Only weeks away from the first ski turns many skiers think about their equipment…. `Skis are tuned and waxed. Clothing, googles, gloves all good. But is there anything else I can improve to make me ski better? ´
Yes, what about the most important part of your `SKIING´? Your ski boots, your feet and how you feel your skis! A custom made, heat molded INSOLE will improve the performance of your existing boot! And if you your ski boots are still laced there might be time for a change too!
As a longtime ski instructor and freeride guide, I come across many skiers who struggle to control and improve their skiing. This happens mainly because of the flawed connection with their skis! An astonishing 80% of all ski boots are sold too large!
Some skiers remind me of the kids in group lesson during my time as a ski instructor in the Meribel French ski school. Small feet with creased ski socks in far too large boots with only one buckle! Surprisingly, with a lot enthusiasm and commitment for the sport the kids still managed. But beyond that learning stage, the grownup skier needs to fee(t)l the ski properly!
The purchase of the perfect ski boot is a complex undertaking! Most important is to find a shop with dedicated staff. Preferably a sales woman/man with experience and skill, a skier her/himself! Don’t forget, your ski boot is the most important part of the equipment after all!
This specialist will after collecting all the relevant data of your feet, be able to narrow the possible choice of ski boots (brands). A choice which is not down to the color or how well the boot charms the rest of your outfit! No, it’s down to how close the shape of the ski boot design comes to the natural shape of your feet!
All ski boot manufactures are known to traditionally accommodate different shape of feet. There are brands favoring narrow, others wide feet. Some are particularly good for tiny heels and some are better chosen if your heel is pronounced! And so on….!
Some skiers have got problem feet which need more attention! In this case foam injected custom liner and sometimes heat modeling the boot shell does the job. Modern ski boots off the shelf, with liners made of special materials and foams usually suffice to make your boot fit you!
But, and here you should listen! All ski boots are sold containing an insole which complies with nothing else but a standard norm. A thin flat sole, which doesn’t support the individually arched foot with all its little details that make each of us unique! Instead it allows the boot to cramp and flatten your feet once it’s buckled up!
An imprint of the natural shape of your feet, preferably taken on a vacuum cushion as it’s usually done by most shops, to heat mold and create your individual insole is the way to go!
No, your boots don’t need to be bigger to accommodate this kind of insoles, on the contrary. Since your feet are not flattened anymore and therefore touching the front of the boot, there is more space for your toes! But most important, insoles will increase the precision and the power you are able to apply to the ski edges! Insoles will improve comfort and ski control, and they will raise the fun you’ll have on skis! I can confidently say `insoles are indispensable´ for a skier!
see you in the snow……. T