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Rock climbing shoes for big toe arthritis
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5 days ago
Unfortunately, age is creeping up on me and my big toe arthritis needs to be mitigated longterm. While I work on other ways of protecting it, I need a new indoor gym shoe ASAP (outside, I'll keep to my tc pros, which seem to be fine for now).

Requirements:

- as stiff as possible
- spread the pressure at the tip among multiple toes rather than just focused on the big toe
- downturned toe not a priority

For reference, I've been wearing (and loving) scarpa boostics.

Any ideas (also if anyone thinks there is a better all day trad shoe than the tc pro for my circumstances, I'd love to hear about it!
Aaron Liebling
Joined Jun 1, 2010
320 points
Administrator
5 days ago
aliebling Liebling wrote:
Any ideas (also if anyone thinks there is a better all day trad shoe than the tc pro for my circumstances, I'd love to hear about it!

Define 'better'. More comfy, better performance, what?
TC sized correctly is the best of both worlds, IMHO. I wear my street size.
For gym shoe...5-10 pink? The new Sportiva....Finale?
Muscrat
Joined Oct 27, 2011
3,040 points
5 days ago
I learned about a bunion and arthritis in my right toe over a year ago. It sucks but I have made it manageable. I climb in Mythos ans Scarpa Instincts and feel much better. But I also throw a toe spacer in between my big toe and the next or keep my shoes on as little as possible. Also there are exercises that can be done that strengthen tendons in the foot and muscles supporting it.

Id be curious to look at a pair of Red Chillis, the have models with a wider toe box giving some relief.
Tony Bob
From Lakewood
Joined Apr 4, 2015
0 points
5 days ago
I have hallux limitus and arthritis and have been searching for shoes too. I recently picked up the La Sportiva oxygyms on a whim and really like them for the gym. They are velcro so you can take them off between climbs, the toe box is relatively foot shaped and very stiff. I'm not sure how the men's fit compares to women's but I've been happy with them. The stiff toe takes some getting used to since you can't feel your toes on holds as well, but I have much less pain because that joint isn't bending as much. Good luck with the search! vwall
Joined May 14, 2012
0 points
5 days ago
I'm definitely in the "take my shoes off between every climb" camp. It helps a ton.

I think the tc pro is as good (balance of performance, regular comfort and arthritis-comfort) as a shoe is going to get for me outdoors.

Anyone have experience with some of the boreals? Something like the marduk?

Or maybe the scarpa techno x?
Aaron Liebling
Joined Jun 1, 2010
320 points
5 days ago
I have the same issue with my big toe. I bought a pair of 5.10 Verdon lace ups. They have a molded plastic piece under the forefoot to help with edging but it also helps reduce toe pain in my case. Kevin Mokracek
From Burbank
Joined Apr 5, 2012
45 points
5 days ago
I've known a few w/ big toe issues that like the Scarpa Boostics, as it's very stiff and very asymmetric (aligns the big toe fairly straight) with only a moderate amount of downturn, but the toe box is fairly high volume, which doesn't encourage flat toes.

I don't like the TC Pro that much as it's a bit too symmetric (which I hate in general in a climbing shoe as that + tight fitting is just bunion waiting to happen); the new (bumble bee yellow) Scarpa Vapor lace has both low volume toe box and more asymmetry than the TC Pro (and in general, the Scarpa line has wider forefoot and more asymmetry than the equivalent in Sportiva).
reboot
From Westminster, CO
Joined Jul 17, 2006
50 points
5 days ago
I know I say this all the time but...Katana Laces. I have big toe issues and can climb comfortably in only TCs and Katanas. Don Ferris
From Eldorado Springs
Joined Nov 27, 2012
0 points
5 days ago
Don Ferris wrote:
I know I say this all the time but...Katana Laces. I have big toe issues and can climb comfortably in only TCs and Katanas.

You should try the yellow Vapor Lace. I have both TCs & KLs, the Vapor Lace is comparable in low volume & stiffness but with better big toe alignment.
reboot
From Westminster, CO
Joined Jul 17, 2006
50 points
5 days ago
Take the insole out of the shoe you use now, lay it on a piece of tin or aluminum sheet metal. Draw around it with a sharpie. Cut it out, duct tape the edges and put it in the shoe. Reinstall the insole. This will make the toe bed stiffer and have more support. It will probably make a popping sound when you walk on it but it may do the trick.

You could try just the toe bed to the mid-sole first.

Best of luck! JB
John Barritt
From OKC
Joined Oct 13, 2016
862 points
5 days ago
I put an extra layer of rubber on the bottom of my gym shoes to accomplish the same. Ruins sensitivity, but I haven't had any feeling in my big toes for 10 years anyway... so no effect for me :-) John Butler
Joined Apr 13, 2016
0 points
5 days ago
I don't have arthritis, but I do have a case of turf toe (basically a tendon that is too loose and allows my toe to flex to far). For this I have found the Five Ten Quantum sized at or 1/2 size bigger than my street shoe to be perfect. The sole is really stiff, it is very slightly downturned, but doesn't feel like it. Awesome Shoe.

And to answer the question, no there is no better multi-pitch trad shoe than the TC Pro. They just plain nailed it.
Ryan Hamilton
From Orem
Joined Aug 11, 2011
0 points
4 days ago
I ordered two sizes of vapor lace. We'll see if one of them works out. The quantum looks like a nice alternative if they don't.

Thanks to all for the feedback!
Aaron Liebling
Joined Jun 1, 2010
320 points


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