October 16, 2009, Newsletter Issue #269: Components of a Ski Binding

Tip of the Week

Alpine ski bindings are composed of a heel piece and a toe piece. Their distance from each other is determined by boot length, which is why you should never borrow someone else's skis without adjusting the binding. When the skier steps down into a ski binding, his or her weight locks the device down around the ski boot. Once the binding is secure, the heel piece is responsible for holding the heel in place.

Other components of ski bindings include ski brakes and anti-friction devices. The ski brakes are the prongs that are attached to the bindings. When the binding is released during a fall, the prongs keep the ski from running away. The anti-friction devices are located under the forefoot. They allow your boots to slide out of the binding when the toe piece is released.
Many ski bindings have an accessory known as a "lifter," which helps add leverage and edge angle to your skis. Lifters are especially helpful for new skiers that have difficulty keeping their skis on edge. However, research has shown that a lifter of about 11 to 12 mm is suitable for 95 percent of the skiing population.

For easy transport of your skis, always be sure to lock the breaks together.

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