How to Snow Ski

Home & Family, Outdoors, People, Sports
on October 15, 2013

Head to the mountains, strap on some skis and get going. If you don't know how to ski, these tips will get you started.

Get the right equipment. There's more to getting the proper ski equipment than walking into a department store and pulling it off the rack. Proper equipment includes skis, boots, bindings, poles, and accessories such as goggles and a helmet. Beginning skiers would be wise to rent equipment.

Master basic moves. Once you're capable of going down a hill without breaking your neck, it's important to master basic moves in order to become a proficient skier. Craig McNeil, certified ski instructor and former director of freestyle skiing at some of Colorado's most prestigious ski resorts, gives six basic steps to practice to learn how to ski.

Step 1: Lift and tilt. This helps skiers use the inside ski to initiate turns. It requires the skier to lift the tail of the inside ski and tilt the ski toward the outside of the foot, with the ski tip remaining on the snow. Make sure you move the feet close together as you practice the lift and tilt method.

Step 2: Right ski, left ski. This is simply making sure the lift and tilt method uses the proper ski to initiate the turn. To turn left, lift and tilt the left ski. To turn right, lift and tilt the right ski.

Step 3: Control your speed. The key to controlling your speed involves knowing how to control your edges as you turn and turning properly in order to slow down or speed up.

Step 4: Breathing. Proper ski breathing involves exhaling on every turn. This helps the skier focus and maintain proper rhythm.

Step 5: Look ahead. Apprehensive skiers too often stare at the ground, hoping not to become a permanent part of the landscape. Looking ahead, ironically, will make that less likely. Looking ahead for two to three turns allows the skier to properly plan ski movement.

Step 6: Maintain rhythm. This is accomplished simply by finishing the turn once started and working with the ski instead of against it.

Because it's impossible to learn how to ski on the Internet, the neophyte alpine skier would be wise to find a coach or a more experienced skier to demonstrate proper technique.