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Bootfitting question - tingling toes after work done

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
My gf spent quite a bit of time yesterday at a shop in town (shall remain nameless) getting her Rossi Power 70L's worked on. With her narrow foot, higher instep and thicker ankle/calves, she had pressure on/behind the ankle bone and achilles and top of instep, and numbness/tingling in her toes. I thought the solution would be to warm up the shell and open up the instep a bit, but I know nothing, really. By the end of the day the tech had heated up the liners, ground down the footboards a bit, then added heel lifts. Took him forever to do this, and when I had to break to go back to work, I left hoping he wasn't winging it in the back, calling in someone for advice on what to do. An hour later my gf called to say the boots still weren't done, and she'd have to go back to work. This is over 3 hours after starting!! Finally, after returning later in the day, he cut out parts of the tongue. She now has no pressure on the top of her instep, but she still feels tingling - beginning *under* the ball of her foot and creeping forward until her toes get numb, (though less numb than before). The tech was scratching his head and flat out grumpy that he wasn't paid more to do fit work(!), even complaining that her boot had a performance fit(!!). No confidence left in this guy or shop as. (fwiw, not even surefoot [it wasn't surefoot] sells low volume lasted boots in nyc. seems no one here knows how to work with a boot that ain't a freakin ellipse. And I have no problem with a lengthy session - it's just so clear that he had no clue what to do after heating up the boot and it still needed fit work.) We're taking suggestions for bootfitters in the Whiteface or Gore, sugarbush/mrg, or stowe area as we may be headed out there early in the week.

As for the fit issue - what's causing the tingling? Help guys, you're thoughts??
post #2 of 14
I'm far from a bootfitter and I'm sure someone can reccomend a good one in that area...but for grins, take the heel lifts out and see how she feels.
post #3 of 14
You may be uncomfortable with this approach, but I can tell you from personal experience that I have the same ball of foot/toes tingling and bottom of foot cramps at the beginning of every season. Even when skiing the same boots/footbeds from the prior season.

It takes a few days of skiing for my foot to "get used to" the aggressive fit of my boots. I just know I have to suck it up for a few days and it goes away. This season it took almost 5 days on snow (more than usual). Can't tell you why, but I'm on my 15th day now and no more problems.

Your GF may want to give the boots a few days on snow (if she can stand it) and see what happens before taking further action. No experience with Northern VT, but two great fitters to the South are Green Mountain Orthotic Lab (Stratton) and Feet First (Plymouth, NH).

Good luck!
post #4 of 14
does she have custom footbeds?

most instances of tingletoes that I used to see as a bootfitter were tied to poor fit across the instep, sometimes because the boot's too short in top-to-bottom volume, sometimes because the person has a relatively high arch and is getting pressure from above the instep without a secure spot beneath the arch to support which in turn causes the person to overtighten at the instep buckle, and sometimes because of a pinch or hotspot that needs some shell or liner boot mods.
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys, good stuff -
No custom footbeds, gonz...yet. She does have a high arch. She's never overbuckled the boots though, first latches on all buckles, so she's not overtightening. The boots are certainly low volume top to bottom, though not so much as a Langes she's had on. She probably would benefit from in insole - but that will require a fitter who'd know how to give her more room on top after the insole took up volume below. Maybe just the remaining slight contact across her instep is causing it. Guess it's a classic fit issue, narrow foot with high arch. Most shops just sell buckets to rec skiers, and the local techs don't get the training to work on low volume boots for someone who wants a good fit. Catch-22.

I think we'll wait and ski, as medmarko suggests. Glad to hear it may be that simple. Hopefully, they'll settle in...
post #6 of 14

custom footbed

With a high arch, a custom footbed is in order.

when she puts weight on her feet, her feet are probably trying to flatten out. this will cause the fore foot to get "squished" and may pinch the nerve that serves the front portion of the foot. Stablilize the foot before trying to change anything else.

I highly recommend Greg at GMOL (Stratton).
post #7 of 14
I misunderstood- thought you had already done the custom footbeds. Still no harm by skiing a couple of days first to see what happens. However, I'm a BIG believer in custom footbeds to support the foot properly. They should help, but may also make the boots a little more snug at first.

Most important is that she not be in major pain. If that happens you may want to shut it down for the day to protect your relationship. The tingling/numbness is just an uncomfortable sensation she can work through depending on her commitment to these boots.

Standing still/lift lines and chair rides up are the worst times for me, so I always release the lower cuff buckle and two instep buckles when not skiing. During the first few days, I often unbuckle the top cuff buckle too and the power strap so I can move my foot around inside the boot a little. When the cramps hit, I take another run or two to see if I can work them out... otherwise I hit the lodge and take the dogs out. (Usually pulling them out once for a short rest does the trick for the rest of the day). I think part of my reaction is going from street shoes (where my foot can pretty much flatten out) to the narrow confines of my boots with proper support alters the normal pressure points and blood flow slightly. (Pure conjecture.)

Hope it is this easy for you!
post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Excellent advice guys, appreciated. Will superfeet do with high arches, or is custom the only way to go? We're on a budget - as Medmarkco may understand, once slip up and it could all collapse into a stinkin' beach vacation, LOL.

We should be able to get into a place next week after a few turns - don't think we'll be at Stratton, though we'll certainly make the call if we're in his neck of the woods. Leaning more toward Stowe, MRV, or even Gore. Thanks again!
post #9 of 14
A high arch with a rigid midfoot and good ankle anlignment may not see much effect from a footbed. In any case an over the counter superfeet would likely have little effect on a high arch. Sole footbeds are the most support I have seen over the counter and would likely be a much better choice.

If her foot does collapse under load then a good foot bed will likely control some spreading in the forefoot. The numb toes is likely either calves pinching off blood flow (not that likely to be noticed in the shop) or more likely pressure from the side of the metheads. It could be as easy as stretching the liner to relieve this pressure.

Pull the cheap crap insole out of the liner and have her stand on it. If she hangs off the side of that good chance the liner needs stretching. Put her foot in the shell without the liner and first check length by having her toes touch the front of the shell and see how much room is behind her heel. It should be 1 or 2 cms between her heel and shell when toes touch the front. NOW move the foot back about where it would be with the liner in (about half the distance) and have her move the forefoot side to side. If she is contacting the both sides of the shell before she moves her foot the shell likely needs stretching there. Half a cm total room is probably enough to not cause that problem but the liner can still be doing the squeezing.

If you need to stretch the shell you will also need to stretch the liner. If the shell is good just stretching the liner may do the trick.

If her foot does spread when putting weight on it then don't do any strething of liner or shell until you get a foot bed and see how that effects things.

Removing the heel lift is unlikely to do much good. If she has thick calves as you mentioned the heel lift should help lift some of the calf bulk out and only help things. That is assuming the pressure over the instep is gone.
post #10 of 14
If you're going to be in Stowe stop by Inner BootWorks on Mountain Rd (http://innerbootworks.com/). I was there on Monday getting some footbeds made. The guys there were very knowledgeable. Unfortunately I haven't had a chance to ski on them yet, but I expect to be pleased.
post #11 of 14
I'm a dummy, but I need to ask, when the term stretching the shell is used, is that the same as heating the shell up and punching the shell out.
In the case of needing to add a slight bit more length (toes are cramped) what would be the appropriate boot modification to provide more length. In my case the width of the toes box is fine, the toe box feels short.
post #12 of 14
Stretching/punching I'm really using interchangeably. I just find that sometimes people are confused using the term punching.

As for your issue, good chance that yours is also liner and not shell. Start by doing the same as I described above. Liner out, foot in and determine how much room there is in the shell. Quite often people think the boot is small causing them to hit their toes but in fact it is big meaning the foot isn't held firm and slides until the toes hit. That's why you start with the shell sizing. If the shell size is good check you foot in the liner to see if the liner is short and needs stretching.
post #13 of 14
Thanks L7. I need to go back and do a shell sizing. The boot is last years Atomic (the white and red model that was one boot below the Retail Race). Do you know the flex index on this model by chance. They had a 26.5 and I have always purchased a 27 shell.(have orthotics) , the 26 Atomic shell fit very well every where but the toe box felt a little short. As recommended, I need to go shell size this boot and see if it fits and if the liner needs stretched to provide a little more length.
post #14 of 14

As suggested by several other respondents, with a high instep and probably a high arch a custom footbed will help. However with a high instep it may well be that the Rossi boot is just not going to work very well regardless of
bootfitting. As a quick comparison she should try on a boot, such as tecnica, that does cater for a high instep, she might be surprised at teh difference.

I went through years of problems with numbness and cramping in my feet despite doing a lot of work on the shells before realizing that some boots just wouldn't work with my high instep, even whne using foamed liners. With some boots I used to have to stop midrun to get the circulation back!.
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