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Men vs Women Specific Snowshoes | What's The Difference?

Video: Brian Casey

Do you want to know what the differences are between men's and women's specific snowshoes? Wondering if you really need one over the other, or if it’s just a marketing ploy? Spoiler alert-there are real differences! We'll quickly go over the main distinctions and how they might improve, or frustrate, your day snowshoeing in the mountains.


When you first look at snowshoes, one thing is obvious: they’re wide. This design helps disperse weight over a large area, allowing you to float on top of the snow rather than sinking through it.

While a wider snowshoe has its benefits, it can also cause issues for those who walk with their feet relatively close together. This is often more pronounced in women due to anatomical differences. Women generally have a greater angle between their hips and knees, which tends to push their feet closer together. This results in a narrower step pattern. For women, or anyone with a narrow gait, "standard" or "men's" snowshoes can pose a problem.

It’s not uncommon for new snowshoers with a narrow gait to experience snowshoes contacting each other mid-stride. This can be both annoying and dangerous. Managing this issue throughout a day of snowshoeing can be frustrating, and the risk of tripping and falling could lead to injury.


Women's snowshoes are tapered through the midfoot and heel, allowing for more room and clearance. This design lets the snowshoes come closer together without contacting each other during your stride.

When comparing the two, the difference in width is noticeable. Although modern designs are beginning to incorporate the tapered heel in both men's and women's snowshoes, it is definitely more pronounced in women's. Throughout your day snowshoeing this difference is going to make for easier travel, with less tripping and falling.