Weight: 8 oz / 225 g
Sizes: 32-46 (half sizes)
Size Tested: 45.5
Fit: Performance w/ High Asymmetry
Upper: Leather / Synthetic Leather
Midsole: 1.1mm LaspFlex (toe only) with P3®
Sole: 3mm Vibram® XS Grip2
My Foot: Size 13 street shoe, medium width (D), I have a high arch when my foot is not weighted, and I pronate.
Climber Type: Sport and Bouldering
Time Tested: 3 months, 3-4 times a week, inside and out
Test Locations: El Rito and The Dungeon, New Mexico; Sailing Hawks and East Animas, Durango, Colorado
I try to save the edge on my shoe for as long as I can. I don’t like to walk around in my shoes after a climb, and I curse my bad foot work when my foot slides off a foothold leaving a long black streak behind. When I look at the edge on my shoes, I want to see crisp angles to give me confidence that they will hold small edges.
So when La Sportiva introduced the Futura, which uses “No Edge” technology, I was very curious if and how they would work. After talking with a friend who had nothing but good things to say about them, and curiosity won out.
The No Edge concept was designed to get your foot as close to the rock as possible. The closer to the rock, the better the sensitivity, and the better you can tell if you’re on the foothold just right. To accomplish this, the sole of the Futura is wrapped up onto the rand so there is less rubber under your foot, more sensitivity, and…no edge.
Somewhat counterintuitively, the lack of an edge on the shoe also helps hold small edges on the rock. When you place the edge of a shoe on a small foothold, you adjust the angle of your foot and ankle as little as possible. This is because if you move too much, your edge flexes and can pop off the foothold. The Futura has no edge, so, with a little practice, you learn to place the part of your shoe where the edge should be on a foothold. With no edge to pop—only more sole or rand in a continuous, smooth surface—you can adjust your body a little more freely with the climb while still keeping your foot on a hold.
When I first got the shoe, I went straight to my local climbing gym to try them. The first thing I noticed was how comfortable they were. The inside of the tongue is a very soft micro fleece that stretches around your foot. The toe box is shaped to let the knuckle of your big toe be bent as it should be with an aggressive shoe.
I have a classic wide forefoot with a narrow heel, and the Futura accommodated both. I would say the size runs similar to the La Sportiva Miura VS. I am a street shoe size 13 and ordered the Futura in a 45.5, which is very comfortable and great for the trad climbing, but after going to a gear shop to try them on, I found I could have easily gone down to a 44.5. The shoe is synthetic, so stretch is minimal, if there’s any at all.
The closure system was easy and wrapped the shoe around my foot, giving me an extremely close but still comfortable fit. I was able to adjust how tight I wanted the shoe across my instep for any given climb. I didn’t have any painful hot spots right out of the box, and still haven’t had any issues after three months of climbing.