Two months ago when I opened the box containing my news shoes I was quite intrigued and very excited by these blue shoes. The first thing I noticed was that the closure system is exactly the same as that of the Solutions. This means one very important thing: the shoes are going to fit like a glove.
The closure system is pretty high tech as a single piece of Velcro is able to secure the shoe yet tensions the shoe at three points simultaneously allowing for one of the best fits possible from a shoe without laces. One of the implications of this is that you can heel hook till your heart’s content and you’ll never have to worry that your heel will slip out of the shoe.
The next piece of tech that the shoe is renowned for is the No-Edge technology. This might tech might not be great for everyone but I’ve come to a few important realizations:
1. The shoes feel like they are worn in right out of the box and have a consistent feel throughout their lifespan. I’ve had the Futuras for two months now and I’ve worn them on every type of terrain around me: steep routes, face climbs and plastic. Guess what, they are showing very minimal signs of wear after climbing in them every weekend and most nights of the week in the gym. Let me put this into perspective for you: I’m tough on my shoes. The normal lifespan of a pair of shoes on my feet is somewhere around 6 weeks of constant wear. The only way that I maximize the lifespan of my shoes is rotating between warmup shoes, training shoes and project shoes with specific shoes for specific projects. I might be a little obsessive about getting the most out of my shoes…
2. These shoes will teach you how to use your feet better: Beginner climbers might struggle with these shoes initially because you have to be pretty precise with your footwork but once you understand how the shoe work you’ll actually have a hard time turning back. I’m NOT going recommend using these guys on a slab because the shoes are really soft but when it comes to overhanging terrain or competition climbing indoors there is not much that will beat them. I have been able to stand on some of the worst holds on the largest variety of routes with my Futuras.
There is a specific hold on Rodan in Boven that makes my cringe every time I stand on it, regardless of what shoes I’m wearing. When I tried the Futuras on it I found that they are so soft and then that I could feel the texture of the hold under my toe and smear the edge instead of seeing my rubber roll around it. The image below helps to explain this whole thing. To be honest, when I first read about this I though it was just a gimmick but it’s not. It works.
3. I can’t shut up about them. There is not a day that goes by when I don’t rave about these shoes. I can’t emphasize enough what that actually means. I love them so much that I climb in them daily. I don’t ever do that! I have 4 pairs of shoes that I rotate and yet I find myself at the crag choosing only to use these guys.
I do have one major gripe about the Futuras that I’d really like to see fixed. These are intended for high end indoor climbing, sport climbing and bouldering; they have the same fastening system as the Solutions but what’s with the lack of rubber on the toes? The Pythons have it, the Solutions have it, why don’t the Futuras? I actually prefer the heel cup of the Futuras as it molds to your heel instead of being a large molded rubber cup (which is awesome for a lot of heel hooking needs). But the lack of rubber on the toe box is quite an issue to me. There is enough there for most toe hooks but when the crux of the route is a toe hook that requires every bit of friction possible (like on Shadowfax), then this is where I feel like I need to don my Pythons instead.