Japanese tabi boots are a wonderful invention, most often seen on the feet of Japanese construction workers or propelling hikers up Mt. Fuji. They are thin form-fitting boots that have one distinct characteristic: they come with an opposable toe. They can be, not surprisingly, fantastically comfortable.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Determine your Japanese shoe size. Japanese shoe size is determined in centimetres - a foot that is 25.5cm long is a size 25.5. You may have to rely on a international shoe size conversion chart.
Decide what sort of boots you want. They come in a variety of styles - fleece, polyester, cotton and more. Some of the most important considerations might include whether or not they are waterproof and the thickness of the sole.
Buy tabi socks, or toe socks. Since tabi boots come with an opposable toe, traditional closed socks won`t work with them.
Try on a pair of tabi boots for size, if you can - they may be available at your local martial art store. They should be form-fitting, almost like slippers but far tougher. Take a walk around the store.
Purchase your boots - either online, at an a martial arts store or at a Japanese retailer. Keep the receipt; if this is your first pair you may not find them to your liking in the long run.
Tips and warnings
- You may need to break in your boots with a day or two of good use. The crease in between your big toe and the rest of your foot may be irritating at first but will soften with time.
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