La Sportiva Taka
As a beginner climber I got these shoes used from…
Source: received it as a sample, freebie, or prize (My brother - who worked at a gym.)
As a beginner climber I got these shoes used from a gym and they supported me for climbing for three years of hitting the gym on and off. They worked great to help me get into climbing and taught me what to look for in my next pair.
- Long lasting rubber
- Super comfy to stand or climb in
- Great for belaying in
- Laces are super long
- Sides of shoes are soft
- Easily can wear out sides on real rock
The heel fits great and so do the sides — plenty of room and they don't feel overly tight around the sides on wider feet. Since I bought these used, they were already very well broken in and easy to bend and move your foot on holds.
The grip was pretty great still when they were well worn out. La Sportiva knows how to make pretty good rubber (it's not the greatest, but way better than the cheaper brands - like Mad Rock or Evolv).
Having real leather sides, they don't tend to be as smelly with sweat soaked feet as synthetic shoes. They are crazy durable too. I finally blew out the side climbing in Joshua Tree — yet I kept using the shoes for 4x more months of climbing on and off. Then I really blew out the side after I got a gym membership. That was when I upgraded to Five10 shoes that I got at the outlet store!
I do like the feel and design of La Sportiva way better than Five10. But both are my top two favorite brands so far. I am a semi-beginner climber only hitting gyms mainly (V-3 to V-4 bouldering and 5.10 to 5.10C). Yet I still know my stuff well enough. It's a great beginner shoe.