2020 Premium Motocross Boots Buyer’s Guide


There are a lot of great motocross boots out there, which means it can be hard to decide on your next pair. That’s where our 2020 MX boot buyer’s guide comes in. Although we have five different boots on this list, we wholeheartedly believe that you can’t go wrong with any of them.

Read on as we cover the basics of and break down the differences between boots from Fox Racing, Sidi, Gaerne, and Alpinestars.

When the first boot in our lineup is the preferred boot of Ken Roczen, Adam Cianciarulo, and Ricky Carmichael, you know this is going to be a solid buyer’s guide. And truth be told (and even at the lowest price point), there are some things that the Fox Racing Instincts do better than any of the other boots on our list.

Before we get ahead of ourselves, though, let’s talk about the fit of the Instincts. The boots run true to size for us, but several riders have suggested that they might actually run a little small. So, if you’re in between sizes or have a wider foot, the recommendation is to size up. Even if that doesn’t work or you think you don’t need to do it, don’t stress – we have our Fit Guarantee program for a reason. When you are in the right size, you’ll notice how safe and secure the ankles feel – there’s minimal wiggle room without feeling too tight or stifling, and there’s not a lot of heel float. The boots offer great flex as well, and all without any break in time.

Now here’s what the Instincts do better – a low ride chassis in the boots bring the boot lower and closer to the foot peg to enhance feel of the brake, pegs, and shift lever. That type of feel and grip is invaluable and unmatched by the other boots on this list. Some extra features like Fox’s exclusive Duratec sole, Hinge Lockout to resist hyperextension, and a Dynamic CORE Stabilizer for comfort and safety, add to the boot’s appeal and performance.

A few inconveniences exist, though. For starters, the boot’s ball and socket buckles can be harder to operate when extremely muddy or dirt caked. Additionally, the boot’s calf opening is a little tight, especially for riders with large legs or even knee braces. Those are both minor traits, though – nice to know, but not deal breakers.

Ken Roczen Rides with Fox Instincts at Anaheim 1 2020
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo


Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors: Navy

Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors
Black Black/White Fluorescent Orange
Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors: Black Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors: Black/White Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors:Flo Orange
Fluorescent Yellow White/Silver Flame Red
Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors: Flo Yellow Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors: White/Silver Fox Racing Instinct Boot Colors: Flame Red

Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boots

Price: $574.99

Handcrafted Italian quality with a tried-and-true reputation, the Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS boots are a continual top-of-the-line option for MX riding. With protection, fit, convenience, and comfort as the focal point, the boots break the mold in more ways than one.

Sidi’s focus on protection is underscored by their ankle pivot system, shock resistant heel, and incorporation of hard TPU plastic. The ankle pivot system features a hyperextension block to prevent injury to the foot and ankle, while the heel is designed to keep the foot planted in the boot and resistant to twisting. The final encasement of hard TPU give your feet an extra layer of insurance and security.

Moving on to fitment, Sidi boots are known for being narrow in the toe box. The Crossfire 3s are no exception, with fitment features like no booties, independent buckling, and a Dual Flex System contributing to the tighter fit. The non-bootie design gives the boots a slimmer, more responsive fit and feel, while the independent buckling system allows for easy closure and adaptability to varying positions on the bike. Paired with the Dual Flex System that works with four different straps to ensure a personalized fit, the boots really are some of the tightest fitting pairs out there.

Convenience and comfort come from the boot’s adjustable shin plate, Cambrelle lining in the foot, and unmatched number of replaceable parts. Nearly the entire boot is made to be removeable – Sidi created the ultimate bolt-on boot out of the Crossfire 3s. Every cam-lock buckle, along with the central strap system, shin plate, boot leg, and even the very sole can be removed and replaced. This is an incredibly unique feature of Sidi boots and a huge selling point of durability, reliability, and affordability.

Alex Ray Wears Sidi Boots at STL Supercross 2020
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Yellow/WhiteSidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Blue

Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors
Black Black/Ash Black/Ash/Flo Yellow
Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Black Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Black/Ash Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Flo Yellow
Black/Red/White Black/White Flo Yellow/Blue
Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Black/Red/White Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Black/White Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Flo Yellow/Blue
Red/Flo/Ash White White/Black/Flo Yellow
Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Red/Flo/Ash Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: White Sidi Crossfire 3 SRS Boot Colors: Black/Flo Yellow
Yellow/White Blue

Gaerne SG-12 Boots

Price: $476.99-$494.99

Roomy, comfy, and protective, the Gaerne SG-12 boots are the third offering in our lineup and they do not disappoint.

When we say roomy and comfy, we mean the boots are significantly roomier and comfier than most others in this lineup. Both qualities are immediately evident when you put on the boots – a wider toe box accommodates a variety of foot sizes, while a memory foam inner lining conforms to the contouring of your specific foot.

But a good boot isn’t just roomy and comfortable. No, a good boot is also protective, and Gaerne’s SG-12s live up to that with a few key features. The first is its intuitive Razorback system. A multipiece structure, the Razorback is the backbone of the SG-12’s dual-pivoting glide plate design. With it, the boot can offer a wider range of motion with joints that glide and shift instead of merely rotating. This plays into the second feature, Gaerne’s exclusive Dual Stage Pivot System. A pivot attached to the “Wishbone” maintains rigidity and strong lateral support while a glide plate keeps the upper part of the boot in a firm and upright position. A second pivot affixed on a sliding glide allows for feel of the controls while absorbing energy in the event of a crash. These two features are unique to the SG-12 boots and decidedly set them apart from other boots on the market.

Other technicalities of Gaerne’s boot that we like include an incredibly large calf opening, hard plastic over the toe box, a traditional stitched on sole, and one of the most user-friendly buckles available. And, take it for its worth, but the SG-12s look like-new after every wash – they don’t wear as visibly as some of the other boots on this list.

Zach Osborne Races in Gaerne SG-12 Boots at STL 2020
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Paste

Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors
Black/Grey Black/White Green/Grey
Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Black/Grey Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Black/White Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Green/Grey
Grey/White/Flo Orange/Black/White Red
Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Grey/White/Flo Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Orange/Black/White Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Red
White/Grey Aqua/Black Blue/Fluorescent Yellow
Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: White/Grey Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Aqua/Black Gaerne SG-12 Boot Colors: Blue/Flo Yellow

Alpinestars Tech 7 Boots

Price: $349.95 – $369.95

Starting at $349.95, the Alpinestars Tech 7 boots are hands down one of the best values on the market. If you’re a rider looking to get into a boot that is both affordable and preferred by many top-level riders, this is it. There are some things included premium boots that won’t be included in the Tech 7s, but even then, the Alpinestars boot is still too good to pass up.

The Tech 7s are host to a laundry list of high-quality features. For starters, the boots are comfortable right out of the box – you can wear them all day with zero pinch points. It still takes a few rides for the boot to become completely flexible, but the break-in time is fairly quick and remarkably comfortable.

Continuing on, the boots are designed with a hinge on the lateral and medial side for flexibility, an anti-slide microfiber suede on the heel, and a dual compound, removable, anatomic footbed with EVA and Lycra on top. What’s more, the boots even take a bite out of the premiere Tech 10s to include a rear blade system that prohibits hyperextension and helps with flexibility.

As mentioned, there are a few drawbacks to the inexpensive boot. The most notable, however comes in way of heel float – of all the boots in this lineup, the Tech 7 has the most heel float. Sometimes, we’ve found ourselves wishing our ankles sat a bit more securely, but it’s also never been a deal breaker for us. Overall, the boots are rock solid and, for the price and everything you’re getting with them, there isn’t anything to lose.

Josh Hill Rides in Alpinestars Tech 7 Boots in 2020
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Flo Yellow/Blue

Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors
Black Black/Orange/White/Blue Black/Red/Green
Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Black Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Black/Orange/White/Blue Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Black/White/Green
Black/Silver/White/Gold Black/White Dark Grey/Teal/White
Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Black/Silver/White/Gold Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Black/White Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Dark Grey/Teal/White
Grey/Red White White/Red/Burgundy
Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Grey/Red Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: White Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: White/Red/Burgandy
Yellow/Military Black Black/Grey Flo Red/Blue
Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Yellow/Military Black Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Black/Grey Alpinestars Tech 7 Boot Colors: Flo Red/Blue
Flo Yellow/Blue

Alpinestars Tech 10 Boots

Price: $599.95

The big brother to the Tech 7, the Tech 10s are a premium and popular dirt bike boot. Though they’ve been around for a long time, the Tech 10s have been periodically refreshed with the most recent update coming in the last year or so. That said, they continue to be relevant and high-performing year after year.

It starts with the fitment. Like the Tech 7 and the SG-12, the Tech 10 boots have a wide toe box and fit true to size. Unlike those boots, though, the Tech 10s have an inner bootie. The only boots in this lineup to have inner booties, the Tech 10s can be a bit more time-consuming and trickier to put on. The process – bootie out, foot in bootie, foot and bootie back in boot – requires some patience, but your foot feels comfortable and very secure once everything is properly situated in the boot. And though the boots are stiff right out of the box, they break in nicely after a few weeks of riding.

Another important facet of premium boots is longevity. Long after the Tech 10s are broken in and have been ridden for a number of hours, we’ve found that they remain supportive and high performing – even when compared to other boots of its caliber. This can be credited to a number of things. For one, Alpinestars’ patented Frontal Flex Frame gives the boot seamless flexion from the foot all the way up to the shin. Second, a biomechanical inner ankle brace along with anatomical shin and calf plates keep the foot protected and well secured within the boot. What’s more, none of this extra protection technology sacrifices feel – a relief cut in the shell of the foot sole offers adequate feel on the pegs.

And that’s really just a cursory look at the Tech 10s. For the full scope on their wide range of capabilities, be sure to check out their product spotlight video.

Blake Baggett Rides in Alpinestars Tech 10 Boots in San Diego Supercross 2020
Photo Credit: Kardy Photo

Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Red/White/YellowAlpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Blue/Orange/YellowAlpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Black/White/Red

Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors
Black Black/Grey/Orange/Flo Red Black/White/Yellow
Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Black Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Black/Grey/Orange Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Black/White/Yellow
Grey/Blue/Orange Red/White/Black White
Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Grey/Blue/Orange Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: Red/White/Black Alpinestars Tech 10 Boot Colors: White
Red/White/Yellow Blue/Orange/Yellow Black/White/Red

Keep the Ride Going

This small lineup includes just some of our favorite boots. For even more MX boot options, check out our Motocross Boots page. And if you want to check out some of our other buyer’s guides for 2020, check out our Buyer’s Guide video page.

The post 2020 Premium Motocross Boots Buyer’s Guide appeared first on RM Rider Exchange – The Rocky Mountain ATV/MC Blog.

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