Hey, I have a pair of Icons that were the same way when I first got them at the beginning of the year. They are working alot better now as far as comfort and flex in the toes. As far as the fitting under the shifter goes I had the same problem too but noticed that with these boots you can use the side of the boot to the end of the shifter. They are a nice set it just takes a bit to get them broken in. Hope that helps.