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ski boot grinding for Haglund's deformity (pump bump)

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hi there,

 

1)  Got Head S11 boots 4 years ago. Fit was tight, but I have a wide foot and that is  acceptable.

 

2)  For the 2012/2013 ski season, I put in about 1/4 inch heel lifts. (I have limited dorsiflexion)

 

3)  By the spring of 2013, pain developed on back outside of left heel, with a noticeable bump.  I took out the heel lift and padded the painful area with moleskin, molefoam, little donut shaped pads, and combinations thereof.  This helped, but pain would develop over the day, and increase from day to day.  Clearly this was not a solution.

 

4)  I went to a podiatrist a few weeks ago.  He agreed with my thought that it was likely pump pump or Haglund's deformity (I'd been web surfing).  We discussed where and when the pain occurred and what I had been doing to deal with the pain and discussed some options. (Pain doesn't seem to develop quickly if I ski groomers.  It does develop on bumps, and I even feel it as I'm standing up off the chair lift and when walking in the ski boots.  I surmise the forward and back movement is the principal culprit).

 

Anyway, the podiatrist x-rayed and examined my feet, looked at my custom ski boot footbed and recommended filing/sanding down a little bit on the bottom under the outside part of the heel.  He said I'm a bit flat footed, and this would bend my ankle outward and likely reduce the pressure on the painful, pumpbump, area. (My interpretation).  He said to continue padding the painful area.  He suggested that adding extra space behind the pumpbump would help, but worried that that might not be doable without wrecking the ski boot -- I don't believe he is real familiar with the extent to which ski boots can be modified.

 

5) I sanded the footbed as suggested.  Sanding worked much better than filing. That did help, but the pain still seems to be developing by the end of the day.  I haven't skied consecutive days yet so can't tell how pain will increase from day to day.

 

My Question:  I believe that making a little extra room right behind the "pumpbump" will help, and I wonder if local boot fitters are able to grind/punch out in that area with sufficient precision and without wrecking the boot.  I'd think a 1 inch diameter or so and 1/8 inch deep hollow would help. What do you think?

 

Thanks for any suggestions.

 

Paul  (JimmyD) 

post #2 of 6

a little space to take the pressure off will help.....unless it was a monster i would be grinding it, the plastic on a ski boot is pretty thick back there, so there should be no issues, the key is marking the area accurately and then making a define shape, then feathering the edges for a neat finish.

 

all the fitter needs is a good flexidrive tool, a large ball burr and the skills to use it properly

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thank You CEM,

 

I was skiing this weekend, just got back.  I'll be calling the ski store Monday to set up a time to talk to a bootfitter, and hopefully the technician who will actually be doing the work. (If they are not the same person).  I'll print out this thread to discuss with him/her/them and if they believe it will work well, it'll be go-time.

post #4 of 6

If the heel lifts helped your skiing I would try to put them back in provided you can make room in the heel compartment for the bone spur.  the bone spur is almost always on the lateral calcaneus and is caused by the ledge built in to the boot above the heel pocket.  Usually the correct fix is not to make room directly opposite the heel spur but rather to make room above it by removing the ledge.

 

Lou
 

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thank you  CEM and Lou,

 

I got my boot modified at a suburban Cleveland ski shop (all the way cross-town), but the technician had been recommended so I felt it was worth the trip.   The technician felt that punching rather than grinding was best, as he felt the boot material thickness was not sufficient to grind safely.  He punched out behind and a bit above the pump bump.  Yes there is a small, but smooth, ledge right there, more of a horizontal bulge than a discrete ledge.  I presume it's designed to help hold the heel down.  I decided not to use the heel lifts going forward, as I hadn't noticed a real improvement in my skiing with them in, and I'm a bit gun shy on that issue now.  The technician mentioned that the plastic would have some memory, so the initial deformation would subside somewhat.

 

I skied on Friday and there seemed to be less pain, but some still was developing at the end of the day.  I had the boot punched out a little more on Saturday.  The ledge is noticeably less behind/above the offending spot.  I haven't skied after the second go round, but am off to Breckenridge for a week next Saturday, and that should tell.

 

By the way,  the boot modification was shockingly inexpensive, and the technician didn't even charge for the further modification.  I didn't know what to do. A tip? 

post #6 of 6

Tip:   Beer or baking are my vises  

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