How Long Does It Take to Break in Ski Boots

It usually takes about 3 to 7 full days of skiing to break in a new pair of ski boots. This can depend on the particular ski boot model and how hard you like to ski, but it typically won’t take longer than a week. 

I’m a lifelong skier who loves everything about the sport. I’ve used dozens of different ski boots over the years and have dealt with my fair share of break-in periods. I know through first-hand experience how long this can take. 

In this post, I’ll show you just how long it takes to break in ski boots while providing some other helpful information to get a good pair that works for your needs. Every skier needs to know that their boots might not be extremely comfortable the first few days you wear them. 

Let’s get to it.

Break-In Period Explained

The break-in period is the length of time it takes for your boots to start feeling comfortable. 

Nearly every new pair of boots will have a break-in period that involves the materials shaping around your feet and your feet getting used to the boots. 

In my experience, this break-in period can last anywhere from 3 to 7 days. These are full days of skiing, and the longer and harder you ski, the shorter the break-in period can be. But it can vary from skier to skier and boot to boot. 

Breaking in ski boots can be a frustrating experience. You just dropped a bunch of money on high-quality boots, and your feet hurt. Sounds bad, right? Just know that this is a natural part of the process and won’t last forever. 

You will probably experience a few days of discomfort, and then your boots will start to get really comfortable or at least won’t hurt anymore. Your feet will also get stronger and used to being in the boots, which is another part of the process. 

Tips and Advice

There is no exact length of time for a break-in period. It could take a single day or a few days, but it usually doesn’t last longer than a week. If you still have severe discomfort after a week of steady skiing, you might need to consider new boots or custom liners. 

I’ve had some pretty painful boot break-in experiences. If this happens to you, don’t panic. You might need to take breaks during the day to take your boots off and let your feet relax. But if you can stick with it, they’ll be feeling better pretty quickly. 

There are some boots out there that claim to have no break-in period. In my experience, this is rarely ever the case. Some boots might have less of a break-in period, but nearly every boot will take time to fit you properly. It’s just part of the process.  


Here are a few short answers to some of the most commonly asked questions about breaking in ski boots. 

Do ski boots soften over time? 

Most ski boots do soften up over time. This is what the break-in period is all about. The boot’s materials will bend and adapt to the shape of your feet and your skiing habits. Your feet will also get used to them over time. 

Are new ski boots supposed to hurt? 

The break-in period can be pretty uncomfortable and sometimes even painful. This is a natural part of the process, and there is no way around it for some brand new pairs of boots. If they continue to hurt for longer than a week, you might need to explore other options. 

Will ski boots loosen up? 

Ski boots don’t necessarily loosen up, but the liners and other materials from around the shape of your feet. Your feet also get more used to being in the boots, which helps them feel more comfortable.

Final Thoughts

Depending on how hard you ski and the specific boot model, breaking in ski boots will typically take 3 to 7 days. This can be a challenging experience, but remember that it will pass, and you’ll be set up with great-fitting boots afterward.

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