Physics and I do not get along....at all.
In college I took physics 101 three times. The first was physics for the health professional which was really just physics 101 that mentioned IV bags and such. I then took actual physics 101 to fulfill my graduation requirements. When I decided to go to medical school I needed a third semester of physics so I took an online course which was physics 101 all over again, but somehow still counted. Now I got an A all three times. I can memorize formulas and regurgitate with the best of them. But understand any of it or be able to apply any of it? Nope. Not a clue.
What does this have to do with anything? I'll get to that.
Sunday morning dawned grey, misty and gross but I was itching to get a ride in and had one last "free" ride on the Fusion Jogging Boots. I headed out in the late afternoon to tack her highness up and head out to find the elusive power lines.
The last ride had the right hind boot twisted 30-45 degrees by the end, but I was in a hurry when I tacked her up so I figured this may have been the problem. This time I took my time to really make sure everything was snugged up and properly aligned all the way around.
We headed down the gravel drive and across the paved road to the gravel road that led to the power lines. I really don't enjoy riding gravel much, but if these boots are going to be keepers I might as well try them on the worst footing. Gem was a little hesitant at first but once she got moving she just stretched out and flew. I was so happy.
We made it out to the power lines, down until I couldn't go any farther without fear of breaking bones or pulling tendons and then headed back. She was being a bit of a snot about running back, so I held her in check to a controlled trot until we got back on the gravel road. The road goes back up hill the entire way and she promptly slowed down to walk. Umm...no. You want to go...we will go...up the hill my lady....and lets canter it!
So I asked for a canter and she obliged with a beautiful, smooth and collected canter all the way up the hill and back to the paved road which I made her walk and then trotted back down the driveway.
I am extremely happy to report that the boots stayed put even up and down extremely steep hills (they were very short but were sit on your butt and slide down type hills and we even cantered up a few in the slick mud), through the slick clay and bushwhacking in the woods without twisting even a smidge. They were excellent.
I am at a complete loss about the annoying dampening pads. I placed the 4mm thick rubber pads into the boots like they are supposed to go. They come sized per the boot, so I know they fit right. I then put her foot in, snug it up and ride. The boot stays put - no twisting. And then I remove the boot to find that the pad inside has rotated 90 degrees. Huh? At first I thought it was in the removal process, but the frog pattern on the pad clearly shows that it occurs at some point while riding. In the beginning? Middle? End? I don't know, but if I rotate the pad back to its normal position, the frog pattern is off on the side.
I just can't figure out how on earth the boot can stay put, but the inside pad rotate? Or what could be causing this? Think of it like the insole inside your running shoe. And it occurs on all 4 in the same counter clockwise direction. I'm sure physics could help me out here with forces and vectors and work and energy and all that. See how I tied that in ;) The only thing I can think of is that there is enough room in the boot that when she lifts the hoof there is a gap between her hoof and the pad, but that still doesn't explain why a pad cut to fit the interior shape of the boot (it is almost spade shaped) would rotate. The insole of your running shoe doesn't rotate.
I emailed the company and am waiting to see what they have to say. I don't want to just leave it rotated because then the heels aren't fully protected and even. I may just glue the pads in to keep them stable with some glue I have at work for making orthotics. Then if the pads need replaced prior to the boots, I can use the contact cement remover I have to remove it and then place a new one. I would just like to avoid any semi permanent changes if I can help it.
Other than that I love the boots. They cover all my needs and Gem is moving wonderfully in them. I still plan to do almost all of my conditioning miles bare to keep her hooves nice and strong and am debating on if and when to use them at our 50 in October. The only thing left is to see how long they last and for that I am going to be keeping tabs of all the miles I put on them.