The 120 flex ski boots are a popular flex for aggressive skiers looking for power and precision from your skiing. Your ski boots are the main way that energy gets transmitted from your body to your skis. Having a boot that is too soft will give you the “flat tire affect”; think of trying to turn a fast moving sports car on a flat tire. You will not get any responsiveness and it will result in a loss of control. Having a boot too stiff will throw your body out of proper positioning and result in delayed reaction times out of your skis.
A 120 flex works great for bigger and more aggressive skiers without having the “brick like” stiffness of a 130. Ski boots in the 120 flex range almost always come with all of the top-end bells and whistles, customizable liners and the best tech that each respective manufacturer has to offer.
Let’s Take a Look at our Top Picks:
Salomon X-Pro 120
Last: 100mm + 360 Degree Custom Shell
Fit: Medium to wide in the forefoot/medium to wide in the shaft of the leg
The Salomon X-Pro 120 is back again this season and raining on top of the ski boot world as the top selling ski boot line. Packed with power, this is one of the easiest shells to have customized for your feet. Salomon’s 360 Degree Custom Shell can be placed in a special oven by an Authorized Salomon Dealer. Once it reaches temperature, the shell is placed on your foot, as the shell cools, it molds to adapt to the shape of your foot.
The 24mm Oversized Pivot provides a burly connection between the upper cuff and lower shell to drive energy directly towards your skis. The TwinFrame Construction has more rigid plastic on the sole of the boot that enhances responsiveness when you start cranking out the high speed turns.
Nordica Sportmachine 120
Fit: Medium width forefoot, medium to wide shaft of the leg and a tall instep
The Nordica Sportmachine 120 is loaded with comfort and performance features. Nordica’s 3D Cork Fit Liner has cork on the heel and ankle pocket that enhances energy transmission, added insulation and easy moldability. Primaloft Insulation keeps your feet extra warm on those cold January mornings when you are waiting for first chair.
Nordica’s Tri-Force Construction adds reinforcements on the back spine and other areas in the shell that reduce torsional twisting of the shell for added responsiveness. To make for easy customization, Nordica has developed the Infrared Customizable Shell where an Authorized Nordica Dealer will heat the shell with a special lamp, then use an air compressor to expand the shell.
Tecnica Mach 1 120 HV
Fit: Medium to wide forefoot, medium to wide shaft of the leg
The Tecnica Mach 1 120 HV brings a totally new mold and shape to the table for the 2019 season. Tecnica now offers the Mach 1 performance to a wider fit that is more accessible to strong skiers with wider feet. The C.A.S. (Custom Adaptive Shape) Shell has dimples in key, problematic fit areas that are very easy for an equipped bootfitter to stretch and shape the shell. These dimples require less force and hold a punch much better than any other shell.
The C.A.S. Liner makes for easy customization in the heel and ankle pocket that can be punched, ground down, or heated and molded. Celliant is a new heat reflective material that uses 13 different minerals that transfer body heat into infrared energy to add extra warmth.
Atomic Hawx Prime 120 S
Last: 100mm + Memory Fit
Fit: Medium to narrow forefoot, medium to narrow shaft of the leg
The Hawx Prime has a race bred heritage with an all-mountain feeling. New to the legendary Hawx feel is Prolite Technology where the boot has been developed from the ground up with strategic reinforcements added first, then the rest of the boot has been constructed from lightweight materials to create a lightweight and powerful ride.
Memory Fit allows the shell to be heated and molded to match the shape of your foot in about a half hour. Atomic’s True Flex Technology ensures that the boot keeps a consistent flex regardless of the temperature on the mountain. 3M Thinsulate Insulation in the Memory Fit 3D Platinum Liner adds warmth and even more customization. The Power Shift located on the rear spine offers adjustment to the forward lean of the cuff for different leg shapes and skiing styles.
Lange RX 120
Fit: Medium to narrow forefoot and narrow shaft of the leg
The Lange RX 120 has more rigid plastic located in the spine, chassis and forefoot to improve power transmission. Softer plastics wrap the foot and lower leg that add extra rebound, with easy entry and exit. The Dual 3D Pro Liner has three different densities of foam that is fully thermoformable to be customized for your foot.
A very defined ankle pocket, wider toe box and taller instep were all included with the new shell design. A Natural Stance sits more upright for efficient and powerful skiing on modern skis with large sidecuts and rocker.
Is a 120 flex right for you?
120 flex ski boots are typically reserved for stronger or more aggressive skiers. Most of these manufactures produce these options in a stiffer 130 flex for bigger, stronger, very aggressive skiers as well. The 130 flex typically has a stiffer liner.
If you do not fall into the bigger, stronger, or more aggressive category there are 100 or 110 flex options from their respective manufacturers. The softer flexing options usually lose a little bit of rigidity in the liner and the shell, yet still offer a strong performance. For a reference to help determine what flex boot is best for you, please consult our Ski Boot Buying Guide.