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Last Updated: , Created: Tuesday, January 13th, 2009

Speciality soles and shoes -- protecting against slipping and crushing

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When you live in Ice Country, as most Canadians do, slipping on ice is a daily hazard for a good part of the year. Hence, inventors have developed a whole range of specialty strap-on soles to keep us from slipping. The first photo shows the Icer's Safety Soles which are a heavy car-tire like sole with sharpened cleats screwed into the sole. They attach to the boot with Velcro straps. These are the ideal grips for heavy work and sport on ice as they give you an absolute grip. Their only drawback is that they are a bit heavy. YakTrax is another slip on sole that is much lighter, you can even carry them folded up in a pocket, and they have a good grip on ice as well, although not as absolute a grip at the Icer's. Be careful with all ice griping shoes as they become slippery on smooth concrete or stone floors and of course they will scratch wooden and vinyl flooring. You can usually find these kind of boot add-ons at shoe repair shops and now even in drug stores wherever ice is a common hazard for walking.

Icers: The most heavy duty and sure footed of all the shoe/boot attachments. Replacement cleats can be purchased to keep them walking.

Stabilicers: Remarkably similer to the Icer (a copy? or the same company - two brands?). The velcro straps are just a bit short on these to go around very large snow boots.

Stabilicers Lite: Lighter duty -- better traction than YakTrax, less traction than Icers -- but has rubber side and depth cleats that reducing slipping on concrete and surfaces too hard for the steel teeth to bite into.  For me, 32North is the company of choice.

YakTrack: Light duty, the easiest to carry around in a pocket. Good traction, readily available. This is the one I started with but now I prefer the Stabilicers Lite above.

From the TV show clip where this database entry started: Jordan David is a maker of specialty shoes and they make the rubber boot you see in the second photo. The grooves in the sole are filled with aluminum oxide abrasive. These are good work boots for people working in slushy end of winter conditions.

The third photo shows a unique thing called a Boot Saver. It uses a very special and extremely good glue to glue this protector right to old leather boots. That helps to keep the toes from wearing out. This is particularly useful for people with steel toed work boots because once the steel in the toe is exposed, they are no longer allowed on construction sites because of the danger of electrical contact. The Boot Savers can make that old pair of work boots last until their soles fall off.  If you can't find them in the stores, you can find them at

Speaking of work boots, it may surprise you to know that you can get that steel toe protection in all kinds of boots. Terra Boots cut the one open for us in the photo above, but they also make hiking boots with steel toes (to protect from falling rocks), dress shoes with steel toes (for the boss on the construction site) and the ladies have not been left out as they make designer quality boots, with steel toes as well.  If you need steel toes, you don't have to wear construction boots.

Keywords: Safety, Security, Ice, Protection, Sliding, Boots, Slippery, Shoes

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