The Army is testing new combat boots at select boot camps in a push to better compete with the more comfortable commercial brands favored by many soldiers for their lightness.
The U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command Soldier Center in Natick, Mass., has developed prototypes that soldiers will wear at three different basic training and active duty sites during the next four months.
“Soldiers live in their boots and many will tell you that there is no piece of equipment more important to their lethality and readiness,” said Al Adams, a team leader at the Army’s soldier center, in a statement. “A bad pair of boots will ruin a Soldier’s day and possibly result in injuries, so we really believe that each of these prototype boots have the potential to improve the lives of Soldiers.”
The prototypes, which utilize more flexible types of leather and lighter outsoles, will be fielded to 800 new recruits at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., and Fort Jackson, S.C. Another 900 pairs will go to infantry soldiers at Fort Bliss, Texas.