Experiencing sore calves and blisters while skiing or snowboarding? The problem lies in your boots. Improper ski boot size and fitting can lead to serious chafing and blisters. This problem can occur with rented equipment that does not fit properly or new gear that isn’t broken in.
Ski Boot Blister Causes
Friction and pressure are the main culprits for blisters and chafing on the legs and feet. With boots too tight, blisters will form where there is continuous pressure. If the boots are too loose, blisters and chafing will occur where rubbing takes place, usually at the heel and sides of the feet. Sweat can also play a big role with ski boot blisters. Even in cold climates, warm clothing raises body temperatures from exercise and can cause excessive moisture to build up. Excessive sweat build up promotes ski boot blisters and chafing.
Preventing Ski Boot Blisters
The best method to combat ski boot blisters is with the proper fitting boots! To remedy ski boot blisters, we must first focus on improper fitting boots as this is the most common factor for ski boot blisters. It is common for ski shops, that specialize in boot fittings, to help customize the fit of your boots. Unfortunately, ski boots do not come in true half sizes due to their expensive manufacturing processes. However, we know half sizes just have a thinner inner sole so we recommend choosing the size that fits best and then wearing thick or doubled up socks to fill the space.
Doubling up your socks and utilizing fast dry-wicking materials in your clothes can also help fight blisters from skiing and snowboarding. Doubling up your socks will allow your boots to rub against the top layer of your socks, instead of your skin. Dry wicking materials will help draw excessive moisture away from your skin, thus reducing friction and blisters. Body Glide® balms are another affordable way to combat ski boot blisters. Apply Body Glide® balms to chafing and blistering areas to relieve rubbing and friction. The balms lubricate and moisturize the irritated area properly, mitigating and reducing the chance of blisters or chafing.
Ski Boot Blister Treatment
Luckily, blisters don’t need any professional treatment and will eventually heal on their own. Allowing blisters dry out and stay dry is essential for healing to take place, if not, the problem may continue to get worse. Once the blister has popped, apply antibiotic ointments to help combat infection. If a blister needs to be popped, also known as “Lancing”, clean the surrounding area, disinfect and sterilize a needle, and insert the needle near the edge of the blister. Allow the blister to drain, disinfect the area again and apply antibiotic cream to decrease infection. It is recommended that you use a bandage or pad on the popped blister to ensure there will be no more rubbing of the skin in that area. We also recommend Body Glide® balms as this will minimize friction greatly in the affected area and will help promote the healing of the damaged skin.