Story by Carolyn Walker
What’s the big deal? Just go buy new boots, click in and ski, right? Well, that IS a choice you can make. …or you could go a wiser route and not only purchase a new pair of boots, but have them professionally fitted. The difference will not only improve how you feel when you’re out on the slopes…but it can also help you on the slopes. The more comfortable you are, the more confident you are. The more confident you are, the better you’ll ski.
A professional bootfitter can make that happen. In this particular story, the bootfitter is Mike Tambling of Southern Ski, which is located on Lake Murray Blvd in Columbia, South Carolina. While the hot climate of the midlands of South Carolina is not where you might traditionally think to find a professional bootfitter – there are thousands of ski and snow enthusiasts around the area.
One of those snow loving guys is Mike Tambling. Mike states as his mission, "To provide the best service and most information available anywhere on custom bootfitting for skiers with bootfit problems or for those of us who just want to ski with greater energy and control."
I was planning for a Christmas ski trip to Snowshoe Mountain when I ventured into Southern Ski. After a short interview of sorts Mike sat me down and talked a bit about what my own personal experiences on the slopes were. He not only diagnosed my specific needs, he steered me in the direction of an adequate boot for me – with my skill set – and with my own unique set of variables.
In my particular case Mike spent two hours evaluating, adjusting, and readjusting my new boots until they fit like a glove. Also, bear in mind, there is no charge for this service. All I did was picked out a pair of boots I liked and he did the rest.
Did it make a difference? Was it worth the two hours I spent hanging out in a ski shop talking about the sport with like minded people? As we would say here in Columbia,SC, Heck Yes! While I’m not carving turns like Lindsey Vonn yet, I sure am more confident, graceful, and the best part of all…my fourteen year old son has finally stopped badgering me about being the slowest one in our group. Thank you Mike at Southern Ski for making my ski trip the most enjoyable I’ve had in years!
If you’re considering a new pair of boots and you’re in the Midlands areas of Columbia, Lexington and Irmo…check out Mike and Southern Ski. These guys will evaluate your stance and determine whether you tend to lean backwards too much. They will measure and determine a proper fit for you feet and you calves and not only guide you to the best boot for your skill set and needs – they will also professionally mold them to fit like a proverbial glove.
Look for a bootfitter who is associated with America’s Best Bootfitters and MasterFit University. I would highly recommend Sean and Mike Tambling of Southern Ski. In addition to what they did for me they also offer the following services:
- Custom Bootfitting provided for new ski boots at no cost on boots purchased from Southern Ski. All custom bootfitting (on new boots) comes with a Guaranteed fit.
- Custom orthotics using the MasterFit InstaPrint Orthotic system.
- Master BootFitters Specifically Trained to Work With the Anatomy of the Female Skier.
- Specialization in Stretching Ski Boots. We can make those toes and bunions really happy.
- Fore / Aft Stance Balancing Analysis.
- Knee Alignment Analysis.
- Heat moldable replacement Liners.
- Electric Boot Heaters Installed.
- Southern Ski will sell and install custom boot heaters for a customer who has cronic cold feet.
We correct these common Boot fit problems:
* Cold feet
* Arch pain and cramping
* Forefoot cramping and numbness
* Shin pressure and pain
* Ankle pressure and tenderness
* Ankle and heel slop
* Poor edge control
Southern Ski is located at 1671 Lake Murray Blvd. in Columbia, SC. You can call them at 1-800-675-4261. You can visit Mike’s website at: www.SouthernSki.com