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Best Beginner Climbing Shoes: A Buyer’s Guide

best beginner climbing shoes

Climbing is a thrilling hobby but you need good shoes to keep a strong grip running without being at risk of slipping or harming yourself. The best beginner climbing shoes will be comfortable on your feet while also giving you the grip and traction you need when in some of the toughest situations.

What to Consider

It’s typically best to find a leather shoe when looking for the best beginner climbing shoes on the market. The problem with so many synthetic shoes is that while they are sturdy, they are not all that breathable and aren’t all that flexible. Leather shoes are different as they are breathable and will conform to your foot’s shape.

The shoe might take a bit for you to break in depending on what you get but it will be worthwhile. In fact, an unlined leather shoe will be more comfortable than one that has a lining on it as it will stretches a little more.

The closures on your shoes should be checked carefully. The best shoes are lace-up ones that will not be at risk of falling off while you are climbing. These will add more of a fit onto your feet but you should make sure any shoe you get in this case is breathable enough to fit onto your feet without possibly slipping off all that easily.​

Velcro closures can still be useful if you’re in climbing situations that are not too intense and don’t entail too many rocks or other items that might fly right at you. Still, you should see how those enclosures work and if there are any securing features on them to keep such closures from slipping off far too quickly.​

The rubber that you have for your shoe should also be checked. Anything that is flexible enough to go around the rocky surfaces that you can go onto all during a typical day while climbing will certainly be useful. This can help you out with keeping a good grip going without risking the shoe slipping off or otherwise being far too hard to wear.​

The thickness of the rubber is especially important to think about. The thickness level of your rubber can include something that is close to 3 to 4mm to create a more sensitive feel that will help you get a better grip onto the underfoot of the rock.​

Something that is a little thicker may also be worthwhile on your feet. Thicker rubber will add support to your feet so they will not wear out quickly and won’t feel much pain as you go onto some jagged or otherwise rough surfaces around a space.​

Your rubber should also be capable of wicking away moisture or other items that you can walk into. Don’t look for a shoe with rubber that absorbs water to make it heavier for a bit. Of course, you still have to use preventative measures in this case by avoiding open puddles or other spaces where water can be wide open in.​

Best Beginner Climbing Shoes

La Sportiva Tarantula

best beginner climbing shoe

The Tarantula from La Sportiva is one of the best beginner climbing shoes for you to check out right now. The Tarantula has a pair of closures on the top to conform to your feet quite well.

The rubber surface uses FriXion technology that creates an adhesive feel on the rubber. This allows you to stick onto rock surfaces and even some smoother tones, particularly the plastic surfaces that you might find on a simulated climbing wall.

This shoe is also made with unlined leather, thus giving you a more comfortable feeling without your feet possibly wearing out as you are climbing.

Mad Rock Flash 2.0

best beginner climbing shoes

This Mad Rock shoe is a good option for men and women to find. The leather on this shoe is paired with a rubber sole and a two-part Velcro fastening system.

The Synflex feature is especially popular as it uses a stretching synthetic material on the leather upper.

This creates a good fit while also keeping the shoe from feeling still. The heel is also fully molded and has a soft insole to keep friction down. The shock gel feature will also keep your heel comfortable as you won’t feel all that much pressure as you are climbing with it.

Five Ten Anasazi Moccasym

This is a shoe from Five Ten that has a striking red and black body but the biggest part of this comes from the C4 rubber surface.

It is only about 5mm thick so it should be flexible enough for your feet without adding more weight than necessary. It also creates a strong grip that will work well over most places.

The fasteners on this shoe are rather interesting as they combine the snap-based fasteners of other shoes with a slight series of ties around the end of the heel. These can be tied up around your foot if desired to create a strong fit that will stay around for a while and will not add any irritation.​

Climb X Redpoint

The Redpoint shoe has a mesh tongue that lets air move in quite well and has a perfectly molded rubber hooking heel that will anchor itself onto surfaces quite well.

The anchor features will not wear out or tear off easily, thus giving you a more comfortable texture that you will certainly enjoy walking with.

The ankle cuff is also padded to stay soft and relaxed. This even has an organic hemp foot bed to keep the shoe from having far too many odors. The two key fasteners will also strap onto your feet quite well to create a stronger feeling over your feet to make them easier to handle.

Evolv Defy

The Defy is the last of the best beginner climbing shoes to check out. The Defy has a 4mm rubber sole that takes in friction quite well and will not wear out after a while.

It uses a synthetic upper and a nylon lining to create a strong outside while also being soft and comfortable on your foot.

The midsole is also very slim so you won’t add more weight onto the shoe but it will still be relaxed and comfortable. Also, the straps on the shoe are easy to adjust for when you need to get a better fit going.

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