Rossignol X-10 Skate FW ReviewMay 9, 2016
- Low-profile sole maximizes response and precision
- Excellent lacing/closure system design
- Very comfortable on finicky ankles
- Velcro strap stiff to adjust
- Minimal arch support
This boot is as close to perfection as we tested in this year’s roundup. It boasts an anatomically superior fit with slimmed down materials—particularly through the ankle—that keeps the boot light and cool for high-energy performance. It felt great right out of the box, but its high level of comfort (without sacrificing responsiveness) truly began to shine on both longer outings and when tested side-by-side with other boots in this review whose fits were more rigid and restrictive throughout.
All the clichés about fitting like a glove, or a slipper, apply to this boot. It has just a little more space in the toebox—both lengthwise and widthwise—than comparable brands in the same size. The low-profile tongue with a ratcheting quicklace adjusts easily and comfortably without creating any pressure points.
A slightly lower-profile sole than is typical keeps this boot feeling “close to ski” for an effortless sense of power transfer. For as flexible a boot as this is, it doesn’t seem to give up much in the way of responsiveness—though newer skate skiers may find it takes some getting used to, out of the box, in comparison with boots sporting a more rigid fit.
This is all beautifully designed, with an easy-to-grasp (even with gloved, or cold/stiff fingers), quicklace-adjusted tongue, an external zip that stays put, and a Velcro power strap that’s well placed that won’t get in the way of other elements of the closure system. All makes for easy on/off and a secure, customizable fit with no superfluous elements. The internal lace adjusts farther forward (toward the toes) than other boots we tested, allowing you to really ratchet down on the toebox if you’d like. And the zipper sports a slim fabric guard behind it to ensure snow or moisture stays out. Only one complaint, and quite minor: the external Velcro strap is slightly wide in comparison to the size of the buckle it feeds through, leading it to adjust a bit stiffly. Hopefully Rossignol addresses this small flaw with the boot’s next rendition.
The ankle support comes from the slim plastic rear cuff, rather than relying on bulky materials or a full foam collar. Because the plastic support in the upper cuff sits slightly higher than in comparable boots, it avoids being an irritant to sensitive ankles without sacrificing any of the boot’s responsiveness or support.
The greatest standout feature of this boot is its innovative design around the ankle. Rather than a full-length tongue or full foam ankle collar, the X-10 Skate features a short tongue and slim, breathable fabric, letting the ankles breathe during aerobic pushes. This makes for a highly comfortable boot out of the box. The footbed is minimal—no real arch support in the insole—which is likely to please those with naturally strong arches but may create some fatigue in the long haul for those without.