Originally Posted by HeluvaSkier
ice skating (started when I was two or something - don't even remember it),
Greg, that could be part of your answer right there. Your were developing balance motor skills highly applicable to skiing at a crucial period in your life. I've found the skills developed in skating to transfer very well to skiing. I had a highly skilled hockey player switch over to skiing and with in a few years he was our strongest racer. As a matter of fact, he was consistently kicking A.J. Kitts butt. Joel (you know who I mean, Greg) wasn't even in the same league.
Back to the foot. It's the center of our balance system. The foot is designed with structural trusses that tension when pressure is applied, thus creating a very stable balance platform. I see some folks, especially racers, cramming their feet into boots 2 sizes too small, and footbeds with too much arch, leaving the foot no room to compress, expand, and tension, as it must do to function as it's designed. It's crazy. They're trying to balance on virtual stubs. Might as well stick their feet in a couple ski boot shaped containers of wet concrete, and when they dry try to ski.
That's why what Disski said here makes so much sense to me.