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New Boots Bruise Opposite Knee - Boots, Stance, or Both?

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

I got new boots back in February. I have 20 or 25 days in them. Been back to the shop three times for tweaks. Getting them dialed in better, but here is one thing that I never remember happening with my old boots. As the other, more major issues have subsided, this one is really starting to bug me. On some days - not sure what the common denominator is - I end up with painful bruises on the insides of both knees. They're not strains. They're bruises, and they're coming from somewhere near the top of the cuff of the boot on the opposite leg. It's bad enough that I'm considering trying some telewhacker knee pads (worn with the business part facing inboard, if possible) to see if that helps.

 

It occurs to me that this might represent some technique flaw that my old boots somehow let me get away with. The stance width thread prompted me to think to post here for input. No, I don't "got video." Thanks to Josh, I do have a photo that illustrates very clearly how this can be happening. (See appended.) Note that my feet don't seem to be crazy close together (although it's hard to tell because there is some vertical difference there). I also don't appear to be a-framing badly in this particular moment. So ... I just I'm just wondering if anyone else has ever had or heard of this problem. I'd be okay with trying some drills to increase stance width, if people think that makes sense. Can someone point me to a couple of those?

 

But wait, there's more. It might be worth noting in passing that a friend who is a coach has observed on multiple occasions that I have a fairly narrow stance, "but then again your hips are very narrow too." Kind of the same deal with the boot fitting. When we did the vacuum thing with the boots, the plate on the machine didn't really want to let me get my feet close enough together for comfort. Also, the biggest issue with the boots was cuff alignment: Went back once and they maxed out the mechanical alignment settings to get me off my inside edges. Went back again and they moved the boot shafts inboard even more using heat - their call, not mine. I feel pretty comfortable and level on my skis now, although I do feel like my skis want to be more pigeon-toed than they used to. (Shop insists it can't be the Soma stance thing. I'm not so sure.) Is it possible the reason I never had this issue with my old boots had something to do with cuff alignment ... like it was always too outboard, so I had to ski more bowlegged to keep my skis flat, so I didn't bang my knees?

 

Is this all a boot fit issue? Should this go in the Ask the Boot Guys forum, or can a technique change help me out?

 

 

LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01

post #2 of 24

I had this too, when I switched from Salomon X2 to Head Raptors.  Kept banging my calf above the boot on the other booster strap carabeener.  Hurt like hell.  I think the alignment being slightly different is the cause....the solution....I think naturally my stance widened to avoid the pain...took a few days.  I think this is explained via some learning princple (Metaphor would likley know the name). All in all, thou, my skiiing improved in the Raptors...but the extra width in stance was barely noticable really.

 

 

Your solution, just looking at that pic...might be to move your inside leg more to get it out of the way.  Only an 1/2 to an inch at the knee would do it.

post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

I had this too, when I switched from Salomon X2 to Head Raptors.  Kept banging my calf above the boot on the other booster strap carabeener.  Hurt like hell.  I think the alignment being slightly different is the cause....the solution....I think naturally my stance widened to avoid the pain...took a few days.  I think this is explained via some learning princple (Metaphor would likley know the name). All in all, thou, my skiiing improved in the Raptors...but the extra width in stance was barely noticable really.

 

 

Your solution, just looking at that pic...might be to move your inside leg more to get it out of the way.  Only an 1/2 to an inch at the knee would do it.

 

Yeah, actually the Boosters are another thing that changed, and it may even be that it started happening only after I put the Boosters on. (Did not have them the first couple of weeks with the boots.)

 

That said, you're talking "simply" (ha!) about moving the inside knee down toward the snow more, right?

post #4 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

 

Yeah, actually the Boosters are another thing that changed, and it may even be that it started happening only after I put the Boosters on. (Did not have them the first couple of weeks with the boots.)

 

 

 

Yeah, if you look when you do the boots up...that carabeener actually sticks out a bit...that is, for me at least...what I was hitting.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

 

That said, you're talking "simply" (ha!) about moving the inside knee down toward the snow more, right?

 

Yes

post #5 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

Yes

 

+1

post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

I had this too, when I switched from Salomon X2 to Head Raptors.  Kept banging my calf above the boot on the other booster strap carabeener.  Hurt like hell.  I think the alignment being slightly different is the cause....the solution....I think naturally my stance widened to avoid the pain...took a few days.  I think this is explained via some learning princple (Metaphor would likley know the name).

 

you're right :) the rubbing in your boots is a perfect example of negative reinforcement. In negative reinforcement, there's some consistently aggravating condition present that gets removed when the desired behaviour is demonstrated. Another example is your safety belt warning in your car - it buzzes when your belt's off, and stops buzzing when you put the belt on. 

 

People often confuse negative reinforcement with the concept of punishment. They're very different though. Punishment involves berating the learner and has damaging effects to the learner's ego and self esteem. Punishment would be, for example, yelling at your learners for a failed performance. Punishment is only appropriate when a learner is in immediate danger (like a child about to touch a hot stove). 

post #7 of 24

The location of the rivots could be differnt as well as a higher ramp angle.

 

 If your inside rivot is lower & or further back then outside rivot your boot is rotary.

 

Your older boots could have been more lateral & your new boots more rotary.

 

When flexed a rotary boot will cause the knee to track more to the big toe edge.

post #8 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

I had this too, when I switched from Salomon X2 to Head Raptors.  Kept banging my calf above the boot on the other booster strap carabeener.  Hurt like hell.  I think the alignment being slightly different is the cause....the solution....I think naturally my stance widened to avoid the pain...took a few days.  I think this is explained via some learning princple (Metaphor would likley know the name). All in all, thou, my skiiing improved in the Raptors...but the extra width in stance was barely noticable really.

 

 

Your solution, just looking at that pic...might be to move your inside leg more to get it out of the way.  Only an 1/2 to an inch at the knee would do it.

Do you have actual Booster Straps or are you talking about the Stock Power Strap?

 

You guys need to roll your inside knee into the hill more and get your feet hip width apart

post #9 of 24

 On Harold Harps blog he shows pictures of skiers sking with fisher boots & the same skier skiing on differnt boots then fisher. The BTE does track to the inside of the turn more then the LTE on fisher boots. ( dont know the manufacture date of the boots or if any adjustments were made)

 

 Dont fisher boots have some type of V stance. I have no idea what that means but maybe thats the problem if its fisher boots your having trouble with.

post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman View Post

Do you have actual Booster Straps or are you talking about the Stock Power Strap?

You guys need to roll your inside knee into the hill more and get your feet hip width apart

Actually, they need to roll the inside knee into the turn more at initiation!!
post #11 of 24

Qcanoe, nice picture! If you are whacking something hard on your boot on your other leg, why don't you just get some padding for the outside of the boot? A kneepad or wetsuit material strap should soften things up a lot. Fluffier pants? Duct tape a flap of foam to the side of the boot? Your style in that photo looks nice - why change what works for you when a little padding would suffice?

 

In waterskiing, the spray from the slalom ski can sometimes give you a pretty good burn on your leg. The causes of this are ski design, binding design and placement, tuning of the ski and style. I never ask a skier who is making buoys to change skis or style just for a spray burn. Instead, I give them a spray leg to protect the tender spot and worry about coaching them on things that really matter.

 

Eric

post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by eleeski View Post

Qcanoe, nice picture! If you are whacking something hard on your boot on your other leg, why don't you just get some padding for the outside of the boot? A kneepad or wetsuit material strap should soften things up a lot. Fluffier pants? Duct tape a flap of foam to the side of the boot? Your style in that photo looks nice - why change what works for you when a little padding would suffice?

 

Cause treating the cause will help the OP more than treating the symptom. There are good things going on in his skiing, and opportunities to make his skiing even better. The knee bruising is a mixed blessing in disguise as it serves as a really obvious stance cue. 

post #13 of 24
Thread Starter 

Hey, this is great input, everyone. I get the message that a change in stance width and/or inside knee action will probably help with the issue. I'm sure that is good feedback and I will definitely be trying to act on that. (In fact, I already have, since it seemed like a pretty obvious direction to go, even before I put up this post.) And eleeski, yes, as I say in my original post, I'm considering trying some knee pads ... not only to alleviate the pain, but maybe also as a spacer-like "cue" to help me remember to do what others are suggesting. Personally I don't prefer pain as a teacher.

 

It doesn't completely solve the mystery, though, in two areas: 1) What changed? (I never had this problem before the new boots.)  2) The photo I posted is a good piece of evidence in some ways and not so good in others. One way in which it's NOT good is that you can see that I am setting up to just barely squeeze by that tree on skier left. That's why my left hand is all tucked into my torso like that, and in fact a split-second later I actually had to tuck the left shoulder in too, so as not to get checked by that trunk. That setting-up may be influencing something going on in my lower half too. Not sure. But the thing that's GOOD about the photo is that it appears to show that my skis are equally tipped, at least in that moment. Meanwhile, my legs look slightly knock-need in that pic, which is possibly one reason people are suggesting that I move the inside knee further inside. I'm not disagreeing that this might be good advice generally, but I do wonder if that's going to lead to unequal tipping, and ultimately a radius-tightening that I may or may not want in a given instant. I can totally see why a bigger distance between the feet would help. But when it comes to the inside knee recommendation, something seems slightly amiss. Seems like whatever relative leg positions lead to equally tipped skis would be desirable, and if those relative positions are a bit bow-legged or (as appears may be the case here) knock-kneed, doesn't that suggest some kind of still-outstanding alignment issue? 

 

Anyway, definitely going to work on the suggestions. Thanks again.

post #14 of 24

Clearly something must be different with the new boots since the result (brusing) is a new side effect.  The boots themselves either are shaped different (taller cuff, wider cuff, etc.) or they have modified qcanoe's alignment in such a way that is exacerbating a possible challenge in his ski technique. 

 

If it were me I would definitely start with both a close examination of the differences between the old and new boots and a full alignment check.  Clearly we can all improve our ski technique, but the mere fact that this issue has only surfaced due to the boot change would make it important to have the boot change itself investigated first.

post #15 of 24

Got any more pictures ?  More would be helpful and better than guessing from a narrow photo.  First glance says you're bracing one leg into the other but this is just one moment in time and not enough to be helpful. Why is the real question.

post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 
On the skiing, no more pics right now. But Noodler put me onto a couple good leads on another channel, which I'll look into. On the boots, closer inspection makes it appear that the plastic is thicker and less beveled, and that the cuff is significantly more flared at the top. Expect that explains a lot.

Time for some drills, I guess.



post #17 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

But the thing that's GOOD about the photo is that it appears to show that my skis are equally tipped, at least in that moment. Meanwhile, my legs look slightly knock-need in that pic, which is possibly one reason people are suggesting that I move the inside knee further inside. I'm not disagreeing that this might be good advice generally, but I do wonder if that's going to lead to unequal tipping, and ultimately a radius-tightening that I may or may not want in a given instant. 

 

I actually think the edges aren't matching - looks like around a 10 degree variation between both edges based on completely non-scientific measurement (using a piece of paper against screen). I'm getting the sense there's no independent leg steering of the inside foot as it's bracing against the outside ski, leading to bruising. Again, this is just from one freeze frame which can be really misleading--but you can definitely tip your inside knee more without worrying about your skis tracking strangely. Might be an alignment issue with the a-framing, but I'd want you to try improving your independent leg steering before paying for alignment unless money's no real object or if it's included in your bootfitting. 

 

Did you get any results from attempting to open up your stance a bit? 

post #18 of 24

No one answered my Booster Strap question, so I will oblige with an answer anyway.duel.gif

 

If you don't have actual brand BOOSTER STRAPS, get them. There is no metal loop on the medial side of the strap to bang up your opposite leg!

 

If you do have real Booster Straps, (which I doubt) the clamping adjustment mechanism is on the lateral side of the boot and you have installed the Boosters backwards. I really doubt this and do give you guys more credit, but must cover all possibilities no matter how, um .............................. unintelligent?

post #19 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman View Post I fixed my own post!

No one answered my Booster Strap question, so I will oblige with an answer anyway.duel.gif

 

If you don't have actual brand BOOSTER STRAPS, get them. There is no metal loop on the medial side of the strap to bang up your opposite leg!

 

If you do have real Booster Straps, (which I doubt)  the Strap should be installed with the clamping adjustment mechanism on the lateral side of the boot.  If not,  you have installed the Boosters backwards. I really doubt this and do give you guys more credit, but must cover all possibilities no matter how, um .............................. unintelligent?

post #20 of 24
Thread Starter 
I have the real Boosters. They are installed correctly. There's no d ring on the inside of the cuff. More anon on my experiments with stance and inside tipping at the loaf today.
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman View Post

No one answered my Booster Strap question, so I will oblige with an answer anyway.duel.gif

 

If you don't have actual brand BOOSTER STRAPS, get them. There is no metal loop on the medial side of the strap to bang up your opposite leg!

 

If you do have real Booster Straps, (which I doubt) the clamping adjustment mechanism is on the lateral side of the boot and you have installed the Boosters backwards. I really doubt this and do give you guys more credit, but must cover all possibilities no matter how, um .............................. unintelligent?

 

I thought I was buying the real BOOSTER ones...but I think they might be knock-offs as they say

 

on them????..th_dunno-1[1].gif

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

biggrin.gif

 

 

Actually mine were not real Boosters...just the ones that come with the boot.  They have 2 carabeeners on the inside...but like I said, the issue went away after a few days...but I still get it once in a while.

post #22 of 24

   Gotta say, I WAS wondering about the booster cam on the medial side of the boot....biggrin.gif

 

   zenny

post #23 of 24

My faith in mankind is renewed!wink.gif

post #24 of 24
Thread Starter 

Just wanted to close the loop on this and say that thanks to conversations with a couple of people - notably Noodler - I'm more on top of one of my technique issues that exacerbates the bruising thing. I experimented on Sunday with a slightly wider stance and - more importantly - with re-acquiring some of the inside leg habits I'd been cultivating successfully earlier in the season on hard snow on easy pitches, but had been letting slide late in the season as I spent more time on steeps and bumps in softer snow. These changes helped a lot with reducing the knee-boot bang. I'll have to focus on that early next winter. 

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