La Sportiva Miura Review + Video
What We Like
- Great all-around climbing shoe — a “quiver of one”
- High-performing yet comfortable
- Comes with Vibram XS Edge rubber, a top climbing shoe rubber
What We Don’t Like
- Not great for advanced bouldering
The La Sportiva Miura has been in the company’s product line for over 10 years now for a reason — it’s a darn good climbing shoe.
If you only want one pair of climbing shoes for many different styles of climbing, we think this shoe is a top option. It won’t be the most comfortable shoe if you size it tight, but it will help you climb at your limit.
The Miura is not a good choice for advanced boulderers — it isn’t aggressive enough for your purposes. Also, if you size them tight, they won’t be great for multi-pitch routes since you’ll likely want to take them off after about a pitch.
- Weight: 8.43 oz / 239 g
- Last: PD 75
- Fit: Performance w/ high asymmetry
- Upper: Leather
- Lining: Dentex
- Midsole: 1.1 mm LaspoFlex (forefoot only)
- Sole: 4 mm Vibram© XS Edge™
- Sizes: 33-46 (half sizes)
- Color: Yellow/Black
The Miura comes with 4mm of Vibram XS Edge™ rubber — a La Sportiva favorite. The rubber is a nice combination of durability and stickiness. Our reviewer owned her second pair of Miuras for two years before the rubber wore through and she never sent them to a resoler.
The rubber is thick around the front of the toes which protects your little piggies even when climbing outside on unforgiving rock or jamming them into cracks.
This shoe is an edging classic. The asymmetrical toe box and stiff rubber let you get a foot on the tiniest of nubs. The shoe’s build directs your weight into the tips of your toes so you can support yourself while standing on just a toe or two.
If you size your pair of Miuras tightly then your toes will curl and it won’t be the best for sticking into pockets and cracks.
The shoe is well designed for heel hooking. It has a nice, thick patch of sticky rubber on all sides of the heel which protects your foot well when hooking.
However, like most shoes, whether the shoe heel hooks well for YOU depends on how it fits your foot. Our reviewer has had occasional issues with her heel slipping out of the shoe while heel hooking (as in, it has slipped out a few times in over three years of wearing the shoe), but other online reviewers have written that the heel fits great. If you don’t know whether or not you have a low- or high-volume heel, though, then this shoe is still a safe bet — even if your heel doesn’t fit perfectly into the shoe, it will get the job done on all but the gnarliest of heel hooks.
It seems like whoever designed the Miura did so with toe hooking in mind. There is a thick rubber patch over the toes which will keep your toes safe and secure while toe hooking. The shoe has laces which always helps since there is no threat of them coming undone while toe hooking like Velcro straps could.
The Miura is a nice balance between sensitivity and durability (there is usually a tradeoff between the two since durability means having thicker rubber and more rubber makes it harder to feel the finer features of the rock with your feet). The shoe does have a thick rubber patch over the toes which makes it hard to feel some of the tiny things you’re standing on. However, usually you can feel what you’re standing on in these shoes.
At times you might not be able to tell if you have a good foothold due to the slight level of insensitivity, especially while bouldering outdoors. Though we gave this shoe a 3.5 out of 5 for sensitivity, it wouldn’t be as good at crack climbing or as durable if it didn’t have all that rubber on it.
Precision and edging go hand in hand, and accordingly, these shoes have knife-like precision on the rock. The asymmetrical and downturned toe box comes to a little point at the tip of the shoe which lets you put your big toe on some tiny nothings. The shoe’s design lets you get a precise placement on any foothold, and then the shoe’s rubber lets you stick securely to the hold.
Some reviewers have noted that the shoe might feel a little slick in the beginning, but after the break-in period it will smear fine. Our reviewer has never had any problems smearing in it. However, since the rubber is more durable than it is sticky, it will never be the greatest at smearing.
Nonetheless, it gets the job done. Our reviewer recently sent a gym V5 (6C/6C+) which was on a slightly overhung wall. The problem involved smearing and doing so was no problem in her Miuras.
Like I said before, if you size your pair tightly then your toes will curl and this won’t be the best shoe for jamming into thin cracks.
Sizing & Fit
For sizing, we recommend you purchase your pair of La Sportiva Miuras 1-1.5 sizes below your street shoe size if you are seeking to get the highest level of performance out of them. They will stretch a little bit after their break-in period (which could take a little depending on how often you climb).
If you prefer comfort to performance, you might be able to size down half a size, but I’d be wary of doing that lest they stretch to the point of being loose in the toes. Our reviewer wears a US size 9 in street shoes and owns US size 8 Miuras (our reviewer is female but wears the men’s version of the shoe because women’s shoes are too narrow for her feet).
Although, as mentioned above, our reviewer’s heel fit a little loose in the shoe, when doing anything but the most forceful heel hook the shoe fits her heel fine. If you size them tight for performance then your toes might begin to hurt after some time climbing and you’ll have to untie or remove the shoe to relieve the discomfort. The shoe isn’t abnormally wide or narrow, and the laces make for a tight and customizable fit.
Your Miuras will withstand the beatings of years of indoor and outdoor climbing. Our reviewer has gone through two pairs of Miuras. Her first she purchased used at an REI garage sale for $5 and was able to get a full year of climbing out of them. She loved them so much she bought a second pair which lasted her two years before the rubber on the toes wore through. Just a month ago she purchased her third pair.
The only durability issue our reviewer has had with these shoes (beyond normal wear and tear) is with the laces. For some reason, the Miura laces aren’t as durable as the rest of the shoe and, as many other online reviewers have mentioned, they will probably be the first part of the shoe to need fixing — especially if you crack climb often.
Our reviewer has owned her third pair of Miuras for about a month and, as you can see, the laces are already starting to fray a bit.
You might have to replace the laces, but the bottom line is you’ll be able to climb in these for a long time before having to get a new pair.
The shoe is quite comfortable for how high-performing it is. The Miuras are tight and aggressive enough that you can climb some gnarly routes and problems in them, but not so tight and aggressive that they hurt with every step. You’ll be able to walk around in them at your local climbing gym or crag but you won’t want to go an entire gym session without taking them off.
When bouldering, our reviewer can wear her Miuras for an hour before wanting to take them off. When sport climbing, she likes to take them off after every climb. They aren’t the best multi-pitch shoes since they might feel a little uncomfortable if you’re climbing in them for a long time without a break. Recall that our reviewer sizes her Miuras a full US size down from her street shoe size, so if you go 1.5-2 US sizes below your street shoe size you might not be able to wear your pair for an hour.
The shoes will need a handful of gym sessions before they break in and feel comfortable, so don’t be worried if they are a little tight on the first couple wears.
These shoes have no abnormal smell issues. They are made out of natural leather which breathes nicely compared to synthetic leather. You wouldn’t want to give someone flowers that smelled like them, but your Miuras won’t stink up the gym, either.
Basically, don’t be worried about how them being unnaturally smelly.
From a functionality standpoint, we like how the amount of rubber on the shoe makes it both durable and versatile. As for aesthetics, the shoe is typical La Sportiva yellow and black which make the shoes look like some bananas or Charlie Brown’s t-shirt.
The La Sportiva Miura has lasted so long with its original design while other climbing shoes of the past have been discontinued. This is a testament to its timeless design and build. The Miura is the classic all-around climbing shoe from La Sportiva, and our review confirmed what legions of loyalists have been saying for years — this shoe can do it all well (and it’ll last a long time, too).
Digging a little deeper, you wouldn’t want to buy this shoe exclusively for advanced bouldering, but anything else is fair game.
Vs. Other Climbing Shoes
The Miura VS is NOT just a Velcro version of the Miura. In addition to Velcro straps in place of laces, the Miura VS is more aggressive, has a higher-profile toe box (meaning it curls your toes up more as opposed to leaving them flat), and includes the P3© midsole which makes it stiffer than the original Miura. The Miura VS is better for advanced bouldering and super technical stuff while the original Miura is more comfortable and better at crack climbing.
Here are the two shoes side by side — the Miura is on the left and the Miura VS is on the right.
If you’re interested in the Miura VS, here’s our review of it.
The Miura is also comparable in many ways to the Katana Lace. Click here for an in-depth comparison of the Katana Lace and Miura.
This review was conducted by an infrequent contributor to the site.