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Feel secure and safe in your next bindings

Ski Bindings play a vital role in your skiing equipment. Not only do they connect your boots to your skis, they are also a very important piece of safety equipment. The right bindings, set to the correct settings will hold you in place while you ski and release your boot when the set amount of force is applied. To narrow down your search for an appropriate binding, you’ll want to factor in the Brake Width, the DIN setting to match your skier profile and the type of Binding you need. 

Only need info on a specific topic? Jump down to what you're looking for:
01. Basics & Components
     -Brakes
     -DIN
     -Heel & Toe Piece
     -AFD
     -Other Features
02. Binding Type
03. Mounting & Setting
04. Maintenance

BASICS & COMPONENTS
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As we outlined above, there are two major factors that will narrow down your binding search.

1. Your ski’s waist width; the brake of the binding has to be compatible
2. Your DIN setting; it must fall between the DIN range of your selected binding

We’ll get into the specifics of both of these elements to help you make an informed decision; however this guide is only intended for informational purposes. Please give us a call if you need help selecting a binding or consult a certified ski technician to find your DIN setting.

BRAKES
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  • The binding brakes are the prongs that line up with the sides of the ski when the bindings have been mounted. When you’re skiing, the brakes flip up and are out of the way. They are designed to flip down when the binding releases from your boot (such as in a fall), to drag into the snow so your skis don’t wind up sliding away from you (or get into another skiers way). You’ll also note that the brakes come in a variety of widths and you should select something that will be compatible with your ski’s waist width. This usually looks like about 15mm of play room with the brake width. For example, if your ski has a waist width of 90mm, a binding with a brake width of 90-105 mm should be suitable. If you select something too narrow, the brakes won’t clear the edges of the ski and therefore won’t deploy properly rendering them useless. If you pick something too wide, the brakes can get in the way, especially during quick turns on steep slopes.

DIN (RELEASE FORCE SETTING)
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As important as it is for your binding to release at the right moment, it’s equally important for it to hold you in when you need it to. This is precisely what the DIN setting will help the binding achieve based on a number of factors. DIN comes from Deutsche Industrie Norm, a set of German standards that has long been in place in the ski industry. 

Your perfect DIN setting takes into consideration your height, age, weight, skier type/ability level and boot sole length. As you can imagine, the formula to get to that appropriate number can be quite complex. Your DIN should be calculated and set by a certified ski technician.

The lower the DIN, the less pressure it takes to release. Bindings come with a DIN range typically somewhere around 3-10 for intermediate skier and 6-14 for more advanced skier but ideally, you want your DIN to be closer to the middle of that range rather than at either end of its limits.

DIN RANGE RECOMMENDATION

SKIER WEIGHT (LBS)ABILITY LEVELSKIER PROFILEDIN RANGE
26-65 Beginner-Intermediate Ligthweight Children 0.5-2.5
30-100 Beginner-Intermediate Junior Skier 0.75-4.5
50-165 Beginner-Intermediate Heavier Beginner or more Advanced Junior Skier 2-7
65-200 Beginner-Intermediate More Advanced Junior Skier or Lightweight Adult Beginner 3-10
65-240 Beginner-Advanced Beginner Skier or Lightweight more Advanced Adult Skier 3-11
65-250 Intermediate-Expert Heavier Intermediate Skier or Lightweight Expert Adult Skier 3-12
130-285 Intermediate-Expert Heavier or more aggressive Intermediate Skiers or Expert Adult Skiers 6-14
130-200+ Intermediate-Expert Heavier, aggressive Intermediate Skier or very aggressive Advanced-Expert Adult Skiers 6-16
150-200+ Expert-Pro Aggressive Expert, Big Mountain Skiers and Racers 8-18

 

*Please note that this chart is only to give you an idea of the DIN range that may be appropriate for you to help you narrow your search down. As we mentioned above, do not try to adjust the DIN on your bindings yourself and if you’re unsure about your DIN, please give us a call.

HEEL & TOE PIECE
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The toe and heel pieces make up the bulk of the binding. In the case of a fall, the toe piece releases sideways and sometimes upwards, while the heel piece releases multi-directionaly.

AFD (ANTI-FRICTION DEVICE)
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The Anti-Friction Device is a smooth piece that sits under your boot on the toe piece of the binding. The purpose of the AFD, which is sometimes a sliding piece, is to reduce friction in the event that your bindings release laterally.

OTHER FEATURES
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Lifters: Designed primarily for racers and carvers, lifters are used to add a bit of height under the binding to help with edge hold.

Elastic Movement: Elastic Movement in a binding is used to reduce the likelihood of your binding releasing inadvertently. The elastic movement allows some vertical and lateral flexibility and also provides added shock absorption during landings. The range of elasticity varies from one model to the next.

BINDING TYPES
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  • INTEGRATED
    An Integrated binding system solves the problem of finding the appropriate binding for your skis. These bindings are designed for a specific ski and are packed and sold as a system. Typically used on all-mountain skis, not only does this make your shopping easier, integrated bindings also tend to flex more naturally.

 



  • DOWNHILL
    Downhill bindings are the most common type of binding and will work for just about any type of skiing. They are designed with a fixed heel and toe piece.

 



  • ALPINE TOURING
    Alpine Touring (AT) bindings are designed with a dual purpose in mind, going uphill and downhill. AT Bindings let your heel move freely while you’re hiking uphill with climbing skins while the toe is locked down. As you set off downhill, your toe and heel lock in.

 



  • RACE
    Built with a slim profile to accommodate narrow race skis, race specific bindings typically have metal components for extra durability and will have higher DIN settings for aggressive and fast skiing.

MOUNTING & SETTING
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MOUNTING
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Where the binding is mounted onto the ski can affect the performance and the feel of the ski. Most ski manufacturers have a recommended mounting position for each ski model and a qualified ski shop such as our Pro Shop here at Corbetts will mount them as suggested. Setting the bindings too far back makes them quite stiff. For ladies and Freestyle skiers it may be beneficial to mount the bindings a little bit forward from center. Your bindings should only be mounted by a certified ski technician.

SETTING
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Once your bindings are mounted, your DIN (release settings) needs to be set and tested. Again, have this done by a certified technician. They will have you fill out a form with all the information they need to set an appropriate DIN. It’s good practice to have your bindings checked and tested at the beginning of every season.

MAINTENANCE
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Your ski bindings should be relatively maintenance free. Keep dirt and salt out of your bindings but don’t attempt to wash them as you may remove lubricant that is key in the functioning of the binding. Store your skis in a dry and warm place during the off-season and as we mentioned above, have your bindings inspected at the beginning of every season.

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Still have some questions? We've got an extremely knowledgeable and friendly team at Corbetts. Visit us at our retail location or give us a call and we'll help you find the perfect bindings to fit your needs.

Need help with more skiing gear? Check out our other Ski Buying & Sizing Guides.





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