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How much is too much flex and forward lean?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I asked my local bootfitter to soften my Lange Comp 120 boot to which he removed one bolt and cut away some material from the outside bottom of the lower cuff buckle strap and cut a v in the back inside shell where the top bolt existed for flex control. This definitely made the boot easier to flex but still I could not get into a fully flexed position without falling backwards. I concluded that I needed some heel lift to bring my hips more forward. This seemed to work but it took two blue foam heel lifts to finally get my hips into the correct position. With this new position in my boot I found that I had too much flex and range of motion and was still getting thrown backwards in extreme conditions. Examining this closely I realized that I was not flexing too far forward but instead looked like I could go too far back. As a result I added in some padding behind the cuff at the spoiler. Presto I was setup and able to maintain a balanced position in all conditions. The problem now is I feel like I am overly flexed at all times and not able to have a neutral position when at rest. The boots have been softened up a lot so I think I lost some lateral stiffness and control. The big question is are my boots leaned forward too much and do I have too much flex in the boot. After skiing my knees are pretty sore compared to before making these changes. I don't think this is an ideal setup but it seems to work. Why doe sit work and what do I need to do so I am not all jacked up and forward.

post #2 of 5

Might be worth posting a video to see if the issue really is your boots, or it might be somthing else.

post #3 of 5



It could be possible that you were not flexing enough in the ankle, all the changes you did forced you to get to a flexed ankle position and that resulted in your success. But as you've noted, you also need a good tall neutral position where you can stack your weight on your skeleton instead of your muscles. It's just a guess. As the dude has noted, a video is worth a thousand guesses.


I have a pair of comp 120s. These are softer boots than a traditional Lange boot. Because I'm a "large" person I've never had trouble flexing them. You're mileage (flexage) may vary.


You might want to consider getting this thread moved to the Ask the Boot Guys forum. If you do, reply to this thread and add your height, weight, skiing level and any previous alignment analysis to the post.

post #4 of 5



Perhaps your perceptions are the beginning of your slippery path of modifications.


First, why do you believe you should be able to use your full range of ankle flexion while in a ski boot?

Do you believe a greater range of ankle flexion will provide better balance?


The easiest solution is to get with a good fitter/alignment specialist and use the proper methodology to solving your issues.   There are four key parameters that affect fore/aft balance and each has a unique role which in turn must work in concert with the others.  Ramp angle, delta angle, forward lean angle, and binding position comprise the four primary fore/aft parameters.


The flex stiffness of a ski boot is NOT one of these four parameters.  These parameters are angles and positions created by the equipment which place the skier in a neutral position which may be optimized by proper alignment. 


While a boot's flex does have an affect of one's ability to find balance, it is not in the way you probably think.  A poorly aligned softer flexing boot will permit the skier to adjust their position over the skis to compensate for poor alignment more easily, while a poorly aligned stiffer flex will punish the skier by requiring compensatory movements of body parts other than the ankles to find balance.  So, the stiffer the boot, the more critical proper fore/aft alignment is to dynamic balance.  So why do better skiers prefer stiffer boots?  Well, when properly aligned they offer quicker transfer of input and allow for quick recoveries when the skier gets out of balance.  Proper fore/aft alignment means the neutral position dictated by the boot angles and binding position places the skier in the optimum position from which to balance.


Your quest to get greater range of flex from your boot may be a bit misguided.


post #5 of 5



Before adding the spoiler to your boot, have you had the actual flexibility of your ankle measured?  Boots with an aggressive forward lean can actually cause your ankle to be forced to be flexed to it's limit.  Do you feel that your heels tend to lift or get loose?  If so, a qualified boot fitter should measure your ankle flexibility and make other modifications to the boot.



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