What Are The Best Motorcycle Boots? A Quick Guide To Choosing A Pair For Riding
The best motorcycle boots protect your feet, are comfortable to wear for extended periods, and suit your style of riding and motorcycle.
It's a lot like choosing a pair of work boots. You start with what kind of boots are going to suit what you're doing, and then you get a pair of boots that does the job and that you can stand to wear.
That isn't a whole lot to go on, is it? Don't worry. We're going to give you a quick guide to picking a pair of motorcycle boots. By the end you should have a good idea about what sort of boot you'll want to get, and what to look for in a pair.
Key Takeaways On Moto Boots:
1. Also known as motorcycle boots, moto boots are a type of footwear designed for motorcycle riders but have become popular in fashion as well. They can be paired with various outfits, including jeans, skirts, and dresses, to add a bold and rebellious touch.
2. High-quality moto boots come with specific features to enhance their durability and functionality. These features include heat-resistant stitching and materials, shock-resistant soles, roughout heel and uppers, high-quality leather, and reinforced ankle and toe protection.
3. Designed to meet the demands of motorcycle riding, moto boots offer enhanced safety and protection compared to regular boots. They provide ankle support, toe reinforcement, and abrasion resistance to protect against potential injuries during motorcycle rides.
4. Things to keep in mind when choosing moto boots include finding the right fit, considering the riding you'll be doing, and selecting boots with appropriate safety features such as reinforced toe and ankle protection.
5. Nicks Boots' Hooligan Moto Boots tick all the boxes for a high-quality and stylish moto boot that combines functionality and fashion. They are designed for moto-riders needing a durable boot on and off the bike.
Why Do Bikers Need To Wear Motorcycle Boots?
Bikers need to wear motorcycle boots partially for safety, and partially for comfort.
Motorized vehicles produce a lot of heat. When you're in a car, the heat is directed elsewhere or otherwise doesn't get to you in the cab. Riding a motorcycle, the heat is right by your feet. Having a pair of good sturdy boots can keep your feet from getting too toasty.
The other issue is the pedals. Depending on what sort of bike you're riding, the controls can become uncomfortable if not punishing to the feet.
This is the same reason why linemen need to have solid boots to climb ladders, and why factory workers need serious boots or shoes to walk on concrete all day and why road construction crews need serious boots to be on pavement all day.
Then there's the worst case scenario.
If you have to lay the bike down, or crash or what have you, your feet need to be protected.
Tennis shoes will disintegrate. Leather boots can easily be destroyed, but can also absorb a lot of punishment before they fall apart, which can mean the difference between bumps and bruises and years of surgeries and rehab.
So, it's partially for protection and it's partially about comfort.
If a person also wants the biker image...well, it's also part of the look.
So, those are the practical reasons why a person needs motorcycle boots. Now let's talk about what kind of motorcycle boots to look for and what to look for in them.
Pick The Right Motorcycle Boots For Your Motorcycle
Unless you just really want to wear them, you don't necessarily need a pair of engineer boots or heavy motorcycle boots to ride a Honda Cub. Granted, a leather-clad biker stepping off a Cub is funny to think about, but you don't really need them for riding that bike.
The same is true for anyone riding a Vespa or other scooter.
So, where does it begin to matter?
It starts to matter when motorcycles separate into sport bikes and non-sport bikes.
Sport bikes, such as the Honda CBR series or most Kawasaki motorcycles or Ducati motorcycles put the rider forward, with your feet reaching back to the shifter. This changes the type of boot you need to ride this bike well.
Boots for sport bikes tend to be sleek, lightweight and flexible, almost like an overbuilt wrestling shoe. You want some padding, some comfort, but it also has to be flexible enough to actuate the controls in that position.
By contrast, a more conventional street bike or cruiser, like a Honda Goldwing, most Harley Davidson and Indian motorcycles and so on, have your feet either directly under you or slightly ahead, leaning back onto the seat.
In that instance, you need a motorcycle boot that supports your feet a lot more, and has a good amount of structure underneath them to protect you from road vibration and from resting on the frame.
That's why popular motorcycle boots for this kind of bike are barely distinguishable from most leather work boots. If there's any sort of difference, it's that some motorcycle boots have side zips for taking them on and off easily.
So, knowing that motorcycle boots are a good idea to have for comfort and for safety while riding, and that you want to pick a pair of riding boots suited to the kind of motorcycle you ride, what should you look for?
Invest In Good Motorcycle Boots, And You'll Love Every Ride
First is that you shouldn't try to save money in the quest to spend less on motorcycle boots. Just as with getting a pair of work boots, investing in quality pays dividends in comfort as well as longevity.
Your feet will feel better after a day's ride than they would with lesser quality footwear. You may even wear them when you didn't even ride your motorcycle that day if you like them enough.
If you need leather boots that offer the utmost in protection and reinforcement, start by looking for a boot that's actually made substantially, with quality leather and a generous footbed. You're looking for a boot that's built tough.
Ideally, you're looking for a boot that reinforces the foot, providing the support in the heel and the arch that keeps you comfortable but also absorbs the vibrations from the road so your feet don't feel like they've been in a rock tumbler.
A more supportive structure also increases the comfort while wearing them. If you take longer trips - beyond just commuting on your bike - that is going to make a huge difference. A boot that isn't comfortable to wear just won't be comfortable to wear.
Look for a welted or stitchdown construction. These construction methods use stitching to attach the upper, midsole and outsole instead of just gluing them on like most footwear these days. The result is a stronger mechanical bond than a mere chemical one.
And also make sure to pick a pair that looks good.
Frequently Asked Questions About Moto Boots
What boots do real bikers wear?
Real bikers often wear moto boots for their ruggedness, durability, and superior protection. These boots feature heavy-duty leather construction, reinforced toe caps, heat-resistant stitching, oil/slip-resistant soles, and roughout heel and uppers to ensure maximum safety and comfort on the road.
Are motorcycle boots worth it?
Absolutely! Motorcycle boots are worth every penny for riders. They are specifically designed to protect the feet and ankles during motorcycle rides while offering unparalleled comfort. What's more, they are a great addition to the overall style and aesthetic of a biker's outfit, adding a touch of ruggedness and authenticity.
Should I go up or down a size in motorcycle boots?
Most moto boots fit large compared to regular mass-produced footwear. Therefore, it's generally recommended to go down a size when purchasing motorcycle boots. This allows for a snug and secure fit, ensuring optimal control and maneuverability while riding.
Why do motorcycle boots have metal toes?
Motorcycle boots often have metal toes for added protection. The metal toe caps are designed to provide a reinforced barrier against impact and abrasion injuries that can occur during accidents or collisions.
Do cowboy boots make good motorcycle boots?
Cowboy boots may not be the ideal choice for motorcycle riding. While they offer a stylish and iconic Western look, they often feature smooth leather soles that are not suitable for motorcycle riding. These soles lack the necessary traction and grip required for safe and secure foot placement on the bike's footpegs. Additionally, cowboy boots typically have a higher heel, which can affect the rider's ability to shift gears comfortably.
Can you wear any leather boots on a motorcycle?
While it's possible to wear any leather boots on a motorcycle, it's highly recommended to wear specifically designed motorcycle boots. Regular leather boots may not offer the same level of protection and safety features as moto boots.
Do motorcycle boots go over or under pants?
Motorcycle boots can be worn over or under pants, depending on personal preference and the type of pants being worn.
Why do biker boots have straps?
Biker boots often have straps for both functional and aesthetic reasons. The straps help secure the boots tightly around the feet and ankles, providing stability during rides. They can also be adjusted for a personalized fit, ensuring maximum comfort and preventing the boots from slipping or shifting while riding. Additionally, they add a stylish and edgy look to the boots, contributing to the overall rugged appearance that bikers often prefer.
What is the best sole for a motorcycle boot?
The best sole for a motorcycle boot is typically one that offers excellent traction and grip on various surfaces, as well as durability for long-lasting wear. Many bikers prefer soles made of high-quality rubber compounds that are oil and slip-resistant. These types of soles provide optimal stability and traction, even in wet or slippery conditions, reducing the risk of accidents or falls.
Why do riding boots have heels?
Riding boots have heels for several reasons. Firstly, the heel provides a secure anchor point on the foot peg, preventing the foot from slipping off during acceleration, deceleration, or maneuvering. This is crucial for maintaining control and stability while riding. Additionally, the heel helps with shifting gears by allowing the rider to pivot their foot easily. It provides leverage and precision when operating the gear shift lever, enhancing the overall riding experience.