The La Sportiva Finale is La Sportiva's introductory climbing shoe. These shoes are unlined and made up of a leather and microfiber upper. They are designed to focus on comfort above all else since new climbers will undoubtedly be turned off by tight-fitting uncomfortable shoes right off the bat. That said, the Finale still totes some of the best features that La Sportiva has to offer. They lack the craftsmanship of the more expensive Sportiva shoes, but still have the same sticky rubber soles, which is a plus. Overall, we were slightly let down by the Finale, though the shoes do have their place as a relatively inexpensive beginner shoe.
La Sportiva Finale - Women's Review
Compare prices at 3 resellers Pros: Relatively inexpensive, sticky rubber soles, comfortable
Cons: Less durable than other Sportiva models
Manufacturer: La Sportiva
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The La Sportiva Finale is marketed as a beginner shoe for those just getting into climbing. This contender is comfortable, soft, and versatile. This versatility makes them a decent introductory shoe, as you can use them on a variety of climbing styles before settling on something more specific.
This metric is where the Finale shines, as they are designed to be worn for long periods of time, whether in the gym or outdoors on long moderate routes. The Finale was the most comfortable lace-up shoe we tested this time around. The Finale does seem to fit better on a narrower foot, so those with wider feet may not feel the same level of comfort that the Finale is meant to achieve.
The shape of the toe box and sole make the Finale a decent shoe for small footholds, but the shoe overall lacks the precision of more shaped shoes. We did find that the Vibram XS Edge 5mm rubber was as sticky and trustworthy as the other Sportiva shoes in this review, such as the Sportiva Kataki. We did note that out of the box, the rubber was less crisp than the other new shoes in this review, and made them seem less sensitive overall.
The Finale performed surprisingly well as an edging shoe. Though they are not stiff at all, they hold their own on small edges and holds. The Finale has a tensioned heel rand and a Powerhinge that provides support underfoot, improving edging performance. It was one of the top performers in this metric and was bested only by the Editors' Choice award-winning Kataki.
As a crack climbing shoe, the Finale performs fairly well thanks to their flat sole and soft midsole. The leather and microfiber upper provides padding and will take the brunt of the wear when jamming these shoes into cracks. The shape is similar, though even less aggressive than our Top Pick for Crack Climbing, the Anasazi LV. Overall, the Finale is a decent option for moderate trad climbing.
Pockets may not be the Finale's forte, since the shoe is not designed to aggressively toe into pockets or small holds, per say. The toe box is fairly symmetrical, and lacking the talon-like shape of shoes like the Mad Rock Lotus, the La Sportiva Sportiva Solution, and the La Sportiva Kataki. This makes the Finale less of a precision tool than these aggressive models, though each of those models costs substantially more.
Ease of Use
For a lace-up shoe, the Finale is a high scorer in the ease of use department. The laces are easy to undo and do not get stuck in the leather eyelets. Another positive feature of the Finale is the fact that it is straightforward to loosen the laces all the way down into the toe box, making them adjustable and easy to get on and off.
The Finale is one of the least expensive shoes in this review. Only the La Sportiva Tarantulace — Women's are less expensive, sold for $80 online. Both of these shoes are good options for an introductory shoe, though we feel that the Vibram XS Edge rubber of the Finale is stickier and better overall than the FriXion RS rubber that is on the soles of the Tarantulaces.
The La Sportiva Finale is most notable for their all-day comfort and ease of use. These are designed for climbers who are looking for a comfortable shoe above all else. That said, the sticky rubber soles make the Finale a shoe that will still stick to small holds and edges. The extra few dollars separate the Finale from the La Sportiva Tarantulace make the Finale a slightly more durable and well-constructed option.
— Jane Jackson