It’s important you put some thought into any footwear you intend to wear for diving. Dedicated diving footwear, called dive boots, offers protection from potentially injurious objects like sharp rocks and coral reefs. You also get enough traction to confidently walk on slippery or rough shores.
Scuba diving boots also provide extra warmth allowing you to dive longer in colder waters. It’s also easy to wear certain kinds of dive fins (open-heel dive fins) with dive boots.
The best dive booties combine comfort and protection to make scuba diving more enjoyable for users. There are several diving boots on the market and they might seem to be all the same at a glance.
However, all dive boots are not made equal and it’s in light of this that I carried out extensive research and testing to bring you a list of the best scuba diving boots on the market.
Below, you’ll find an overview of the selected scuba boots, their pros, cons, and a buying guide to help you choose the right boots. So here we go.
When And Why Use Scuba Boots?
Dive boots aren’t necessary when you are reading closed heel fins or diving in warm, tropical waters. Closed heel fins completely remove the need for dive boots. However, you can still wear dive boots, albeit lighter models, when diving in warm waters.
Even when diving with closed-heel fins, you will still need dive boots if you have to get over rocky and rough terrains.
Dive boots become necessary when diving in cold water as they provide warmth for a more enjoyable diving experience. Also, you need dive boots when the shore is rocky or rough as I discussed above. Open-heel fins necessitate the need for dive boots.
How To Choose Your Diving Boots?
Below are factors to put into consideration when buying a pair of dive boots:
The neoprene material used to manufacture scuba boots comes in different thicknesses usually 3mm, 5mm, and 7.5mm. The 3mm models are suitable for diving in warm, tropical waters while 5mm dive boots are ideal for cold water diving. Dive boots exceeding 5mm will be needed for extreme cold conditions.
Soft Sole vs. Hard Sole
The choice here depends on your style of diving. If you intend to enter the water from a boat, then you’ll need soft sole dive boots for more flexibility. However, if you are entering the water from the shore, you’ll need hard-sole dive boots to protect your feet on rocky or rough terrains as well as hot sand.
High Cut vs. Low Cut
Dive boots can be high cut or low cut with high cut dive boots going past your ankle while low cut booties sit below your ankles. While the choice here mainly depends on personal preference, low-cut boots are more suitable for diving in tropical waters while high-cut boots are ideal for diving in cold water as their longer length means they provide more warmth.
Size And Fit
Scuba boots should fit you snugly – not too tight and not too loose. Too tight and your dive boots will be uncomfortable to wear. Too loose and water gets into the boot taking away the warmth the boots should be providing.
Scuba boots manufacturers provide sizing charts to help customers choose boots of the right size. Be sure to use it.
Type Of Closure
Zippers, velcro straps, and slip-on with no closures are the different closure designs that come with scuba boots. Zippers have the advantage of creating a close fit with the feet and making the boots easier to put on and remove. The quality of the zippers must be put into consideration as low-quality zippers will spoil in no time.
Velcro straps also create a tight seal and are sometimes combined with zippers for a snug fit and tighter seal.
Dive boots with no closures provide a more snug fit but they are more difficult to put on and take off.
There you have it, the best scuba diving boots available on the market. As I discussed in this article, there are situations where you can’t do without dive boots and you’ll do well to wear a quality pair of dive boots in such situations.
Buying dive boots doesn’t have to be a hassle, not if you know what to look out for. Use the buying guide above to choose a quality pair of dive boots and here’s to you having an enjoyable time in the underwater world.