There’s nothing worse than a day on the slopes being spoiled by damp, sweaty, uncomfortable ski or snowboard boots.
We recently caught up with Alps2Alps to provide some insight into how you can help ensure your feet and footwear are in great condition - so you can get the maximum enjoyment from your time on the mountain...
When it comes to equipment, having your own boots is much more important than having your own skis or snowboard.
We all have different shaped feet, with rental equipment rarely providing the fit needed for comfort and performance.
If skiing is more than a one-off experience, purchasing your own boots is worth the investment; and even better if you can go one step further and get moulded footbeds and foam injected liners.
There are a host of experts that can help ensure the perfect boot fit and take you through the process step by step, so that your ski/snowboard boots are tailored perfectly for you.
In skiing and snowboarding, everything comes from your stance and balance, and there’s no question a pair of well fitted boots will provide you with a great foundation for more fun on the mountain.
At the end of a long day, its easy to unclip your ski boots and leave them that way. To help your boots stay in shape, make sure you buckle them back up each time you take them off; and especially in between ski holidays. Buckling up your boots will help them maintain their integrity over a longer period of time.
Walking in boots off snow will wear away the tip and heel. If your ski boots have screw in toe and heel caps, we recommend buying spares, so you can replace them when they wear thin. If they wear too thin, you might not be able to clip into your binding properly, which becomes a safely issue – so check your boots for wear regularly.
Popping on some rubber cat tracks will help maintain the integrity of the sole for longer too, with the bonus of providing extra grip for walking.
Dry boots help keep feet warm and reduce bacterial and fungal growth, so removing moisture is essential for taking good care of your feet.
It’s common for most people to use heated boot dryers – but be careful, heating your boots can warp footbeds and damage liners. Heated dryers also require electric or battery power, which isn’t so great for the environment, and sometimes it’s simply not practical to access heated dryers when travelling.
Drysure Extreme boot dryers will dry boots 12 times faster than air drying and require no power source, meaning you can use Drysure anywhere.
Light and portable, Drysure is made from a unique plastic casing containing a bag of silica beads, which can absorb up to 10 days of moisture.
The product can also be reused, over and over again by simply removing the bags from the casing and reactivating the bags.
Bags can be reactivated by placing them in direct sunlight, on a radiator or in the oven for a short period – helping skiers and snowboarder’s dry boots quickly at home, in resort or on the go.
Drysure Active is also great for drying out low ankle footwear you may be wearing in the resort, helping dry out wet shoes fast so you never have to put on damp, soggy footwear during your ski trip.
Not only will dry boots help make your boots warmer, so will thin socks. It’s a common misconception that thick ski socks, or doubling up by wearing two pairs of socks, will help keep your feet warm inside your boots. Airflow is what will help keep your toes toasty, with thinner socks creating more room inside the boot, and as such, more airflow. Your feet will warm the air and the air will warm your feet!
Taking good care of your feet makes a big difference to feeling comfortable in your ski boots.
In particular, make sure you cut your toenails before getting into your boots, to avoid putting pressure on your nails and causing bruising.
Using a pumice stone to scrub any hard skin will help keep your feet fresh, as well as applying moisturiser at the end of each day. This is a tip to adopt before you go away, not just on your ski holiday!
At the end of each winter, it’s recommended to prepare your boots for the next winter season, so they are stored safely for summer. If there are any problems such as loose buckles, worn toe pieces etc you can tackle them straight away instead of packing away your boots for months and forgetting the problem until you realise it again when next clipping into your skis or snowboard on the slopes. Carefully take out your liners, wash the boots with warm water and a little washing up liquid and air dry the shell. Once dry, re-assemble the boot and you’ll be in good shape for the following winter. Even better, pop in a pair of Drysure for extra reassurance.
We have two designs: “Extreme” for ski boots, snowboard boots and ice hockey skates and “Active” for low ankle footwear like running or cycling shoes – also great for drying out wet shoes worn in ski resorts off the slopes!