Numb Feet, might have nerve damage. - Page 5 - Snowboarding Forum - Snowboard Enthusiast Forums
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post #41 of 48 (permalink) Old 01-21-2010, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by StokedSoul View Post
Hey Guys,
I too have had numbing toe issues after a day of riding. My numbness usually comes after about 4 hours of riding. Its a bitch since it usually always happens and even if my legs still have some strength, I have to end my session because my feet kill. Over the holiday's I rode for 6 days straight and the tips of my big toes were numb for days afterward.

It worries me because it cuts my session short and also, like many of you, I don't want to have long term nerve damage.

I've tried a bunch of things over the 10 years I've been riding, arch support (I have extremely high arches in my feet) helped and keeping my inners loose helps as well.

I've come to realize though that even with all the tips and tricks I try to do to avoid the numbness, it still happens and I think the reason is the constant (or almost constant) pressure on my toes when riding. I like to ride hard which means digging a deep edge, which means putting a lot of pressure on my toes. This constant pressure, after many hours, leads to numb toes. I just don't think their is hope.

If anyone thinks differently, let me know.
My friend has a high arch and it causes him a lot of pain as well. Oddly, skiing is much better for him, and snowboarding is worse.

All of the tips and trick you've tried over the years aren't going to do you any good until you've isolated exactly what the problem is and where it's occurring. With a high or a low arch, the pressures being exerted on your foot are not being distributed properly. This is due to bad genetics or bad shoes growing up. I'm guessing more often than not, it's a little of both.

Anyhow, you're sustaining nerve pain because your feet are not handling the pressures properly. You need a level of arch support that you'll probably NEVER find in off the shelf orthotics. You need a completely custom solution to relieve the pressure. Pay attention to pressure points, make sure you lace only the zones of your boots that are comfortable being tight, thin but quality socks, etc. Beyond that, as I said, you need a completely custom solution or you may sustain long term damage.
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post #42 of 48 (permalink) Old 01-22-2010, 01:42 PM
StokedSoul
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Phile00,
Thanks for your reply. I've been thinking that custom footbeds may relieve my issue. The cost of them however has dettered me from following through. If you know any cost effective alternatives, please let me know

I also thought that extra cushion under my toes may help as the numbness comes from constant pressure applied through my toes. We'll see.

Thanks again for your reply
post #43 of 48 (permalink) Old 01-22-2010, 01:44 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by StokedSoul View Post
Phile00,
Thanks for your reply. I've been thinking that custom footbeds may relieve my issue. The cost of them however has dettered me from following through. If you know any cost effective alternatives, please let me know

I also thought that extra cushion under my toes may help as the numbness comes from constant pressure applied through my toes. We'll see.

Thanks again for your reply
putting cushion just under your toes is going to misalign your foot even more. I haven't researched alternatives, but I do know there are effective fully custom solutions out there. Do some research a lot will probably show up.
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post #44 of 48 (permalink) Old 01-24-2010, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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Ugh, time for an update.

So I thought things were going well with my newly fitted boots: Aline insole (very supportive), heat molded boots of course, zonally laced as much as possible, thin, warm socks, boot bowed out where I found pressure points.

Anyhow, the only consistent improvement thus far has been warm feet. My feet seem to always be warm now, which is great. However, I still get an unprecedented amount of foot pain. It felt like the instep on my front foot and both of my big toes were smashed with a hammer. It was a sunny, amazing day with great snow conditions, but the pain took away from that. I snowboarded for about 9 hours, with a few breaks peppered in there for food and what not. I could feel the onset after my first run, but it didn't really kick in to extreme pain until probably my 10th run.

I guess I have more experimenting to do. Sigh. I'd take out a second mortgage to be pain free while snowboarding.
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post #45 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 11:12 AM
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PROBLEM SOLVED!

My wife has the same problem. I've been lurking for a while trying to find a solution, as we've tried on dozens of boots over the past month with no success.

She currently rides a size 6, and we've gone all the way up to a 7 in the hopes of taking the pressure off her instep to maintain some circulation. No luck. Either the pressure is too much for her to take, or if not, her feet go numb within about 2 minutes standing the shop anyway. We've tried different insoles, her boots have intuition liners that we've molded and remolded, and we've been to several shops to try to fix the issue. No luck.

Finally we were able to get an appointment at our local shop with their top boot fitter, and after studying her feet and trying to understand the problem, we confirmed that her 3rd metatarsal sticks up higher than the rest, which of course subjects it to significant constant pressure, which then affects her circulation.

First we got her out of her current un-articulated boa's and into a Forum Mist, which has regular laces and an articulated cuff. It was a size 6, but had a bit more toe room, which was good. But, the instep pressure was still there, and worse than her current boots.

He removed some foam from the liner tongue to create a pocket for her bone, which I've heard of other people doing, and which helped a bit, but he also heated up the tongue of the boot SHELL and bumped it out into sort of a dome shape on the instep area, similar to how you'd do a ski boot. It took a couple tries to get the shape just right, but once it was done, it was like a whole new world for her. She stood wearing them for 20-30 minutes with zero pressure and zero numbness. This was all with the stock footbed.

The last thing he did was to mold a custom footbed for her, which made things even better, but I don't think was absolutely necessary to solve the numbing issue.

Of course, the true test will be on Sunday when we head out to test them out. But just from wearing them around for a bit, she is confident that there is a 1000% difference. I should note that this was also a size 6 boot, which is exactly what she measured and exactly what her old boot was. No need to go up in size to fix the issue, and her heels stays put exactly where it should.

If your fitter won't do this, find one who will. Most of the ones I talked to would only mold a foot bed and try to heat mold the liner, neither of which worked.

Oh yeah, one more detail . . . the cost of the custom work was $60, the footbed was $150. Expensive, yes, but the owner of the shop spent 3 hours with us, past their closing time, and made it so my wife can actually take more than one run at a time. Well worth it if you ask me.
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post #46 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-05-2010, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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Awesome!!!!! I'm glad to hear someone had luck. Just be careful that her bindings don't crush down that spot and undo all the work that the shop did. My feet have been a little better lately. Zonal lacing is also where it's at. I just simply tighten the laces at my toes, lightly tighten on the instep, and then tighten a tad harder on my shin, and make sure I have my bindings tweaked perfectly. It's not perfect but it's better than it used to be.
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post #47 of 48 (permalink) Old 02-07-2010, 08:56 AM
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Had a similar thing happen last week: Noticed my toes were a bit numb on the lift up, so at the top I sat down and retied my boot (right foot only) Seemed ok, but not great. It was a pretty long run in my amateur opinion, and I didn't even make it to the bottom without having to stop; as soon as it flattened out a bit I sat down and tried again. The numbness went from the toes to the foot and to the leg up to about the knee. Not fun, hard to move your foot if you can't feel it. I fully unlaced and removed the boot, massaged the foot a little (and it helped alittle) but ended up just barely tying the boot back on my foot, and rode down with it looser than a slipper. That run ended the day, I just couldn't get the feeling right.

I'm going to grab some Superfeet when I've got the spare money. Also thinking about trying to skip an eyelet on the laces to move some pressure. I have new bindings now that I haven't tried yet, with the tow cap over the front. The weird part to me is that it was numb up to the knee, like the top of the boot was too tight, which it didn't feel like to me. I'll update if I can. Good luck me!

Last edited by RenoRebel; 02-07-2010 at 08:59 AM.
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