Ski Tips for the beginner skier
Skiing takes time to master, but following a few of these key ski tips will get you from the green circles to the black diamonds and beyond in no time.
- LEARN BALANCING SKILLS: The first time you put on a pair of skis weather it is your first time or you have been doing the sport for years, it is important to train the body for the sport including developing leg strength and balancing skills prior to hitting the slopes. A simple bend in your knees will help you to lower your center of gravity keeping you more stable. One important reason why you want to keep your knees bent is that it will keep your legs in the right position in front of the boot known as the sweet spot. Bending your knees will also help you to be more prepared to absorb small jumps and uneven terrain. No matter what sport you do, straight legs will make you less stable.
- KEEP YOUR STANCE FORWARD: When you first start learning the sport, you may be tempted to lean way back or too far forward. The idea is to keep your legs square under your torso with your shoulders in the direction of the downhill slope. Keeping the body weight as even as possible will help improve your balance and keep your skiing in control. With the skis in the right position, you will allow the natural rhythem of the ski to work its magic making less work for you and much more fun. It is the difference between an exhausting skiing experience and a truly rewarding one.
- DON’T LOOK DOWN: I would say this is one tip that applys to many sports, you should keep your focus about ten feet (3 meters) in front of you at all times. As in life, it is best to see where you are going so you can prepare for what is to come.
- KNOW YOUR ABILITY: There is an excellent rating system in the United States ski slopes that focuses on the type of ski piste that you should be on. If you are a beginner, it is best to stay on the green circle runs until you feel more comfortable, then you can move to the intermediate level. Jumping in over your head will always result in an unpleasant experience. Once you hone in that technique, then you can advance to the more advanced terrain.
- SPEED IS YOUR FRIEND: Ok you might think I am crazy for saying this, but in this sport, you need a little bit of speed to keep your balance. When you are going slow, your balance will be off. Work on your techniques, but do not be afraid of increasing your speed. The reality is when learning new tricks or just learning to go downhill, falling is a part of the learning process. Falling well is the key. If you are interested, getting pads might make you feel safer and protects your body from the impact. I personally recommend CrashPads because they are fitted well to your body and protect everything.
- GO WHERE YOU FEEL COMFORTABLE: If you are new to the sport, I would recommend going to a small ski resort to learn the basics. Why pay a big heavy lift ticket when you are not going to be using the entire resort. Some resorts are known for their steep terrain or parks, so it is important to find out what resort offers you what you need.
- RIGHT GEAR MATTERS: True. You can either love skiing or hate it depending on how you are feeling in the gear that you bought. Stylish ski clothes are often fun for nightime activities, but you need functional gear that gets the job done. Nowadays, designers are incorporating fashion with function so you can have both. There are a few necessities that I would recommend you do not go without. These include a helmet, goggles, snow pants, a warm under layers, warm gloves and comfortable ski boots.