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What should the Foot - Ball / Heel Weight Distribution be for shaped skies. & Binding location.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
This question applies to blue / black groomed runs.

I am 5'10" ~170lbs. 2007 Beast 12 boots. Atomic Beta Race SL II skis, 156cm (I know they are too short, but the price was right and now I "own" a pair of shaped skis). I have also been demoing a number of skis and the below applies to most of them as well, primarily 170mm Vokl AC30's, Nordica Top Fuel, and Speed Machine 3.

I was a mid '80s thru early '90s style skier who was taught to and could "carve" turns by the carve definition of that era. More edge grip was often achieved by driving forward in the boot and placing more pressure towards the ball of the foot. I didn't have any major issues with my stance or weight distribution (i.e. I definately was not leaning back) and my shoulders - body face downhill.

I am learning the methods for shaped skies. My main pitfall after an evaluation is that I need to widen my stance more which I do after pretending I am "horseback" skiing. Then the stance width is right when sking naturally.

I have the old habit of drving my shin forward and applying pressure to the ball of my foot. I have gotten mixed opinions on whether this is right with shaped skis and it may be causing me to pivot my foot. Sometimes having about 50/50 distribution seems to get a better bite.
Also what effect does fore - aft binding location have on shaped skis?

post #2 of 6

156cm may seem rediculously short, but they are a good size for your height and weight unless your going to be doing all powder. I'm 5' 10" 230 and I'm riding 165cm skis.

Shin forward technique should not be causing pivoting. The forward movement should be diagonally forward, towards the apex of the new turn unless you are doing short radius turns (in which case you do move exactly forward). Having weight in the backseat often causes pivoting, but you can pivot from a centered position simply by turning your feet. IF you are pivoting, that could be the reason your getting mixed advice. For you the main advice I'd give is that the difference between straight and shaped skis is the amount of "help" they need to turn. Shape skis need less help. For example, if your forward movement for straight skis on a 1-10 scale was an 8, try quieting the movement down to 3 or 4. If your forward movement is pressing the sides of the boot cuff instead of the tongue, the ski will turn itself and your much less likely to be pivoting.

I would not be messing with fore/aft binding position unless recommended by a top boot fitter.

Video would allow us to provide more useful advice.
post #3 of 6
A wider stance is not necessarily a virtue. More important is to avoid a locked-together stance. As long as the feet are acting independently, the stance width isn't critical. Walking-width stance between the legs is good, with the distance between the feet varying depending on how much your inside leg is retracted for the leg angles you need to develop.

The main difference with modern skis is that you merely need to put them on edge and allow them to turn you. Experiment with fore & aft balance. More forward pressure helps at the beginning of sharper turns and turns on steeper slopes, but you don't need to lay on the tips.

If your bindings have fore & aft position adjustments, experiment. Some skis do better with the bindings forward of the boot-center mark, and some do best with the boot center mark over the mark on the skis.
post #4 of 6
Shaped skis are just one change from years ago. Boots from back then had a different design, as did the bindings. So it is really hard to say which change is most profound. Since you are on a ski that is a lot shorter than the old 204 SL, the wider stance allows you to regain some of the stability you had on the longer skis. 156 is a bit short for your height but at pedestrian speeds they will not be too unstable. 165 would be more appropriate but hey you already own the shorties.
post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 
TY for the responses.

In general from your experiences with shaped skis, what has been the "feel" of the weight distribution between the ball and heel of the foot?

As far as tip pressure goes, I think I can tend to "lay on them" do to the old skiing habits that is why I want to get a better idea of the feel for weight distrubution before the season is over, and get another quick review to make sure I am not too far back, and work from there.

As far as my stance goes, I have been told a shoulder width / shortstop stance is what is recommended. In this stance the "RR tracks" are similar in width to some amatuer racers, instructors, and ski patrol I have seen on the hill. My general standing stance is about 8-9" Centerline to Centerline apart.

165-170cm feel about right for me especially at higher speeds and through some crud. The friends I ski with ski fast most of the time and I have no problem with that. The 156's in this ski are a bit short for the higher speeds. They want to be on edge most of the time at speed, but they can turn very fast and sharp which can be fun. The first times I used them I nearly landed on my butt, but I am used to them now.
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
I thought I would add some info I found about binding location posted by tdk6 in another similar thread regarding weight distribution through the turn.

"General rule, mounting the binding further back will make your skis run faster but mounting them further forward will make them turn easier and keep them arcing with less risk for tail skidding and drifting."

Its a nice general rule summary statement.
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