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Foot pain / fatigue when skiing bumps

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

I wasn't sure where to post this because I feel like it could be either a boot issue, a technique issue, a fitness issue, or any combination of the above.


I got back into skiing last year after taking about 10 years off and the gear and technique have changed a lot. One thing that hasn't changed is the deep, sometimes crippling (hyperbole) soreness or fatigue that develops in my feet while skiing, especially when I ski bumps or more technical terrain (trees) that require a different technique than the groomers I ski 90% of the time. The pain seems to originate on outer front part of the underside of the foot, where the arch meets the ball underneath the smallest toes. Prior to my hiatus I skied mainly on smaller hills in Michigan and don't recall noticing the problem except during my annual trips out west, and then mainly when I skied bumps.


Now back in the game, skiing on the East Coast (mainly Hunter, with one recent trip to Stowe), I've been experiencing the same pain, but it has been affecting me earlier in the day and on less technical terrain (e.g. after skiing groomers). The pain will mainly disappear while on the lift (when I unbuckle my boots). As before, the pain is worse when skiing bumps, and seems to vary with the degree of difficulty. For example, at Stowe this past weekend the pain was manageable while skiing liftline, unbearable while skiing Goat, and pretty much non existent while skiing a shorter blue bump run with relatively even bumps (forgot the name). I've skied 7 days this year and the first time I didn't feel the pain was the last day I skied at Stowe this past Sunday.


So, due to the nature of the pain I've decided that it is probably caused either by some technique issue or just due to a lack of fitness, but I haven't ruled out a boot or biomechanical issue. Another potentially useful piece of information is that I've experienced the same pain recently doing the jumping drills on the Insanity workout DVDs.


If anybody has an idea what might be causing this pain / fatigue and has any recommendations to fix it, I will really appreciate it.

post #2 of 4

1) do your feet move in your boots? feet can move around->get to a bootfitter


2) do you have custom footbeds? no custom footbeds-->get to a bootfitter


3) if you go do balance exercises (bosu ball, walk 10 times on balance beam, 1 legged exercises like jumping on boxes, pilates, yoga class) do you get the same footpain?  same pain?->get in better balance shape and stregthen those muscles

post #3 of 4

Boots too tight across the forefoot. The nerves are getting pinched between the foot bones. Technique may have something to do with it--if the bumps are putting you in the backseat your foot will push forward in the boot and the pinching will be worse. Loosen the bottom buckle so that it is just tight enough to stay closed. Might have to loosen the second lowest a little. Footbeds might help if you don't have them already, like the man said. 

post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies. Sounds like it is probably a combination of all three issues I suspected.


Boots don't move around as far as I know. I don't have custom footbeds, but did replace the stock footbeds with some off-the-rack superfeet. I'm not sure if the boots are too tight in the forefoot, but it's possible. The boots are 2012 Nordica Enforcer Pros, size 27, 98mm last. I didn't get these professionally fit (mistake I know) but I think I did a good job with the size selection. When I do a shell fit, there is about 1cm of room behind the heel with toes up against the front. I don't think my feet are narrow (28 cm length 105cm in the widest part), but I have a pretty low volume foot so I thought the narrow last would be better for this. I don't have any extra lateral room in the forefoot when I do the shell fit, but my feet aren't squashed. I've been planning to go to a bootfitter for some modifications to make room for a bony knob on the sixth toe area, so I will make sure to mention this as well when I go in.


Concerning balance fitness, I haven't done the particular exercises you've mentioned, but I do get the pain/fatigue while doing jumping exercises and yoga type stretching, so I'm sure there's some fitness issues at play.


Thanks again.

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