How To - Lace Hiking Boots

How To - Lace Hiking Boots

From a casual bush walk to a rugged alpine trek, there is no more important asset for hikers than their feet. To optimise the performance and comfort of your hiking boots, there are a number of methods to lacing them that can be used. Use this guide to pick the lacing technique to best suit your foot and the terrain you are walking on. Note that for the purposes of this guide, we talk about lace hooks - these techniques are still effective for boots designed with eyelets.

Heel Lock Lacing

This lacing technique is ideal for securing the foot inside the boot, minimising the heel from sliding up and down and your foot from sliding back and forth.

  1. Lace your hiking boots with your usual technique.
  2. At the second last lace hooks, take the lace straight up on the same side to the top lace hooks.
  3. Cross the laces across the front of the shoe and through the back of the loop created in step 2.
  4. Pull the laces tight, and then tie them off as per usual.

Window/Box Lacing

This lacing technique is best for helping to ease pressure points on the top of your foot. It basically removes the crossing laces from the portion of your foot that is in pain.

  1. Unlace your hiking boots down to the lace hooks that sit just below the pressure point.
  2. Re-lace the boot by going straight up on the same side to the next lace hook before crossing the laces back over again.
  3. Finish lacing up you boots with your usual technique.

Parallel Lacing

This lacing technique is also useful for relieving pressure on the top of the foot.

  1. Completely unlace your hiking boot.
  2. Re-lace your boot, starting with one line that runs across the toe.
  3. Skip the first lace hook and bring the lace up through the second one.
  4. Cross the lace over to the other side, then skip one lace hook again and bring the lace through the next one.
  5. Repeat this pattern on both sides of the boot until it is fully re-laced.

Toe-Relief Lacing

This lacing technique helps for relieving pressure in the toe box of your boot.

  1. Completely unlace your hiking boot.
  2. Lace it back up, starting at the second set of lace hooks. This releases the pressure in the toe area of your boot.
  3. Finish lacing up you boots with your usual technique.
  4. Depending on your boot's design, you can also start at the third set of lace hooks.

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