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forward lean or lack thereof

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Skiing with an ex instructor friend he commented on how my shins were almost straight with no forward lean as opposed to his stance even at rest which was maybe 5 /10 deg forward. At rest flexing forward with all my weight my lower leg basically stayed at right angles to the skis.

 

When skiing I find I need to keep constant pressure on the front of my boots or I'll go back seat very quickly.  

 

My boots are Head Vector 100s with custom footbeds and intuition powerwrap liners. I've adjusted the flex by removing the rear cuff screws so its supposedly closer to 90 now but I suspect the intuition liners added some stiffness back. There doesnt appear to be  any option for forward lean on this boot.

 

The first bootfitter I saw when I still had the stock liners and footbeds added some heel wedges to the boots but when I was fitted for the custom footbeds they removed these saying the footbeds and liner should do this job?

 

FWIW I' m 6'1 178 lbs and 59. Been skiing for about 5 years now and have about 70 days all up comfortable on most groomed blacks and keen to do more off piste.

 

Is this lack of forward lean a real problem, if so I suspect binding shims would be a  better solution than heel wedges. I'll see a bootfitter to discuss bit would welcome any input prior.

post #2 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by mauricem View Post

Skiing with an ex instructor friend he commented on how my shins were almost straight with no forward lean as opposed to his stance even at rest which was maybe 5 /10 deg forward. At rest flexing forward with all my weight my lower leg basically stayed at right angles to the skis.

 

When skiing I find I need to keep constant pressure on the front of my boots or I'll go back seat very quickly.  

 

My boots are Head Vector 100s with custom footbeds and intuition powerwrap liners. I've adjusted the flex by removing the rear cuff screws so its supposedly closer to 90 now but I suspect the intuition liners added some stiffness back. There doesnt appear to be  any option for forward lean on this boot.

 

The first bootfitter I saw when I still had the stock liners and footbeds added some heel wedges to the boots but when I was fitted for the custom footbeds they removed these saying the footbeds and liner should do this job?

 

FWIW I' m 6'1 178 lbs and 59. Been skiing for about 5 years now and have about 70 days all up comfortable on most groomed blacks and keen to do more off piste.

 

Is this lack of forward lean a real problem, if so I suspect binding shims would be a  better solution than heel wedges. I'll see a bootfitter to discuss bit would welcome any input prior.

 

The bold says it all - clearly your only problem is gaining your friends approval.

 

 

Head has been around a very very long time, and they are one of the worlds most popular ski brands.  While I dont know the particulars of your boot - I can say with 100% confidence that there is no way possible Head would manufacture and sell a boot that is not suitable for skiing.  Some people need more foward lean, some less.  Since you havent mentioned any of the issues associated with not enough forward lean (ie sore quads after a few turns, inability to control speed on steeper runs), it appears these boots work for you.

 

If the boots fits - wear it.

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

 

The bold says it all - clearly your only problem is gaining your friends approval.

 

 

 

Couldnt care less  about approval or otherwise , but when someone way more knowledgable and experienced than me comments that my stance is holding me back I think its worth looking into.

 

Im sure the boots are not the problem although its not unheard of for boots to be described as lacking in forward lean as my Scarpa Tornados were.  I suspect the inutuition powerwrap liner is holding me upright  more than the stock liner but there are so many advantages to the intuition liner Id hate to go back to the stock one.

 

Re binding shims, arent these one of Harold Harbs goto solutions?

 

Quad burn and trouble holding and shaping turns on steeper and bumpier terrain, guilty on all counts,

 

Whilst i can handle most groomed blacks and ungroomed soft conditions when it gets lumpy I notice I have to work a  lot harder (and look a lot uglier)  to stay in control than good skiers 

post #4 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by mauricem View Post

 

Couldnt care less  about approval or otherwise , but when someone way more knowledgable and experienced than me comments that my stance is holding me back I think its worth looking into.

 

Im sure the boots are not the problem although its not unheard of for boots to be described as lacking in forward lean as my Scarpa Tornados were.  I suspect the inutuition powerwrap liner is holding me upright  more than the stock liner but there are so many advantages to the intuition liner Id hate to go back to the stock one.

 

Re binding shims, arent these one of Harold Harbs goto solutions?

 

Quad burn and trouble holding and shaping turns on steeper and bumpier terrain, guilty on all counts,

 

Whilst i can handle most groomed blacks and ungroomed soft conditions when it gets lumpy I notice I have to work a  lot harder (and look a lot uglier)  to stay in control than good skiers 

 

Without seeing you in person, its impossible to say anything for sure.  There is certainly no rule that "more forward lean" is better...many skiers have too much....but it is true, some dont have enough.  Your issues could be equipment - or could just be technqiue.

 

If you have videos of you skiing, or even just pics that will help alot.

 

 

Re: binding shims - that is just one approach of many.  Be wary of any "one size fits all" solutions.

post #5 of 7

My boots have a rear spoiler that I removed because I had too much forward lean.  When I got powerwraps I felt that the double thickness in front was making my stance too upright and I had to be careful not to get tossed into the back seat.  After I replaced the rear spoiler (the velcro on the spoiler sticks well to the back of the powerwrap) and added heel wedges all was well again.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldgoat View Post

My boots have a rear spoiler that I removed because I had too much forward lean.  When I got powerwraps I felt that the double thickness in front was making my stance too upright and I had to be careful not to get tossed into the back seat.  After I replaced the rear spoiler (the velcro on the spoiler sticks well to the back of the powerwrap) and added heel wedges all was well again.

 

This aligns with what I was thinking, I do use the spoilers though, and I have the original heel wedges which I can refit to try out. Should be back on the slopes in NZ in a few weeks:)

post #7 of 7
I'm not a bootfitter.

Here's a couple thoughts.

Heel lifs don't necessarily give you more forward lean. In fact, I believe they can cause the opposite. It depends on how they are used. A woman (or man to keep it fair) wearing high heels doesn't lean more forward. The ankle is more open though.

In Ken's head, everyone has their balance point and no matter what is under foot, you will seek it. If you stand on a hard floor and put something about 1/2" thick under the ball of foot (bof) area, you won't fall backwards. Your ankle will close some but your head will have your body adjust for balance. This is the very reason why people lean back while skiing; your desire to be balanced to the the forces around you override the need to be balanced to the slope and the fore aft slope of the ski. It is possible that a toe lift will get you more forward than a heel lift.

Since we always want to be balanced, all changes to alignment tend to cause an additional opposite change too; lift the toes and you lean forward, lift the heel and you lean back.

If you put a spoiler behind the boot that isn't needed to eat up space, that will push your lower leg forward so something else needs to go aft. Stand barefoot on a flat hard surface and notice your ankle, knee and hip. Now put on your ski boots and notice the difference. The more forward lean you have, the more your joints will be affected. While your doing this, just for fun, open all your joints while standing on a flat floor in your ski boots. Probably feels like you are going to fall forward.

One last thought on forward lean positions. Three people looked at me in my skis boots. All of them very seasoned and are way up the instructor ladder. One is a PSIA examiner. One said I had too much forward lean and two others said it was perfect. All said this to me when I was standing on a hard surface in the lodge. So, just because someone has more knowledge than you, doesn't make them right.

I would GUESS that more than anything, you need to work on your skiing stance and overcoming your natural desire to lean back when your toes are lower than your heel. It is counter intuitive to do this.

My in the basement experiment shows Intuition Wrap liners are about 15% stiffer. At your size, this shouldn't be an issue but again, I'm guessing as I haven't seen you in your boots or skiing.

Have fun,

Ken
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