La Sportiva VK BOA: The makings of a Vertical Kilometer running shoe

The three most important aspects of a good mountain racing shoe, especially for a Vertical Kilometer competition, are (1) lightness, (2) fit, and (3) traction. And it's safe to say that the La Sportiva VK BOA nails all of these. 

  • It's "extremely light," as reported by experts. This is all due to its very minimal upper and cushion.
  • For the fit, the combination of the upper and BOA technology is responsible for the shoe's precision lockdown. 
  • Since running uphills demand more use of the shoe's front part, it has a rock plate, toe guard, and more contact points upfront than the rear.

In summation, the Vk Boa is a mountain racing shoe that's designed to move quickly in a featherweight construction. 

A perfect blend of ground feel and protection 

The La Sportiva Vk Boa is a minimalist trail runner, meaning that it has less cushion than most trail models. This is the reason why you have sufficient ground feel in this shoe, encouraging good proprioception. 

Despite being minimal, the shoe also has its fair share of protective elements. One, there's the toe guard in front. Second, the outsole has a rock plate, muting the sharp objects on the ground. 

What's the difference between the OG La Sportiva VK and the VK BOA? 

The only difference between the parent La Sportiva VK and the BOA version is the use of the BOA Fit System for lockdown in the latter. Other than that, they're pretty much identical in use and in design. 

Facts / Specs

Terrain: Trail
Weight: Men 6.3oz / Women 5.3oz
Drop: 4mm
Arch support: Neutral
Base model: La Sportiva VK
Forefoot height: 12mm
Heel height: 16mm

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Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.