AMX Blog

Motorcycle Road Boots Buying Guide

By Darya AMX

Tue Nov 23 2021

It is a commonly referred to recommendation that 10,000 steps per day will improve overall health in the average adult. All you need are two working feet!

Therefore it stands to reason that you would take necessary precautions to protect your feet when riding your motorcycle.

And the best way to protect your feet is with the right pair of motorcycle boots.

When buying road motorcycle boots, there are three questions you should ask;

  1. What type of riding will the boots be mainly used for?
  2. What kind of protection and armour will you require?
  3. What other features are important for your comfort?

In this comprehensive guide we will explain the six main categories of motorcycle boots to help you determine which pair of boots is right for you. We will also discuss the importance of correct fitment & price.

So let's get started!

Urban or Street Boots and Shoes

Yes, you read right - shoes! Motorcycle riding shoes are increasing in popularity with the introduction of protective casual sneakers like the Dri Rider Tribute boots.

Who are these boots/ shoes for?


This style of boot is suitable for a street rider or commuter who needs their riding shoes to double as work shoes or serve as "normal shoes" for a social outing.

What kind of protection & armour do they offer?


Made from heavy duty canvas and/or real leather , they offer the key components of nylon inner ankle protection, anti slip oil resistant soles. Some styles also offer Thermoplastic toecap and heel for added protection. The best ride shoes will have anti-torsion systems to keep the shoe rigid and combat improper flexing of the foot.

What other features should I look for?


Look for shoes that have a waterproof & breathable liner, and cushioning insole for comfort.

Dri Rider Tribute Boot

Dri Rider Tribute Boots

Touring Boots


If this term is new to you, touring boots can usually be characterised by comfort, durability, weatherproofing and sturdiness.

Who are these boots for?


Touring boots are designed for comfort on those long rides across the country.

What kind of protection & armour do they offer?


These motorcycle boots should have moulded ankle & shin protection, & non slip rubber soles. An important feature of any boot, especially one that is getting significant use, is a gear shifter protector or guard. This will prevent excessive wear from use of the gear shifter.

What other features should I look for?


Breathable & waterproof liners are important to be prepared for riding in all weather conditions. Synonymous with quality waterproofing and breathability is the use of Gore-Tex®, for example in the Dainese Freeland Gore-Tex® Boots , which also come in a Ladies version. The innovation of Gore-Tex® is that it does not allow water into the boot however it will let sweat vapor escape, which makes them the perfect waterproof boots for riding in wet weather conditions and long distances.

Dainese Freeland Gore-Tex Boots

Dainese Freeland Gore-Tex Boots

Sports Boots


Your sport boots are similar to race boots but not quite as heavily armoured in their construction. They are taller boots built to provide maximum protection while allowing some flexibility and freedom of movement to make an all day ride more comfortable, and allow for ease of movement.

The versatility and solid protection of the sports boots makes them suitable motorcycle boots for most riding styles.

Who are these boots for?


Foot and ankle injuries are extremely common in motorcycle accidents, which is why this style of sport boots is so popular for all road motorcycle riders, regardless of the type of bike or style of motorcycle riding.

What kind of protection & armour do they offer?


The best sport boots will be constructed mainly of high quality leather, like the Dainese Nexus Boots supplemented by Thermoplastic polyurethane inserts on the shin to allow for resistance to abrasion, high resilience and increased flexibility. Another feature to look for is ankle bracing which restricts lateral movement and in turn prevents rotational ankle injuries, an example of this is the integrated bio-mechanical detachable ankle brace in the Alpinestars Supertech R Boot. Other features of the sport boot include toe sliders (for toe protection), oil resistant soles to prevent slipping & shifter guards.

What other features should I look for?


Zip & Velcro closures allow riders to easily take on or off their boots without the need to remove gloves. Ventilation and waterproofing will aid in comfort in all riding conditions.

Alpinestars Supertech R Boot

Alpinestars Supertech R Boot

Cruiser Boots


Typically when you think of motorcycle boots, chances are you picture cruiser boots - sturdy leather boots, normally accompanied by a leather jacket and a flashy belt buckle.

Who are these boots for?


This style of boot is for the cruiser rider who values comfort and protection as well as style.

What kind of protection & armour do they offer?


These are a very classic looking motorcycle boot, mid height, thick leather construction for protection and usually with a side zip as well as laces and or buckles to adjust fitment. Like the Johnny Reb Rascal most boots will often have a small heel and a rubber, oil resistant sole. Some even come with a waterproof, breathable liner and inner ankle protector for added protection, like the Dri Rider Legend Boot.

What other features should I look for?


Look for boots with double or triple stitching in high stress areas and a shifter protector. For the ladies, there are high quality leather options available like the Johnny Reb Womens Classic.

Johnny Reb Womens Classic

Johnny Reb Womens Classic

Adventure Boots


Adventure boots or ADV boots are specifically designed for the adventure rider, being a hybrid between off-road motocross boots and a sports touring boot.

Who are these boots for?


These boots are for the rider who dares to journey into the unknown on two wheels. If you never know where you are going to end up, a pair of Adventure Boots will help get you there safely.

What kind of protection & armour do they offer?


Another point of difference in the adventure boot range is the soles; good adventure boots will have vulcanised or double density rubber soles, meaning that the soles are harder and more durable, making them the best motorcycle boots to protect your feet from rocks, sticks and other unexpected hazards presented by journeying off road. Added protection for adventure riding also comes in the form of Thermoplastic polyurethane inserts on the shin, as well as ankle protectors.

What other features should I look for?


You will often see the use of buckle closure on these boots for easy and precise closure that will stay closed for a full day on the trails.

As with touring boots, you will find Gore-Tex® or a similar waterproof & breathable liner incorporated into an adventure boot to keep your feet dry but still allowing for good range of motion and flexibility. Check out the SIDI Adventure 2 Gore-Tex as a perfect example of protective boots for adventure riders and off road riding. The higher the boots, the deeper the puddles you will be able to traverse.

SIDI Adventure 2 Gore-Tex

SIDI Adventure 2 Gore-Tex

Racing Boots or Track Boots


Race boots are characterised by offering increased armour and protection for the feet and ankles so you can push your limits on the track. A good pair of boots is as important to a safe and successful track day as the right set of tyres.

Who are these boots for?


If you are racing or doing track days, and you want extremely durable motorcycle boots with a high level of protection, and advanced performance.

What kind of protection & armour do they offer?


Toe sliders and reinforced toe box to protect your toes, lightweight materials to reduce centrifugal force in the case of a fall and impact absorbing technology all combine to make racing boots a class of their own. Take the Dainese Axial D1 Boot which also has an internal ankle brace which guides the joint to make correct movements and prevents any unwanted movement that could cause a sprain or fracture. This boot is used by top athletes on international race circuits.

What other features should I look for?


Look for boots that offer maximum protection around the ankle, shin and calf, while still allowing freedom of vertical movement to operate gear and rear brake levers. Premium race boots will have replaceable parts (i.e. toe sliders, armour etc) in the case of a crash or wear & tear you are not necessarily having to fork out for new boots. Also look for the “CE” rating means that the product meets the basic health and safety requirements of European Directive 89/686/EEC.

Dainese Axial D1 Boots

Dainese Axial D1 Boots


Now let's talk about price & the importance of correct fitment.

Fitment & Sizing


Regardless of whether you are looking at boots designed for women or men, checking the size guide for riding gear is very important. Each brand will have a different size guide with measurements tailored to their specific product. So if you think you know your shoe size, think again - always do your measurements in accordance with the size guide specific to the boots you want. Even the best motorcycle boot is no good if it doesn't fit correctly.

Follow these steps to correctly measure your feet:

Place your heel against a wall and measure out to the end of your big toe.
The boots inside length should be 15-20mm longer than your feet.
This measurement gives you the correct toe clearance for safety and comfort.


See below the Alpinestars Size Guide, and the SIDI Size Guide. Notice that the size EU 39 in the SIDI Guide says 24.5cm, however the Alpinestars guide is 25cm. This highlights the importance of checking the size guide for the specific brand of boot you are considering.

SIDI Size Guide

SIDI Size Guide

Alpinestars Size Guide

Alpinestars Size Guide

If you can, head into an AMX store to try a pair of boots before you buy, and bring the socks that you intend to wear with the motorcycle boots as if you normally wear thick socks this can make a difference to the fitment and your boot size. If you don't have an AMX store near you, no worries we offer free standard shipping Australia wide, and have a flexible returns policy so the perfect boot is never far away!

The Price of Motorcycle Boots


You've heard the saying "you get what you pay for", well the adage applies here just as well as anywhere. Motorcycle boots can range in price from a hundred dollars to close to a thousand dollars. And while you don't need to drop a grand for decent boots, the price is a reflection of quality. Ensure that the boots you have chosen have the correct protection and features for their intended use. At the end of the day if you like your feet and ankles to be in good shape then buying good motorcycle boots is a no brainer.

Happy Shopping!


After reading this motorcycle boots buying guide you should now have a good understanding of the different styles of motorcycle boots available, what style is the best boots for you and the questions that you need to ask before buying motorcycle boots. Remember that although new boots will be stiff to begin with, if they aren't comfortable, they aren't your boots. If you still need help finding the right motorcycle boots, we have AMX Superstores located all over Australia and a team of experts ready to assist you. Or you can contact our online customer service team on 1300 113 257.

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