Ski Boot Stretching

Have you got some ski boots that don't fit quite right? Feeling constant aches and pains all day? The good news is your boot shells can be stretched, remolded and reshaped to fit your foot. Once the process is done they will be your own uniquely shaped boots and they will be way more comfortable than before.

For this process, you will need to seek out a bootfitter. But it will hugely helpful for you to know how and why a ski boot is stretched and what stretch you may need for yourself.

Here are couple of the most common ways to alter the shape of the ski boot to make it fit perfectly.

Widening the forefoot
- Often done with the tool called "The Jumbo". The process consists of inserting the tool in the shell in the front. Once it is in, it can be widen as much as needed. It can make the ski boot wider in the front and provide more space for the metatarsal bones. "The Jumbo" can be customized to match the shape of your foot with some foam padding. This will give you the best shape and result.
Reshaping the toe box
- We can get some extra length, but most commonly the toe box gets reshaped or widened. It is done with pre shaped wood blocks or metal toe fitting. This allows us to get the perfect width and length. The blocks go in the ski boot and are pushed forward with a manual or hydraulic crank.
Single stretch/punch
- If you are having issues with a single pressure point on your foot because of the shape of the ski boot, no worries. This can be fixed with the "Manual Press". It offers great flexibility and a ton of options. We can set the shape and the amount where you want to stretch or to punch the shell. It's great for ankles, bunions and any other fleshy/bony parts of the foot.
Volume expansion
- Should you have a huge mismatch of foot to shell, "Ultracam" can be your solution. It allows both boots to be reshaped at the same time. A lot of volume could be added to the shell by stretching and widening. This tool is a true lifesaver of any people who have problems with uncommonly wide feet, "Hobbits" take note.

If your going to get this done, its super important to mark out accurately what are the points of contact are and where the stretches and punches should be made. You can see for yourself where you need the extra space by going through your shell fitting process. Heavy points of contact will be the spots to target. It is best to mark your boot with just chalk as it wont stain the plastic. Avoid drawing circles or making huge marks with a sharpie as that is just rough and makes your boot look like shit.

The key to making the stretch or the punch hold properly is to ensure the plastic gets hot enough to remold it. The heating should be done very slowly. And should be brought up to a temperature of at least 300F. The risk of heating it up too fast is melting the outside plastic, while the inside will not get hot enough to remold. You must allow the plastic to absorb the heat right through.
Once your boots have been stretched or reshaped in any way, the shells should be kept away from any sources of heat, so heaters, dryers, you name it! If the shells get too hot, the plastic can retract and lose its new shape. So try to keep your shells to room temperature or below.



Patriot on February 10 2018 at 09:24AM

Hi Ben,
Unofrtunately there is not much available online as a consumer boot stretcher. These ones in ski shops are hundreds of dollars and only sold to retail stores. There is some wooden ones designed for shoes out there, but any I have tested have fallen apart under pressure.
I am working on bringing a tool to market, but will still be a couple of weeks, please check back for when I have it ready.

Ben on February 07 2018 at 08:46AM


Thanks for the very helpful video! I’m looking for the right tools to do some ski boot stretching for some friends. Can you tell me where I can purchase a tool like “the Jumbo” for stretching the forefoot. I’ve been searching online for a while with no luck.

Much appreciated,

Patriot on January 19 2017 at 11:38AM

Hi Peter,
Have you looked into Paragon or Emilio’s ski shop? Both look they offer ski boot punching service and likely could sort this out for you.
Good luck

Peter on January 19 2017 at 09:33AM

After years of skiing, hiking, running and exercise I have developed a bunion on my left foot. Consequently my Tecnica Diablo boots, which are about five years old and still in good shape, no longer fit.

I don’t want to invest in a new pair (I’m 70 y/o so I would like to have my boot stretched to accommodate my foot, but I’ve been unable to find a boot fitter in New York City. Any Suggestions or contacts who could do the work?

Thank you for your help.

Patriot on January 13 2017 at 10:07PM

Hi John,

In response to your question, the price you paid for boots has no effect on their ability to be customized. All ski boots that are plastic can be stretched and altered to help alleviate your pains. When it comes to toes in particular, I would recommend that you look into a footbed to help prevent your foot elongating and impacting the front.

Also be sure to double check your size of boot to make sure it is ok. Sometimes the boot can be a little big, which can allow your foot to slide and this can be a big factor too.

I have some other videos on this if you want to check them out and I hope it helps solve your issues.

Cheers mate,


john finnell on January 13 2017 at 12:05PM

Hello, I own a pair of atomic ski boots that cost me around $450 USD. After a few days on the slopes, I have already got skiers toe. I was wondering: can all ski boots be stretched? Or do you have to buy a pair of $800+ boots? Thanks

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