How Tight Should My Walking Boots Be?

This is a common question and many people incorrectly believe you should have tight, restrictive walking boots. This is an easy way to damage your feet, but a loose boot can be just as uncomfortable and detrimental to your walking. The simplest way to think of this is to go for snugness rather than tightness.


Effective Fitting

When trying out hiking boots for the first time, you should make an effort to go later in the day. Feet swell throughout the day and trying boots towards the evening will provide a more realistic fit after a day on the move.  Find a pair in your size, and you may want to bring along some walking socks so you get a more accurate gauge for the fit due to them being thicker than normal socks. They should fit your feet well with a small amount of space at the front so your toe isn’t scrunched up.

When laced up, your foot should feel supported but there should be no point where it feels too tight as any pressure points will be a hotbed for blisters and pain. Make sure you are very comfortable before you make a decision as any uncomfortable points will be amplified over a whole day of walking.

While breaking in your boots is a part of any hiker’s routine, the boots should still be comfortable before this process. This goes for any insoles you regularly wear, which you should bring along to check the fit too.

Related Articles

  • How Do I Break In and Care for My Walking Boots?

    For any hiker, your walking boots are your most important piece of gear and taking good care of them is important for prolonging their life. There are lots of simple...
  • fleece-guide

    Fleece Guide: How to Choose a Fleece

    The chances of owning a good fleece are close to 100% if you’re serious about the outdoors in general, but fleece is such a versatile material that you’ll find its...
  • How to Prepare Before a Hike

    If you’re hiking for any length of time, it’s essential to prepare effectively. The mantra of “fail to prepare, prepare to fail” may seem like a cliché but it stands...
  • Backpacking Guide

    Which Backpack is Right for Me?

    There are a wide range of backpacks on the market, ranging from small-capacity hydration packs to high-capacity backpacking rucksacks. Selecting the right design for you is easy when you know...