Whether rock climbing or bouldering, climbing is a sport marked by adventure, excitement, and generous amounts of adrenaline rush. Each step and climb carries behind it a lot of planning, effort, energy, and determination. Such a sport requires you to have the best equipment and gear, including shoes. Amateur, intermediate, and advanced climbers need different types of shoes. Intermediate climbers who climb v4 to v7, or 5.10 to 5.12b, have been introduced to the advanced climbing stages and must possess climbing shoes that are snug yet high on performance. But what are some of the features of the best intermediate climbing shoes, and how to recognize them? Read on to find out.
They are aggressively shaped
There are three types of climbing shoes: neutral, moderate, and aggressive. Shoes for intermediate climbers are shaped aggressively downwards like a banana, also called a camber, which enables precise movement and placement. They cause the sole to assume a prominent arch. While they may not feel comfortable at first, your feet will get used to them after a while. Shoes with this type of design help negotiate roof climbs and overhung walls marked by small footholds and pockets.
Intermediate climbing shoes have thin soles
Intermediate climbing shoes have thin soles about three to four millimeters thick since they provide flexibility and sensibility. Getting the feel is essential when placing your feet in places that excessively limit your movement. The thin soles, which are also sticky, are suited for various actions like smearing and toe hooking.
Asymmetrical with a rounded toe
An asymmetrical shoe is referred to the shape it has when seen from the top or the bottom. There are three kinds of asymmetrical lasts: low, moderate, and high, with moderate lasts being the most suited for intermediate climbers. Intermediate climbing shoes will always have downturned toes, allowing the concentration of power and proper placement required for overhang climbs. They are somewhat similar to advanced shoes in asymmetry.
How to know you are wearing the proper shoes?
The shape of your toes and the width of your feet are the two factors determining what kind of intermediate climbing shoes are best for you. While buying shoes, you should remember that the toes should be placed firmly but not in a way that they feel constricted. The heel should not be slippery at any cost. Your toes in the shoes should be able to withstand the pressure of the body’s weight without any pain.
What is the best way to fasten climbing shoes?
There are three options when it comes to tightening or lacing intermediate climbing shoes. These are Velcro straps, laces, and slip-on. If you find laces annoying, then your best bet would be Velcro straps. They are perfect for aggressive shoes and can be taken off as well worn easily. Shoes with laces are well-suited for people who climb for long hours. You can loosen the shoes if your feet swell up because of the heat and tighten the laces if you want more hold. The primary reason behind opting for slip-on is they help you scale rocks with thin cracks.
These are some of the ways to identify the best intermediate climbing shoes and buy a pair accordingly. A proper pair of shoes for an adventurous sport like climbing is necessary, not just for protection and safety but also to enrich the entire experience.