Are you wondering : How to stretch snowboard boots?
Maybe, you just got yourself some awesome snowboard boots and feel it’s a bit too snug.
You’re anxious that you won’t be able to break your snowboard boots in time for your next run and you’re already starting to google how to stretch snowboard boots.
There’s an old Asian myth that helps you break your shoe in an instant and that is to bite the shoe before it bites you.
I would love to tell you it’s as easy as that, unfortunately, you’ll just get something in your mouth.
Here are some steps that can help with breaking in snowboarding boots.
- Walk it out
- Strapping In Snowboard Boots
- Bending And Flexing In Your Snowboard Boots
- Heat Molding At Store
- Heat Molding At Home
- Replace The Footbed
- Use Thin Socks
- Cut Off Some Liners
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Stretch Snowboard Boots Naturally
1. Walk It Out
These boots are made for walking and that’s just what they’ll do!
If you just read that line and automatically a song came into your head, high five.
But, it’s still true and a big tip in ways to stretch your snowboard boots. Walk it out every day every 10-15 minutes.
Why is it crucial to walk in it until your snowboard boots get comfortable? Walking it out helps the mold adjust to your feet and follow the dimension of your feet.
Once the dimension of the foot is set, you can snowboard so much more comfortably instead of trying to break the boots when you’re already skiing.
Do snowboard boots stretch fast? Naturally breaking in new ski boots should take about 1-2 weeks, so ensure you have ample time to break in naturally.
2. Strapping In Snowboard Boots
Yes, strap in those boots. Spend a whole day at home walking around in your snowboard boots. Need to cook? Cook in your snowboard boots. Hang out in the living room? Hang out with your snowboard boots.
I think you get me. Strapping in your snowboard boots helps stretch your snowboard boots faster as the heat from your feet will mold your boots.
This method is slightly faster than walking it out as you’re going to spend practically the whole day molding it naturally rather than doing so every day for 10-15 minutes.
3. Bending And Flexing In Your Snowboard Boots
Bending and flexing is another way to stretch your snowboard boots naturally. Why bend and flex?
Bending and flexing are repeating the actions that you will be doing when you are snowboarding.
When you do this process make sure you’re in a warm or room temperature area so that it quickens the molding process.
I bet by now you’re wondering if there are any ski boot stretching tools. There is somewhat a ski boot stretcher that you can use, however, this only helps with the width of the boot and does not help with breaking in the boots entirely.
Stretch Snowboard Boots By Heat Molding
Other than manually having to heat mold your snowboard boots there are 2 ways to speed up the process. Which is doing it at the store or in the comfort of your own home.
Nevertheless, most snowboard boots come with heat molding liners now. However, they are on the higher price and so if your budget is on the lower side you still would need to do heat molding on your own.
How to heat mold snowboard boots? Here are 2 ways on how to stretch snowboard boots using heat molding.
Using this method should speed up the process of breaking in snowboard boots and have a more comfortable fit.
1. Heat Molding At Store
I personally recommend heat molding snowboard boots to be done at the store as it saves so much time from doing it yourself and ultimately; because your warranty won’t become void. You will still be granted your warranty.
These shops are professional and trained to do the heat molding without damaging your snowboard boots.
So what they will do is, take the liners and footbed out before placing the liners on a machine that will then heat them up and make them flexible.
They will then put it back on the snowboard boots and have you walk around for about 10-15 minutes so it will mold nicely to the shape of your foot.
It will take 1-2 rides after to fully break your snowboard boots but it will be comfortable enough for you to refrain from feeling stiff.
2. Heat Molding At Home
If you’d like to save some money and do the heat molding yourself, you need one tool to help.
A blow-dryer. This substitutes the heat molding machine that stores would use.
Here are some simple steps to do when heat molding snowboard boots at home:
1. Put on your snowboard boots
2. Pinpoint exactly where it is putting pressure on your foot.
3. Take it off. Blow-dry the area of pressure points. Do this for about 15 minutes.
4. Put it back on and let it mold your foot naturally for another 10 minutes.
Alternatively, you can watch this video on how to do heat molding at home.
In this video, you can see that they are using a few other things that help with heat molding. Instead of using a blow dryer, they’re using a microwave as the appliance to give out hot air.
Things To Consider When Heat Molding at Home
I do not recommend you do heat molding yourself for a variety of reasons. Blow-drying the snowboard boots yourself could potentially destroy your snowboard boots and there isn’t going back when this happens.
How can this happen?
This happens because you can’t control the heat from your blow-dryer and do not know at what temperature to stop.
The second you end up accidentally destroying your snowboard boots, your warranty is also void and you aren’t able to claim anything anymore.
I recommend spending a little bit more money doing it at your local professional store to do the heat mold rather than taking the risk to do it yourself.
Bear in mind that the video that I shared with you above is done by an expert. He knows exactly what he is doing and if you are new to this; I say abort the mission.
Making Snowboard Boots More Comfortable
1. Replace The Footbed
There are various reasons why I do not recommend you do so yourself. Blow-drying the snowboard boots yourself could potentially destroy your snowboard boots and there isn’t going back when this happens.
How would replacing the footbed of your snowboard boots make your boots more comfortable? Replacing the original footbed with a thinner insole will help in making your feet more comfortable when using your snowboard boots.
Using a thinner insole, you are able to have more space and better support because you will be more comfortable when using your snowboard boots.
The key to a more comfortable fitting lies in the thickness of your snowboard boot’s insole. The thinner it is, the better it is for your feet.
Here are some insoles you can easily get online.
This is amazing as it helps get the stress off your feet and back. When snowboarding a lot of the pressure is on the foot and with this, you have reliable support and comfort. More on the pricey side, but it would be an investment worthwhile.
Powerstep insoles help alleviate any pain in the ball of the foot. You can order the insole with your exact shoe size so no trimming would be required. This money-back guarantee product assures to keep the pressure off your feet and tendons.
2. Use Thin Socks
How thin should your socks be? Buying proper socks for snowboarding helps. Here are some of my favorites that you must have to enjoy snowboarding.
These socks have a technology that ensures your feet are kept warm while skiing without you having to worry about those freezing toes.
It also has high durability so you’re able to wear it on trails and terrains without any discomfort. A big plus is that it’s so lightweight, perfect for how socks should be.
This pair of socks has a variety of colors that are perfect for both men and women to use. These socks keep your feet warm at a perfect temperature throughout the day.
It’s made up of premium cotton that hinders any build of sweating. So if you have naturally sweaty feet, these are the socks for you. When socks prevent this build of sweat, it also means that the socks won’t become as smelly as usual.
30% merino wool, these socks will have your feet warm the whole day. Using these socks helps maintain the heat and keep your feet from being cold.
What I totally love about these socks is the fact that it’s over the calf making sure you’re extra cozy. But wouldn’t that mean that it would slip down easily?
The socks are non-slip! Yes I know, unbelievable!
3. Cut Off Some Liners
When you decide to do this, make sure you have tried all the rest of the options before actually getting the knife to cut off some liners because there is no turning back when you start cutting off the liners.
The area you should be cutting off is the toe area. Cut a little cut to make some space so that it’s more comfortable to have your feet in.
Filling Up Space In Snowboard Boots
Alternatively, you can also add a little more room by adding a heel lift. This can easily fill up unwanted space in your boots without compromising the fit of the snowboarding boots.
However, if you do have a high arch it’s not recommended for you to use a heel raise because when using a heel raise it automatically makes your stand taller and if you are going snowboarding you might have less control over your snowboard.
The type of heel lift you are getting is very crucial so that after you use it you make sure your toes do not cramp after using it.
Factors To Consider When Buying Snowboard Boots
Here are some factors you need to consider when buying the perfect snowboard boots.
Your snowboard size and your shoe size should be the same. But you know how sometimes when you use brand A you’re a size 8 and when you use brand B you’re 7?
It’s the same with snowboard boots, different brands do have different sizing. How should snowboard boots fit? The fitting should be snug, not too tight that it is close to painful, and not loose enough that you feel a gap when walking.
2. Distance of Toe
If you’re wondering, should my toes touch the end of my snowboard boots? The answer is no. Your toe should slightly brush the front of the snowboard boots. How tight should snowboard boots be?
Your toes are still able to wiggle inside but the spacing shouldn’t be so big that you can feel it when you press down on the tip of the snowboard boots.
Lace up your snowboard boots to see the fit. Lace it up as how you would normally lace up your snowboard boots so you could get the perfect fit.
Try walking around to see if there’s any pressure or pain. If it’s too tight, it is not the perfect fit.
3. Heel Lift
After you’ve tried it on and feel comfortable with the fit and check the toe distance you need to check the heel lift.
Lean forward and bend like how you would do when you’re doing a turn while snowboarding. This is to ensure that your heel fits perfectly and your liner doesn’t lift.
If it doesn’t then buy the snowboard boots because everything else fits perfectly.
Snowboarding Boots And Their Tightness
I understand it’s hard to differentiate if it’s too tight because of how snug the fitting can be when trying on the snowboard boots.
Should snowboard boots be tight?
Here’s how to check if the snowboard boots are too tight.
1. Put on the snowboard boots and check to see if your toes feel like there is the pressure at the front or if it feels like it’s curling. This is a big indicator that it is too tight.
2. Do the heel lift test. Press on your heel and bend your knees. Your toes should be able to have slight room to move, if it doesn’t then it’s too tight.
3. The snowboard boots are supposed to feel snug, and not overbearingly tight. If it starts to hurt, then it’s too tight.
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Best Types Of Snowboard Boots
Here are some snowboard boots that I recommend that you can easily buy off Amazon.
1. System APX Men’s Snowboard Boots
These boots not only already have heat molding liners inside that would save you so much time from going through all of the above, but it also has traditional laces that make fitting better.
It has a special metal hook design that ensures your lace is snugged throughout the day when you are riding. This boot comes with a 3-year warranty.
The warranty is long enough to keep you covered until your next snowboard boots. To add on, the product is from a small business and I’m all for supporting small businesses.
2. Siren Lux Women’s Snowboard Boots
Similar to the boots I recommend above, these boots are for women.
Also a product from a small business, this boot comes with a 3-year warranty.
This boot comes with a heat liner that helps put pressure off on all points and adapt to curve your foot perfectly. Other than that, it also comes with a quick lace inner liner that helps place your food perfectly inside.
3. BURTON Grom BOA Snowboard Boots Kid’
If you’re ever planning to bring your kid out to go snowboarding here is some good snowboard boots.
The boots are made up of soft flexing material to ensure a comfortable experience while learning to snowboard.
As kids grow out of their shoes faster, this boot is equipped with a room-to-grow feature that has an integrated footbed that can expand the boots without compromising the fit of the boot.
FAQs On How To Stretch Snowboard Boots
How Can I Stretch Tight Snowboard Boots?
You must be wondering how you can stretch tight snowboard boots and if you can use a heat gun to soften up the foam liner. It should soften the pressure points however it is at your own cost but not recommended by me. Going to the store to do heat molding is best.
Why Do My Feet Go Numb In Snowboard Boots?
If you’re wondering why my feet go numb in snowboard boots it’s most probably because your boot is too big for your feet and you’re doing the instep buckle too hard to secure your foot. What happens is that the nerves and blood vessels are being pressured causing no blood circulation.
How Long Does It Take For Snowboard Boots To Break In?
How long does it take for snowboard boots to break in without heat molding? It takes between one to two weeks to naturally break in your snowboard boots. If you would like a faster approach to breaking in snowboard boots, try the steps above by using the heat molding method.
In a nutshell, your snowboard boots will eventually stretch and you’ll soon find yourself comfortable enough. Though you could always use these tips above and speed up the process of how to stretch snowboard boots.
If you have followed all the tips above, you should be able to enjoy snowboarding with snowboarding boots that fit like it’s made just for your feet.
You’re still feeling that your snowboard boots might not be the perfect size for you? I suggest a quick stop at the shop and try on a different pair and get the right size! If a snowboarding boot is too big there’s no way to fix that problem other than getting a refund.
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