EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › "sternum height" 5 year old ski size question
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

"sternum height" 5 year old ski size question

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 


Sorry if I'm in the wrong forum, first timer, unless this post popped 
up somewhere yesterday, and I didn't know it...

My 5 1/2 year old son has been on 67cm skis since last year. We got out 
5 days last year, this year we will get 9-10 days out there. We ski at 
Jack Frost in PA. He is able to do the green runs alone, can stop in a 
wegde, and do wedge turns. He can do the easiest blue (Easy Rider), but 
he is doing a lot of wedge braking on the steepest parts, but can do the long s type turns . He will do a 
lesson every 3 days out there.

Anyway, I did some searches on here and read the similar threads about 
kids and ski length. He is not a brave/daredevil kid, but is really 
taking to the success on the 67's and is having a blast, even bombing 
that blue, until I over-advised him  and created the wedge braking 
habit. The last time out I got him back to using lots of turns to slow 
stuff down. Still "lesson time" next time for sure.

I read here that sternum height is good for a beginner. I measured him 
barefoot, and 67cm is to the very bottom of his sternum (xiphoid 
process, I think), and 80cm would reach the bottom of his neck. He's 
the smallest kid in his class, around 41 inches tall, 36-37 lbs.

I am able to buy some used 67's locally. We've been renting, but we 
have enough trips scheduled this year to have them pay for themselves. 
I was thinking he may even get to use them next year. I was also able 
to  score some nice 80cm kids skis off craigslist for next year.

My gut is to keep him on the 67's for at least this year, and maybe into next year, since he is really having fun and success with it. But I 
don't want to mess him up either. He definitely  can't handle the 
tougher blues at JF yet.

Since the 67's aren't technically sternum height, should I look to movehim up this season? Or is that a bad idea with limited days out there. 
Is there a "too short" length at his age/level?



post #2 of 6

FWIW, when our daughter was starting at age 3.5, she was about 41'/39 #s and did great on 80 cm skis.  Last year, she was on 93cm skis at about 43"/41 #s and age 4.5.  I didn't think 13 cm was a big jump for her.


After making the change, I could see how the 80 cm skis might have slowed her down a bit.  That said, she's a pretty coordinated/enthusiastic little kid, so YMMV depending on how coordinated/enthusiastic your child is.


post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

Dino, thanks so much for taking the time to answer. 

My kid is pretty motivated, and has decent coordination. Skied for 4-5 hours with breaks last time out too. By "slowing down," did you mean slowing down skiing speed on the hill or slowing down her progression? Sorry, I sort of got it... 13cm might not be too noticable to the kids, right?

post #4 of 6

I've been keeping my son(now 5) on skis that stop somewhere in his lower face for length for the last 3 years.  I think too short a ski can cause problems too.  he may over ski (go faster) than the short ski can control.  I think more edge allows for more stopping power especially in a wedge.  I would suggest trying his on the longer skis and If it doesn't work out go in and rent.  Just make sure his bindings are adjusted  for his boots and weight.  also make sure they are tuned and waxed.  some think it is a waste to tune and wax kids skis but waxed skis let them slide easier on the low angle slopes and a sharp edge inspires confidence in the turns and especially stoping. 


my .02



post #5 of 6

Sternum is too short, IMO. Skis will be easy to turn, but unstabile if he gets moving and hits an irregularity. Our level 3 5 year old has been on hand-me-down skis that come up to there, his instructor told us recently that he should be on a length that touches bottom of chin. Once they're intermediates, the line goes up to the mouth. 

post #6 of 6

Yes, I've been going with chin height to just below the nose length skis for our daughter. 


I felt if they were shorter than about chin height, then the effective edge would be too short and/or fore/aft balance would be tougher.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › "sternum height" 5 year old ski size question