A footwear is a type of garments worn on feet to protect against adverse environments especially regarding to ground textures and temperatures. There are different types of footwear available in the market such as boots, sneakers, sports shoes, jogging shoes, sandals, and indoor footwear among others. The military footwear or the military boots are specifically designed for the defense personnel to protect their feet from adverse environmental conditions, gunshots, and fire attacks among other harmful attacks. These footwear are usually made up of hard leather and sometimes waterproofed leather with grip and ankle stability. Additionally, the military boots are available for specialized climates and conditions such as jungle boots, cold weather boots, desert boots, and shallow water boots.
The demand for these military footwear is growing due to increase in safety and precautionary measures in the defense sectors. These footwear are durable enough for a soldier to survive in the battlefields and the rubber sole provides ample grip on various terrains. The boots are also lightweight which help soldiers to maneuver easily. Due to the durability and maneuverability benefits, the military footwear market is expected to grow in the near future. Moreover, these military boots are highly resistant to heat and oil and owing to this soldiers don’t hesitate to work in an oiled or heated surface.
However, lack of fund in the defense budget is hindering the development of advanced military footwear.
Presently, major opportunity for the manufacturers of military boots is the introduction of composite plastics toes. The composite toe can prevent the soldiers from extreme shock and withstand it. There has been development of boots with a combination of rubber, nylon, and leather. The combination of rubber is expected to provide comfort to the soldier, nylon is anticipated to help in ventilation, and leather is likely to protect the soldier’s feet from different environmental conditions. This development is projected to propel the market in the next few years. Moreover, it can be an opportunity for the countries with smaller army but with higher risk of terrorists attack or tensions among nearby countries to enhance their armed personnel.
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Based on type, the footwear can be segregated into combat military boots, parade ground boots, and magnum boots. The combat boots are specifically designed for the soldiers to be worn during combat or combat training. Presently, many manufacturers are using nylon side panels to improve ventilation and comfort level, which is incorporated from civilian hiking boots. The parade ground boots are not developed to wear during battles but for marching or performing any drill activities as a purpose of training. They are also used to maintain the discipline during any military official functions. The magnum boots are a combination of combat and parade ground boots as they can be worn both in battlefield and during performing drill activities. They have been developed with the highest quality of material.
On the basis of geography, the military footwear market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Middle East & Africa, and Latin America. North America has a significant market share in the military footwear market. Asia Pacific is a fast growing manufacturing region for these boots/footwear. Rapid research and development is going on in China, India, and Japan among others for developing the rubber, nylon, and leather blended military shoes.
The leading manufacturers of the military footwear across the globe are McRae Footwear, a division of McRae Industries Inc. (U.S.), Belleville Boot Company (U.S.), China WestWarrior Company Ltd. (China), Indian Armor (India), YDS Boots (UK), and Intelligent Armour, a division of Intelligent (UK Holdings) Ltd. (UK).