Footwear commonly called boots have a specific purpose and are not considered a shoe. All boots extend to cover the ankle as well as the foot, and most boots extend to near knee height and the calf to some degree. Of coarse some boots cover some portion of the thigh as well as the knee and provide protection up to the hip - hip waders. Hip boots, as these are commonly know, are considered waders in our store and can be found in our wader category. Quite often the heel of a boot is thicker than the rest of the boot sole and is thus forms a groove which is a required safety feature in certain jobs that require climbing ladders. But not always, some boots, especially work boots, feature a continuous sole with no obvious heel. In years past, boots were traditionally made of leather, however currently boots are made from a huge variety of materials. Boots are worn for specific functions such as safety or protection from the elements and environment (such as work place conditions) or for support such as hiking boots and often boots are worn for no specific function but simply for fashion.

In certain jurisdictions, boots are mandatory footwear in order to comply with regulations. For example, the safety regulations which require safety boots with steel-toes for those performing work in certain hazardous occupations. In addition to steel toes, certain conditions may require special soles and construction to help prevent electrical shock or certain materials that resist chemicals such as acids or caustics. Law enforcement and military have regulations that require boots be worn in certain environs and work situations. In such a case the boot is the footwear portion of a specifies uniform. Motorcyclist would be well advised to consider boots during that activity as well.

Early boots consisted of a three part footwear which were worn together as a single boot. The early system consisted of leggings, soles and uppers. Some 3000 years back, around 1000 BC, the boot evolved into a single piece of footwear consisting of the previous parts but joined together.

Boots designed for walking, Nancy Sinatra found a song in that, through wet environs such as mud, water or snow are often constructed and stitched to be more watertight. These boots generally lack laces and the tongue design of other boots. Such boots may also be insulated for warmth. Boots that do not specify "waterproof" may be considered "water resistant," as they are not usually fully waterproof.

Work boots have evolved into a huge array of specialty boots to mitigate numerous work place hazards. There are boots designed and made to protect steelworkers' feet and calves if they get accidentally step in puddles of molten metal and to with chemical resistant materials to protect workers from a variety of chemical exposure. Heavily insulated boots to protect workers feet from extreme cold. Most work boots are "laceups" style boots and made from leather. The earlier hobnails and heel- and toe-plates have bowed to the thick rubber sole of today, and often with steel toecaps. Technology, new construction materials and advanced assembly techniques have equipped boot manufacturers to produce boots specialize for various sports, hiking, work, and other activities.

Boots have played an important role in history and therefore having given rise to a number of meaningful tales and sayings. For instance. many boots may have a loop or handle at the top. This handle is commonly known as a bootstrap and is used as a tool to provide better leverage in getting the boots on. And, thus the 19th century saying "to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps" refers to a person's ability to advance one's own standard of living or overcome difficulty without help from others. Or another common one is to "die with one's boots on" meaning to die while one is still active or to go down fighting. And, everyone knows that to "give one the boot" means to kick one out or expel one, either literally or figuratively. But, did you know that to "put the boot in" is an idiom for inflicting violence on someone. Or, that "Knocking boots" is slang for having sex, regardless of whether either person is wearing boots. Well I did not. But I did know that when the boot is on the other foot now" means that a situation has become reversed—a previous victor is now losing, for example.

NDC 3.1.18