When speaking of skiing, the first thing that pops up to your mind is probably the skiis. Which is actually fine as they are the main ski equipment. But there is some other part with main importance that makes them complete – the ski boot bindings. So what’s the purpose of bindings? They are the part that keeps your boots and skis attached when you are hitting the slopes and one that help you release the skis in case of an accident.
If you want to select the right ski boot bindings then there are some important consideration you need to keep in mind. For instance, where you are skiing is important, the type of ski boots, your ski width, DIN setting and you also need to know how to adjust your ski bindings.
The type of skiing should be your first considerations when choosing your ski bindings. You need to decide between downhill or backcountry. Let’s take a look at both of them. First, downhill bindings are a great choice if all your ski runs start with a chairlift ride. There are some downhill skies that are sold along with bindings but usually, they come separately. Standard downhill bindings are great for resort skiers helping you to keep your boots in place and release them from the skis in case of a fall. They come in the separate heel and toe pieces, include breaks, have an anti-friction device pad and DIN setting window on the toe piece.
You will need backcountry ski bindings if you are planning to explore what is going on beyond ski resorts. If these are your choice of bindings you need to get familiar with all different styles available. For example, there are frame bindings where toe and heel pieces are connected by a frame, usually feature breaks, they are intuitive and easy to use and best for skiers who are new to touring and those who are not very concerned about equipment weight. Tech bindings are another type of backcountry bindings where toe and heel pieces have pins that attach to specific ski boot types. Some of them do not come with breaks so they can be lightweight but the good thing is you can always add them if you want. These bindings are good for strong backcountry skiers that prefer lightweight ski equipment. The last style is telemark bindings. They are always a free heel and come in tow main categories NTN and 75mm.
Another thing to know is that not all ski bindings can fit all types of boots. Your boots and bindings need to have the same compatible system so they can fit perfectly. For example, downhill ski bindings are compatible with downhill ski boots, some may fit with AT boots with interchangeable soles or some may work with alpine touring boots too. Tech bindings can fit only boots with tech inserts while frame bindings are most compatible with alpine touring boots while some may also work with downhill boots.
Once you choose the right ski bindings you need to know how to adjust them. The best way to do things right is to take your skis and bindings to professional ski tech. They have all the experience and tools to make things properly and having in mind that this is the part that will help you keep your skis attached as you are flying down the slopes it is more than a wise idea to let the professionals do the job.