Choosing your ski boots By Jim Lister, Ski Republic branch manager in Les 2 Alpes
Then you have to choose the size – not only the regular shoe size but the breadth, or ‘last’. For the shoe size, buckle the boot up the leg and bend your knees: your toes should be free to move. However, if when you lean back your toes aren’t touching the end of the boot, it’s too big! The ‘last’, measured at the broadest part of the foot, can range from 98 to 106 mm. Your shoes shouldn’t be done up too tightly: a good skier will always adjust their boots.
The term ‘flex’ refers to the boot’s suppleness, which depends on your level, but above all on your type of skis: piste, free-ride (off-piste) or freestyle (acrobatic). On the piste, you need a more rigid flex, becoming progressively more supple for the other disciplines. If you’re into all kinds of skiing, take piste boots.
With new boots, make sure that, after fastening all the hooks and velcro so that your calves are firmly supported without being squeezed, there are still two notches left. That will allow you to tighten up when the boot has settled.
Take the time to try out boots properly and listen to the sales assistant’s advice. And if you are hiring, don’t hesitate to come and change them if you have the slightest problem, or just for the pleasure of trying out another pair!”