-up, and the Solutions are not. So if you're the sort who takes his shoes off after every attempt, the Solutions might be a better idea, but they aren't going to fit quite as snugly as the Testarossas will.

      Best Answer

      Having both, I would say that the Solution is the better bouldering shoe. First, their slipper/single strap design makes them easier to take on and off rapidly, which bouldering lends to. Also, the firm heel cup lends its self to aggressive heel hooks, which are more common bouldering than in route climbing. The Testarossa has a very soft and thin heel cup that gives on really thin heel hooks, such as small crimps and slopers.

      The Testarossa is still an excellent, especially for steep routes and crimpy test pieces. The Testarossa has a more round toe that allows for powerful back steping on the smallest of edges and smears, where as the solution comes to a point for directing power into the big toe. In the end its really just a preference choice.

      Unanswered Question

      Are these less downturned than the old...

      Are these less downturned than the old testarossas? And how can you compare the sizing to the old solutions?

      Has anyone tried the new Vibram XS Grip2?...

      Has anyone tried the new Vibram XS Grip2? Any noticeable improvement over the original XS Grip? And, if so, is the new rubber on the heel as well? I'd have nothing but positive things to say about these shoes if they improve the heel hook capabilities via stickier rubber.

      Best Answer

      hey B-Ville! I have tried the new XS grip on these very shoes! and let me tell you, comparable to my LA Sportiva Solutions, (with the old grip) they have a much stickier feel to them, i can smear and feel just as secure as if though i was on a huge foot hold, same goes with edging. As far as the heel, i'm not sure if it's the same rubber, but it is sticky just the same. It's safe to say that I've never felt more secure using the heel.