Every level of skier has to practice their craft. Even experts aren’t technically done learning, which is why it’s completely normal to continue improving your abilities. We all might be starting at a different place, from beginners to seasoned snow buffs, but taking advantage of a few tips and tricks means you’re just going to get better over time. And the more you practice, the more you’ll feel confident and excited about fulfilling a new ski goal.
The slopes and sunlit snow are just waiting for you this season. But before you adjust your bindings and glide down the trails, take a moment or two to evaluate what you want to accomplish this ski season. If you’re not sure what that might be, then have no fear because we are here to provide you with a few quick notes on how you can take your skiing to a whole new level.
Work On Your Turns
If you’re a beginner and you’re just starting to build your skills, this will be a valuable tip to work on while on the snow. If you’re more of an intermediate or higher leveled skier, this might not seem like news to you but it’s still helpful! Especially because some people don’t think about this right off the bat.
Getting your turns down just right means practicing the technique quite a few times. But it’ll pay on, in the end, to keep your speed fairly even as you race down the mountain. While shorter turns might be better for narrower runs, skiers of all levels can make this a practice so that wider turns become almost like second nature. The best way to do this is to turn your skis with your legs while having a solid center stance. Imagine that you’re going through a small tunnel where you have to duck a little because you’re too tall. This can help you to balance yourself and keep an even movement on both sides.
Perfect Your Carving
Carving is essentially within the same ballpark as making turns on the snow. Learning how to control them means you’ll be able to pick up speed. If you’re a beginner you might not be ready to go faster just yet, but it is a crucial part of getting better at skiing. Working on carving takes some concentration and is best done when the slopes are a little less crowded. However, if you’re an advanced or intermediate skier you can practice making smooth turns regardless if there are people around.
The best way to achieve this goal is to get your skis on edge as early in the turn as possible. As you begin rolling down the hill you’ll want to shift your weight from ski to ski early as well and keep the entire body straight. It’s easy to want to bend at the waist, which many people do, but you want to be mindful when attempting it. Advanced skiers can also reutilize this technique when or if they find they tend to go on autopilot when on the slopes. It can happen to anyone which is why it’s important to pay attention and avoid a wipeout or an injury.
Take a Lesson At A Ski School
Perhaps the most obvious tip or suggestion skiers might get is how booking a class (or two) at a ski resort. Setting aside some time to meet with an instructor either privately or in a group is a great way to improve your skiing. Lessons are meant to teach more than how to stop or how to navigate down a slope. You can also glean new or already known information to support the development of your technique. Advanced skiers can also learn a new thing or two from a new lesson which can help focus on problem areas that someone is still struggling with.
Instructor training can be incredibly useful as well, though might be best left to skiers with a little more experience under their belt. This type of training is meant to solidify, develop and learn how to teach basic techniques to others. You’d be surprised how this sort of lesson breaks down what you already know and restructures it in a way to use later on. Don’t forget to check your intended ski area page on our site to see if they are offering any ski lesson deals or discount coupons!
Don’t Be Afraid To Take Risks
You won’t get better at something if you continue to try the same things every day. So it’s important to change your routine once you begin to get over your learning hurdles. If you have friends or family who is going to go on a harder run than you normally take then join them one time. Or try out a new trick you’ve been wanting to accomplish. Even if you don’t succeed the first, fifth or tenth time you need to keep going.
You just have to be more diligent about your surroundings, and take care to not push yourself too far in a short amount of time. Think about it this way: When you start working out you aren’t going to run 10 miles then do a bunch of weights when you’re done, right? You have to steadily build up your stamina and strength to raise the bar. Likewise, when you first started to swim you probably weren’t in the deep end hitting multiple laps. That all took time, and so does this! From beginners to advanced skiers, everyone adding new skills to their routines should know it will only make them better.
Build On Your Fitness Routine
And speaking of workout routines, you’ll want to ensure you’re ready for the season by staying in shape. There’s no need to be the next Olympian, but picking out a few exercises to get your body prepped is never a bad idea! Skiing and snowboarding is a physically demanding sport, and you’ll want to avoid early burnout or extreme soreness from dormant muscles.
You can enjoy your ski trip more plus your body will thank you for not wearing it down. By also keeping yourself in good shape, you’ll find the overall experience more bearable and fun too. Plus, the likelihood of tearing your muscles or hurting yourself will decrease quite a bit as well.
Record Your Progress
It might seem weird, but having friends or family record you while you’re skiing can be a big help when improving your technique. Much like practicing speeches in the mirror, actually being able to see yourself gives you the chance to pick up on what you might be struggling with. You can also pause the video at different spots which can give you an upper hand.
You might think you look a certain way and that your form is doing fine. But that’s vastly different from what you actually look like when you’re out on the snow. While it does take a moment to get used to, it’s really a great way to identify those problems and quickly fix them. You’ll also avoid injuring yourself on the slopes as well due to the corrections you make.
Practice Warm Ups and Cool Downs
Anyone preparing for a full day of skiing should always stretch out their muscles beforehand. Similar to when you work out, practicing a pre-ski and post-ski routine will help your body acclimate to the stress you’ll put on it. Stretching beforehand or just taking it slow at the get-go also prevents injury from happening and improves your performance. This works for any level of skier and snowboarder as well. Repeating your strategy before you ski will help you get into the habit of doing it every time. The extra five minutes can go a long way and can take your ski skills up a notch.
There are countless other ways to help improve your skiing, but by following some of these basic ones you’ll soon find yourself reaching new goals quickly. It takes time and patience to get better at this sport and there is always room for growth. Never feel discouraged if the improvements don’t happen right away and as always stay vigilant when on the snow. The best way to enjoy skiing is by staying safe and aware of your surroundings while you work on being the best skier around! At least, the best skier in your circle of friends, perhaps.