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  1. #26
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    Jan 2006
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    A C.Ped offers some opinions...

    Quote Originally Posted by Wetdog View Post
    and they suggested molding the liner with no footbed...but skiing with them, I got the old familiar pain across the arches and on the inside of my knees...
    Hey, Intuition liners are really nice, but they really do need to have a footbed or orthotic in there for a host of reasons. It sounds like you had a preexisting condition and the orthotics to be in there anyway. The whole no footbed in an Intuition thing has been kicking around here for a while now. For some reason, the Intuition people have such great faith in their product that they have been furthering this notion. The consensus among most bootfitters I know is that you must have some type of footbed to stabilize the foot during the molding process.

    Personally I think that when an Intuition liner is properly heated, it is so soupy and flaccid, that it is next to impossible to maintain any structure in the foot and it becomes an accommidative footbed (see below).

    Quote Originally Posted by Wetdog View Post

    I showed them my custom orthotics and they said, skiing in orthotics is not recommended because they are rigid and designed for walking in flexible shoes.


    In general, a flexible or soft orthotic is an accommidative footbed is prescribed for tissue diseases and instances where foot problems need to be accommodated- think diabetes, very flat feet or degenerative muscular diseases. Again, in general, rigid orthotics are better known as functional orthotics because the control the function of the foot- better for sports. These types of orthotics are usually prescribed to correct or modify skeletal function- like your knee problem- so they have to be strong.

    Don't confuse rigid and hard. A rigid orthotic can have some flex or "give" in it so that the foot get less fatigued from the stress which are enacted upon it. A hard orthotic usually is higher volume under the arch and has very little "give" to it and can be difficult to wear in activities where shock adsorption (pronation) is required.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wetdog View Post

    Do people ski with regular orthotics? What is the difference, other than most orthotics are rigid, as are boot shells, and custom footbeds seem to have a bit of flex.
    As a C.Ped, I see all types of orthotics made by orthopods and DPMs that customers are unwilling to part with. Usually they were very expensive- at around $500-$7500.00/pair (and up!!!). Sometimes these work seamlessly in a ski boot. Many times, the orthotic is a three quarter length functional (think rigid) and has nothing to hold the orthotic in place in the liner to prevent forward or lateral shear in the boot. Most patients who wear an orthotic for an existing condition are an easy sell at this point, because they realize that shear is an important factor to consider as it likely affects their current footwear choices and how an orthotic fits into their shoes.

    Is your orthotic three quarter length or full length?

    With customers who have full length functional orthotics, I see no problem with using it in a ski boot. If it works. But swapping it out can be a chore.

  2. #27
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    I have had 3 pair of 3/4 orthotics for about 25 years now ,they all were made unweighted .

    The 1st guy put me in a chair and cover my feet with plaster and cut off the cast when it dried

    the last guy stuck my foot in a box of expanded foam which crushes the foam leaving an imprint ,he makes a plaster mold and the otrhotics from that

    I have always found as long as the orthotic physicaly fits in the street shoe/runner/hikingboot/ski boot the foot will hold it in place

    I did have some (old clear plastic) that were too big to fit into some ski boots

  3. #28
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    3,479
    Oh where to begin, Skiing in Jackson has some great points. I am no longer in the industry but my fitting resume was large, 3 yrs tech editor for ski mag boot test, C ped (which has since lapsed) fitted boots for over 17 yrs (surefoot and Gorsuch LTD).
    I guess weighted VS unwieghted really depends on the type of foot (rigid vs flexible, flat vs caveous etc).
    Keep in mind functional orthotics are for a foot in motion, walking etc. You start with a heal strike, to toe off etc. IN a ski boot this is not happening. YOu are trying to limit the amount of motion in the boot without locking the foot out. The foot needs some articulation to make fine motor movements and adjustements so help stear the ski. SO i would say podiatrist orthotics in a ski boot, although better than what is in there, are not ideal. PLus, depending on the material they are made from (PU, Fiber Glass etc) they can be cold as hell and take up too much room.

    Unwieghted THotics. I would do this when presented with a flat flexible foot that has the ability to tollerate some pressure and support. If you do a non weighted thotic on a flat rigid foot, chances are you foot is going to get crushed, cramps etc.

    Semi weighted. WOuld do these with normal feet with some flexibility. SOme rigid feel can take this as well.

    Fully Weighted: TOtaly flat rigid feet. After this is made, i would put some rear and forefoot varus, just a little to give some support. These feet are the most difficult to do.
    ALso, caveaous (super high arch, rigid foot) i would do fullly weighted. you have to be careful with these people. They have never had the support before and might not be able to tolerate any support.

    Keep in mind, ever situation is different. What i enjoyed about using AMFIT at surefoot was that you could do any three of these types of molds. The grinding machine will then manufactor the foot bed. Keep in mind a machine is only as good as the operator.

    ALso, if you walk into a "boot specialists" and they are talking in abosolutes, i would leave. Boot fitting and foot beds are not an exact science and someone with experience with thousands of feet is going to have a better idea of how to help you.

    One sidenote, with the advent of "shaped"race skis, most ski racers where not using foot beds because they were getting too much response. SInce these skis have now been out for a while, we are seeing more and more guys racing with not only beds (most of which provide just a little support)but also foam liners

    Another thing, Orthotics or foot beds in ski boots are not corrective, they are supportive. They are not in your boots to correct ailments in the rest of your body.

    I hope that sheds some light. Someone sent me a PM a while back about this and i did not have the stomach to respond. I am sorry for not getting back to you and i hope this helps. PM me with any questions. If you want specifics, send me some pics.

  4. #29
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    Feb 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiing-in-jackson View Post
    A C.Ped offers some opinions...

    Is your orthotic three quarter length or full length?

    With customers who have full length functional orthotics, I see no problem with using it in a ski boot. If it works. But swapping it out can be a chore.
    Hey skiiing-in-jackson, thanks for your detailed response to my enquiry. Yes, my orthotic is 3/4 length and is rigid plastic. I had the same prescription modified to fit my ski boot and have skied on it for several years no problem. It was going to a tighter closer fitting boot that gave me some problems with fatigue over the arch of the foot. Initially, I tried a weighted foot bed that had a little less arch support, but while being more comfortable around the arch of the foot, I still had some issues with my knee and the stock liners were just too tight and cold. They didn't stretch out in the areas that I had the shell punched to alleviate pressure points. Going with the intuitions solved a lot of the discomfort that the tight stock liners were causing my feet, but without orthotics the knee pain returned. So I re molded the liners with orthotics and have no more knee pain, have a much more comfortable, warmer foot, but am experiencing some fatigue in the foot again around the arch when skiing hard. That is why I wondered if something like the Superfeet Corks would be worth looking at. They feel like they have a little bit more give, and while molded unweighted, a lot of fitters have the client stand at the end of the molding to reduce the arch area a little.

  5. #30
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    Feb 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by skideeppow View Post
    Oh where to begin, Skiing in Jackson has some great points.

    I hope that sheds some light. Someone sent me a PM a while back about this and i did not have the stomach to respond. I am sorry for not getting back to you and i hope this helps. PM me with any questions. If you want specifics, send me some pics.
    Skideepow, I think that is me you are referring to who sent you the PM. I posted in response to skiing-in-jackson above. It would be good to get your view on it as well. Thanks for your response above. I will drop you a PM with some pics though. I am interested in getting as much input as possible, before I go off and get yet another pair of footbeds made up.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by skideeppow View Post

    I hope that sheds some light.

    It was an excellent discussion.

  7. #32
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Los Alamos, NM
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    I've always thought the Surefoot system was a good answer to the pros/cons of both.
    You are standing in the correct position but the air supported mini pins should give completely equal support so your foot doesn't spread out/flatten from being weighted.
    Sort of like this:
    Attachment 55263
    Last edited by Roxtar; 02-07-2009 at 02:01 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jer View Post
    After the first three seconds, Corbet's is really pretty average.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Malcolm View Post
    I mean, it's not your fault. They say talent skips a generation.
    But hey, I'm sure your kids will be sharp as tacks.

  8. #33
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    Just some more food for thought, I skied with recently retired world cup gs star eric scholopy all weekend. I have know eric since he was 10 and watched his success on the WC. He is techincally one of the best GS skiers in the world but just had some problems putting it together on the wc. A bronze at Worlds in st anton and numerouse top 10 finishes.

    ANyway, he uses a non posted soft flexible foot bed in his boot. He subscribes to letting the foot articulate in the boot, which gives you more feel. Less is more.

    He would rather have nothing under his foot than something that was posted up.

    I personally have a amfit foot bed that was done almost fully weighted. I also like to have very little under my foot, but enough that is allows my foot some articulation.

    Body puts a huge inside ankel punch on his boot to allow his foot to articulate as well. And in his old dobermans, Schlopy used to have a zeppa with softer material intermixed with the actual zepp[a to let the foot articulate even more.

    Just some more info for you!

  9. #34
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
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    5
    I recently had problems with my footbeds as well. I looked at this and other threads and decided to post my question here as opposed to opening up a new one.

    Last year I got a pair of custom weighted footbeds, but I think that the shop who made them wasn't very good. If you look at the first picture, when my arch is fully supported and comfy, my heel is sticking out about 1cm behind the footbed and there is about 1cm in front. On the other hand, when I have my foot positioned on the footbed the way I would have it in the boot, there's one area (circled in green) which is really pushing against my heel and another one (blue), which is not being supported as well. I think that this green pressure point pushes against some nerves and cuts off circulation, because after a couple of hours of skiing my feet go numb.

    Now, I'm not a foot specialist, but my gut feeling is that if the footbed doesn't feel right outside the boot and is not the right shape it's not going to work. So I went back to the shop and after about 2 hours of discussion with the guy, I managed to persuade him to make me a new pair. I asked him to make it in such a way that the bulging up part actually supports my arch and doesn't press against my heel. the way I envisioned it is that he would make them in such a way that there is one cm more on the heel and 1cm less on the toes. However he made them exactly the same! He argued that the footbed is supposed to support exactly this green area and not the front of the arch. That sounded strange to me, especially since it is so uncomfortable. So do you guys think there's something wrong with my feet and am I missing some point, or is that guy just a moron and should I just go and get a refund?

  10. #35
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    30
    Looks like the footbed has been heated in the toe area after molding and flattened out.
    Possibly because you were over-corrected on the vac-pads.
    This would mean you have lost some support of the metatarsal and lateral arches, making it feel like the pressure is uneven and possibly too pronounced.
    Some bootfitters will take all the definition out the toe area of a footbed to make it sit flat and/or hide some inaccuracies of a bad mold.

    He's not wrong that the main place to support the foot is from the heel (that's pretty much how off the shelf footbeds work), but that isn't the whole story, and the point of getting a custom insole is to have support where you need it, not where 99% of people need it.
    Without seeing your foot and the footbed, it's impossible to say if they are good or bad.

    But they shouldn't hurt.

  11. #36
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    Mar 2008
    Location
    northern BC
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    my feet are flatter than pis on a plate ,I have had 3 orthotics made by 2 different podiatrists and they were all done unweighted

    the first guy made plaster casts of my feet while I sat in a chair and made clear plastic 3/4 length orthotics from that

    the last guy who has done 2 sets sticks my foot into a foam box which crushes to the imprint he put there using my foot ,he makes a plaster cast of that and the orthotic out of that in his garage workshop

    I have always had extended health care so I didnt pay much if anything

    I also got some Soles which are about 40$ , if I didnt have HC and I was paying the shot for my feet ...I would get the soles

  12. #37
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    Jan 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thebaldskiman View Post
    Looks like the footbed has been heated in the toe area after molding and flattened out.
    Possibly because you were over-corrected on the vac-pads.
    I can't tell the brand of insert, but depending on the material, many inserts need to be heated and flattened out to remove, or create, a tow crest. How can you tell the forefoot was heated, because it is smaller?

    I can't tell from a picture that it has been heated...


    Quote Originally Posted by Thebaldskiman View Post
    Some bootfitters will take all the definition out the toe area of a footbed to make it sit flat and/or hide some inaccuracies of a bad mold.
    Huh?

    How many skiers have a toe crest on their footbeds- not many, is this what you are talking about?

    As to the original picture:

    Jopeto: It is very hard to deal with these issues on the net. But... It looks like you are too far back in the first pic. The insert looks like it is fitting the length of your medial arch well.

    In the second picture: When you are seated in the heel, the medial arch comes up short. It was a bad mold. It looks like (again on the internet it is difficult to diagnose such things ), he placed the blank too far forward in the pillows.

    If someone has a question about my orthotics, I usually listen to the problem, try to explain my point of view, and if necessary to keep the customer/patient happy- immediately offer a refund or remake the orthotic. (this rarely happens with sports orthotics, but occasionally when I am filling a prescription for a specialist).

    Two hours is way too long. If you still have confidence in the shop (I wouldn't), they should offer you a new insert immediately.

    What I'd like to see is a discussion on heel cups and their respective depths and how they affect your skiing and fit in the boot. Anybody?

  13. #38
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    May 2008
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    in washingtonish
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    Ah..I'll answer, but I didn't read this thread and am just saying what I have noticed IN SHOES-
    I have fucked up feet, and have had bad knee and achilles problems that I have been told is very possibly as bad as it is from my feet, so I started using good footbeds.

    I found that the ones molded weighted didn't really provide much added support, since that is where my feet are without any footbed, so what is the footbed helping me with other than keeping my foot from moving a bit in my shoes? The pair molded unweighted kept my feet and legs aligned better it seemed like and gave me arch support(which is wierd because I am almost flat footed, and the moldable footbeds kept a bit extra arch than my foot naturally has). So hard to explain, but I would say unweighted or with SOME weight but far from all. My feet aren't where they should be without some footbed adding some arch though. Hard to explain. I'm molding a pair tonight with a bit of weight and I'll tell how it goes.

  14. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by skiing-in-jackson View Post
    As to the original picture:

    Jopeto: It is very hard to deal with these issues on the net. But... It looks like you are too far back in the first pic. The insert looks like it is fitting the length of your medial arch well.

    In the second picture: When you are seated in the heel, the medial arch comes up short. It was a bad mold. It looks like (again on the internet it is difficult to diagnose such things ), he placed the blank too far forward in the pillows.





    What I'd like to see is a discussion on heel cups and their respective depths and how they affect your skiing and fit in the boot. Anybody?
    Funny that that was my first reaction to the pic - that the heel cup had been ground off too much - not that the mold was wrong. But I am only a customer, not am expert.

    Good point as to heel cups.

    My first confomrables in the 1990's were unweighted with a big heel cup

    My recent conformables are weighted, with a much smaller heel cup (Matt Sheets in JH).

    I still have both footbeds and use them both.
    I did have the higher heel cup slightly ground down after appreciating the lower heel cup.


    (FYI, in both cases, the pedorthist bootfitter still shoves the foot and the sandbed around to align the foot where he wants it.
    A properly made "unweighted" footbed is not made in the air with a vac bag, and a properly made "weighted" footbed is not made with 100% weight and a collapsed arch and too much pronation)


    Anyway, back to the issue of heel cup, I feel that the shorter heel cup is better since it shoves my foot back into the heel pocket of the liner and boot.

    the higher heel cup worked, but I think the reduced heel cup is better for me.

    The higher heel cup made me feel that the footbed heel was holding me in.
    the shorter heel cup made me feel that the liner pocket was holding me in.



    what is shown in the photo could possibly be an extremely short heel cup.
    That does not look comfortable (or normal) but I am no bootfitter.
    What??

  15. #40
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    ^^^ That "heel cup" or lack there of looks crazy. Can't imagine how that made it out the door.

    I've been thinking about heel cup since this thread got going about this time last year. Again, I make Conform'Able orthotics, both for sports med apps and for Drs. In town.

    While heel flanges (cup) is a required component of certian specialized orthotics, excessive heel cup is evil for a host of reasons in a ski boot.

  16. #41
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    Feb 2016
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    People need to think more holistically about this...

    Quote Originally Posted by El Chupacabra View Post
    Custom foot beds: weighted vs. unweighted molding --

    Pros vs cons of each?
    The foot is a dynamic device. It's dependent upon the bio-structures it supports, and vice-versa.
    While every foot is different and there are different variations of pronated/supinated/hypermobile/rigid/etc feet out there, the unweighted platform is, by far, the best for this one, simple reason; when an unweighted platform is molded to a neutral foot, all the bones of the foot are aligned and seated properly, nerves, tendons and ligaments are allowed to sit naturally without being stretched, veins and arteries are also unstressed, and the foot aligns naturally to the leg.
    I've read the debate as it's written here and I've heard it all before. However, after having made hundreds of full Kork Superfeet, I can tell you that I've had less than 5 returned as un-ski-able.
    That said, the firm post can be a bit hard on people who are off the ground as much as they are on it (pipe, big air, etc), especially if they have a rigid, supinated foot. I find that stretching prior to and while skiing makes a big difference. When the calves are tight, the feet cramp. When the hamstrings are tight, the calves are tight. Also, when the body is dehydrated, things are worse. So, if you were banging down high quantities of vodka and red-bull the night before, don't look to me when your feet are cramping in your boot. Also, drink lots of water while you are skiing. Your feet and your body will be much happier... not to mention the fact that your recovery time will be shorter.
    For those of you hucking big rocks or landing hard quite often, I used to make the foam DFP footbed as you could mold it while the person was seated. I think the newer version of their custom model is still probably a good choice.
    In the end, we need to fill the void between the foot and the sole of the boot for the best control over our skis, yet allow the foot some natural articulation while reducing human error and maintaining the fit of the boot. The Superfeet molding process was the absolute best for reducing human error. Additionally, I like the theory behind the Superfeet aligning the heel to allow the arch some natural flex. It also provided he most secure fit and completely eliminated toe bang for a properly sized boot; I have a bit of a hyper-mobile, pronated foot that sits at a 29.5 to 30 on a mondo-point sizer. I ski a 28.5 with no issues.
    Last word- I have always found that a weighted foot bed caused my toes to go to sleep at some point during the day. Trying to correct a foot that's in a splayed position is just about impossible, and I find that there's really no single theory to make weighted insoles work better. Everyone has their own interpretation and most over-post the insole to try and stabilize the foot. It's hard to make a footbed that was molded to a splayed foot work correctly (all weighted feet have some splay going on) - even with tons of posting.
    Those that don't post and claim that the foot needs to articulate in a ski boot are copping out and don't have the patience to really get the fit of a posted insole right. Foot movement reduced control over the skis and increases the risk of other injuries.
    Which, in the end, is a sad statement for the direction of our industry. The knowledge and experience required to do the job right is quickly fading into oblivion and the will to provide good service has disappeared from everywhere but the few, best shops that are left.
    So that's it, if you can find a full Kork bed somewhere, get it before they're gone.

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