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La Sportiva Python Climbing Shoe
The La Sportiva Python is a competition and artificial wall climbing shoe that combines high performance with comfort for modern climbers who want to push their level on boulder problems, overhanging sport routes, technical face climbs, and in climbing gyms.
The La Sportiva Python has been designed to be as sensitive and as soft as possible with maximum performance on heel hooks and toe hooks. The sole is only 3.5mm thick and no lining is used at all, and La Sportiva have given it a 5/5 out on their sensitivity scale. Great for tiny, frictionless holds on overhanging problems! The sole has been split in the middle to make the shoe as soft as possible for technical manoeuvres like toe-hooking and general hooking onto steep holds, and the velcro strap secures the heel when heel hooking and blocking.
The new Python has had three updates. The toe rubber is now thinner adding more sensitivity and has a new design which helps the Python adapt to the foot better. The volume of the shoe has changed allowing the foot to be closer to the front of the shoe which makes the Python more comfortable and more aggressive. The final update is the colour is now only on the outside of the shoe so your feet don't become the same colour as your shoes.
The Python is designed to be fit really snugly, but keep in mind that it's unlined suede leather upper will stretch up to a full size. So size appropriately!
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Vibram XS Grip 2
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Vibram XS Grip2™
Rubber compound built for pure friction, recommended for use where maximum grip is the primary need - bouldering and sport climbing, indoor climbing, or extremely smooth, polished routes.
Full Features List
• A sensitive, snug fitting slipper with Velcro straps to provide secure positioning during heel hooks.
• Ultra sticky heel provides stability and protection.
• Extremely easy to pull on and off.
• Ultra sticky toe rubber for increased performance on toe hooks.
18 product reviews
Why can't they make this heel on more of their shoes. I am a big fan of soft slippers for bouldering but I usually find that the heels are rock solid and wide. I had the Skwamas for a while after I blew out my first pair of pythons (after 2 years of climbing in them) but the heel was just a lump. Really glad to get my feet back in the pythons.
Happy with the shoes, mainly using them for indoor bouldering. They are a little wide on the top for my feet but the velcro remedies that properly. They do leave your feet orange, although they say this is fixed in the new pythons (which released while these were in the mail..)
Nice heel, but the front part is a little bit vide for me. Softer than the Solution. I miss the velcro from the front too a little.
Before buying these shoes I wondered why it was that so many people have them. No more of that. The Pythons are simply a great shoe, aggressive but comfortable, super sticky for smearing but can also edge. And they help you develop stronger feet due to there not being so much support. I imagine these would not be ideal on super-long multi-pitch routes, but in an indoor setting they're up there with the best of them.
As people mentioned before - try to size down as much as possible in these! I went from a size 45 in the Otakis, to 44 in these (46 street shoe size). The asymmetric toe box may be more comfortable for people with a more pronounced big toe.
I've been using these for the last 2 months for indoor bouldering and they are easily in my top 3 favorite shoes of all time. The rubber on these is very sticky. The shoes are soft and sensitive. These smear great on slab or vertical walls, and the heel is excellent for hooking. Toe hooking is also a breeze with the extra rubber on the top of the shoe.
I'm coming to this shoe after wearing the Scarpa Instinct VS (also an excellent shoe, just different from the Python). I picked these because I wanted something soft and sensitive and I am not disappointed in this regard. Notably though, the top of the Python isn't as tight as my old Instinct VS were. My Instinct VS had an almost compression-sock-type feel for me. The pythons feel loose in comparison. Not necessarily a bad thing though. I haven't noticed any detrimental effect on performance but this leads to my next point which is about sizing.
In terms of sizing, I didn't have a chance to try these on beforehand, so I ordered a 39 based on my Sportiva Katana Lace ups being a 40. After wearing the shoe for a while, I know now I should have gone down even more to a 38.5 or even a 38 at least for indoor bouldering. In any case, I'll be buying these again for sure, and will have time to explore other sizes.