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No fitter to be found, little help please. [Seoul, Korea] - Page 2

post #31 of 43
Thread Starter 

A bit of update.

 

After trying two salomons at once I notice, as stated on another thread, that these boots are cuff canted out and it's not clear that adjustment is possible.  This puts me signficantly on the inside edges in a natural stance, enough I think it matters.  So bummer.

 

I tried a few other boots.

-Dobermann edt 130 fits very well but I feel like my shin is resting on a steel bar when I flex.  Shin pressure is too low and or not distributed well. Also its a 130 but to me it feels soft compared to many boots.

-Nordica Speedmachine 110, lots of heel lift with #2 buckle on tightest setting.  Perfectly canted for me.  Maybe I should have tried to downsize it.

-Rossignol alltrack 110 (more expensive).  In the 270 with #2 buckle fully tight, the heel was just secure.  Otherwise the boot felt great.  More than enough toe space.  Great springy flex and glovish feel almost like the Salomon. I could get almost 3 fingers (back to back, not side to side, not sure the right way) between heel and shell.

 

-I tried the Rossignol downsized to 265 and the toes were snug, even touching slightly when flexed, but not curled even when standing. #2 buckle now half tight which seems better starting out, but some significant hot spot on the inside of arch and outside of foot toward front.   I worry about getting crampy foot feeling when really using it, but maybe punching it out is better than going big.

 

-I briefly tried a Redster and might give a second look.

 

Options presently seem to be

a) Go up to 130 on Salomon which has a solid sole and grind the plates (probably money)

b) Use a speedmachine and fill it up with a bunch of inserts and padding

c) Go with Rossignol but which size?

d) Keep searching, maybe try the atomic again.

 

Nobody can see my foot but any basic thoughts on which things sound more promissing here.  I'm running out boots to try so I think I'm narrowing down the options.  I left out terrible ones.

 

Thanks for any advice.

post #32 of 43
If these are all new boots, they're going to get packed. So, removing the inner boot, putting your toes against the front, and measuring behind the heel is crucial to figuring how huge they will be when they pack. THREE FINGERS IS HUGE!!! It should be 5-15 mm. Measure your finger thickness, some people have tiny fingers, but it should be closer to one. Until the length is right, talking about anything else is useless.

Some boots now have adjustable lasts. The advantage of that is they can be tightened as they pack out.
post #33 of 43
post #34 of 43
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

If these are all new boots, they're going to get packed. So, removing the inner boot, putting your toes against the front, and measuring behind the heel is crucial to figuring how huge they will be when they pack. THREE FINGERS IS HUGE!!! It should be 5-15 mm. Measure your finger thickness, some people have tiny fingers, but it should be closer to one. Until the length is right, talking about anything else is useless.

Some boots now have adjustable lasts. The advantage of that is they can be tightened as they pack out.

 

Yeah, the thing is the salesman kept telling me "it doesn't matter".  A different one tried to tell me the fingers should be extended straight down, not to the back of the heel pocket.  Whatever.   It's weird because I've read the Rossignol sizes well and I definitely measure a 270 every time.  It does seem to have a really dense plush liner but I wondered still.  Thanks.  The downsized Rossignol might be my best bet so far.

post #35 of 43
It doesn't matter????????!!!!! Go elsewhere!!!

Stop worrying about the size number and worry about the actual fit.
post #36 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

It doesn't matter????????!!!!! Go elsewhere!!!

Stop worrying about the size number and worry about the actual fit.

 

This. Your description of the fit in the Speedmachine is obviously too big of a boot. Going to the tightest buckle of a boot in a shop fit means the boot is too big- Once the liner packs in, the boot will not work. Latching it as tight as it will go and STILL GETTING HEEL LIFT IN A BRAND NEW BOOT means the boot may be more than 1 size too big. Stepping into a correctly sized boot for the very first time should not be a pleasant experience. You should not have any painful pressure points, but it should feel like somebody giving you a strongman handshake- too firmly gripped for comfort.

 

Remember, boots can always be made larger, you cannot make a boot smaller.  Trying to add padding to take up volume will either 1) not work 2) be painful and create hot spots 3) work for a few ski days until you pack in THAT padding and are back to square 1. The shell needs to fit.

 

Regarding the shell fit and fingers in the boot- one data point for you. When I met the woman who is now my wife in 2010, she was just returning to skiing as an adult after only occasionally skiing after college.  She had very high-volume ankles, and we stuck her in every boot we could find.  At the time I put her in a boot that had 1.5 fingers of space- a "comfort fit."

 

That "comfort fit" ruined skiing for her as she progressed.  She always complained of ankle pain skiing moguls. We figured it was related to some sprains she had that had not fully healed. As she continued to ski, her leg shape changed. Her calf muscles enlarged and drew the muscle mass further up her leg- no more "cankles" adding volume to the ankle area. All the sudden, she ran into ankle pain on every ski day. We came across a great deal on new Salomon Idol 8 boots ($50 after lots of coupon stacking) which we felt would add support in a stiffer more performance oriented boot and would end the pain. The key mistake here is we went for the 1.5 finger comfort fit in these boots. We should have sized down to a different shell and then punched it where needed.

 

The new boots largely fixed the ankle pain for about 5 ski days. Then the liners packed out and the ankle pain come back. She could not ski more than 2 runs at a time without a break. She could not ski ungroomed. Essentially she went from a level 6/7 skier to a low intermediate with no stamina. She couldn't ski.  She has other foot problems, and I chalked up the pain to the other issues. However, one day we finally managed to talk in depth about where the ankle hurt, and it hurt in the muscles that hold the ankle steady while walking, muscles that should not be getting used at all while in a ski boot.  We finally realized the pain she has had for years is coming from too much space and not enough support at the ankle. 

 

Finally, we get to an actual professional bootfitter. His diagnosis is the same- too much space in the ankle, but he also states that the sizing was correct in that particular boot because the boot was tight at the instep. In goes intuition liners molded with lots of compression on the instep and none at the ankle. She's got 5 days in and is a completely different skier. She is back to killing it and is quickly regaining the confidence in her skiing she once had.

 

Moral of story- walk away from any salesperson that tries to tell you what you described in your post above is ok.  Walk away from a shop that "fits" you for a boot without a shell fit. The boots will not work, and they will likely cause you enormous amounts of pain and ruin skiing. It is much better to buy a boot on the small side and punch it. Most good bootfitters will punch for free and will guarantee the fit, but even if you can't find this level of professionalism, I would get a boot that feels close, ski it for 5 days and then pay for somebody to punch it in the places where it hurts. Much better than wasting money on a boot that will double as a clownshoe.

post #37 of 43
Thread Starter 

Hi Anachronism,

 

There's no place to go here where the advice is significantly different/better.  I've been to nearly every store there is and not one where anyone actually encouraged me to take a liner out. Usually the expression reads more like "you're going to do that, well ok.."  Two have basically told me it doesn't matter.  

 

The Rossignol in the small fit is seeming like a good option.  The guy did indicate that they could punch them out (probably another guy who works in the back, not him) but wanted me to buy the bigger ones (maybe so they don't have to?) 

 

I think I did well with finding a snug fit in the X-max and forgot the basics when trying on the speedmachine.  Believe me, I want that super snug fit and it sounds like length is the problem.  I can though get major cramping problems in a boot (at least a rental) when the ball of my foot hits past where the boot curvature wants it to. I'm better off taping skiis to my sneakers than with that type of cramp.  Atomic mentions this effect in advertising their flat-bottomed redster, and maybe footbeds can solve that if it happens.

post #38 of 43
A lot of cramping issues are due to compensating for too large a fit in the front part of the boot. The skier feels slop and cranks the buckle tighter, making the boot push down on the TOP of the foot and cutting off circulation. The problem is that due to pack out or too wide a boot, the last/width is not hugging the foot enough. Better to get a boot that doesn't have hot spots but is so snug that you just want it off NOW. After ten days of skiing that let-go-of-me sensation should ease.
post #39 of 43
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

A lot of cramping issues are due to compensating for too large a fit in the front part of the boot. The skier feels slop and cranks the buckle tighter, making the boot push down on the TOP of the foot and cutting off circulation. The problem is that due to pack out or too wide a boot, the last/width is not hugging the foot enough. Better to get a boot that doesn't have hot spots but is so snug that you just want it off NOW. After ten days of skiing that let-go-of-me sensation should ease.

Yup. The cramping can also come from the normal inclination to ball up the foot to take up space in a too big boot. I would rather ski a boot too tight than loose- you can ski through ache but not foot cramps.
post #40 of 43
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by anachronism View Post


you can ski through ache but not foot cramps.

 

This I definitely agree with.  When a boot cramps me I'm back in the rental shop in one run, no choice.  I've had it both ways, from "balling up" from too big and from some other effect which is more like what atomic describes and related to the ball hitting on an upward incline in front of the ball well.  

post #41 of 43

Nice to see another poster from Korea.

 

I've skiied at pretty much all of the various mountains in Korea (grew up skiing in Canada and the East Coast of the United States with a few treks out West). Second what was said about lack of off-piste and powder in Korea - need to go to Japan for that. Japan is very costly though and transportation not so easy when you consider the flight, rental car and all the other things you need to do.

 

High1 and Yongpyong are indeed the "best", although I will give the thumbs up to High1, despite it not being selected to host any Olympic events in 2018 (not enough lobbying funds probably, since I don't buy the whole "distance" excuse). Yongpyong is a sprawling resort and because of that, the layout is more conducive to gentle riding down trails (as the oldest ski resort probably designed for older, less athletic skiiers), and hard to find many challenging runs. Also, because of the layout, Yongpyong's trails tend to be very dangerously narrow at points, and the grooming is not of a high standard.

 

High1 is far more straightforward and modern in design (blacks on one side, blues on the other and greens below) and so I have found the snow to be in better condition, and far better separation among skiiers by ability level as a result (whereas Yongpyong tends to mix and match). Unfortunately High1 is also further from Seoul than any of the other major ski resorts.

 

I also enjoy going to Pheonix Park, only because it is much closer to Seoul (about 70 miles, or ~2 hours drive compared to the ~3 hours it takes to get to High1 or Yongpyong). Doesn't sound like a big difference, but that's a major factor in deciding whether you can make a day trip, or needing to spend the night.

 

I also go to Gonjiam and Jisan quite often due to the proximity, and the emptiness (and safety) of their "black" runs - great place to work on your technique and there are almost no ques for those "black" lifts.

 

I enjoy skiing in Korea far more than I ever did in the East Coast - maybe something about the facilities and design. The mountains here are similar to what you would expect to find in Vermont (serviceable, but lacking that "big mountain" feel). Also, on most days (even in the height of winter), the snow will be hard and icy, or bumpy, or very sticky, or a combination thereof. Far less forgiving than the groomers you'd find in Canada for instance.

 

I typically try to go 3-4 times a week when there's any snow, so if anybody else in Korea is interested for a "meetup" or need other help, I'm available.

post #42 of 43

Edit to add:

 

http://blog.naver.com/fl000?Redirect=Log&logNo=220186206142

 

This place is the only boot-fitter I know of in Seoul - maybe others near the resorts, but I highly doubt that. I think most "boot fitting" occurs on an informal, ad hoc basis among the ski professionals and athletes, as there is virtually no demand for it among the general public (who really only go maybe 3-5 times a year, if that).

post #43 of 43
I met the Korean Air 787-9 program guy last year in Seattle. He bought and had boots fit locally while he was here for all the reasons described above.. No help I know, but just an interesting story.
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