Comfort, support, ease of entry and release, features – these are the things that today’s riders look for when they shop for new bindings. And as much as a lot of us hate to admit it, looks play a major role in our decision as well. With all that in mind, Liquid Force came up with the 2005 Team bindings, the most anticipated release in their binding line. With its features of a dual cleat, stealth lacing system, F.A.S.T. System, Lycra material and super soft footbeds, it sure will be the bindings of choice by riders with even the highest of standards.
I’m real particular when it comes to bindings, as everyone should be. I could have the best board in the world, but unless my feet are comfortable, I will more than likely not like the board. After all the things I’ve heard about the Teams, I placed my order with Boardstop.com. In no time, I received my order and immediately placed the Teams under a microscope.
Pieces of Evidence
The looks of the Teams is like no other. The sewn and embossed overlay comes in black with brown and white accents, with the Limited Edition in blue and silver with white accents. The baseplates are soft-touch painted to match the boot. Laces and Stretch Zones take up the front and rear, while the toe and heel pieces are topped with durable “handles” for entry assistance.
Some bindings offer 1 or 2 features that would satisfy the recreational rider. As a seasoned rider, I expect more features from a pair of bindings. The Teams feature a Stealth Lace System that allows for the rider to adjust them independently, creating the custom fit. Each lace glides through runners which makes adjusting a piece of cake. To lock the laces in place, snap the laces in the Dual Cleat Locks. No more pulling of levers or turning of knobs. No more struggling trying to unlock a tab with your thumb. Simply slip it in the cleat locks to lock the laces, and pull the laces out of the cleat locks to release. Easy!
The heel and toe pieces are Molded EVA. The heel piece has molded kidneys that lock the heel down, while the toe piece is molded to eliminate pinch and pressure points. Combined with the Lycra lining, they are the most comfortable heel and toe pieces ever.
Super soft C-4 EVA footbeds and Helium Air-Cell System make for super soft landings. Contoured arch support make for a perfect fit.
Stance adjustment is easy with the F.A.S.T. System, which allows for unparallel adjustments every 2 degrees.
After all that’s been written about the Teams, I had high expectations. With just a bit of slime, I was able to get in them with ease. Tightened and locked laces in place, I was off on my 1st ride in the Teams. The first thing I noticed was how super comfy the bindings were. The Lycra lining felt really soft on my feet, while the footbeds felt like pillows! At first glance, one would think that the Teams are stiff. Not at all! They’re flexible which makes it easy to poke out those grabs!
One thing I’ve changed about my riding style is trying to go wake-to-wake, instead of wake-to-flats, simply to avoid painful landings. I landed out in the flats MANY times and the C-4 EVA footbed and the Helium Air-Cell System absolutely did their job…to soften the landings! I can’t say enough about how soft the landings are, but I’ll say this: do NOT hesitate to take your tricks out in the flats!
In the past, bindings required a break-in period in which your feet will go through some cramping in the first couple runs. Not with the Teams. After my first run, had I not been out of breathe, I could have ridden longer. The support is incredible, yet the bindings are so comfortable that they don’t cramp up your feet or put them to sleep.
After my run, I got in the boat absolutely satisfied with my purchase.
“What didn’t you like about them?” is what you may be asking. Well, quite honestly, I can’t think of anything that I didn’t like. In my opinion, it’s the absolute perfect binding! I guess if I were to come up with 1 thing, it’s that they make more of the Team Limited Edition. The Blue/Silver combo is badass!
Buy the 2005 Liquid Force Team bindings…NOW! This is a “must have” for today’s riders! Super supportive and super comfy!