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When it comes to winter sports like alpine skiing, snowboarding, ice hockey, cross-country skiing, and ice-skating, proper fitting footwear is a must. The key to keeping feet and ankles free from injury is finding shoes that provide ample support.
Winter sports involve high-speed forward motion, jumping, and rapid lateral movement. Shoes that fit properly can help absorb some of the pressure put on your feet and ankles and reduce the risk of injury.
What to look for in winter sport shoes
Finding winter sport shoes that fit properly is not easy, especially for newcomers. If ski boots or ice skates are too tight, they can cause blisters or abrasions and cut off circulation to the lower extremities. This is particularly worrisome in cold climates. When shoes are too loose, they can cause toe irritation and leave you vulnerable to falls and ankle sprains.
When purchasing shoes for winter sports, the easiest way to ensure that you find a good fit is to visit a specialty shoe store. Have a salesperson measure your feet and recommend the most appropriate size. Ski boots and skating shoes should feel snug but not overly tight. If you purchase winter shoes but are not sure they fit properly, have a podiatrist evaluate the fit.
Issues created by improper fit
There is little room for error when it comes to fitting winter sport shoes. When shoes are too loose or too tight, the results can be disastrous.
Improper shoe wear can lead to the following injuries:
Existing foot conditions can become irritated in ski boots, snow boots, and ice skates. If you are experiencing pain from bunions or hammertoes, you may need to switch to a better-fitting shoe.