As someone who's just had knee surgery for the first time I'm stoked to hear that at least someone is trying to innovate. What sort of issues are you hoping to resolve by bringing an Engineer on board?
I have an BEng in Materials Science, MSc in Composite Materials and am writing up a PhD in Mech Eng at the moment. To be honest I may not be 'your guy' for this but I can offer some advice. FYI My speciality is developing models to predict the behaviour of new types of composite material, probably not an area thats going to trickle down to skiing anytime soon.
If you don't have the funds to pay/hire someone have you thought about approaching a University and asking them if they have a suitable BEng or MEng student who'd want to do it as part of their major project? I'm not sure about the US but in the UK you have to do a extended research project as part of your degree. At my Uni they typically run 4-5months. This way you'll get access to the sort of testing and computing/modelling facilities that most companies can only dream of. You'll also get the benefit of cheap, if not free labour, from a student who should be pretty fresh on most Engineering concepts (assuming you pick a good College) and oversight from that students tutor. Obviously there'll be some IP issues for you to sort out but if you've filed for a PCT it should be easy to iron them out.
As another idea there is a programme that some Uni's run called UROP (Undergraduate Research Opportunity). The scheme puts student who are interested in getting some experience doing research with an Academic over the summer holiday. The idea is that the student gets to run a short research project and learn how to design and implement a research programme. The Academic supervisor's job is to keep the project on track and provide advice. These projects are normally funded by large companies, NGOs and Government bodies.
BUT, the governors of Urop have decided to open up these programmes to small companies and are actively trying to get them involved with the Urop programme. You will have to pay for it, but the amount of money is tiny for what you get as you'll probably only put forward 40% of the cost with the College, development agencies, etc.. paying the rest. And then you get access to the sort of equipment that even the likes of Nike can only dream of (once again, assuming you've picked a hihgly regarded and well funded Uni).These projects are also covered by IP contracts so your patent should stay protected (obviously I'm not a lawyer so don't quote me on that).
Although most of the students that come to my Uni for UROP placements are from the UK or Europe I know that the programme is in some US Colleges too. I know for definite that MIT, Harvard and UPenn have programmes lie this as some of my friends did UROP projects at those Colleges. There are probably plenty of other Colleges.
These projects are controlled by an Academic which means that if you want a specific project done for you then you need to find an Academic willing to run it. This is a bit trickier as you're unlikely to find a really good Academic to do a project if you can't fully disclose what your project actually is due to IP protection. Also, its going to be hard to motivate an academic to take on a project when they know you don't have millions of dollars of Grant money to distribute.
The ideal scenario would be to find a top flight academic who has a pet interest in skiing or sports in general. You'll often find that academics do like to get involved in odd topics and random stuff for their own entertainment. A good guide to finding an Academic like this is to look at their publications list. If the title of their publications reads something like : "Non-linear higher order shear deformation theories, multifractal EM forcing, other hardcore engineering shit, etc...' and then something like ' Why do white cricket balls behave different to red cricket balls' then you're probably on to a winner. Academics like this will do the occasional random project for their own entertainment. The fact that they can afford to screw around on side projects is typically a reflection on them being pretty good at what they do. If they weren't then their University wouldn't let them tie up millions of pounds worth of equipment to fuck about with cricket balls or other 'non-serious' projects. And yes, the cricket balls example is real. One of the lecturers in our Biomechanical Engineering Department decided to do a project on this and somehow it was recommended that I be brought in. It was a fun project which I enjoyed it and was fairly well payed but I know that if we were doing a similar amount of work on a regular project we would have charged a lot more.