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Extreme ankle pain in ski boots - any solution?

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone! 


I have just registered here because I am shaking in turmoil (nice poetic picture), and I am hoping some kind of advice from more experienced fellows. I have already spent several hours of surfing the internet for any information, but unfortunately I have not found anything for my specific problem. Let me just draw the situation. I have been a leisure skier, spending about a week on the slopes per year so for years and years I used a second hand ski equipment that I had purchased around long time ago for virtually "50 cents", and it contained a worn out pair of beginner's carving skis, a pair of cracked boots, and a pair of miserable skipoles that I have accidentaly destroyed 2 years ago when I fell on them. Anyway, I loved those equipment, I had the fun and the fond memories I recall make my eyes hazy. :) But as years passed I have arrived to the realization, that skiing for me is not just a passing habit, or a mere flash in my lifetime, I haven't got tired of it, and I would like to visit the slopes as many times as I can. So I thought it is the time for an upgrade. Last year I have purchased a modern pair of skis, and skipoles, but I have not bought any new boots, due to my... economical limitations. :) I was very satisfied with my new skis, but riding on them with my old cracked boots, I realized soon, that the weakest link in the chain is now the ski boot.


So this year I have decided to upgrade my ski boots as well. And then the HORROR has begun! I found a very good tutorial on finding the best boot for me, and when I re-checked my original boots' specification I was shocked how off they were. They were large, at any ration, and I used two thick socks to feel comfortable in them. Yes they were comfortable with a flex number of 45, and that's all the pros I can list here. With my new skis I realized, my feet moved in the boots very easy, in some situation I felt like they are slipping all over the place. So what I did next was that I measured my length and width of my feet and tried to aim for a stiffer flex this time, because I have evolved from beginner to a kind of intermediate level. I measured that 27.5cm length and 10cm width is ok with my feet, and I went to a ski shop to buy boots, but this time the in the correct size for my feet.


I tried on the first one and I felt it comfortable, except for... the back of one of my outside ankles. At first I didn't realize what the problem was, but then I tried on a different pair of boots, the same situation. Then I got out and checked my feet. I noticed that the outer ankle of my right foot protrudes out far more than the other 3 ankles of my feet. The other 3 are just fine. I can't remember any ankle damage or injury from my lifetime, I think it has grown like this, and haven't caused any problems so far. My original boot was so big and flexible, that it did not cause any problems.


But when I tried on the correct sized boots, and I leaned to the side imitating a carving stance or just leaned forward to imitate a skiing position, I noticed severe pain at the back of the protruding outer ankle. It was partly bone pain and partly neuralgia in nature as if the side or back of the boot pushes my outer ankle forward, stretching the tendons and nerves around it. And it was severe! I still feel the discomfort hours after the last boot checking.


I have tried several different brands and models, with several differerent flex numbers ranging from 70 to 100, and although I found differences in the pain levels between the makes and models, the pain never really vanished with any of those that I have tried on (around 15-20 so far). I even tried on wider boots with 102mm, but that did not help either. Longer (28) sized boots were long and didn't helped eliminating the pain either.


So this is the issue which I am facing right now, and I would like to have some kind of advice how to overcome the situation. I have heard that there might be some kind of adjustment of the plastic shell itself, to extend the distance between the shell and my ankle, but it requires heating up the plastic and something like that. I don't know how this works and I found it a bit risky, but that's because I don't have any experience in such modifications and I don't know the limitations. But I have to purchase the boots first before I know it will be ok, and it makes me feel uncomfortable as well.


Thank you for your insights and suggestions in advance and best regards,


post #2 of 2

As you have figured---you need a modified boot, to fit around your ankle bone, and you have come on to this web site to ask boot fitters how to go about resolving your problem.


What you need is a shop that employ's a "boot fitter" so that when you purchase a pair of the correct size boots, you can also get the boot shells stretched to fit around your ankle, often at no extra charge if you purchase them there.  This is easily done by a competent fitter.  


There are boot fitters listed in the "Who's who in ask the boot guy's" at the top of this section, they are located all around the US and the rest of the world. Find the nearest one to your local, and even if it is a distance from you, the trip will be well worth it.


Good Luck & Happy Holidays



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