What Is the Difference Between Traditional Combat Boots and Tactical Boots?

Some branches of the armed forces will employ both the use of tactical boots and combat boots. While the two kinds of boots are very similar, there are some key differences in the makeup and construction of the boots. For example, combat boots are made to last longer and are more durable against heavy duty wear and tear, whereas tactical boots are thinner, lighter, and more flexible so they are easier to wear for activities that involve a lot of movement, such as in training sessions.

Tactical boots consist of a thinner, usually black leather and lace up past the ankles. There is only one sole, whereas combat boots have a midsole and an outsole, and it is much softer than the outsole of a combat boot. Because of the softer materials that tactical boots are constructed from, they do not last as long and cannot be worn as hard as heavy duty combat boots. Tactical boots are ideal for those in the armed forces who are not going to be engaging in hand to hand combat or dealing with explosives, hiking rough terrain for hours or sifting through debris. They are sometimes worn by army gunmen and officers.

Unlike tactical boots, combat boots are designed to be worn in the roughest terrain, under the heavy stress and in all climates and elements. They are harder and sturdier to last longer while being worn continually and they are more protective of injury from exterior factors such as hand to hand combat and debris. They protect the ankles from being injured while running or climbing and they are waterproof, unlike many tactical boots. Combat boots have two soles, a soft, insole to absorb shock and a hard, outsole to maintain traction and stability while promoting easy maneuverability. They last longer than tactical boots because of the harder leather, but also because they have replaceable parts like the outsole, which can be replaced once it wears too close to the midsole, and the insole, which can be replace at the wearers discretion to maintain comfort.

Tactical boots are sometimes used by Air Force soldiers because they are face less frequently with the hard wear of those on the ground. They are also more easily accessible to civilians than standard issue combat boots. While there was a time when combat boots were easy to get from any army surplus store, the new style of combat boots (the newer Belleville style boots in sage and tan colors) are harder to come by due to regulations on military apparel. Tactical boots can be purchased in many firearms stores that sell tactical gear, on the internet and in army surplus stores. Tactical boots are typically the more fashionable boots to be worn by civilians because of their accessibility to the product, the appearance and the lighter weight.


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