best beginner climbing shoes

Best Beginner Climbing Shoes – No. 6 is (Absolutely Stunning)

After several hours of research. I made my selection of the 7 best beginner climbing shoes among more than 25 models currently available on the market.

I personally have a crush on the scarpa helix. However, do not be surprised, I have not pinned them as the best beginner climbing shoes in their range. Because what I like (their design and the fineness of their sole) is precisely what usually repels other climbers.

You will also find at the end of this article a buying guide to help you find the pair of shoes perfectly adapted to your desires … and your feet!

Why Trust Our Selection?

The editors of toptenboots spend hundreds of hours researching, analyzing and comparing products to recommend the best value for money. Our choices are unbiased, and we never accept to put one brand over another.

Best Beginner Climbing Shoes: Low Budget

These Climbing Shoes may be listed as entry-level Climbing Shoes, they are not so far of lower quality. Just be aware that they are more for beginner climbers.

la sportiva tarantula review

best beginner climbing shoes
la sportiva tarantula review

What we like:

  • Excellent value
  • Comfort
  • Suitable for beginners
  • Several finishes
  • Unlined leather

What we don’t like:

  • Their weights
  • Less suitable for intermediate climbers

Professional Recommendation:

The model La Sportiva Tarantula is, in my opinion, the perfect model for beginners! Indeed, while remaining in an affordable price range, it is extremely comfortable and adaptable, since it constitutes a kind of compromise between the flat and the intermediate shoe, with its rather thick sole, but flexible and slightly curved.

Its comfort results from several factors.

Above all, it has a leather and synthetic coating, which allows the foot to benefit from the pleasant side of the first without risking a too fast deformation of the shoe thanks to the second.

The leather, moreover, is not doubled, which increases the breathability: the foot will not slip, and the beginner climber will not be immediately rejected by possible blisters or – worse! – mushrooms or foot smells that would settle after only a few sessions.

Its asymmetrical arrangement offers more flexibility to the toes, which are a little freer in the tip, despite the narrow model (even for a climbing shoe!). This allows the user not to be locked in a shoe without flexibility, despite the thickness of the sole (5 mm).

The configuration of the sole, moreover, as well as the adherent heel, make this model as well suited to indoor and outdoor practice. The sole is indeed very resistant to abrasion while the heel makes it easier to stand on the micro-edges.

The flat Climbing Shoe, it turns out quite suitable for climbing a vertical wall filled with cracks. On the other hand, for the practice of the block, La Sportiva Tarantula quickly reveals its limits (but there is nothing astonishing here since, as I said, these Climbing Shoes are perfect for beginners and that the block is generally practiced by more seasoned climbers).

The nice side of the shoe is its wide range of finishes: several colors are available, and you can choose a lace closure or Velcro (I personally advise the lace closure, which allows to better adapt the boot on the entire foot). Its negative point: its weight. 903 grams! As much to say that you will make your muscles just by going up and down your feet along the wall!

scarpa helix climbing shoes review

scarpa helix climbing shoes review
scarpa helix climbing shoes review

What we like:

  • Comfort
  • Their weight

What we don’t like:

  • Less specifically adapted to beginners

Professional Recommendation:

Although suitable primarily for beginners, the Scarpa Helix model is also something to attract fans of climbing on the longer term, and this always despite a lower investment.

Indeed, with it is 3.5 mm sole, it allows you to really feel the different surfaces under the foot while maintaining a thickness that prevents you from feeling too much pain.

Its heel has a technologically advanced cut, which means that the support and stability of the foot are not threatened.

The gum is also reinforced at the toes and heel, which greatly improves the grip of the shoe. What reassures the beginner climber who would hesitate to climb a micro-niche (well … provided you do not suffer from vertigo, of course!)

This Climbing Shoe is thus more suited to the practice of the block than the previous model.

The leather covering brings both advantages and disadvantages. The comfort is undeniable, making this slipper an excellent choice for anyone planning to spend a lot of time in the climbing gym. On the other hand, it will inevitably undergo a stretch over time.

But this is where the practical side of lacing to the toes comes in since one can easily opt for a model a little too small at the base, which can be loosened at first for a better comfort.

In terms of design, the Scarpa Helix has the distinction of being declined in a blue man model and a mandarin woman model(No it’s not cliché, I’m sure that Madame would prefer pretty slippers to the feminine touch!)

Finally, last but not least, from the top of these 215 grams, it has a weight much lower than the previous model. If you go from one model to another, you could almost feel like flying!

Best Beginner Climbing Shoes: Mid-Range

These Climbing Shoes have some additional features that make them generally usable over a longer term or at least more suitable for the practice of some climbing surfaces (but suddenly, they are also often less recommended for beginner climbers).

five ten hiangle review

five ten hiangle review
five ten hiangle review

What we like:

  • Comfort
  • Unlined leather
  • Quality gum

What we don’t like:

  • Their narrowness

Professional Recommendation:

If I chose the Five Ten Hiangle as the best mid-range product, it’s because it has the particularity to be a perfect combination between the extended daily use Climbing Shoe and the aggressive type Climbing Shoe suitable for any terrain steep slope.

While remaining in a moderate investment, so we can already acquire a Climbing Shoe adapted to a variety of situations.

Many testimonials tend to say that this is the most comfortable aggressive slipper on the market. This is again an unlined leather model, offering all the breathability necessary for climbing high flying (it’s still the class to get to the top of the slope without a drop of sweat … less to the feet!)

The closing system itself – in velcro AND elastic – contributes to this comfort since it keeps the foot safe, even in some extreme slopes.

Small flat: apparently, you should not have a foot too broad base, even if the leather will, in the long run, relax to fit perfectly to the shape of the foot. Leather Climbing Shoes are generally recommended to be one size smaller than what is worn in street shoes, but in this case, it could be frankly uncomfortable in the early days.

Its sole of 4 mm (which is still quite thick for an aggressive boot!) Offers more rubber than is usual to meet on this type of model. But that’s what makes the Five Ten Hiangle so suitable for external use.
You will not miss a rock because your foot accidentally slipped! This rubber is also of very good quality, which guarantees a durability of the Climbing Shoe unequaled.

If it does not have a huge choice of colors, it still has a stylish design, which does not spoil anything. At 340 grams, this shoe has, I’m sure, enough to seduce any climber somewhat experienced.

la sportiva mythos review

la sportiva mythos review
la sportiva mythos review

What we like:

  • Suitable for any terrain
  • Quality gum
  • The most sold in the world

What we don’t like:

  • More expensive than other booties for beginners

Professional Recommendation:

It was impossible to make a comparison of the best beginner climbing shoes without addressing the famous La Sportiva Mythos. Although its price is slightly higher than the other models generally dedicated to beginner climbers, it is, in fact, the best-selling model in the world!

According to the brand, the Mythos Climbing Shoe “does it all and is suitable for everyone”. It is true that this Climbing Shoe, which combines technology, comfort, and performance, is really something to seduce.

It is a flat Climbing Shoe (therefore perfectly recommended for beginners who practice climbing walls with cracks), which has a sole of 4.2 mm, with a high-quality rubber, which allows a use all-terrain, without it ever seems to be deteriorating.

This rigidity of the sole, coupled with the lacing system, offers an excellent compromise between sensitivity and adhesion. Perfect to reassure young climbers, without depriving them of a discovery of the feeling of the wall under the feet.

Again, it’s a Best Beginner Climbing Shoes that the brand decided to decline into a man model (in brown tones) and a woman model (in shades of gray). The coating is leather (so pay attention to the stretch over time!) And its weight is on the average: 450 grams

Ideal for beginners who are looking for a Best Beginner Climbing Shoes that can take them on any type of terrain, it is not designed, in my opinion, for long climbs overhanging sports, where the heels and toes must be mobilized precisely on micro-niches, which requires a greater flexibility of the shoe.

For those who would like it, I inform you that on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of this slipper icon market. The brand has decided to release an “Eco” version, made of 95% recycled materials (for example, the sole is obtained by recycling the rubber used in the shoe production process at the La Sportiva factory, and the laces and straps are made from recycled fishing nets). An eco-friendly gesture that can only be emphasized.

scarpa instinct vs review

scarpa instinct vs review
scarpa instinct vs review

What we like:

  • Optimal grip to the toes
  • Reinforced heel
  • Helps to a rapid progression

What we don’t like:

  • Long and painful lapping

Professional Recommendation:

Although it has a fairly aggressive form, the Scarpa Instinct Lace is to be put in the category of intermediate Climbing Shoes and used early in the course of the climber.

Warning! These are not Climbing Shoes to use to learn climbing, but their specific design is that they will still be quickly used by climbers (almost) beginners. Once they have trained a few months and they will have a desire to give a boost to their progress.

Their sole with a thickness of 4 mm has a fairly rigid rubber, which has the advantage of allowing a good grip on any type of surface. This is particularly noticeable on the toes, which are more cramped than on other models, which guarantees optimal grip.

However, this rigidity itself, coupled with a coating of the synthetic shoe, makes this model long enough to be the foot (you may suffer during your first climbs!).

On the other hand, we stay in a medium weight range, with a slipper of 440 grams. Which does not constitute a hindrance to your acrobatics. Especially if you are a follower of the block, for which the Scarpa Instinct Lace is highly recommended.

What makes the most of the Scarpa Instinct Lace is the shape of its heel, narrow and reinforced. This guarantees high precision (never negligible in climbing), not to mention that it extends the life of the shoe.

Although the basic model, as its name suggests, laces, there is a variant with Velcro closure. However, I advise the lace closure for a better hold of the foot (and more ease of adjustment to it during break-in)

In terms of design, there is no choice here: this model exists only in black and orange, which does not prevent me from finding it very elegant, as well for a man as for a woman.

Best Beginner Climbing Shoes: High End

These Climbing Shoes feature advanced manufacturing technology, which is sometimes reflected in their price. But we will not lie, if you want to practice intensively climbing, it is necessary to invest in a long-term (very) good Climbing Shoe.

la sportiva genius review

la sportiva genius review
la sportiva genius review

What we like:

  • Universality
  • No-Edge Technology
  • Unlined leather

What we don’t like

  • Their price

Professional Recommendation

But what makes this model THE absolute reference in climbing shoes? Without a doubt, it’s a universal side.

Indeed, this Climbing Shoe is supposed to be able to adapt to all, whatever its kind, its age, its weight, or the anatomy of its foot, and whatever surface it wishes to practice.

How is it possible?

First thanks to the innovative No-Edge technology: thanks to a rubber that is both soft and sticky, the contact surface is enlarged compared to other shoes. Your foot will not look for an edge or an irregularity to cling to but really grip on the entire support surface.

So you reach an unmatched level of adhesion while maintaining a very good sensitivity, with a sole thickness of only 3 mm.

The intersample itself has been worked in such a way that the weight of the climber is supported. Even if the shoe is not excessively tight. No more locking up your foot in a slipper too small: thanks to this technology. La Sportiva Genius adapts to any type of foot (yes, even your big flat feet can feel at ease!).

The lace closure, this completes this adaptability, since it allows to adjust the shoe around the foot accurately and comfortably.

To avoid spoiling the comfort of the Climbing Shoe, their surface is made of leather and synthetic. Which guarantees that it will not deform almost over time. So you can take a slipper directly to your usual size.

The leather itself is not doubled, which increases the breathability of the shoe.

Finally, as a Belgian, I can only appreciate their black-yellow-red design!

You will understand, from the height of their 440 grams. These shoes will satisfy all feet … and all types of climbing. Although they are particularly recommended for use on vertical walls. They also allow an intensive practice of the block, thanks to their adhesion system.

five ten anasazi lv review

five ten anasazi lv review
five ten anasazi lv review

What we like:

  • Comfort
  • versatility
  • Excellent feeling of the wall
  • Particularly suitable for technical climbing

What we don’t like

  • Very thin sole

Professional Recommendation

Yes, I know, I’m going to be accused of introducing these slippers in the ranking for the simple reason of their design. (pink! – in case their name is not explicit enough). But I assure you, making Five Ten Anasazi Pink a must-have climbing shoe is their incredible versatility.

It’s at the heel that everything is played here. It is shaped in such a way that, thanks to its roundness, your heel is easily lodged there.

So, if you choose your slipper size correctly. The toes will naturally fit in the tip (you almost feel like you’re putting on a glove … on the toes), and your foot is properly maintained throughout. the ascent.

In addition, with the Five Ten Anasazi Pink, the risk of deformation is minimal. On the one hand, its coating is the synthetic material. On the other hand, the rubber goes back above the liner, which reduces the risks.

As much to say that the comfort of your feet is guaranteed for a long time.

By cons, what makes the performance of the Climbing Shoe is both what could put you off: the sole. This one is very thin, only 2 mm! It’s great to feel the wall hanging under your foot, but it can be painful when you’re not used to it.

This sensitivity, combined with the reinforcement spread over the entire sole. Makes it a Climbing Shoe particularly suitable for technical climbing (taking precision will no longer have any secrets for your feet!).

There are earlier versions of this boot, including velcro closures, but, again. I recommend the laces version, which allows to really adapt the boot to the shape of your foot.

With their beautiful pink dress and 450 grams. The Five Ten Pink Anasazi have something to seduce everyone (do not worry, gentlemen, the pink does not detract from your manhood!)

How to choose your climbing shoes?

The weight

We do not always realize the impact that the weight of our shoes can have on our movements. It goes without saying that this is all the truer in a sport like climbing. Where each movement requires lightness and precision.

But beware! It is not a question of taking the lightest slipper possible (you have already tried to climb a rock with the help of a simple cotton sock – light, but not very effective …).

It is necessary to find the right balance between lightness and protection. Between precision and help with climbing (it is necessary to offer a maximum of power to the foot without enclosing it in heaviness so that the climber preserves its energy on each movement).

Flexibility

Climbing, it feels. In the hands, in the arms, in the abs, in the thighs and … in the feet!

The climber’s bootie should be flexible enough to allow him to feel and “pack” the jack. But this flexibility should not be at the expense of proper support.

Protection

If you practice climbing, you must spare your feet. They are your tools of work as well as your hands.

This should be reflected in the surface of the Climbing Shoe (leather, synthetic, …). As in the sole (do you prefer a thickness that ensures maximum shock absorption or on the contrary a finesse that allows better feel the catch?).

The tip and heel of your bootie should particularly hold your attention. A high-end eraser strategically placed in these two places allows you to grip easily and not slip.

Comfort

When you start climbing, you can not stop hearing comments like “a climbing shoe, it must tighten”. Yes and no!

Believe me, if you take a Climbing Shoe too tight, you will not get to the top of the slope easily. It’s impossible to focus on your movements when our Climbing Shoe cut off traffic!

How to guarantee optimal comfort for its Climbing Shoe?

Size

Above all, your bootie must have the right size. That is to say?

It will be different for each of us (a slipper will not fit the same way on my big flat foot or on the very end of my friend dancer star). But, generally, it is necessary to count that the big toe must reach the end of the Climbing Shoe. (Otherwise, it is too big) and that the rest of the toes must not be crushed against the tip (otherwise it is too small).

It is also necessary to take into account the material of lining. The leather will relax with the use, contrary to synthetic

The material

Preferably, your Climbing Shoe should be made of a comfortable material. (I myself have a preference for leather, softer and more adjustable)

He must also breathe. Impossible to climb well with a foot that slips into the slipper! Not to mention the inconvenience of catching mushrooms or seeing his shoes stink after a few uses.

The sole

Your Climbing Shoe must also have a sole with good damping, whatever its thickness.

The type of closure

Finally, it must have a closure system adapted to your type of climbing. It’s annoying when you climb in the room and remove. His shoes between each track, having to fade laces at each shot.

And on the other hand, it is not advisable to have a simple Velcro when rock climbing. It would be a shame to see his boot open in the middle of a steep slope!

Best Beginner Climbing Shoes: Man or Woman?

Mixed Climbing Shoes, men’s Climbing Shoes, women’s Climbing Shoes … Is there a real difference?

The answer is yes and no.

Yes because the Climbing Shoes labeled “for women” often have a volume lower than those labeled “men”, with a thinner design. They are usually also available in smaller sizes.

But that does not mean that you must wear a Climbing Shoe according to your gender. Indeed, if you find that your Climbing Shoes are not well adjusted, and often filled with air in the heel. It is quite possible that the Climbing Shoes for women suit you better, even if you are a man. A true (on the contrary, for my part, I am often more comfortable in mixed Climbing Shoes or for men).

The type of Climbing Shoes

There are three types, each adapted to a certain purpose.

The flat Climbing Shoes

It has a medium-to-stiff sole, usually quite thick and less sensory. Its strengths: it is perfectly suited to crack walls and often seduces beginners with its comfort.

The intermediate Climbing Shoes

It often has a more grippy sole than the flat shoe. Its shape, more curved, allows a more versatile climb.

It is generally less comfortable than the flat Climbing Shoe, but more than the aggressive Climbing Shoe.

The aggressive Climbing Shoes

It is recognized by its curved sole, thinner and more adherent. It is generally less comfortable and adapts less to walls with cracks than dishes.

On the other hand, it’s THE Climbing Shoe to have if you want to practice the block.

In conclusion

As you can see, best beginner climbing shoes depend on both your level and the type of terrain you practice. My advice if you are a beginner: take the most versatile Climbing Shoes possible. The one that will adapt to any type of terrain or surface.

Admittedly, it will not be optimal on any surface but will test everything.

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