How To Lace Walking Boots

How to Lace Walking Boots & Cure 3 Common Boot Problems

Just doing up your laces is not the best way to make your walking boots fit properly.

Get the lacing system right and it will make your feet more comfortable, will stop laces coming undone and help you enjoy your walks for longer.

What’s Your Problem?!

Decide what problems you are having with your walking boots and see if you fit into the 3 main scenarios below:

  • Heel slippage
  • Painful pressure points
  • Cramped toes
how to lace hiking boots
Standard hiking boot lacing.

Wrong Way to Lace Your Boots!

Many people simply buy a pair of walking boots and stick to the lacing setup that comes straight from the manufacturer.

But, you can improve on this and make your boots more comfortable.

By altering your lacing you are effectively creating a bespoke pair of walking boots, designed to fit your feet perfectly.

Before changing anything though always remember that as laces and boots get older they will stretch and alter their shape meaning you may have to change the laces and lacing technique as time goes by.

Once you have a system that works for you, keep it for as long as you can before you need to make adjustments.

Lacing Boots For Narrow Feet

If you have narrow feet you will need to lace your boots more tightly nearer the toe area and loosen the lacing further up the foot.

Starting the lacing in the middle of the boot and working down allows you to focus on the narrow part of your foot first. Then loop it back up the the top to hold everything in place.

Lacing Boots For Wide Feet

This technique is ideal if you have wide feet or high insteps. It creates gaps in your boot lacing to accommodate the wider parts of your feet. These gaps are called windows. You create them by not using all of the eyelets on your walking boots. You can use this technique to alleviate pressure on any part of your upper foot and again, it will make your shoes more comfortable.

Lacing Boots to Provide Relief at Pressure Points

Using the window lacing technique will help you adjust your feet to fit your boots in a more bespoke way.

wide feet hiking boot lacing
Wide feet hiking boot lacing technique

Lace Your Boots To Allow For Toe Relief

Some people like to allow their toes to have extra room inside their boots permanently, whilst others find that after a long time on the road your toes may need extra room to move to this type of lacing will help you adjust your boots fit to.

Give your feet the extra room they desire.

hiking boot laced
Toe relief hiking boot lacing technique

How to Prevent Heel Slippage

Heel slippage is when you your heel starts to slip and slide inside your walking boots and starts to rub, causing blisters.

This especially happens if you are descending a hill or you are 30 minutes into a walk and your feet have started to swell slightly and your initial lacing has become loose.

Using what’s called the surgeon’s knot can help you create a strong bond around your foot to help prevent heel slippage and provide extra ankle support.

tying the surgeon's knot when lacing up your boots
How to tie a surgeon's knot when lacing up your walking boots.
heel-slippage-hiking-boot-lacing
Heel slippage hiking boot lacing technique

Tying Off Your Laces

If you are planning on a lot of hill walking, then tying off your laces further down can give you more flexibility in your ankles. There is nothing worse than stiff and restricted ankles when you are trying to walk uphill. So instead of tying your laces up on the last hook, loop it round and back down so the know is further down the ankle.

Supporting your feet properly whilst out walking should be a priority, otherwise you can end up with long term heel damage.

Conclusion

Adjusting your lacing 30 minutes into your walk will help set you up for the rest of the day. As your feet bed in and your laces stretch, it’s always a good idea to redo your laces and find a more workable and comfortable position to keep you going.

Lacing your boots to suit your feet will make them far more comfortable and feel like a bespoke pair of walking boots.

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