Can You Wear Hiking Boots on a Motorcycle?

Hiking boots are sturdy and durable. They are designed to protect the foot and ankle but at the same time stay very comfortable. Which is a great plus.

Since hiking boots offer both protection and comfort, many motorcyclists wonder if they can be used on a motorcycle. Hiking boots are the perfect type of footwear for long hikes and other demanding activities, but can they meet the needs of motorcyclists?

Can you wear hiking boots on a motorcycle? Although you can wear hiking boots on a motorcycle, you should not do it. Hiking boots are not good for motorcycle riding, and they are not safe. Motorcycle riders should not wear hiking boots while riding as hiking boots do not offer enough protection to the feet, ankles, and legs.

Below you will find more information on hiking boots and how well they compare to footwear designed for motorcyclists.

A motorcyclist with hiking boots

Hiking boots vs. motorcycle shoes and motorcycle boots

Hiking boots

Hiking boots are designed in such a way as to provide good levels of foot and ankle protection during walking on footpaths and trails in the countryside and other rural and off-road places.

Hiking boots are, at the same time, durable and comfortable as they should allow the hiker to walk comfortably long distances.

Typically there are three different types of hiking boots:

  • Low cut hiking boots: Low cut hiking boots offer the best freedom of movement. However, their protection is fairly low. They stop below the ankle bone and will not protect the ankle very well.
  • Mid cut hiking boots: Mid cut hiking boots stop around the level of the ankle bone. They will protect the ankle from scrapes and cuts, but the overall protection of the ankle is fairly low. In terms of movement restriction, they fall between the low cut and high cut hiking boots.
  • High cut hiking boots: High cut (ankle) hiking boots offer the best ankle support and protection; however, they can be the most restrictive. High cut hiking boots can be as high as 8 inches, and the scuff usually covers the ankle.

Hiking boots can be made from a variety of different materials like leather, rubber, synthetic materials, and more.

Hiking boots will normally be waterproof as they are intended for use in a variety of weather conditions.

Motorcycle shoes

Motorcycle shoes try to provide good levels of protection while at the same time, remain very comfortable and easy to walk in. Motorcycle shoes offer a decent alternative for motorcyclists but will no offer the best levels of protection.

Motorcycle shoes will often have reinforced toe boxes, added ankle protection, with stronger heel counters, and more.

Motorcycle shoes are made from various heavy-duty materials that can protect against impact, abrasions, and splitting like thermoplastic polyurethane, durable microfiber, vulcanized rubber heavy-duty textiles, heavy-duty plastic, and more.

Motorcycle boots

Motorcycle boots offer the best possible protection to the foot, ankle, and leg. Motorcycle boots are usually very high and can be between 10 to 38 inches in height.

They are also form-fitting and will restrict your movement more compared to motorcycle boots and even hiking boots—especially when it comes to walking.

Motorcycle boots are usually made from heavyweight leather and composite materials like hard plastic, metal, and impact-absorbing and energy-dissipating padding.

Generally speaking, we can distinguish three different types of motorcycle boots.

  • Racing boots: Racing boots are specially designed to offer plenty of protection to the foot, ankle, and the leg of motorcyclists that ride on hard paved roads at high speeds.
  • Touring boots: Touring boots are viewed as the best of both worlds. On one side, they offer plenty of protection, while on the other side, they also offer good levels of comfort and less movement restriction.
  • Motocross boots: Motocross boots offer high levels of protection and often are considered one of the safest motorcycle boots. They are knee-high and will protect the whole leg of the rider.

Hiking boots vs other types of shoes

Hiking boots are definitely better than wearing nothing or some other types of footwear like flip-flops, sneakers, trainers, etc.

Hiking boots will offer more protection than a standard shoe but not as much protection as good motorcycle boots.

Are hiking boots good for motorcycle riding?

Hiking boots are not good for motorcycle riding because they do not offer adequate levels of protection to the feet, ankles, and legs. Hiking boots are not designed for impact protection or even sliding protection and will not be safe for riding a motorcycle.

Generally speaking, hiking boots will not offer much in terms of protecting your ankles from twisting and crushing.

During an accident, your ankles will be subjected to different forces that will cause them to twist as you slide and tumble on the ground. This twisting is a primary cause of many different and very severe injuries.

Hiking boots are also not designed to offer abrasion resistance, and while sliding, the asphalt can eat through the hiking boots very quickly, exposing the foot.

Some hiking boots may also easily slip and fly off your feet in an accident, exposing your feet even more.

Another problem is the laces. Hiking boots have laces, which are not reliable at keeping the hiking boots on your feet in a motorcycle accident. But what is more is that laces can get stuck on the pegs or even be caught into the chain, which can result in you dropping your motorcycle while stopping, crashing, or severely injuring your feet.

Hiking boots are usually waterproof. However, since they are not very high, it is very common for water running down your trousers to get caught in the hiking shoes getting your feet wet.

Hiking boots will often have softer cushiony soles that will not offer a lot of protection to the feet. The softer sole is designed to offer more padding and keep your feet from fatiguing while hiking. However, the rubber soles can wear down faster.

Compared to specialized motorcycle shoes and boots, hiking boots will just not be as safe. Hiking boots are not as stiff, and their materials and protective layers will deteriorate faster. Over time the top of some hiking boots where you shift can start to wear down.

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Conversely, other types of hiking boots may have stiffer at the toes and may cause you to have some problems shifting.
Overall not all hiking boots may allow you to easily slip your foot between the shifter and the foot peg.

Should you wear hiking boots on a motorcycle?

The majority of prevalent injuries among motorcyclists are lower limb injuries (about 55.5%), and this is why it is recommended that motorcyclists should wear proper motorcycle-specific gear.

One of the advantages of hiking boots is that they can be fairly comfortable, especially if you are looking for something to wear while hiking. Hiking boots can also be used very successfully to operate the pegs on the motorcycle.

However, the problem with motorcycle shoes is that they are just unsafe and will not offer much in terms of impact and abrasion protection in an accident. And safety should always be placed in the first place.

Of course, nobody plans to get into an accident or fall with their motorcycle. Nonetheless, accidents do happen, and the reality is motorcyclists are at worse odds when it comes to the severity of the injuries they can sustain in an accident.

You should not wear hiking boots as they are not designed to provide suitable protection in an accident. Hiking boots will not offer adequate levels of impact or abrasion protection.

Hiking boots are not designed to protect your feet while you are moving at high speeds. They are designed to protect your feet at walking speed, which is very different from what you will experience while riding a motorcycle.

Depending on where you live, the law may require you to wear proper motorcycle specific footwear or requires you to wear any time of footwear that covers the ankle, in which case hiking boots may suffice.

Are there hiking and motorcycling boots?

The aspects that make one type of boots good for motorcycle riding usually make them bad for walking and vice versa. Because of the heavy-duty construction, motorcycle boots will usually be very stiff and limit your flexibility.

On the other hand, hiking boots have to be flexible and not limit your movement.

In other words, hiking boots and motorcycle boots are intended for marginally different purposes and thus built and designed differently.

This is why motorcycle boots cannot replace hiking boots, and hiking boots cannot replace motorcycle boots. In other words, dual-purpose boots are not an option.

This is why it is recommended to get a pair of motorcycle boots and a pair of hiking boots that you can swap. The extra pair of shoes can be kept in the tank bag or in a hard case on the motorcycle.

Are timberland boots good for motorcycle riding?

Finding the right riding gear can be a challenge, and it can add up! To ride safely, you need a helmet, gloves, a jacket, and boots. Many riders will try and save costs by looking for cheaper alternatives to traditional motorcycle gear. This search might lead to timberland boots, which cover the ankle and look sturdy. But, can you ride in them?

Timberland boots are not the same as riding boots. They are made of less durable materials without proper abrasion and impact resistance. While better than sneakers or sandals, timberland boots will not replace a sturdy pair of motorcycle boots.

I’m not saying you absolutely cannot wear timberland boots. Just know that they aren’t riding boots and won’t offer the same protections as a good pair of riding boots. Keep reading to find out what kind of investment is worth it in terms of foot protection.

Should you wear timberland boots to ride a motorcycle?

Timberland boots are better than nothing, sure. These are, after all, boots that cover the ankle and can be tightly laced to protect your ankle. Because they are taller, they do offer more protection than, say, sneakers.

However, timberland boots just aren’t as protective as a real riding boot. While some styles of timberland boot are made with leather, most are thin and focused more on fashion than safety.

A good riding boot needs to be able to withstand impact and hold up when scraped against concrete. Even the timberland boots that are designed as work boots just don’t hold up as well and can come off or come apart if you go down.

Riding boots typically have areas of reinforcement to protect you while you ride and if you fall. They may have extra padding around the ankle, on the top of the foot, and over the toes. Without these extra layers of protection, you’re more vulnerable to a serious injury.

Another danger with wearing timberland boots to ride is that they have laces. Most riders choose to avoid shoes with laces. After all, there are a lot of moving parts on a bike, and the last thing you want is for your shoelaces to get too familiar with those parts.

In addition, very few models of timberland boots are waterproof. While you might not ride in the rain often, there’s always the chance that you could get caught in a downpour, and your boots need to hold up.

Finally, a new pair of timberland boots is often stiff and needs breaking in. If you don’t break in the shoe, it can be hard to shift and you may not have as much control over your motorcycle as you should.

Ultimately, if you decide to wear timberland boots, do so knowing that they are not a riding boot and will not offer the same protection if the worst should happen.

Why is leather so important for motorcycle riding?

If you’ve been searching for motorcycle boots for a while now, you’ve probably noticed that leather keeps coming up. While not all motorcycle boots are made of leather, most have at least a central element of hard, durable leather.

Leather is a prime choice for motorcycle riding because it can hold up against the wear and tear of riding. It is difficult to cut through, stays on well, and won’t disintegrate if rubbed against concrete. In short, it will protect your foot and ankle if you crash.

In addition to looking for good leather on a motorcycle boot, you should be looking for boots that have added layers of protection. This may come in the form of additional leather padding, plastic, metal, or other materials like gore-tex.

This extra protection will save your toes, ankle, and shin. Many riders who have gone down without proper motorcycle boots will tell you they wish they had invested in proper boots.

In addition to the padding, it’s important that motorcycle boots have a rubber sole that is oil-resistant. Leather soles won’t have the same grip or durability.

Finally, you want motorcycle boots with a slight heel to help you keep your foot solidly on the foot peg, and you may look for boots with extra toe reinforcement, though there is some debate on whether or not steel toes are a good idea.

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Are motorcycle boots worth the cost?

According to Motorcycle Legal Foundation, in cases of motorcyclists needing treatment after a crash, almost 50% of those are leg injuries.

This makes sense if you think about it. When you ride, your feet are the closest body part to the ground. Depending on the circumstances of the crash, your feet are likely to be the first thing to hit the ground.

A foot injury can range a lot in severity. You could get road rash, sprain an ankle, sever toes, or even lose your foot. The risk can be incredibly high and with lasting results.

Now, wearing the proper gear isn’t guaranteed to save your foot. Accidents can happen that are so bad that even the best motorcycle boot won’t save you. After all, look at motorcycle racing. These riders are covered in proper gear, yet it’s common for crashes to result in broken ankles, femurs, and hips.

However, wearing the right boots can make a serious impact in a less severe accident. If you go down at low speeds, you want boots that will withstand scraping the ground, protect you from burns, and keep you from getting cut as you fall.

You don’t have to look far to find stories of riders who know their injuries would have been much worse without boots, or who could have saved themselves a serious injury had they been wearing the right boots.

In short, yes, motorcycle boots are worth the cost.

There is a range in the price of motorcycle boots, and you can easily find a pair for around $100, which is much cheaper than the hospital bills from a serious foot injury. If you value the use of your foot, I’d recommend investing in some proper riding boots.

What type of boot is best for motorcycle riding?

Now that you’re thinking about foot safety, how do you know which type of boot to purchase? As I’ve mentioned already, nothing can quite compare to a designated motorcycle riding boot. This will have additional padding, abrasion resistance, durability, and crash protection.

Within the world of motorcycle boots, though, you aren’t limited to just one style. If you’re eyeing timberland boots because you value fashion over function, you might want to look at different styles of harness boots.

There are also plenty of shorter boots, which still cover the ankle but are a little less conspicuous than other types of motorcycle riding boots such as touring boots or motocross boots which offer more protection but really only work on the motorcycle.

Remember, though, that it’s definitely possible to have a pair of motorcycle boots which you can change out of once you arrive at your destination. If you mostly ride to work, you can keep a pair of shoes under your desk to change into once you get to work.

This may sound like a hassle, but the safety improvement is worth it, and many riders soon get used to changing shoes after a ride. Keep your timberlands for the days when you aren’t riding and protect your feet and ankles.

Tim owns a Honda ‘Hornet’ CB600F and loves to ride his bike whenever the weather allows him to. Tim has been interested in motorcycle clothing before he even owned a motorcycle driving license. Motorcycle gear is his hobby and that’s why he started this blog. Tim lives in the Netherlands, which you might notice due to his accent.

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Are Timberland Boots Good For Motorcycle Riding?

Timberland Boots

Motorcycle boots, gloves, jackets, and helmets are among the most important parts of riding gear. They are designed to prevent injuries in event of an accident and you should therefore be careful when choosing them. Unfortunately, most riders try to save costs by going for the cheapest alternatives to traditional gear. Some will choose Timberland boots because they look sturdy and they cover the ankle. But are timberland boots good for motorcycle riding? We have the answer.

While Timberland boots cover the ankle and you can lace them tightly to protect your ankle, they are not good for motorcycle riding. Below are the reasons timberland boots are not good for motorcycle riding. This guide will also help you choose the best boots for motorcycle riding purposes.

Why Timberland Boots are Not Good for Motorcycle Riding

One of the reasons timberland boots are not good for motorcycle riding is that they are designed for other purposes, such as mountain climbing and hiking. While they can cover your ankles and offer more protection than sneakers and sleepers, they are not as protective as boots designed for motorcycle riding. Again, some timberland boots are made of leather but they are very thin and are focused on fashion.

Good riding boots should withstand impacts and hold up if scraped against a concrete wall. Most timberland boots, including those marketed as work boots, cannot hold up and they can easily come apart or off when going down,

Riding boots are usually reinforced to protect the motorcycle rider in event of a fall. They, therefore, feature extra padding, particularly around the ankle, over the toes, and on the topside. Any boot without the extra protection layers, such as timberland boots, will make you more vulnerable to serious injuries in event of an accident.

Another thing that makes timberland boots dangerous when riding a motorcycle is the laces. The motorcycle has many moving parts and the last thing you would want is the shoelaces to get to the parts. For instance, if the left shoelace happens to be caught on your motorcycle’s footpeg, it will be hard to land your left foot when stopping at a stoplight. Your bike will tip over and hurt your foot or knee.

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What’s more, timberland boots are not waterproof. Even though you are unlikely to ride in harsh weather conditions, there is a chance that you may get caught in a heavy downpour. In such cases, the motorcycle-riding boots should hold up.

Lastly, timberland boots are stiff and they demand breaking in. Failure to break them in will make the bike riding a tough task because you will have a problem shifting the gear and applying the rear brakes. That will cause many problems such as stalling the engine.

What about Timberland Pro-series Shoes? Are They Good For Motorcycle Riding?

Timberland Pro-series is the upgraded version of Timberland boots. The boots look tough, extra rigid, and ready for hiking in addition to helping you look 2 inches (5cm) taller. Unfortunately, they are not good for motorcycle riding. The boots are designed for hiking and heavy load work. They are therefore waterproofed, well-constructed, hard, rigid, and durable, something that makes them good for climbing hills and mountains.

The boots are very close to motorcycle riding boots due to their outer construction designs but they will not protect you in event of a crash. And because of their construction design, the heat from your motorcycle engine will damage them easily. Possibly, you would not want to invest in an expensive pair of boots that will only last for a few days.

Are Motorcycle Riding Boots Worth Buying?

Yes, motorcycle riding boots are worth buying. Data from the Motorcycle Legal Foundation show that around 50 percent of the injuries resulting from motorcycle accidents are leg injuries. That is for the reason that your feet are usually very close to the ground when riding a bike and depending on the crash circumstances, they are more likely to hit the ground first.

Foot injuries range in severity. Some accidents result in a sprained ankle, road rashes, severed toes, or even disfigured feet. The risk is usually high and the effects are long-lasting.

While wearing motorcycle riding shoes is not a guarantee that your feet will be safe in event of an accident, the impacts of the accident will be lower. Some accidents can be very bad that even the highest quality motorcycle riding boots will not save you.

If you are among the people who ride at a low speed, you should go for boots that can withstand scraping, protect you from accidental burns and prevent cuts in the event of a fall. Such boots will cost you less than $100, which is lower than hospital bills associated with serious foot injuries.

Which is the Best Type of Boot for Motorcycle Riding

Foot safety should be your top priority when shopping for the best type of motorcycle riding boots. As we have already mentioned, Timberland boots cannot compare to boots designated for motorcycle riding. Boots designed for riding purposes have additional abrasion resistance, padding, crash protection, and durability. However, distributors do not limit the buyers to a single style.

The market offers a wide range of shorter boots that can cover your ankles but are less conspicuous than most other motorcycle riding boots, such as motocross boots or touring boots that provide more protection but only work when riding a motorbike. Besides, some motorcycle riding boots designers offer boots that you can change after arriving at your destination. Put differently, if you mostly ride to your workplace, you can place a pair of shoes under your office desk and change into them after getting to work. Even though this might sound like a big hassle, you will get used to changing shoes after every ride and riding your bike safely.

When shopping for a pair of motorbike riding boots, you will come across Touring Boots, Street Boots, Racing Motorcycle Boots, and Dirt Bike Motorcycle Boots. The names show clearly that each type is made for a particular purpose and you must therefore be careful when choosing one. Selecting motorcycle boots that match your needs will help you avoid difficulty and danger when riding your bike. Also, you will find something to match your style if you are a fashion-oriented person.

Why Motorbike Riding Boots Are Made of Leather Material

One of the things you will notice after you start shopping for a pair of motorcycle riding boots is that most of them are made of leather. Even though some boots are made of other materials, they will feature at least one central element made of hard leather. That is for the reason that leather holds up well to the wear and tear associated with riding. And because it is hard to cut through, leather will protect your feet and ankles in event of a crash.

Motorcycle riding boots also boast added protective layers, which come in form of plastic, leather padding, and metal along with oil-resistant rubber soles and slight. The purpose of this extra protection is to save the ankle, toes, and shin if an accident occurred and the oil-resistant soles and slight heels keep the feet solidly on the motorcycle pegs. Boots with toe reinforcement are also available.

Conclusion

Timberland boots are not good for motorcycle riding. They are mainly constructed for walking, hiking, or doing heavy-loaded jobs. That means you should only go for motorcycle-specific boots when riding your bike for safety and protection. The good news is you do not have to go for the expensive motorcycle boots, any boots that have a ride safe feature will provide the needed protection. The construction of such boots includes thick skin, ankle-high, comfortable, waterproof, and flexible thick soles. They are also stitched because the heat that the motorcycle engine produces can melt glue.

Being a biking fanatic, I decided to be your source for all things motorcycling, with a specialty in motorcycle gear. Let’s navigate the motorcycle gear world!

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