Getting ski boots which fit your feet correctly is absolutely vital from both a performance and comfort stand point. One crucial measurement you’ll need to consider is the last width, so in this article I’ll take you through everything you need to know about it.
What is Ski Boot Last?
Ski boot last refers to the width of the boot inside the shell at the widest part of the foot. The last width of a ski boot is typically around 100 mm but can range between 96 mm and 105 mm. This measurement is based on a men’s size 26.5 boot and women’s size 25.5 boot.
|Ski Boot Last Measurement||Classification|
|95 mm or less||Race|
|103 mm or more||Wide|
As you scale up or down in size, the width of the boot will alter. For example, if a 26.5 size boot has a last measurement of 100 mm, then a 27.0 size will be slightly wider.
The confusing part is that manufacturers don’t tell you the new last size. This makes it a bit more difficult to figure out what last size you need if you’re not looking at a size of 26.5 boots.
What Last Width Do I Need?
If you are a size men’s 26.5/ women’s 25.5 then you may look to get a boot with the same or slightly larger last width compared to the width of the widest point on your foot. For example, if you wear a 26.5 boot and have a foot width of 100 mm, then you should look at a last width of 100 mm to begin with.
However, if you wear a smaller or larger boot, then you’ll need to convert the sizing as the last widths all use a 26.5 boot as a reference point. Here’s how to translate the measurement:
- Measure the width of your foot at the widest point.
- Check the table below to see whether you fall into the “narrow”, “medium” or “wide” category.
|22||<89 mm||90-94 mm||>95 mm|
|23||<91 mm||92-96 mm||>97 mm|
|24||<93 mm||94-98 mm||>99 mm|
|25||<95 mm||96-100 mm||>101 mm|
|26||<97 mm||98-102 mm||>103 mm|
|27||<99 mm||100-104 mm||>105 mm|
|28||<101 mm||102-106 mm||>107 mm|
|29||<103 mm||104-108 mm||>109 mm|
|30||<105 mm||106-110 mm||>111 mm|
Here’s what boot last measurement you should look at based on which category you fit into:
- Narrow = 98 mm or less
- Medium = 98-102 mm
- Wide = 103 mm or more
Narrow vs Wide Boots
It’s not always necessary to go for an exact match between the last size and your foot width and sometimes it’s not actually recommended.
The width of the boot affects how comfortable it feels and how much control and precision it gives the skier.
The narrower the last (tighter fit), the more “performance-based” it’ll be. This means that it’ll give the skier more control and precision. However, wearing a narrower boot often comes at the price of comfort.
Choosing a wider boot will feel more comfortable as the foot isn’t being compressed as much by the boot. It’s important not to go too wide though, or it can start to feel very sloppy.
Testing Out the Boot Fit
I highly recommend that you purchase your ski boots from a reputable store with experienced members of staff. They will be able to measure your feet properly and recommend a size to you so you can test it out and see how it feels.
When you try on your boots, make sure you use a thin sock. This helps reduce the risk of pressure points and improves circulation.
Once you’re foot is properly placed inside the boot, your foot shouldn’t move around from side to side and should feel snug. If this is your first time trying ski boots on, don’t worry if they feel a lot tighter compared to your normal shoes, this is normal.
They need to fit snugly and not have any lateral movement, but they shouldn’t be painful.
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