BMW Knitrace Motorcycle Sneakers and Alpinestars Drystar Boots

Riding footwear for walking, touring, and wearing all day

By Tricia Szulewski, Editor
BMW Knitrace boots on Suzuki SV650
BMW Knitrace Sneakers aren’t typical riding boots. They look and feel like hightop sneakers, but have a few features motorcyclists need.
Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar on Suzuki SV650
Alpinestars RT-7 Drystar touring boots are thicker, offering waterproof protection, but are comfy for walking, too.

From Riding to Walking

Spending an excessive amount of time on my feet coaching MSF classes has resulted in many restless nights due to foot, leg, and back pain. The search for the perfect pair of riding footwear that is protective but also good for walking and standing on asphalt has become an obsession of sorts. I spend hours upon hours researching and scrolling through MSF coach social media feeds, reading reviews, and comparing specs.

Thankfully, motorcycle “sneakers” have really caught on and there are a ton of options for women and men who ride. After wearing through a half dozen different Harley-Davidson riding shoes, Dainese Street Biker Lady, and not finding enough width in Rev’It! G-Force, my feet are still screaming at the end of the day. So, the search continues.

Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar Boots

When it’s cold and wet or when I want more protection while riding, I choose Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar boots. The Stella series is a long-known women’s line from A-stars, and the Drystar products feature its 100-percent waterproof gear. The new RT-7s are built with touring riders in mind.

Alpinestars Stella Drystar RT-7
Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar boots feature over-the-shin protection with waterproof durability and protective double density disks to protect the ankles on both sides of the boot.

When the boots arrived, I was surprised at how “fat” the Stella RT-7s are. The puffy material in front of the shin is built for protection but does add girth overall to the boot. Fitting them under pant legs takes a little time and patience.

Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar
I love how easy it is to get the RT-7s on. There are zippers and Velcro closures on both sides of the boot that open wide and a pull tab.
Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar
The lightweight rubber sole is flat, making it easy to position feet anywhere on footpegs, but offers excellent grip.

Part of what makes the RT-7s so comfortable for walking is well-positioned elasticized flex panels in the fore part of the ankle, and the rear Achilles area. Also, Alpinestars’ Transversal Protection Frame (TFP) midsole is the brand’s system for securing feet while riding but being flexible for walking.

Alpinestars Stella RT-7 Drystar
Flex panels in the Achilles area makes walking easy without any resistance.

Drystar Fit

The Stella RT-7 Drystar is offered in women’s sizes, but is on the wider side for fitment. Ordering a size 43 (U.S. women’s 11), which is a little bigger than I normally wear, gives my toes lots of room to move about. Ideally I would wish for a 42.5, but only full sizes are available. To take up the extra room, I use Dr. Scholl’s All Day Work gel insoles (I always insert these $12 inserts in the footwear I coach in.) The fit is now perfect, and I appreciate the extra cushion in the footbed.

Offered in women’s whole sizes 36–43 (5.5 to 11 U.S.), the Stella RT-7 Drystar boots cost $289.95. This is on par for a quality full featured motorcycle touring boot that is built to last for years.

For more info and to order Alpinestarts Stella RT-7 Drystar boots, visit

BMW Knitrace Sneakers

For warm weather, I wear BMW’s Knitrace sneakers. Offered in unisex sizes 36–48, the Knitrace sneakers are a little wider than a regular woman’s fit. This actually works well for me, as I’ve found that going to a wider width is ideal when I am on my feet all day because my feet swell.

BMW Knitrace sneakers
Made with breathable fabric, the Knitraces are best for warm weather. You can actually feel the air flowing through them while riding.
BMW Knitrace sneakers
A side inner zipper fastener makes it easy to get the Knitraces on and off easily, even with the laces tight.
Laces BMW Knitrace sneakers
I love the flap of fabric that stores the loops of the laces, so you don't worry about catching them on footpegs.
BMW Knitrace sneakers pull tab
The extra-large pull tab makes pulling the Knitraces on very easy.

Knitrace Protection

While the Knitraces look and feel much more like sneakers than actual protective riding gear, they are certified as level 1 motorcycle shoes. They include an integrated ankle guard, reinforcement in the gear shift area, and 3D heel protectors.

BMW Knitrace heelcup
I love the look of the Knitrace’s heel. It matches my BMW S 1000 XR motorcycle well. The 3D heel protector cups the heel nicely.
BMW Knitrace toe
Reinforcement in the shift area protects your toes and makes shifting easier.
BMW Knitrace sole Vibram
The oil and fuel-resistant rubber Vibram outsole offers excellent traction when you put your foot down at a stop.

BMW Knitrace sneakers retail for $249—a bit pricey for minimal protection, but I recently paid that much for high quality (HOKA) trail runners, so it’s not completely off the mark for sneakers.

You can find more info about the BMW Knitrace Sneakers at your local BMW dealership or order at

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