6th January 2019 | Alex Cove, PlanetSKI
Last modified on December 19th, 2019
PlanetSKI looks at why every keen skier should own their own boots. We head to the specialists, Profeet.
Now I need to declare my position.
I am perhaps not your average skier.
I am a Level 3 internationally qualified ski instructor and have worked three winters in Banff, Canada.
My season lasts from early November to late May.
Last summer I went south and worked in Perisher in Australia: June to mid-September.
Prior to that I taught in Verbier in Switzerland.
I am not an expert, there are plenty of people better than me, but I do ski for a living.
It is clearly a no-brainer for me to have my own boots.
Ones that fit perfectly and do exactly the job they are supposed to.
When I dropped into Profeet I was asked how much I ski a year.
I lost count of the number of weeks so I simply wrote down ‘A lot’ on the form.
But I advise anyone who skis regularly to buy their own boots and to get them fitted by a professional.
It is not just a question of comfort.
It is a question of the boots enabling you to become a better skier.
Without properly fitting boots you will not get the most out of your ability or your skis.
So, what is the process at Profeet?
First things first.
You MUST book an appointment.
It takes 2-hours or so and Profeet, based in Fulham London, is busy much of the time.
The man in charge of getting me set up was Frazer Shand.
He has been a boot-fitter for 15 years and reckons he has fitted 3,000+ pairs of ski boots.
“People come to Profeet for the level of service, our expertise and simply because they want boots that are as comfortable as possible and do the job,” he said to me.
See here for more about Profeet.
So, what’s the process?
First up a quick visual and physical inspection.
Then it gets a bit techy.
I’m asked to stand on some heat pads in my general ski position to see how my weight is distributed on my feet.
“Spot on with 100% even distribution,” said Fraser. “You must be pretty good.”
Then it’s back to get the custom-made footbeds done.
A mould is made of the underside of my foot.
A snug footbed is then able to transfer the weight and pressure correctly and harness my weight distribution.
It is a key part of the boot in my opinion and is the main reason I am in Profeet – a badly made one will cause discomfort and not help your skiing.
A well-made one will enhance comfort and assist your skiing.
Now I always advise people to let the boot-fitter decide which boots you should have.
They’re the experts and will select the correct boot for the shape of your foot, your skiing level and what type of skiing you like.
But, like most blokes, I don’t practice what I preach.
I had pre-ordered a Lange RS 130, size 26.5.
I have skied on it before and love it.
“You have chosen a very good boot and pretty much exactly the one we would have recommended for your level and the amount of skiing you do,” said Frazer.
And 2-hours later I was kitted out with my new boots.
And I had learnt a bit by chatting to an expert.
“Boots have remained pretty much the same over the years but this season is the biggest development I have seen in 15-years.”
And it’s not to do with what they do when skiing, it’s about what they do when walking to and from the slopes (or restaurant).
Step forward GRIP WALK.
It is a new sole that pretty much all the major manufacturers are now putting on their boots, so people can walk with greater ease.
And with that I walked out of Profeet with my new boots.
Next stop this month is Samoens in France and then Verbier in Switzerland.
I’m looking forward to putting them through their paces.
And walking on snowy roads and paths without fear of falling over.