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 Post subject: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 8:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 07, 2011 4:25 pm
Posts: 11
Location: Salt Lake City UT
Hello All,

I'm battling pain in my forefoot/ball of my foot this winter. The pain is aggravated by touring mode, and comes on gradually until the balls of my feet are burning every time I take a step. Once it flares up it bothers be walking/running/standing etc. I have to rest my feet for awhile before I can get back out on the snow. I wanted to see if any other users have ever experienced this problem.

Here is my setup if this helps.

Voile Light Rail Bindings
Spark Deluxe Boots

The pain started when I got the Spark boots, but this also coincides with a big step in the length/number of days I get out. I keep the boot quick laces undone when in touring mode. Use the power strap to keep the boot from being too loose.

At first I realized that the incredibly large footprint of the Sparks caused my toes to hang over the toe of the Voile Light Rail footplate (which has a lip for the slider pin to fit under). I thought this could cause the pain, but I moved the heel pieces back to accommodate the larger footprint. No dice.

Second, I decided the sole liners I put in the boots were a little too long for the boot and were curling up at the toes. Effectively raising up my toes/forefoot and possibly putting pressure on the forefoot. No Dice again.


At a loss. Any help/ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 9:42 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 24, 2011 1:03 pm
Posts: 344
Location: Stockton, CA
have you had someone try to fit the boots to you? Maybe you are not getting enough arch support.


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 9:58 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 6:48 pm
Posts: 671
Location: Kodiak, AK
I experienced the exact same numbness/pain when I had Karakoram bindings. My Spark Burners did not cause this, or if they did it was far milder and less frequent. I could not finish a climb with the Split30s without the metatarsal burn. I lent my splits to my neighbor who was interested in getting a setup and who happened to also ride Burton Driver X boots like me, and one a day when he was trying my K-rams he said, "does splitboarding make your feet fall asleep?" I figured it was the lack of a toe ramp on the Split30s and the big holes in the binding base plates. (My neighbor ended up buying Sparks when he got his own setup.)

It is an issue that is boot-binding specific in my experience. Try starting with the cheap parts: replace the boot footbed and your socks. Then try liners from other boots. Then borrow a friend's bindings for a couple of outings. Work your way up to the big ticket items before you decide if the problem can even be fixed at all. And definitely never over-tighten your straps on the climb.

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Venture Zephyr 164/260
Never Summer SL 163X
Burton Spliff 148
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BD, G3, and Gecko skins
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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 11:44 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2005 8:56 pm
Posts: 472
Location: Meyers, CA
I have those boots and have experienced similar though milder issues. I think it is related to them being a relatively stiff boot with a stiff sole and lots of built in forward lean. Forward lean puts pressure on the bottom of your forefoot and if this pressure continues for a long enough period of time = no bueno.

For years I have reduced the forward lean on my highbacks for touring efficiency and comfort and then cranked it for riding. Although I still do this with the Sparks the benefit is decreased since the boots retain so much forward lean. Multiday tours are where this becomes super noticeable for me.

These types of boots are closer to alpine ski boots than floppy sorelesque snowboard boots. While there are definitely benefits, there are also some drawbacks.

One of the best features of AT ski boots (even just compared to alpine ski boots used by other skiers) is the walk/ski mode which simply and instantly removes all forward lean. This makes touring and just standing around in AT boots infinitely more comfortable than doing the same in alpine ski boots...and likely more comfortable than some snowboard boots.

I'd try some different boots and see if that changes things and if you're not already touring with minimal forward lean try that too.


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:42 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 2:38 pm
Posts: 323
Location: Fairhaven
You might try putting one of the foam baseplate pads from another binding into your LRs to bridge over the exposed gaps. I've done that with my K'rams but haven't been back out on them since I went to the hardside...

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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 5:23 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 10:05 am
Posts: 1510
Location: Colorado
It is very likely that this pain can be alleviated by a good custom footbed. I would recommend visiting your local bootfitting guru, and having him make a pair of custom footbeds for you. A good bootfitter will guarantee his work, and work with you until the problem is solved.

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Never Summer Prospector 167X, furberg 173 DIY, Dynafit TLT5/6 Mountain , Phantom Bindings, BD Glidelite Skins
Quiver Killer inserts

http://protectourwinters.org/
http://14ersnowboardproject.homestead.com/


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 8:44 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2004 6:27 pm
Posts: 1449
Location: Denver
barrows wrote:
It is very likely that this pain can be alleviated by a good custom footbed. I would recommend visiting your local bootfitting guru, and having him make a pair of custom footbeds for you. A good bootfitter will guarantee his work, and work with you until the problem is solved.


This...


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 11:05 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2004 5:07 am
Posts: 620
Location: Montana
I had this exact problem. I have really high arches. I tried all kinds of different boots and had the same result with all. I tried the best superfeet footbeds....still burning pain. I finally got some arch supports. These things are rigid plastic inserts I put under my superfeet. No more pain....ever. It made all the difference. I think Dr Scholls makes similar products now that aren't nearly as expensive as the ones I bought but they've lasted like 6-7 years & I don't wear shoes without them any more & definitely don't tour without them. Buy new boots in a couple of years just take them out & put in your new boots under the new footbed. These things seemed like they were rediculous expensive for what you got....however looking back...worth every penny.

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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 6:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 07, 2011 4:25 pm
Posts: 11
Location: Salt Lake City UT
Thanks for all the responses everyone.

Dishwasher Dave -- It makes sense that it could be a problem caused by forward lean, as the pain can be excruciating after a long day holding a toe side traverse.

I'll try the arch support.

I'll look into the boot fitter approach as well. I live in SLC, if anyone has a guy.

Thanks again, and I'll update with results as to document solutions.


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:45 am 
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Joined: Sun Mar 12, 2006 6:40 pm
Posts: 738
Location: Seattle
I have just recently been having pretty much this exact same issue. I only get it on my right foot tough. I have had some foot issues over the years, but this one is new. I have both Driver X and Spark Deeluxe boots and Spark bindings. I only get it when skinning (although did get it recently when booting some couloirs) and not riding. I haven't tried getting custom footbeds yet as I have thad them before and they didn't help with my previous foot issues. One thing I did discover and not saying this is for sure what I have or what you have but the symptoms are pretty much dead. Its called a Neuroma. Google it. A friend of mine had this and she had the same symptoms I am having. Going to find a good foot doctor to what hey have to say about it.


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Sun Feb 17, 2013 9:37 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 10:17 pm
Posts: 280
I have had the unfortunate luck of dealing with a Morton's nueroma. I spent years working with bootfitters etc to try to address the symptoms without really understanding the root cause of the problem. My nueroma ended up becoming quite large--and surgery was required. Basically, I traumatized one of my nerves as I rode very tight fitting snowboard boots---and the nerve thickened/enlarged due to this trauma. For years, my symptoms (burning pain/pressure in the forefoot) was confined to snowboarding--and usually in specific conditions like riding through heavy snow. Eventually, the symptoms spilled over into everyday life.

On a positive note, I was able to use this experience to provide some information to several friends in the early stages of dealing with neuromas. I was able to put them in touch with an excellent sports podiatrist--and they were able to address the symptoms without surgery.

In post surgery life, I have to implement many if the same preventative measures---thin socks, wide shoes (all of my shoes) and supportive foot beds.

For my snowboarding life, I use wide toe box boots (my Vans Cirro soft boots) or have the toe box punched out (my Dynafit TLT5 AT boots). I have custom insoles that take my needs regarding the nueroma into account. For my hardboots, working with an excellent boot fitter was essential. I also wear very thin socks.

No matter what your issue might be, I highly recommend starting with a sports podiatrist--especially one experienced with ski boot related injuries. I have also found that good bootfitters are becoming familiar with nueromas as well.


Good luck!


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 12:52 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:28 pm
Posts: 453
Location: Cottonwood, UT
backroadshome wrote:
Thanks for all the responses everyone.

Dishwasher Dave -- It makes sense that it could be a problem caused by forward lean, as the pain can be excruciating after a long day holding a toe side traverse.

I'll try the arch support.

I'll look into the boot fitter approach as well. I live in SLC, if anyone has a guy.

Thanks again, and I'll update with results as to document solutions.

As I was reading through this thread the immediate thought that came to my mind was Neuroma. But it looks like other people beat me to it. I haven't had one but my wife and a couple of neighbors have and I know they can be super painful. Without some sort of action it won't just go away, unless you give up snowboarding and walking altogether. There are a couple of options I've heard of to fix it. Cortisone shots and insoles can help but usually aren't a permanent solution. Surgery works great but most people don't like to opt for that unless they have no choice. Custom orthotics seem to be the best solution based on what friends have said.

Since you are in SLC go to the Sport Loft and ask for Jeremy. He is one of the best boot fitters in the state and goes to a ton of podiatry conferences and stuff to stay up on the latest. My neighbor said that the custom orthotics he built for him are the only reason he can still ski.

Good luck figuring it all out.


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 Post subject: Re: Forefoot Pain Split-Mode
PostPosted: Tue Feb 19, 2013 1:15 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 06, 2010 9:49 am
Posts: 31
Hey I have this kind of pain too, I think mine falls under 2nd metatarsal overload syndrome. I got that fancy name from this page http://www.northcoastfootcare.com/pages ... -Pain.html, which has some cool diagrams and ideas about how to combat specific types of pain in the ball of your foot. Bottom line looks like it ties into tight calves and strained ligaments, so stretch more. They have some stretches on their page.

Also I don't know if its relavent but I wrote this today,
https://snowboardergirlz.wordpress.com/ ... kin-track/. Not everyone does it, but a lot of splitboarders turn their knees inward on the skin track, I don't see skiers doing it that often. It looks like a recipe for a whole bunch of problems transferring from your knees to your feet and hips. I've been trying to be really concious of stacking my bone structure on the skin track to avoid stressing my knees and other ligaments. Maybe you're not skinning as efficiently as you could be.


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