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Shoe to Ski Boot Size Conversion

Whether you're a rank newbie or a veteran ski buff, you probably don't know much about how boots are sized. That's because ski boots use Mondopoint, a sizing standard that you won't find at your local shoe store. However strange Mondopoint might seem, it makes good sense when you know how it works. You'll forget your befuddlement once you learn how to use the sizing technique to find the right ski boots for your foot size.

Mondopoint was created as an international shoe-size standard. Before Mondopoint, shoes were measured differently around the world: A size 11 in the United States was the same as a 10.5 in the United Kingdom and a 45 in continental Europe. Mondopoint simplifies the sizing conundrum by measuring the length of your foot in centimeters. You won't find Mondopoint many places, but it's the norm in ski resorts and among NATO soldiers.

The simplest way to find your ski boot size is to forget everything you know about your shoe size and grab a ruler with centimeter markings. Step on the ruler and find the length of your foot in centimeters. Voila: now you know your boot size. Mondopoint measures sizes to the half centimeter, so if your foot is just over 24 cm, round up to 24.5.

If you haven't got a ruler or you want to impress ski bunnies with your math skill, you can easily match Mondopoint to U.S. sizes. The best method is to calculate backward from the Mondopoint size by adding the first two digits together. By this calculation, a size 24 boot would be 2+4, or men's size 6. To convert for women, add one: 2+4+1=7. Mondopoint size 24.5 would be a men's 6.5 or a women's 7.5.

When choosing ski boots, it's very important to get the right size. Ski boot shells come in whole sizes only; you can choose a thick or thin liner to make up the difference between whole and half sizes. Sports website Great Outdoors recommends that beginning skiers choose a larger shell and thick liner for better comfort. Rocky Mountain Gear Guide says you should never buy a boot without trying it on first.

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This article reflects the views of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the views of Jillian Michaels or JillianMichaels.com.