How to Lace Tactical Boots

There is a tendency among many people to choose military lace methods just because they look good. Once they discover an exciting method of lacing via the armed forces, they move on to the next one.

There are a lot of real benefits you can get from learning methods to lace up military boots. You can improve the functionality of boots, add even more comfort, or tie them in a way that gives you better ankle and foot support.

The eyelets that are found nearest the ankle could be used by someone who has wide feet, while the eyelets that are closest to the toes should be left empty. This is the point where the feet need breathing room, since they are the widest there. If you have high arches, you may need to explore gap lacing, so that the top of the foot can have more room. Lacing military boots can be learned in multiple ways.

It is clear that proper lacing has real benefits. Boots are sturdier and allow for more detail when it comes to lacing, due to their size. However, how do traditional combat boots size up and why is it important that you know how to lace up this type of boot?

Lacing Military Boots: The Most Common Method

When it comes to tying your military boots, you have a variety of options and patterns. Military boots come in a variety of styles and each offers its own benefits – add more support, make your boots even more functional for rough terrain outside, or just go for the military look. You decide.

First things first: you need a good pair of shoelaces before you can lace military boots. If you just buy cheap shoelaces that will wear out in a matter of weeks, learning all the lacing methods is pointless. Get shoes with durable laces that won’t fall out so fast. Make sure you have long shoelaces.

Having dealt with the shoelaces, let’s go ahead and do the work. The ladder lace is the most common way to lace military boots. If you want to try this, you will need longer shoelaces.

Make sure you start with the eyelets closest to the toes of the boot, at the bottom of the boot. Make sure that the ends of the shoelaces are pointing upwards, rather than outwards from the inside of that bottom row. Make sure there is equal lace on both sides.

Push each end of the lace into the adjacent free vertical eyelet as soon as the lace is outside. Do not pull the lace outside for now, but cross each end to the other side. The next step is to thread each side of the lace around the vertical section you created in the previous step before pulling it out. Make it as tight as you can, then go upward through the next eyelet.

Now you know why longer shoelaces are needed for this method.

Continue threading the lace through the eyelets until all of the eyelets have been threaded through. If you are out of eyelets, you can tie a knot inside the boot, once you are out of eyelets. If you would like to tighten the laces a little more, you could thread them one last time through the last opposite vertical section you made.

Double or triple the knot according to how much lace is left after the process. In the end, this technique will give you a ladder, hence its name. And now you understand how to lace a military boot.

Ladder lacing is one of the few techniques that give you that much solidity and strength.

A soldier in camouflage pants lace up army boots

What Other Methods Would You Recommend?

Military boots must be laced several different ways and you can discover dozens more on your own. Because of this, learning a single method and sticking to it isn’t really helpful.

Let’s go over one or two more that are worth having in your repertoire now that we’ve shown you the most popular method.

Diagonal Lacing (Cross Lacing)

Lacing boots in the military style with criss-cross (commonly known as cross lacing) is a good option. This diagonal lacing method is also referred to as lacing that is ‘over-under’.

The lace is fed from the inside to the out, repeatedly, when criss-cross lacing is performed. Start by pulling the lace upwards from the bottom-most set of eyelets, then measure one side to ensure it is even. The laces are crisscrossed inside out since once you are at the next set of eyelets you will be threading the lace that way again.

Each lace is kept diagonal right up to the end, due to the laces always crossing.

What is the military lace style for boots?

The Army lacing method is a lot like the method we discussed above.  Keeping the crosses inside and the verticals outside is just as important as the method you used for ladder lace. This will prevent snagging and keep your shoes in good condition.

However, army laces do not provide the same level of support as ladder laces. Several other techniques would provide more strength.

Lacing up with the bow tie method

You can also use the bow tie method if you know how to do army lacing.

Army lacing is very different to bow tie lacing. On the first horizontal thread, you aim for inward and then outward movements. Following that, don’t do the cross on the inside as you would with army lacing styles, but instead choose the outside. When you are at the eyelet that is opposite, send the lace through it. You will need to access the next vertical eyelet but from the inside. Bring out the lace and then make another cross from the outside.

Final Thoughts

The methods for lacing boots military-style above vary in their level of comfort and support. Because of this, you must choose one that is best suited to your feet and ankles. In terms of the boots themselves, you’ll be wearing the toughest boots you’ve ever worn as well as using popular lacing patterns.


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