Climbing shoes are the most important thing in your whole climbing gear, they are even more important than climbing chalk, that’s why it is important to pick the correct shoe size for your feet. A very common problem for climbers is that their climbing shoes rub their feet, but many experienced climbers said that climbing shoes should be tight to let you climb easier, but is that true? How tight should my climbing shoes be? Those and many more questions we will answer in this article so stay with us.
Let’s start with the topic’s question which is “Should climbing shoes rub my feet?” the short and simple answer is “No”. Climbing shoes should not rub your feet, but if that’s true then how tight should climbing shoes be? Based on our research and the knowledge we already have we will tell you some valuable advice to make your climbing life easier.
How tight should my climbing shoes be?
Climbing isn’t an easy task, and the shoes should help us climb easier and not make it harder for us. If you will try hiking with too-tight shoes then after a mile you will slowly get irritated by your shoes which will prevent you from enjoying your hike, and also won’t let you give it your best, but let’s get back to the climbing.
Too tight shoes can make your climbing session more difficult. Your heel or toes will start to hurt with every move, and you won’t be able to use them to the fullest due to the pain. Many experienced climbers tend to say that “Climbing shoes should be tight”, but that’s often misleading for new climbers.
Because of this advice, new climbers are willing to buy shoes which way too small for their feet, and that’s the issue of misunderstanding. It is true that your foot should not be loose in your shoe but, not to the point of hurting yourself. You need to aim for something in the middle.
If you try on your shoes they should not hurt your feet while you are sitting and walking in them, but they should feel a bit uncomfortable while walking because that’s not their purpose. So if your feet start to hurt after a while of wearing them then that means that your shoes are too tight.
But what you can do if you have already bought those shoes, there are some options for you so let’s talk about them to make you less worried and help you out.
What can I do if bought unfitting climbing shoes?
If you already have unfitting climbing shoes, there are some options left for you. If you bought them in the local store or on the internet there should be an option to “return an item” if it wasn’t more than a month since your purchase, but some stores have a different policy so make sure to check it out if you still can return them and get back your money.
If you are already past the day of the possibility to return the item, then we need to focus on your shoes to make them more comfortable. Note that shoes, if they are still new, can stretch a bit, after some hours of wearing, that’s why with every climbing session you should feel a bit better.
You can use old newspapers or magazines and fill your shoes with them, that will stretch them out a bit without you hurting your feet. Also, make sure to not have too long toes nails because that will make your shoes feel tighter. Or maybe you are wearing socks while climbing? That also will make your shoes tighter for your feet. Climbers tend to wear climbing shoes without socks.
If your climbing shoes are too loose then wearing socks can make you feel more comfortable while wearing them, so try it out with different socks, or put many layers on. That will help you move with your shoes a bit better, but that won’t be as near good as wearing the correct size of shoes.
How to wear climbing shoes correctly?
Maybe the issue lies in the way that you are wearing your shoes. As we told you before you need to make sure that your toenails are short, and also you are not wearing socks while climbing. Climbing shoes are not comfortable that’s why you should take them off while you are not climbing to let your feet rest a bit before the next approach.
Make sure that your pants do not catch on your shoes, because that’s a common problem while you are climbing in pants rather than shorts.
In Summary – Should climbing shoes rub my feet?
Your climbing shoes should definitely not rub your feet while wearing them, because that won’t let you give your best while climbing, so make sure that your shoes are not too tight, and use some of our tips to make them feel more comfortable because that can be the reason why you are not progressing as a climber.
If you are interested in climbing shoes then make sure to read our new article about climbing expenses where we talk a bit more about shoes and how to pick the right size in this article “Is Bouldering Expensive? – (Make It Cheaper)“.