Ski Boot Design in 2022 | BLISTER Summit ’22 Panel Discussion

We talk with Christoph Lentz (Fischer ski boots product manager), Tom Pietrowski (K2 ski boots product manager), and Greg Klein (product development & owner of Willi’s Ski Shops) about the current state of ski boot design, the latest trends (including pros & cons), and their predictions about the future.

Presented by: Whistlepig Whiskey & Athletic Brewing

Learn more about the Blister Summit here

TOPICS & TIMES

  • Introductions 00:00
  • “Recreational Skiers” & Ski Boot Design 5:35
  • Liners: Different Types & What to Look for 12:41
  • “Trickle Down” Elements from High-End Boots 21:17
  • Predictions: Walk Modes 28:03
  • Liners & Stiffness 35:36
  • Standardized Flex Ratings 40:01
  • 3rd-Party Liners 42:45
  • Better Ways to Sell Ski Boots? 47:50
  • How Long Should a Liner Last? 52:53
  • Walk Modes on Rental Boots? 56:10
  • Fit: Comfort vs. Performance 57:53
  • Stiff Boots & Smaller Sizes 1:00:31
  • How to Keep Your Feet Warm? 1:08:35
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2 comments on “Ski Boot Design in 2022 | BLISTER Summit ’22 Panel Discussion”

  1. Blister should include fit notes in their boot reviews (i.e. instep height on a scale of 1-10, toe box length 1-10, heel width 1-10, etc).

    Why not have standardized flex patterns or at least compare them to a standardized boot (i.e. a doberman 130?) Similar to how MTB suspension curves are plotted, boot companies could publish their flex curves in a size 26.5 and a short cuff version. As a consumer, there are definitely significant drawbacks to getting a boot that is too stiff, as well as a boot that is too soft. Most people probably ski in a boot that is too stiff but many people say boots labeled 130s are not even close.

    To solve the demand for higher performance smaller boots, commit to making unisex 110-115 flex boots (with one of two bolts installed for alpine) in a lv last in sizes 21.5 to a 23.5 with a cuff that is modifiable (material can be removed) for a larger calf if necessary. Put a good liner in them and market them to women, small men and teens. Teenagers of today are demanding more from their equipment. Most ripping ladies wanting a 110+ flex boot can live without a women’s styled boot. Race boots aren’t women’s specific… Very few female professional skiers ski exclusively in a women’s specific boot, even if they are a smaller size. Ingrid Backstrom, Michelle Parker, Angel Collinson, Liz Smart, all ski in mens or unisex boots. Furthermore, some smaller men with smaller feet who want a 23.5 in a 110 flex aren’t too stoked to ski in a women’s styled boot with feminine colors schemes and a loose fitting cuff. Maybe a better question to ask is how many pairs of 21.5 race boots in a 110+ flex are sold? Perhaps race brands should make their 98mm last race line boots with aspects that allow for more factory like modification that make the boot more suitable for freeride and all mountain (i.e. aftermarket vibram soles and tech toes).

    Finally, The market needs more low volume tour friendly boots! There’s a reason why skimoers look like they are survival skiing all the time. I’d rather modify a tight touring boot than deal with a loose fitting one any day.

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