How To Choose A Ski, Boot And Binding Combination | The Ski Workshop

Here's our guide to getting the perfect skis, boots and binding setup based on your ski style and ability

Searching out individual bits of kit can be just as satisfying as it is frustrating. But where things really get exciting is when you start to match up the individual components to get everything dialled right.

Pairing just the right ski with the right boot and binding to make that ultimate setup. Part of this process is technical, making sure the components are compatible and part of this is style, combining your outlook on skiing with goals and ambitions.

Compatibility – Ski and Binding

Let’s look at the technical elements first. Nearly all skis will accept any binding. The interface for most bindings is simply a set of screws placed into the ski. The exception to this case is in skis with an integrated rail system. Less common these days but some piste skills will still have this and will need paired with the correct binding.

Assuming you don’t choose one of these then in theory you can mount a race ski with a pin binding or a skimo ski with an 18 din metal alpine binding – however, you might get some funny looks in the lift line.

Compatibility –  Binding and Boot

The boot binding interface is a bit more complex. At the extremes you will find pin bindings for touring that require the pin interface in the boot, traditionally this would only be found on dedicated touring boots.

However, you can now find pin compatibility on alpine and cross over boots giving more flexibility in choice if you want to use one boot for multiple uses. On the other end traditional alpine bindings will only be able to accommodate the standard Alpine norm boot soles.

In the middle you are now seeing most alpine bindings having adjustability to take both the standard soles and the newer GripWalk soles.

Personal Style

Once you have a grasp of the technical requirements for a setup it is then down to your personal style, goals and ambitions. For most it is simply creating a setup that follows a similar theme of weight and ski category. For instance if you just want to ski pistes then you can go for a piste ski, alpine binding and alpine boot, simple. Similarly if you just want to go touring you can pair a lightweight boot, pin binding and a touring ski for the perfect backcountry setup.

Where more thought is involved is in the middle ground. If you want to ski the whole mountain in the resort then you have endless combinations of ski style and weight. For example you might select a freeride ski, hybrid binding, such as the Salomon Shift, and a freeride boot, such as the Tecnica Cochise 130. This would cover you for anything you’ll find in the resort plus the option to start touring beyond the lifts if you have the desire.


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