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What To Do With Old Climbing Shoes

what to do with old climbing shoes

Your climbing shoes are one of the essential pieces of equipment in any climbing activity. However, when climbing shoes get old or worn out, most climbers do not know what to do with them. Some find it useless and just keep it in storage. The worst-case scenario is to throw them away in the trash bin.

So, what to do with old climbing shoes? The truth is, there are still so many things that you can do to make the old pair still useful. You can recycle, resole, or even sell it if you like. There are still many ways to make climbing shoes useful but throwing them away is not the best option. Please read below.

Resole your Old Climbing Shoes

Most of the experienced climbers I know prefer to resole the old shoes so they can use them again. If you resole the pair, you will save money from refraining from buying new shoes and protecting the environment. This method also helps extend the shoes’ lifespan of what is expected.

If you resole the shoes, the sole, rand, and the upper will be replaced. Trying this process will extend the life of the climbing shoes and all the adventures you will experience with the pair. It is one of the best ways to still use climbing shoes, even if they are old and worn out.

Another advantage of using this method is its affordability. Resoling is way much cheaper than buying a new pair. Furthermore, for those climbing shoes with natural leather that have already acquainted with your feet, there is no need to break in the shoes again once it is resoled.

But please note that not all shoes can be resoled. So, you need to check on the pair if it can be resoled. Some shoes, when resoled, will lose the edging making resoling the least option. But this issue is for a few brands only since most of the climbing shoes can be resoled.

Reselling Them is an Option

If your climbing shoes still have a lot of mileage left, even if it is old, then you can have the option to sell them to other climbers. Definitely, there are many ways to sell your old climbing shoes should you decide to do it.

With the popularity of climbing, you can always find a climber looking for second-hand shoes. Another option for you is to sell them on online forums, Facebook groups, and other online platforms. The gym community you are affiliated with can also be a target to sell your old climbing shoes.

But if you want to sell it immediately, please note that you need to keep the shoe quality at its most refined form. Make sure to keep the brand name when you start reselling the shoes. So climbers even resole the shoes first before selling them to others.

donate your old climbing shoes

If you do not like converting your old shoes into money, then you can always give your shoes to others who need them the most. The donation comes in so many forms. You can give it to someone you know who desperately needs a pair but does not have the means to buy a new pair.

Giving it to your local gym if you are affiliated with one is also a way to donate the shoes. These local gyms usually offer these donated climbing shoes to those climbers in need. Resole companies also accept donations of old climbing uses, which will also be given to others in need.

But then again, when you donate your old climbing shoes, make sure to clean them and make them in excellent condition. You need to make the shoes comfortable as a courtesy to the others who will use them in the future.

Make it as a Backup Pair

upcycling the old climbing shoes

Another clever way to use your old climbing shoes is to make them a backup for your main climbing shoes. Using the old one as a backup will make it useful and save some mileage on your main climbing shoes.

There are many ways to maximize the usage of the old pair as backup shoes. An excellent way to use the shoe is during warmup. The old shoe has been with you for a long time with a lot of adventures together. Making the old shoe your backup will not only bring back lots of memories but also make you feel safe with the reliability of the old shoe.

You can also wear old shoes when you are training. Since this shoe is proven, it can still be helpful and reliable during training. You can save your main shoes for the actual climbing and use your old climbing shoes for training.

Another way to maximize its potential as a backup pair is using it in deep-water solo climbing. If your place has a crag that is a waterfall, you can jump in the water using your old climbing shoes, followed by climbing up the wall. When doing this, you prevent your main shoes from being wet and still use your old shoes for the unique climbing activity.

Upcycling the Old Climbing Shoes

This option is not for everyone. It is only for those climbers who have creativity in them. Upcycling means turning your old climbing shoes into something and making a new product. But the creativity and artistry of the show owner will come into play in creating a successful new product.

I have seen acquaintances who have converted the Velcro tabs of his climbing shoes into keychains. Another simple way to upcycle is to use your old laces as a backup for your current climbing shoes. There are many ways to upcycle, but it depends on your creative skills when turning your old climbing shoe into a new product.


Old climbing shoes need not go into the trash bin if you already find them unuseful. But what to do with old climbing shoes? There are many ways to make the most out of your climbing shoes still, as presented in this article. Your old shoes can still have a lot of usage and provide some functionalities to climbers in need.

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