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Skis for 14 year old

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

My son is 14, 5'5" 150lbs...not a small kid with size 11 feet.  He's only been skiing a few seasons and due to his size and late start, has sort of struggled a bit and is still a level 2/3 beginner.

 

I'm almost afraid to admit this, but the wife and I thought getting him his own skis for xmas might really help motivate him and blah, blah, blah, just us trying to justify buying him skis when we know conventional wisdom would tell us to just rent until he stops growing, gets better, etc.  Long story short, he's 14 and hopefully some people reading this will understand that without much more explanation.

 

Anyway, I feel like if I can find a good enough deal and make him happy, i can probably recoup some of it in resell when he hits a growth spurt next year.

 

Any suggestions?  He's been on the crappiest of crappy rentals and have to think some modern skis might actually help him develop a bit quicker.  

 

I was looking at these, and figured this might be as good a place as any to start the discussion:

 

http://www.levelninesports.com/Defiance-2012-Fraction-Skis

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 24

Get him some good boots that fit him well for Xmas. Save your money on skis and do a "demo" rental package on your trip to Snowmass. He'll get to try out a bunch of really cool demo skis (one per day if he wants) and he'll have comfy feet. Plus you won't have to pay for another big piece of luggage.

 

IMO people who live away from the snow and only get to ski for a week or two per season should all take that approach. You get the ability to use different skis based on the day's conditions, they're usually the latest skis in great condition, and you don't have to schlep them around. And you get to do it in good boots. And in the end, I bet you end up spending less money.

 

I own 5 snowboards and 4 pair of skis. Last time I went to Aspen/Snowmass I left my skis at home and demoed skis all week. It was great. One night it was going to snow overnight so I traded in the skis I had for fatter ones for the next day. I brought two snowboards, but only because no one rents carving boards.

post #3 of 24

Yes, good boots first. As for skis, based on where you are and his ability level, rentals/demos still makes the most sense. Try hitting a retail shop instead of on hill ones. You might have better luck with the selections. If you ski mostly local, then it's another story.

post #4 of 24
Thread Starter 

All very fair comments.  We were planning to get him boots as well...just didn't mention that.  I hesitate to spend too much on boots though, as his foot is constantly growing. 

 

The reality is our 14 year old is the only family member without his own gear.  I usually do a pretty good job of getting good deals off season when they pop up.  

 

However, I am in agreement with what everyone has said, so I will try to sell him on the demo idea instead.  That also leaves him open to try boarding if he wants to.

post #5 of 24

One of the biggest obstacles to overcome will likely be the boots.  With a size 11 foot, he will be beyond the largest sizing for junior boots and the only hangup with some of the adult boots may be the cuff height.

 

Another option that may be worth considering is a seasonal ski lease package, they work out fantastic for kids that tend to outgrow equipment fairly quickly.  We have a few seasonal ski lease packages available that include skis, bindings, boots and poles, they can be found here on the website:

 

http://www.skiessentials.com/browse.cfm/tweener-leases/2,349.html?utm_source=epicski&utm_medium=forum&utm_campaign=postreply

 

All of the seasonal ski lease packages offer free shipping both ways to the continental US.  Customers use the equipment for the entire season, and just hang on to the boxes to ship everything back at the end of the season.

 

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to send over a PM, email or give us a call.

 

 

post #6 of 24
Thread Starter 

I honestly think I do better purchasing outright and then selling them used at the end of the season, and honestly that was my intent for purchasing in the first place.  I realize that leasing locally can be a good option if you expect the kid to outgrow something mid-season, but shipping long distance would make that hard.  Plus, it's akin to ordering boots without a fitter online.  Appreciate the idea though.  While I think that's a great option for some, I'm not sure it would be that cost effective for us.
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by skiessentials View Post

One of the biggest obstacles to overcome will likely be the boots.  With a size 11 foot, he will be beyond the largest sizing for junior boots and the only hangup with some of the adult boots may be the cuff height.

 

Another option that may be worth considering is a seasonal ski lease package, they work out fantastic for kids that tend to outgrow equipment fairly quickly.  We have a few seasonal ski lease packages available that include skis, bindings, boots and poles, they can be found here on the website:

 

http://www.skiessentials.com/browse.cfm/tweener-leases/2,349.html?utm_source=epicski&utm_medium=forum&utm_campaign=postreply

 

All of the seasonal ski lease packages offer free shipping both ways to the continental US.  Customers use the equipment for the entire season, and just hang on to the boxes to ship everything back at the end of the season.

 

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to send over a PM, email or give us a call.

 

 



 

post #7 of 24

you're really buying adult gear. just buy it steezy, so it accomplishes your goal to inspire him. I wouldn't buy from a small company (faction), that may not have the intermediate flex dialed. go to a really good shop and have fun learning and picking. you could also call Start Haus and get some info and purchase over the  phone. I know nothing about intermediate ski models, but all the big brands sell some. what's absolutely critical is that the model you chose be right for his ability and strength. don't even consider growth, you can't.

post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

you're really buying adult gear. just buy it steezy, so it accomplishes your goal to inspire him. I wouldn't buy from a small company (faction), that may not have the intermediate flex dialed. go to a really good shop and have fun learning and picking. you could also call Start Haus and get some info and purchase over the  phone. I know nothing about intermediate ski models, but all the big brands sell some. what's absolutely critical is that the model you chose be right for his ability and strength. don't even consider growth, you can't.



Thanks.  I must be old...don't even know what steezy means :-)

 

 

Would putting a lower intermediate on twin tips be a good move or forever fuck him up?  Oh sorry, thought I was on the other forum for a second!

post #9 of 24

I think the other board is broken right now. It's been down for a few hours. If we were over there, I could post some of the images that came up on google when I searched Steezy. But that won't fly here.

 

 

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=steezy

 

 

If you let him demo gear during your vacation, he can start to figure out what he likes (twins, big, small, fat, skinny, etc.). That's part of the point behind my suggestion. Heck, he can try one pair in the morning and another after lunch if he wants.

post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 

I'm in agreement with everyone here.  But there is also the thought that I can pick up some decent sticks for less than it will cost to rent for a week and then have the ability to resell.

post #11 of 24

If your mind is set on buying, there is nothing wrong with that. I would suggest buying a steeply discounted one at a swap or online. You can always up trade in the future at a small loss (if at all).

 

Make sure the skis are appropriate for his level and interest. If used, make sure the edges are in good shape. The Defiance that you posted sounds like will work. Don't over-consider for growth (say for more than one year) although some growth room is always good.

 

As for the boot size, if your son is like any other teenager, he street shoes are over-sized and he's probably measured at size 8 or 9 US Men. To get a good estimate, just trace his (bigger) foot and measure it from end to end. That would be the Mondo number that is very close to his actual size with some room to grow because a new pair of boots (especially an entry level one) will pack one a half size or so. Now, keep that in your back pocket and go find yourselves a good boot fitter.

post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 

Good info.  He's actually in a size 11 street shoe...big kid. :-)
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chanwmr View Post

If your mind is set on buying, there is nothing wrong with that. I would suggest buying a steeply discounted one at a swap or online. You can always up trade in the future at a small loss (if at all).

 

Make sure the skis are appropriate for his level and interest. If used, make sure the edges are in good shape. The Defiance that you posted sounds like will work. Don't over-consider for growth (say for more than one year) although some growth room is always good.

 

As for the boot size, if your son is like any other teenager, he street shoes are over-sized and he's probably measured at size 8 or 9 US Men. To get a good estimate, just trace his (bigger) foot and measure it from end to end. That would be the Mondo number that is very close to his actual size with some room to grow because a new pair of boots (especially an entry level one) will pack one a half size or so. Now, keep that in your back pocket and go find yourselves a good boot fitter.



 

post #13 of 24

We have a pair of boots my son used when he was an 11 .. .I think they are size 28.5. Salomon Mission RS 7, or something like that? He used them at ages 14, 15. PM me if you're interested ... will sell for very very cheap. :-)

post #14 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by segbrown View Post

We have a pair of boots my son used when he was an 11 .. .I think they are size 28.5. Salomon Mission RS 7, or something like that? He used them at ages 14, 15. PM me if you're interested ... will sell for very very cheap. :-)


Thanks.  I'll do a little amateur "boot fitting" to get him sort of sized and let you know if that's a possibility.  Thanks!  I'm thinking that might be too big but no way to really know until I get near those stinky feet and take a look.

 

post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post


Thanks.  I'll do a little amateur "boot fitting" to get him sort of sized and let you know if that's a possibility.  Thanks!  I'm thinking that might be too big but no way to really know until I get near those stinky feet and take a look.

 



Yeah, probably a bit big at this point, but is he done growing? My son used these as he was growing from 10.5-12; the shells were big enough last season but the liners weren't, so we tried to have them stretched, but there wasn't a lot of difference (lower end boot, of course). Then mid-season we finally had to buy some 29s. 

 

I just sent an entire box of size 13 snow boots (I ordered 4 pr to try) back to Sierra Trading Post ... "Mom, I swear, they're too small!" good lord. 

post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 

Good lord is right...wow.  Something in the water with these kids and their feet.  Also, I think they feel like they need to swim in their shoes.  Back when we were kids...

post #17 of 24

I can't justify purchasing boots that might get 1 season on them. My 14 yr daughter has womens skis but I rent boots for the seasons.  She just continues to grow.

post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtebor View Post

I can't justify purchasing boots that might get 1 season on them. My 14 yr daughter has womens skis but I rent boots for the seasons.  She just continues to grow.



You know, it's funny, the boots have always gotten 2 years use -- my kids' feet have grown consistently, never any huge spurts. The boots were maybe a touch roomy the first season, but not bad, and then as the feet grew and liners packed, they were fine. I always bought on sale, and we have a niece and nephew to whom we hand down everything (and then they give away the gear to other kids in their mountain town), so they get lots of use. Last year was the first that we ever had to buy in the middle of the season, but it was spring, so really the end. I really thought his feet would be done -- he's almost 17. He did put on the new boots last week and they are fine, crossing fingers. (If he goes to a size 30, so help me....)

 

I was always a little skeeved by rental boots, to tell the truth. I could never rent a helmet, either. shudder.

post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 

As the original poster, I think we've decided to let him rent skis this year...maybe look into getting him his own boots...my thought is maybe buy a wee bit big with the understanding that the liners will pack out and hopefully allow for a bit of growth room and maybe get 2 seasons.  I too find rental boots a bit skeevy.

post #20 of 24

Great decision. Rental boots aren't just skeevy. They almost never fit well.

 

Be careful though. Don't go so big that the boots are loose. No problem having him fit them in thick socks for the first season and really thin ones the second season. I've done that with kids before. It isn't optimal, but it gets the job done and it saves money. Also, consider buying the boots from a good bootfitter and getting a 'comfort' fit to begin with. That should leave them enough room to shave the footbed and maybe stretch things a little next season (the boot fit guys will probably chime in here and tell me I'm on crack).

post #21 of 24
Thread Starter 

I'm a big believer in well fitting boots.  I also skied for many years as a kid in ill-fitting hand-me-down boots and was none the wiser.  There's a balancing act between performanance/comfort/ and cost.  If money was no object (it is), this would be a non-issue.

 

I drew out his foot and measured it.  Ironically, his foot is EXACTLY the same size as mine, except he has a funky second toe that protrudes big time vs. mine.  Anyway, he measured a 26.5 perfectly...however, I think he might whine a bit if I put him in 26.5...kids.

 

If I thought I could get a way with hit, I would put him in my boots this season and get me some vacuums :-)

post #22 of 24

Just as a point of reference... I too measure around 26.5. That's equivalent to a US Men 8.5. With the last two pairs, I have been wearing 26.5 for 6-7 years (and street shoes 8.5-9). Both pairs seemed to work fine in the beginning and eventually became a bit loose in the toe box. And, I don't wear them tight, just barely loosely snug, even with the orthotics.

post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by elduderino View Post

I'm a big believer in well fitting boots.  I also skied for many years as a kid in ill-fitting hand-me-down boots and was none the wiser.  There's a balancing act between performanance/comfort/ and cost.  If money was no object (it is), this would be a non-issue.

 

I drew out his foot and measured it.  Ironically, his foot is EXACTLY the same size as mine, except he has a funky second toe that protrudes big time vs. mine.  Anyway, he measured a 26.5 perfectly...however, I think he might whine a bit if I put him in 26.5...kids.

 

If I thought I could get a way with hit, I would put him in my boots this season and get me some vacuums :-)



Have you done a shell fit with him in your old boots?  

It may be an option, but with the different foot shape(funky second toe) there is a possibility that you may want to get him into new boots from a good fitter.   Doing the right thing for his feet while he's at this stage of growing may be the best thing for him, long term.

 

But then, he may fit well in your old boots and thrilled at the idea.

th_dunno-1[1].gif

post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post



Have you done a shell fit with him in your old boots?  

It may be an option, but with the different foot shape(funky second toe) there is a possibility that you may want to get him into new boots from a good fitter.   Doing the right thing for his feet while he's at this stage of growing may be the best thing for him, long term.

 

But then, he may fit well in your old boots and thrilled at the idea.

th_dunno-1%5B1%5D.gif

 


 

Unfortunately, unless a kid is racing or otherwise competing, it's just too darn expensive to be terribly picky about boots. I am not shy about spending money on my kids' skiing, but handing down boots (if they fit even marginally well) sounds good to me. Wait until you're reasonably sure that the feet have stopped growing, then see a good fitter. It's worked for us to go to a shop where they carry a large inventory, and have them fit by a reasonable knowledgeable person who understands that the boots are a temporary solution and will search for old stock or otherwise discounted merchandise. It's sort of a compromise between rental boots and well-fitting boots. (I mean, yes, we marry our boots, but we don't want our teenagers marrying anything! Play the field, look for cheap ... uh, never mind.)

 

One thing I did do last season was go to our fitter and get off-the-shelf footbeds made for my son; fitter did a little bit of modification, but certainly nothing fully custom. 

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