Buying Cross Country Ski Boots
When buying cross country ski boots, it's essential that you have considered the context in which you will use them. The design of cross country ski boots differs depending on, whether it's going to be used to go from hut to hut in Norway or to set a record in the famous Vasaloppet contest in Sweden.
Find The Right Size
Most people use a thicker sock in cross country ski boots, so the boots should, therefore, be around a half to a full size larger than your running shoes.
Match of Cross Country Ski Boots and Bindings
It's vital that your cross country ski boots fit with your bindings:
- Alpina boots will fit Rottefella NNN bindings, Fischer and Rossignol Turnamic bindings, and Salomon Prolink bindings
- Salomon SNS and Atomic SNS boots fit with Salomon and Atomic SNS bindings
- Salomon Prolink and Atomic Prolink boots fit with Salomon Prolink and Atomic Prolink bindings but fit also Rottefella NNN, and Rossignol and Fischer Turnamic bindings
- Madshus boots fit Rottefella NNN bindings, Fischer and Rossignol Turnamic bindings, and Salomon Prolink bindings
- Rossignol boots fit Rossignol and Fischer Turnamic bindings, Rottefella NNN bindings, and Salomon/Atomic Prolink bindings
- Fischer boots fit Fischer and Rossignol Turnamic bindings, Rottefella NNN bindings, and Salomon/Atomic Prolink bindings
Read more about which compatibility between boots and bindings in this guide: "Buying bindings"
Cross Country Ski Boots Classic
Cross country ski boots in this category are designed for both experienced and novice skiers. For beginners, the focus should be on keeping your feet warm with a thicker liner, together with choosing boots providing support around the heel and ankles. This boot type is good for the annual winter holiday or for first-time runners at the Vasaloppet contest.
Classic cross country ski boots for the more experienced skiers are often lighter compared to boots for beginners. They come with a thinner liner so that the boots are not as hot but in return lighter in weight and created with a stiffer heel counter, which gives even more power transfer.
Cross Country Ski Boots Skate
Cross country ski boots (and -ski) for skate style are designed differently compared to classic gear. The reason for this is, that the movement pattern in skate skiing is very different from classic skiing. In skate, the ankles are significantly more loaded. Therefore, skate boots are designed with a more rigid and higher ankle brace, which can be made of either plastic or carbon.
Also, skate boots differ from classic cross country ski boots in that they have a stiff sole. This means that you can kick off with the entire sole, where you in classic style kicks off with only the forefoot. Through this, you gain more power in your kick.
Cross Country Ski Boots Combi
If you are fond of both skate and classic skiing and only want one pair of boots or need the ankle support from classic boots, the combi boots are the ideal cross country ski boots for you.
Combi boots combine a classic boot with a skate boot. This results in a boot with solid ankle support, which is good for skate and keeps your ankles stable when you kick. At the same time, the sole is soft as in a classic boot, so that you can get up on the front foot in your diagonal run. This is very difficult in a skate boot.
Most people use their cross country ski boots when they run on roller skis out of ski season, and that's fine. If you have tried this solution and feels that your feet get too hot when you exercise in the summer, we recommend you to buy summer rollerski boots to NNN bindings (NIS), which are lighter and better ventilated than traditional cross country ski boots.
Please note that your boots get worn out more when using them for roller skiing, because grit and salt wear boots, especially at the zipper. Your boots will not last as long on asphalt and at gravel paths compared to snow trails. To extend the life of your boots, you may want to brush them free from grit and dirt, and then store them in a dry place when not in use.