lace-up-shoesLa Sportiva - Kataki Woman - Mint/Coral - Women's...
In climbing most things are pretty clear, a route/boulder has its grade and every piece of gear has it's job, so why is there always this confusion around velcro vs lace shoes. To generalise this discussion lets compare lace to any other shoe, be it velcro, slipper or what they call low volume.
Ultimately the choice comes down to personal preference, but there are a few aspects to consider when purchasing a climbing shoe and it all has to do with what kind of climbing you are planning to do. If you are a gym rat spending most of their time climbing/bouldering on plastic you will probably prefer the convenience of velcro and slip on shoes. For this type of climbing, people tend to wear quiet aggressive shoes, forcing their feet in weird positions to maximise precision/performance whilst sacrificing comfort. Another reason to wear your shoes super tight is when you are working a project. The extra tightness can provide the necessary precision to complete the problem and being able to quickly take your shoes off is a big advantage. Furthermore, especially whilst bouldering, a lot of time is spend standing and waiting between climbs, that is when you want to slip in something comfy and take those climbing shoes off quickly.
With climbing styles that require longer time spent on the rock such as multi pitching or traditional climbing comfort is more important than performance which is why climbers tend towards lace up shoes. These allow for micro adjustments, loosening and tightening in different areas which is a huge advantage.
Moreover, if you have a super weird shaped foot lace climbing shoes will probably give you a better fit than velcors due to the previously mentioned ability to perform micro adjustments when tightening them.
Now let's talk maintenance. I've heard and said it over again, lace shoes are not great for toe hooking because we tend to tear the laces off, especially with high level bouldering. Fortunately, laces are easy to replace, which cannot be said about velcro. Velcro might not tear as quickly as laces do but once those velcro teeth collect some dirt they quickly lose effectiveness.
In conclusion, the main benefit of velcro shoes is the ease with which you can get them on and off, which is also the main reason most gyms will rent velcro shoes and most climbers in the gym are wearing velcro. The downside... you do not have that much control over the fit.
The choices are endless and difficult today so contact our Customer Service or send us a mail to help you choose the right product for your needs.
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