Guide to Skiing – Buying Skis

May 11, 2012 by  
Filed under Get in Shape

In this installment of our guide to skiing we look at buying skis…

In order to make the most out of your skiing time, it is important to choose the correct pair of skis, as they are the most important piece of equipment needed for skiing. There are many variables (type, length, shape, stiffness, etc.) with skis though and the right pair for you is dependent on your skiing ability and style.

Skis are designed to support certain types of skiing, so it’s important to know what type you plan to do. You will find that most skis have been designed for powder or packed runs, because those are the most popular types of skiing. Those are the skis you should look to get if you’re a beginner. Upgrading your skis to those tailored specifically for off-piste or deep powder terrain should happen when you feel experienced enough to take on those challenges.

It’s not advisable to start off with modified skis though as it’s believed they can hinder the initial progress of beginners.

Length, shape and stiffness are arguably the most important considerations. Regarding length, the shorter they are, the easier they are to turn. For this reason, most beginners start off with a pair of short skis. Once you’ve mastered the basics of skiing and are confident of your ability, then you can consider longer skis, which will allow you greater speed in many different snow conditions, but which also will be less forgiving of errors.

Shape dictates a ski’s stability – skis that are wide in the boot area provide more stability while making broader turns than those that are narrow in this area, providing for faster, sharper turns. The two factors that make up a ski’s stiffness are the material it is made from and it’s shape.

Longer ones are usually stiffer than short ones and are more stable at high speeds. The less stiff shorter skis offer greater maneuverability which is seen a benefit to beginners.

The last point to remember is that you shouldn’t invest in skis until you know you will use them, so go skiing a couple of times before purchasing your own skis. Even if you’re sure you’ll be a regular skier, rent before buying because they’re not a cheap investment and you’ll want to be sure that you get the right type, length, shape and stiffness for your specific needs.

Want to know more? Click here to continue reading our guide to skiing: Learn To Ski

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