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Rotary boots

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Harald Harb thinks ROTARY boots are bad and avoiding ROTARY boots is important. His argument seems to make sense but I can't test or measure each brand of boot. Is ROTARY only an issue for Harb's style of skiing or does it also apply to the traditional style skiing/instruction? Can anyone tell me which boot companies make ROTARY boots and which ones make the boots that aren't ROTARY? Is ROTARY more of an issue between expert boots as compared to intermediate boots? A related questions. If ROTARY is so bad why would any multimillion dollar company make a boot that has a basic design flaw? Is there some advantage to a ROTARY boot that Harb is overlooking?
post #2 of 18

I'll answer a part of your question

I bought new boots last year. Two finalists were Lange 120 and Head S12. Because it was late and the bootfitters were willing, we did a mini alignment in both. Standing in either boot, I was neutrally aligned. When I flexed the Head's I stayed neutral (in other words, my knees flexed straight forward). When I flexed the Lange's I was 1/2 degree out (I don't remember which way). I don't know that this is proof of 'rotary' but think it is.

I don't think the boot manufacturers see it as a design flaw. They see it as the boot helping you drive (Harb would say twist) the ski. Harald feels very strongly that one of the keys to better skiing is elimination of the remnants of wedge and/or stem christie and any twisting/steering of the ski. He wants the boots to flex straight forward and let the ski sidecut provide the turning.

There are usually lists of non-rotary boots on the PMTS web site. It is interesting to note that most of the high-end boots (Atomic, Lange, Nordica) are classified by him as rotary (I believe, not sure). I assumed that this is a concious decision on their part, that they feel it makes the boots quicker and more responsive?

I bought the Heads because I liked the fit and the overall balance of the stance (the non-rotary was a bonus). While I believe his arguments, I doubt that I would make a buying decision based only on that and don't know that rotary or not would make a difference in my skiing that I am good enough to detect.

PS I hope some of the knowledgeable people or bootfitters jump on this, I would like to hear their opinions.
post #3 of 18
Gandallf. I second your hope for "some of the knowledgeable people or bootfitters to jump on this". Seems to me that although HH thinks that his teaching methods are the best and ? debateable, he also has advanced the alignment issue and boot selection issue. I have read some praise for his work in the alignment issue from non PMTS skiers.
Wonder how far advanced in skiing you have to be before the rotary/lateral boot thing really makes a noticeable impact?:

Mark
post #4 of 18
:
Wow, I love this place. That's the first time I heard of this rotaty stuff !
post #5 of 18
Okay, i think you should know why the knowledgeable people or bootfitters WILL NOT jump on this.

But i don't want to leave things as they are now (especially considering the last post) so i will help you.

check out this link:http://forums.epicski.com/showthread...highlight=xt17

Itis almost a year old, but it is one of the best about rotary vs. lateral
Jim Lindsay (Bootech) joined the discussion. If you do not know, he is of the best bootfitters in the country.

That thread should answer all your questions.
post #6 of 18
[quote=sywsyw]Okay, i think you should know why the knowledgeable people or bootfitters WILL NOT jump on this.

But i don't want to leave things as they are now (especially considering the last post) so i will help you.

check out this link:http://forums.epicski.com/showthread...highlight=xt17

Itis almost a year old, but it is one of the best about rotary vs. lateral
Jim Lindsay (Bootech) joined the discussion. If you do not know, he is of the best bootfitters in the country.

That thread should answer all your questions.[/QUOT

That being said, The post referenced seems to refer to skiers that race, even recreationally. Does this mean that the difference in boots, ie rotary vs lateral only apply to racers? If so ok. Since I probably won't ever race, then I can ignore this whole discussion. If not then it still remains of interest.
Mark
post #7 of 18
[quote=mkevenson]
Quote:
Originally Posted by sywsyw
Okay, i think you should know why the knowledgeable people or bootfitters WILL NOT jump on this.

But i don't want to leave things as they are now (especially considering the last post) so i will help you.

check out this link:http://forums.epicski.com/showthread...highlight=xt17

Itis almost a year old, but it is one of the best about rotary vs. lateral
Jim Lindsay (Bootech) joined the discussion. If you do not know, he is of the best bootfitters in the country.

That thread should answer all your questions.[/QUOT

That being said, The post referenced seems to refer to skiers that race, even recreationally. Does this mean that the difference in boots, ie rotary vs lateral only apply to racers? If so ok. Since I probably won't ever race, then I can ignore this whole discussion. If not then it still remains of interest.
Mark
I didn't read the thread again. I thought it would answer your questions. This thread surely will answer them. If not ask HH!
http://forums.epicski.com/showthread...ghlight=rotary
post #8 of 18
I didn't read the thread again. I thought it would answer your questions. This thread surely will answer them. If not ask HH!
http://forums.epicski.com/showthrea...ighlight=rotary

Thanks, that one was better and more entertaining and probably too the point! " If not ask HH.":
post #9 of 18
i was at a product launch last december in italy and asked the lange boot design crew what the deal is/was with rotary vs lateral boots and the common answer was in heavily accented italian "wtf are you talking about" and then something along the lines of "we build the boots to fit the feet, and make/help people ski better"
post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by waxman
"wtf are you talking about"
That's pretty much the response I've gotten from anyone in the ski business that I've ask about the "rotary vs lateral" boot issue.
post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
That's pretty much the response I've gotten from anyone in the ski business that I've ask about the "rotary vs lateral" boot issue.
My experience as well.
I tried to ask Johann Leitner who is the main guy behing Fischer Soma boots and a prominent Austrian bootfitter. No idea what I was talking about.
post #12 of 18
I ski in a "rotary" boot (the Tecnica XT). According to a highly skilled ski teacher I trust (our own Uncle Louie), I am able to carve clean arcs in these boots. I will say that when I was fit in the boots by Jeff Bergeron, he built footbeds specifically designed to have my knee move forward when I flexed (instead of medially). I expect that this resolves some of the issue.

The whole deal with "rotary" is basically this: what forces are applied to the ski when the skier flexes forward? If the forces are only fore/aft, then the boot is not "rotary". If the forces also apply a turning/rotary force to the ski, then the boot is "rotary". According to HH, I believe that offset hinge points contribute to this. That is, the hinge points on the medial and lateral side are not the same.
post #13 of 18
I ski in Tecnica Icon's. I remember someone posting somewhere that you couldn't carve in them....lol

sorry that strikes me as a bit comical.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Louie
I ski in Tecnica Icon's. I remember someone posting somewhere that you couldn't carve in them....lol

sorry that strikes me as a bit comical.
i remember that too. One of my boots is the Icon Alu Comp. there is nothing wrong with this boot. Too bad it was discontinued. The Magnesium is a bit tighter in the heel but much wider in the forefoot. the Diablos are PROBABLY rotary boots too even the Race R
post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Uncle Louie
I ski in Tecnica Icon's. I remember someone posting somewhere that you couldn't carve in them....lol

sorry that strikes me as a bit comical.
No, I think they said you couldn't carve in 'em...

post #16 of 18
You know, when I flex my knees forward without any boots on them I can move them into the middle or straight or with a little effort even forward and out. If I were in a rotary boot and didn't want to put any side pressure on the boot, what's to stop me from just moving my knees in as I move the forward. It seems to me that its just a question of leverage: where do you want you knee to be when(or if) you start applying that sideways force. A little sideways force sometimes does help the edge stay stuck.
post #17 of 18
Ghost, I think I see your point, but it is a bit different in a stiff encasement. The boot has "natural" flex direction, and I found that the footbed makes a huge difference (more supination, straighter flex).

Again, I'm not trying to argue whether or not this is a requirement for skiing (although it seems to me that HH does), only to explain the phenomenon.
post #18 of 18
Let me first state that the folling comments are directed to race (plug) boots.

Flex directions have been designed by engineers and tested ad nauseum in different configurations to determine what works best for the masses. Nordica, Lange, Salomon and Atomic have the 'rotary' designs. Head is claimed to have a 'lateral' flex direction. Lateral refers to a side to side movement. Any design with lateral flex will result in a very imprecise ski feel, and lack of control. An anterior-linear flex would refer a boot design which flexes straight ahead. If this is the Head design, I'm sure they thought this was what They though worked best.

Now look at what gets results. Lange was the epitome of Race boot design. In the men's World Cup, 80-90% of the starters for any given event used this boot (in Lange or Rossignol colours) a few years ago. Nordica gain prevalence once the Doberman was released. The Atomic RaceTech came on strong last season after full developement was completed. Eric Guay has been using a version of this boot for 5 years. Last season, the boot representation on the podium was Atomic, Lange (and Rossignol), Nordica and Salomon. The Fischer, Volkl and Head ski equipped racers who made the podiums used Lange or Nordica, not the boots from their ski suppliers.
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