Tips for Rock Climbing Shoes Last
While rock climbing shoes are essential equipment for both rock climbing and bouldering, they aren't cheap. To make your shoes last as long as possible, it is important to take care of them. The largest factor in making rock climbing shoes last is to be sure aware of the wear they receive. Without being observant of how you use them and diligent about maintaining the shoes, they will quickly succumb to the strains of rock climbing.
Seem Grip is a wonderful product with a million uses. Coat all the seams of rock climbing shoes with Seem Grip to help them hold on longer. All climbers will have a specific style or shape to their foot, and this can create problem areas which begin to deteriorate. Coat the areas which receive special wear to get much more life from your shoes.
If you live in areas where the shoes are likely to get wet, you can also buy water sealants to help prevent moisture deteriorating the soles or leather. Be sure to keep Seem Grip or any other chemicals away from the shoe's sticky rubber bottoms.
Most importantly, do not store climbing shoes in any way which disfigures the shape of them, even though they are so malleable. Rock climbing shoes should be kept out of direct sunlight because the heat can cause the rubber to become brittle or disfigured. They should not be carried in the trunk of a car or other place where extreme heat or humidity can cause the delamination of the soles. Shoes should also be kept away from dank spaces so they do not breed mold or bacteria, and they should be completely dry before they are stored away.
Rock shoes are worn without socksduring heavy exercise, so they get sweaty and will begin to smell if they are not properly cleaned. Deodorizing and anti-bacterial food powders can be purchased at most any store and are good for rock climbing shoes as well. Sprinkle the powder in the shoes every two weeks or so to keep mold and bacteria down. After every use, air shoes out thoroughly. If shoes happen to get wet, stuff newsprint down into the shoes to absorb moisture quickly.
The soles of the shoes often receive quite a beating. Brushing them off with an old toothbrush to remove grit and dust can greatly improve the longevity of the shoe. Such dust and grit may seem minor, but can create cracks and wear marks with heavy use.
Sloppy footwork maximizes the abuse given to the shoes. Shoes are designed to have the largest wear impact on the toes and the upper, inside edge of the foot. These are the areas which are reinforced. Many novices will overly wear on the shoes due to not being precise enough with their foot placement. Go slowly and thoughtfully as you pull moves in an attempt to not only hone your skills with fluid movements, but also to minimize abuse to your shoes.