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Self Help Advice ? - long

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Background: 60 yr old avid intermediate+ skier. Surefoot footbeds and later posted by a bootfitter recommended on this site, but not a member or someone who posts here. Boot soles planed/ground to flatten them. Left shell punched to relieve pressure on big toe. Intuition liners.
I can balance better on my left leg (despite having broken my left ankle years ago) than my right and I can turn left better than right, despite Squatty's best efforts at ESA BS.
I talked with both the Surefoot bootfitter/technician and the Epic recommended Bootfitter about knee action and canting Both asked me to do a few knee bends and said they thought I needed any work done.
While doing a few lunges this morning I noted again how my right knee tracks inward so that when my thigh is level with the floor the knee is inside my big toe as I look down on it. My left leg tracks almost straight. I know it's less exact lwith me looking at my own torso but I'm exercising on a tile floor where it's easy to follow the lines and see where my leg moves as it flexes. I also did some reverse lunges moving very slowly and with less pressure on the right leg and the right knee continued to move toward my left leg as it flexed.
I am only near bootfitters when I'm on vacation and I will not be near any of you until late in the ski season.
What could I experiment with on my own to see if I can do something with alignment that might help me with those left hand turns?
I recall someone named Mosh (?) posting here about wedges to put inside boots. Anyone with any experience with that?
Maybe I should just take the "experts advice" and forget about the boots and spend the money on lessons?
Any suggestions?
post #2 of 23
try a thin (2-3mm) wedge on the inside, underneath the footbed. Then try it on the outside of the footbed. Try this on both sides to see what feels, and what skis the best.

Then play with the upper cuff alingment (canting screws) on your boots. They move both inwards and outwards. Try both and see what feels/skis better.

Lessons can NEVER hurt too.

when you get to see a good boot fitter (and instructor) then tell them what you have found and see what they think and see.
post #3 of 23
Hi Steve Turner,

I have the same exact problem.

Just for the fun of it sit on the floor with both legs extended before you, do your feet stand up at the same angle or does your right foot angle toe out to the right?

Does your right ski chatter when turning left?

If you look down the shaft of both legs (while standing)with feet about hip width apart does your rt leg knee cap seem to be angled medially (inward)? Mother nature doesn't know what a straight line is. Anatomical imbalances are not unusual.

We experimented with cant shims (angled wedges)on hill and found that 3 degrees fat side out corrected my problems by pushing the outside of the ski down off of it's inside edge. My ski was overturning causing wobbly knee problems.

miketsc
post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 
YES
YES
and
YES

Although the solution to the problem seems counterintuitive I'll sure give it a try.
If I put the inside 1/4 of my right foot on a magazine it will make my knee track straighter ahead but I fully agree that building up the outside would help the ski to track straighter. I was under the misconception that I should try to get the knee to in a biomechanical fasion straight ahead in order to improve my edging.
I'm guessing your 3 degrees of shimming is with the boot sole. Do you think it might help working under the footbeds or zepa?
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveturner View Post
YES
YES
and
YES

Although the solution to the problem seems counterintuitive I'll sure give it a try.
If I put the inside 1/4 of my right foot on a magazine it will make my knee track straighter ahead but I fully agree that building up the outside would help the ski to track straighter. I was under the misconception that I should try to get the knee to in a bio mechanical fashion straight ahead in order to improve my edging.
I'm guessing your 3 degrees of shimming is with the boot sole. Do you think it might help working under the footbeds or zepa?
I would try to stay away from working under foot inside the boot as it can cause other issues to pop up.

The least expensive way to accomplish this is to find a shop who will mount cant strips under the ski binding, although we just jammed a short pieces(different degrees) of cant shim in between my boot heel and the binding---For liability reasons I can't reveal how I did it---OOOOPs---Please disregard that last statement!!!

miketsc
post #6 of 23
1. Test 1-3 degrees thick side inside under your right boot.

2. A toe out boot/binding/plate on the right side would likely be helpful. Atomic will have bindings with a small amount of rotational adjustment available next year. Marker has a plate that you can mount the binding on in a toe out position. Both products will allow for an asymmetrical setup.

3. Unless you have a specific foot deformity (i.e. forefoot varus) you should avoid using shims on the zeppa or under the footbed.
post #7 of 23
Thread Starter 
OK, as I read this I've got one vote for inside right boot and one for outside right boot. I can see how the inside buildup helps make my right knee flex forward. I also see how the outside buildup keeps me from overturning the right ski, which does seem to be a problem. I'm already using Fischer boots to get a little toe out. Anyone want to cast a tie breaking vote? Where can I buy some cant strips to do some experimenting?
I'm glad to hear some of the manufacturers are making bindings that are more adjustable. I think they will be popular.
post #8 of 23
You need to have someone assess the cause of your right knee tracking inside (more than your left).

Is it...

-forefoot varus?
-rotational asymmetry (femoral/tibial torsion +/- toe out)?
-leg length discrepancy?
-isolated joint (subtalar, knee) plane/vector difference?

Your ultimate setup could include:

-lift
-forefoot varus correction (under the footbed)
-canting (under the boot)
-toe out setup

...or it could require just one of those things. Your best bet is to have someone look at you .

BTW, I fail to understand how shimming thick side outside would be relevant in your case, but I'm only basing that on your description.
post #9 of 23
BTW, I fail to understand how shimming thick side outside would be relevant in your case, but I'm only basing that on your description.[/quote]


If your Rt knee joint is oriented toward the inside(medially rotated), as you flex forward, the knee will track inward no matter what you do to try to straighten it out. By placing the cant shim fat side out and pushing the ski off of it's inside edge, you correct the over turning problem. Hey it worked for me! You aren't me---but it won't hurt to try it both ways, I venture to add that if you put it fat side in, it will put the ski on more of an inside edge as your knee moves forward.

Cut several pieces of cant shim about an inch long and insert them (different degrees) one at a time, only under the heel of your boot, they will cant the shaft of the boot (leg part)and give you a feel for the results achieved. Once the rt ski stops chattering you should be good to go.

miketsc
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by miketsc View Post
If your Rt knee joint is oriented toward the inside(medially rotated), as you flex forward, the knee will track inward no matter what you do to try to straighten it out.
Wrong .

It totally depends on the cause of medial tracking, aka valgus thrust.

In any case, I think we can all agree that Steve needs to see somebody to sort this out.
post #11 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdistefa View Post
Wrong .

It totally depends on the cause of medial tracking, aka valgus thrust.

In any case, I think we can all agree that Steve needs to see somebody to sort this out.
I agree.

miketsc
post #12 of 23
Steve:
How are you doing? Lou here. You've gotten good but different advice from two experienced guys. Who said boot fitting is science? Well I did, but we aren't completely certain of the science.

I won't cast the deciding vote but instead will ask more questions. How did you arrive at cuff alignment and are the cuffs aligned?

did the problem get worse when you moved to Fischer boots. The toe out design makes the turn pick up more quickly and for some people will cause overturning.

There is a tendency to correct knee tracking to straight ahead as an absolute rule when sometimes it should be ignored for more simple solutions.

Lou
post #13 of 23
More info. I don't want to say that your knee doesn't track in. However, remember that ROM for a lunge is hugely more than is required for a ski turn and may give you misleading information.

Lou
post #14 of 23
+1 re. what Lou said.
post #15 of 23
Thread Starter 
Hey Lou,
Last year I skied two boots. The newer Fischers and older Salomon Pro Model SC. One I leave at Big Sky and one I keep in Tennessee for when we travel. Maybe this is a mistake. I frankly have not been able to tell much difference in the way they ski. I keep my custom insoles/footbeds with me because they are comfortable.
Yes, I think the cuffs are aligned properly. I've moved the right boot's cuff to the inside to allow the knee to move to the inside without pressuring the inside edge of that right ski.
I've been to at least three experienced bootfitters within the past two years and none of them made adjustments to the cuff alignment. They checked it but they did not make a change I could feel and did not note that they thought it was a problem.
I do know there is more forward lean built in the Salomons that keep my knees bent all the time while I'm able to straighten my knees and relax in the lift lines with the Fischers. It was one of the reasons I bought the Fischers.
I've also thought about this a little more and don't remember having this overturning problem until I started trying to use a more "modern" technique compared to my original "old style" method I learned in the 70's.
Does ones style of skiing impact this problem?
post #16 of 23
Steveturner, To answer your above question...I don't believe your chosen "style" of skiing will change any affects of how your ski equipment determines your stance.

It sounds like your knee tracking is causing overedging rather than you are having to over-angulate to get an edge, am I correct?

These are two totally different issues with different solutions. You also said you turned better to the left than right yet your right knee is the one that is tracking in?? and you say making you over turn??? so I am a little confused to say the least!
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
Bud,

Yes, I think I may be overedging but I've had several lessons and it was never mentioned by an instructor who observed my skiing. All I know for sure is I am much more likely to lose my balance (and control) in steep terrain turning to my left with most of my weight on my right leg. I seem to have more problem staying on top of the right ski while I'm turning to the left. When I lose my balance turning to the left I somtimes feel like I'm leaning into the turn too much.

My mistake. I turn better to the right. Despite being right handed and kicking a football with my right foot and having broken my left ankle as an adult, a right hand turn with most of my wieght on my LEFT leg is my "go to" anytime I'm in difficult conditions. It is my right knee that seems to flex more to the inside.
post #18 of 23
Sure would like to see you but I would agree with Jdistefa's posts. It sounds like thick side inside edge is the call, but hey test both ways and there will be no doubt. Note, thick side on the outside will take away edge grip on the inside edge and thick side on the inside edge will add edge grip.
post #19 of 23
Thread Starter 
I have some Railflex bindings mounted on Dynastar 4800s. Seems to me the easiest way to experiment with canting would be to shim under one side of the binding. I can get some cedar shims at home depot but I think they would compress and make the plate loose under the boot.
Metal shims are available but that's WAY too much work to cut and drill just for an experiment.
Anyone know of a source for shims that might be made of plastic or rubber?
I can use something like an old credit card or strips of heavy rubber under one side and under the section where the screw attaches the plate to the skiif I can't find anything else.
Sounds like most canting is in the 1.5 to 2.5 degree range. How much change is that in mm added to the edge of a boot sole? Looks like a credit card is about .6 -.7 mm thick. I'm guessing I'll need 2-3 mm change in the edge of the plate to impact my alignment. Does that sound like a place to start? I can't relate that to degrees of change.
post #20 of 23
Hotel room key cards are great (no raised digits).

Cut 1cm wide, loosen the bindings, slip under the required side between the binding and ski, re-tighten.

Approximate:
1 layer = 0.5+ deg
2 layer = 1+ deg
3 layers = 1.5-2 deg

If using 3 layers, IMO you should use longer screws on the affected side.
post #21 of 23
Thread Starter 
I'm OK experimenting with the hotel room keys but isn't there a source for shims that could be used for cant strips? It would require less sealing around plate to keep out the snow.
post #22 of 23
Personally, I like hotel key cards. They're cheap, adjustable, easy to test with, and you don't have to take off the whole binding. I've never had a problem with snow.

If you feel inclined to spend money: http://www.cantco.net/cantco_pricelist.html
post #23 of 23
Bud and Matt have you on the right track IMO. Playing with the room key idea is fast and fairly easy. Once it works and you know what you need cantco will be able to help. Or find someone to cut the boots.

Lou
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ask the Boot Guys › Self Help Advice ? - long