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How young is too young? [a Family Skiing topic] - Page 2

post #31 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

Great advice!

 

It's fair to say that families who live 3 or more hours from a small ski area are likely to make different decisions than families who live relatively close to a large ski area.  In the southeast U.S., parents are considering whether or not to drive 3-5 hours to a mountain that has a few short green or blue runs covered with man-made snow.  By short, I mean a run that an adult intermediate skier can finish in less than 5 minutes.

 

Also depends on whether or not one or both parents can ski well enough to help a preschooler onto a chair lift.  At a small mountain like Massanutten, often the kids are put into ski school by parents who do not ski at all or are beginners themselves.  Before they installed carpet loading for the beginner lifts, the lifties had to stop them all the time because the adults didn't know enough.


Actually you don't need that much to put your kids on skis. All you need is snow, time and energy.

Early January... This is our first hill... Could be 1 meter of vertical... When cars were parked in front of this hill, I simply pushed the little guy arround in the back yard of the house.

700

Then we went to a bigger hill... Maybe 3 meters of vertical. We did it at night when it was empty because other kids where going down that hill on everything that slips during the day.

And this is our first lift served hill on late March... http://www.epicski.com/gallery/image/view/album/100846/id/95337/sort/display_order

The little guy was 1y 11m when we started, but he is strong for his age.

post #32 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by irafar View Post


Actually you don't need that much to put your kids on skis. All you need is snow, time and energy.

Early January... This is our first hill... Could be 1 meter of vertical... When cars were parked in front of this hill, I simply pushed the little guy arround in the back yard of the house.

700

Then we went to a bigger hill... Maybe 3 meters of vertical. We did it at night when it was empty because other kids where going down that hill on everything that slips during the day.

And this is our first lift served hill on late March... http://www.epicski.com/gallery/image/view/album/100846/id/95337/sort/display_order

The little guy was 1y 11m when we started, but he is strong for his age.

Fun!  Lots of energy by parent needed.  Did he walk back up or did you pick him up?

 

Wouldn't work around my house.  When we do get snow, it's usually less than 4 inches and melts in a day or two.  Not sure any local shop even has skis short enough for kids under age 4.  Many kids don't even own snow boots of any kind, much less waterproof gloves or other snow outer ware.  They go sliding after snowstorms in sneakers.  Of course, those kids don't have parents who love to ski.

post #33 of 45

I had to push him up the hill so it takes a lot of energy indeed :) but its fun. Skis are too heavy to walk arround, but it gives more stability when skiing down the hill. So there are pros and cons. It would be much easier to move around with tiny cross country skis but without significant result on the hill. I need a ski buddy after all :)
As for skiing without snow... Don't know... I would go for in-line skates or a skateboard... 

Quote:

Originally Posted by marznc View Post

Fun!  Lots of energy by parent needed.  Did he walk back up or did you pick him up?

 

Wouldn't work around my house.  When we do get snow, it's usually less than 4 inches and melts in a day or two.  Not sure any local shop even has skis short enough for kids under age 4.  Many kids don't even own snow boots of any kind, much less waterproof gloves or other snow outer ware.  They go sliding after snowstorms in sneakers.  Of course, those kids don't have parents who love to ski.

post #34 of 45

Every child is different. Thirty pounds and walking, rather than toddling is key. They should also be able to follow directions. My niece is a late November birthday, so the winter she was 2, she was less than 30 lbs and toddling. We took her out to play in the snow whenever possible. She got to experience a face plant and mitten issues. She learned to love the snow and the outdoors. At 3, she learned to ski on a harness. If you little one is ready for snow time, go for it. Many destination resorts do have programs for little ones. The amount of snow time vs. day care time varies by program.

post #35 of 45

We don't live very close to ski areas, but love skiing, so we used to go even with very young kids. Most ski areas have daycare for kids 6months+ or sometimes even younger -- I know they won't be playing in the snow, but at least you will, and you can pull the kid around on a sled or build a snowman in the afternoon. Actual skiing - maybe around 2,5 or 3 yo? At that age they can slide & begin to balance. We were at Sugarloaf, Maine, they have a $10 daycare add-on for 2,5yo, a 45 min private lesson including rentals (seriously). My son loved that. Even at 4 or 5, it makes sense to sign them up for ski school, they learn faster & enjoy it more (and you can ski, too). Ski school & daycare rates range from exorbitant to pretty reasonable depending on resort, so do some research before going to control the costs.
 

post #36 of 45
Infant is too young .
post #37 of 45

As long as they can walk, smile, and enjoy themselves you are good to go.  Sunny warm days are a plus with good gear that fits well and is warm.  Let the little one dictate how much is too much. Bottom line as it is with any sport is to make it enjoyable positive experience.  As a few have indicated, all kids are different and they will go at their own pace.  Have fun!

post #38 of 45

17

 

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post #39 of 45

How young is too young?

It depends on the state ;)

 

For skiing I would say they should be out of diapers, and well able to walk and talk,  probably start at about 3 years, but don't expect to teach them to ski, just have them on snow with skis and having fun.

 

Also when you visit a ski hill with the kids, MAKE SURE YOU SPEND MORE TIME LOOKING AFTER THE WEE ONES ON THE SKI HILL THAN YOUR WIFE DOES, unless you want her to give up skiing and not support your efforts to get your kids into skiing.

post #40 of 45

We started all 4 of our kids at age 3.  For all but one of them, that was a good age.  One was not so coordinated, and would have been better off had we waited until he was 5.  

 

Depends on your kid.  

post #41 of 45

I started on skis at 3 and so did my son. No minimum age for playing in the snow-- just bundle them up. 

post #42 of 45

bump . . . for relatively new parents thinking about when and how to get their little ones on skis.

 

Obviously very different situations depending on whether or not the family lives an hour or less from a ski area, versus having to drive 3+ hours or fly for a ski vacation.  Also depends on what terrain parent(s) can handle on skis.

post #43 of 45

The key is focus on fun, rather than being too goal-oriented. I started my daughter at 3 and the first few times "on skis" was on dry grass and then in the backyard with just a couple inches of snow. We practiced falling, walking, gliding, and more falling. Getting used to the gear is one thing. And if the focus is always on "playing" then I think the end results will be better. Share your excitement. Like going from crawling to walking, it isn't really a race, so I look to set up the conditions for success, encouraging exposure and repeat play, and then eventually it will click. Fun first. On the resort, we spend have the time mucking about and then every now and then we go downhill :)

post #44 of 45

That reminds me, allow time after being on skis for snow play.  I think that was a major highlight for my daughter ages 4-8 since we live in the southeast so the only snow she ever saw was the manmade stuff next to the ski hill or snow tubing.  I also learned to have extra gloves/mittens so that there was a dry pair available if needed.

post #45 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by irafar View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 

Great advice!

 

It's fair to say that families who live 3 or more hours from a small ski area are likely to make different decisions than families who live relatively close to a large ski area.  In the southeast U.S., parents are considering whether or not to drive 3-5 hours to a mountain that has a few short green or blue runs covered with man-made snow.  By short, I mean a run that an adult intermediate skier can finish in less than 5 minutes.

 

Also depends on whether or not one or both parents can ski well enough to help a preschooler onto a chair lift.  At a small mountain like Massanutten, often the kids are put into ski school by parents who do not ski at all or are beginners themselves.  Before they installed carpet loading for the beginner lifts, the lifties had to stop them all the time because the adults didn't know enough.


Actually you don't need that much to put your kids on skis. All you need is snow, time and energy.

Early January... This is our first hill... Could be 1 meter of vertical... When cars were parked in front of this hill, I simply pushed the little guy arround in the back yard of the house.

700

Then we went to a bigger hill... Maybe 3 meters of vertical. We did it at night when it was empty because other kids where going down that hill on everything that slips during the day.

And this is our first lift served hill on late March... http://www.epicski.com/gallery/image/view/album/100846/id/95337/sort/display_order

The little guy was 1y 11m when we started, but he is strong for his age.


@irafar : how did it go last winter?

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