Rock climbers often want that holy grail of a climbing shoe that works like a high-end performance shoe, but fits like a comfy, all-day shoe. Introducing: La Sportiva's Otaki.

La Sportiva Otaki: Design

La Sportiva designed a comfortably fitting performance-oriented shoe.

The new "S-Heel" has two main aspects: It's designed to hold the heel at a slight tilt, which creates a more powerful foot position. It's also designed to hold the shape of the heel together, so it doesn't change shape over time.


The Otaki is a technical shoe, so it's suited to overhanging rock and bouldering. But, it's not a one-trick pony. It's a good all-rounder.

Some, more aggressive shoes are only good on overhanging rock, or only good for bouldering. The Otaki is a technical shoe, it is aggressive, but it does work as an all-rounder as well.

Compared to the La Sportiva Solution

The Otaki's downturn is not quite as steep. When you look at a Solution, it has a much more aggressive downturn. The Solution has a higher volume toe-box, which requires your toes to be quite curled up. And, it has a different heel design that grabs the heel and torques it even more than the Otaki.

Where the Otaki sits in La Sportiva's range of climbing shoes

If you were to break a climbing shoe range down into three areas, you've got beginner shoes, intermediate shoes and performance shoes.

The Otaki fits nicely into the intermediate and performance area. It's a good option for a customer buying their first performance shoe.


All climbing shoes have one key disadvantage, and that's if it doesn't suit your foot shape. The Otaki follows the same toe profile as the Katana. If you're coming from a Katana, you'll likely find that this is a good fit for you.

P3 System explained

P3 stands for "Permanent Power Platform". The P3 system was introduced with the Solution. It's La Sportiva's way of making a shoe stay downturned through the life of the shoe.

To achieve this, La Sportiva could have done it in a few different ways. The obvious way being, incorporating a stiff board beneath the forefoot. But, that would mean you'd have less feel underfoot.

It's pretty easy to see how the P3 system works. You push the toe up on the shoe, and just wait. And, it slowly goes back down.

Who is the Otaki made for?

The Otaki is a good option for experienced climbers who want a technical shoe. But, it's also a good first step into technical rock climbing shoes. It's a little bit stiffer than some of the other options, so it gives good support.

About La Sportiva

La Sportiva is widely regarded as the best climbing shoe brand. They still make almost all their climbing shoes in the same village in Italy that they've been based in for nearly 100 years. Plus, Italian leather speaks for itself.

See more rock climbing shoes.

Learn more about the La Sportiva Otaki.

See more La Sportiva.

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