WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: FOOTBEDS
You've probably heard people talking about ‘footbeds’ but maybe you've never really understood what they are or why you’d ever need one. In this blog post Gordon Rae, our Ski Hardware Trainer, explains up why a Sidas custom footbed is important and why you might need one.
What is a Sidas Custom footbed?
At Ellis Brigham we offer two types of Sidas Custom Footbeds: SUREfit Custom Ski (stiffer support for hard shelled footwear) and Multi TX (the walking boot equivalent).
Both versions of our Custom Footbeds comprise of a material cast of the foot which is then later supported with a stabilizer adding stiffness and creating a flat surface to prevent ‘rock and roll’. These replace the stock insole which tends to be a flat foam sole on the inside of the ski boot liner (directly beneath the foot). The purpose of this type of support is to control the foot in a neutral position (neither rolling inwards – pronation, or outwards - supination). Unlike generic pre-molded insoles the bespoke Custom Footbed provides support to all areas and arches of the foot, offering maximum control and minimising the collapse and changes of the foot.
Why are they so important within a ski boot?
Focusing on ski boots (but this can certainly can be applied to other types of footwear) it is widely accepted within technical boot fitting circles that custom footbeds are an integral part of a properly fitted ski boot.
There are three key reasons why experienced boot fitters ask that you supply or purchase some form of effective foot support:
- Stabilize the foot - The foot has naturally evolved to become mobile when placing the foot down onto a surface, acting as a shock absorber but then stiffening at the end of our stride to provide a rigid lever for propulsion.
Throughout this motion the shape (width/height/length) of the foot constantly changes. Because the ski boot has no flexibility to allow for these movements, problems soon occur and boot fitters struggle to identify how much space to provide around the foot.
- Improve alignment – When the foot is held in a neutral position it’s surprising just how far the effect spreads across our bodies. Not only will the foot rest in a straight and suitable position for the ski boot, the legs and hips will also become straighter and in a stronger position to resist the forces experienced whilst skiing.
This reduces fatigue of the leg and feet and significantly improves the stance, balance and control for all skiers.
- Improves pressure distribution - Because we use a custom process to support the foot we spread pressure across the entire plantar surface/sole of the foot. This improves comfort, reduces fatigue experienced in the foot and increases the contact area which gives more sensory feedback to the brain improving balance.
Whether you’ve already got a pair of ski boots or are intending on buying a new setup, add this integral component to get the most out of your skiing and equipment.
Visit any of our winter sport stores to have your ski boots fitted with Sidas Custom Footbeds.