Looking good on the slopes is an art that isn’t always easy to master! It involves more than skiing well, it is the small things, the inside knowledge, which make you look like a pro.
We have put together some top tips to help you look like a pro on the slopes…
The clearest sign of your level of skiing (apart from when you are actually skiing!) is how you carry your skis. To look like a pro, always carry your skis on your shoulder, with both parts of the binding behind your shoulder and your arm slung over the front. As well as looking cool, this is actually the easiest and most comfortable way to carry skis!
If you do happen to have a tumble (I am sure no-one was watching!), then knowing how to put your skis back on smoothly is an important part of looking slick on the slopes. Firstly, make sure you de-snow the bottom of your ski boots by banging them with your ski poles, and also make sure there is no ice on them. Then check your bindings are clicked down, before putting your downhill ski on first, and then smoothly clipping into your second ski.
Getting on and off the chairlift is sometimes harder than it looks. I was once caught out in Whistler with new slippy pants, and as soon as I got on the lift, I slipped straight back off! It is a good idea to take your backpack off and have it on your knees, and always put the bar down. When getting off the lift, be aware of who else is on the lift with you, and exit the lift forwards, without making any sudden left or right turns. Also look out for rogue skiers or snowboarders who have fallen over on exit – and try and avoid them!
Whilst continuing on the theme of eyewear and headwear, then beware of the gap! Whether you are wearing a helmet or hat, make sure you don’t have a gap between your headwear and your goggles. Not only does it compromise your ‘looking like a pro’ status, you may also end up with a pretty horrid looking red sunburn stripe on your forehead.
To avoid looking like a beginner, make sure you put your pants/ trousers over your ski or snowboard boots and not tucked into them. Although it may mean you can access your buckles more easily, it makes you look very un-pro like indeed!
The schuss, or the tuck is a key part of skiing, making sure you glide quickly over the flats and avoiding a polling to get to the next piste or lift. But how exactly should it be done? When getting into tuck position, make sure you stay low, tuck your poles under your arms and make sure they are not sticking up in the air. Then tuck your elbows in, and keep your hands in front of your face and wait for the leg burn.
When it is particularly cold the base of our skis or snowboard can sometimes get iced up, meaning you are going nowhere fast! It can often happens if you are standing around on your skis for a while, and you won’t know about it until you start to head off. If this happens, take your skis off, grab a credit card or something similar, and scrape off the ice, otherwise you will definitely not be skiing like a pro!
On a powder day, all the pros will keep their goggles nice and warm and dry before they hit the slopes for the day. There is nothing worse than steamed up goggles even before you have started. So if you can, avoid wearing them on your walk to the lifts, then whip them out just before you hit the pow. Another top tip is to keep a second pair of goggles in your backpack.
If you fancy yourself as a bit of a freerider, then make sure you have the right kit to be hitting the powder. Any pro that dabbles in the off piste will be kitted out with an avalanche transceiver, shovel and probe – and will know how to use them.