I know this is a tired topic, but I would like to get feedback on a specific question related to rubber v. hardshells, which is: who out there that has spent a lot of time on rubber bindings (Wileys, D3s, other) and skied well on them (into 38 and beyond), then switched to hardshells and really experienced a marked improvement in their performance (like you actually gained a few buoys or got very consistent at a difficult pass that you only ran occasionally previously).
By all rights I should be a hardshell user - I come from a ski racing background and I love buckling into stiff plastic, but every time I've tried them on my slalom they've made my ski feel sluggish, short, too deep in the water, and were generally too much of a change for me to stick with. I ski with a lot of edge in the water, even on my onside, as I'm trained to always be driving forward on skis. This is to my detriment and I'm working to change this, but I think it's the main reason I struggle with hardshells. I really want to be one of the cool guys with a Reflex front at least, but I just haven't been able to make it work.
Also, I think the safety factor in rubber is pretty darn good and I hate the idea of pre-releasing from my ski (in fairness though I did really jack my front ankle pretty good in a fall in rubber one time, so not totally safe).
So, if you were already good in rubber, was it really worth the switch to hardshells performance-wise?
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