in partnership with Cotswold Outdoor
Indoor climbing is one of the best activities to keep you fit and healthy throughout the winter months. It’s great for building strength, staying flexible, and blowing off steam – read more about the benefits of indoor climbing here. To make the most of indoor climbing, it’s worth investing in a couple of bits of kit – shoes and harness being the most important.
Now, climbing shoes can be a tricky purchase. You need a tight fit- but not too tight, and trying a shoe on in a shop isn’t always a fair indication of how a shoe fits. Only after a couple of hours on the wall do you really know how a shoe fits or doesn’t as the case may be.
We recently received a pair of the new Scarpa Velocity V indoor specific shoes from our friends at Cotswold Outdoor to test out. And our first impressions are that they fit like a dream, straight out the box. More on that later..
Scarpa Velocity: A Cornerstone Shoe
The Scarpa Velocity V is the new, improved model of a well-loved shoe for 2020. The Velocity has been a cornerstone of the Scarpa climbing range for years, and this year it gets a makeover to make it more eco-friendly and vegan.
The sole is made from Vision rubber which can be re-soled, and the upper is made from a microfibre material which is vegan friendly and easily washable. The Waveshape strap closure system spreads the pressure evenly across the upper from the strap and buckles. All this results in a super comfy shoe which offers excellent control on the wall without being uncomfortable.
As we said before, first impressions were that it fits really, really well straight out the box. The centre biased FFX last and medium foot width means this shoe is extremely comfortable, ideal for all-day use. Scarpa doesn’t offer half sizes in this model so I sized down to a UK 8 as I think a 9 would be too big. Personally, I’d rather a closer fitting shoe than a comfy, loose shoe. But you can find out how to choose the perfect shoe for your foot shape here.
In terms of appearance, the new shoe is a welcome update on the old model which, whilst it is a classic, looked a little dated. The black-ottanio colourway is subtle and modern, and the use of vegan-friendly materials nods towards a more conscious design process.
On the wall
I’ve climbed in the shoes (indoors only) for around 6 weeks now and I’m very impressed overall. The medium sole width is ideal for my foot shape and I can climb all night long without any major discomfort. The microfibre upper hasn’t stretched at all as leather does and the shoes don’t seem to smell as bad as other shoes I’ve climbed in!
On the indoor wall, the soles are grippy enough for all the holds I’ve tried them on. I’m interested to see how they perform on a range of different rock when I get outside. It’s also reassuring to know that the sole can be replaced if it wears thin, prolonging the life of the shoes and reducing waste.
The Velocity doesn’t claim to be an expert shoe, nor do I claim to be an expert climber, so it’s a perfect match really. The shoes do exactly what I’d expect from an intermediate-level shoe – comfortable and functional.
The updated version of the Scarpa Velocity brings this shoe right up to date with modern materials, a clever fastening system, and a distinct nod to the climate. I think the Velocity is a great shoe for climbers of all abilities, not just intermediates, that are looking for a comfortable indoor shoe. After all, it’s a long old winter and there’s plenty of time to spend at the indoor wall.