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Suggestions for a frustrated beginner. [in upstate NY, big man]

post #1 of 67
Thread Starter 
Hi everyone, I'm brand new here, and am looking for some advice. My wife really loves to ski, and I have little experience. This was never much of an issue, but after moving from the flatlands of Illinois to upstate New York, I have found that every weekend that there is snow in the mountains, my wife is wanting to go skiing, and she is really wanting it to be a shared experience. I went out about 6 times last year, and each time left me sore, frustrated and discouraged to the point that I finally told her that I would stay at the lodge bar while she was on the mountain (which neither of us liked). I took lessons ever time we went but once, but I never felt like I had control of either my turns and especially my speed. I felt like I was a cannonball barreling down the hill.
Now to my question. I am wanting to make it work this year for both of our sakes, and I feel like part of the equation is the equipment. I always rented, and everytime I went out I would have a different size ski depending on where we were at. I'm a big guy (6'4 250lbs) and I know I have a weaker right leg. Does anyone have a suggestion for equipment that can get me started in the right direction this year. I lost a lot of confidence last winter, but I feel like 1 or 2 good trips will change the experience from one of frustration to a lot of fun for both me and my wife. Any help you can offer would be appreciated. Thanks!
post #2 of 67
Well the first thing to worry about is your boots, since they control the ski. If the boots are too big, you'll be in the back seat, struggling to get the skis to go where you point them. So, get to a real bootfitter, NOT A GUY WHO SELLS BOOTS, and get boots that fit. SNUG!
post #3 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post

Hi everyone, I'm brand new here, and am looking for some advice. My wife really loves to ski, and I have little experience. This was never much of an issue, but after moving from the flatlands of Illinois to upstate New York, I have found that every weekend that there is snow in the mountains, my wife is wanting to go skiing, and she is really wanting it to be a shared experience. I went out about 6 times last year, and each time left me sore, frustrated and discouraged to the point that I finally told her that I would stay at the lodge bar while she was on the mountain (which neither of us liked). I took lessons ever time we went but once, but I never felt like I had control of either my turns and especially my speed. I felt like I was a cannonball barreling down the hill.
Now to my question. I am wanting to make it work this year for both of our sakes, and I feel like part of the equation is the equipment. I always rented, and everytime I went out I would have a different size ski depending on where we were at. I'm a big guy (6'4 250lbs) and I know I have a weaker right leg. Does anyone have a suggestion for equipment that can get me started in the right direction this year. I lost a lot of confidence last winter, but I feel like 1 or 2 good trips will change the experience from one of frustration to a lot of fun for both me and my wife. Any help you can offer would be appreciated. Thanks!


Welcome to EpicSki!  Good for you for wanting to figure out why you're not having fun.  Given that you are a big guy, I suspect that's part of the issue.  Take a look at the threads using the link for Clydesdale that I added under Topics Discussed to start with.

 

Where are you skiing?  Would you consider a private lesson or two?  If so, you want to get a recommendation for a Level 3 instructor to help you get over the hump.  Some places are a lot friendlier for beginners and intermediates than others.  For instance, I would not take a beginner to Whiteface but would consider Gore or even one of the really small places near Albany.

post #4 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Well the first thing to worry about is your boots, since they control the ski. If the boots are too big, you'll be in the back seat, struggling to get the skis to go where you point them. So, get to a real bootfitter, NOT A GUY WHO SELLS BOOTS, and get boots that fit. SNUG!

This is absolutely true. Go to the "Ask the Boot Guys" forum and read the wikis about fitting and terminology, then check the "Who's Who" to see if there is a boot fitter listed either near where you live or near where you ski. If there is, call and make an appointment. Expect to spend a couple of hours and listen to what the fitter says about how the boots should feel. You don't want them to fit like shoes.

After you get the boots, take a private lesson, all day. Then report back. I think you might be more than amazed.
post #5 of 67

1.  Get properly fitted boots.

2. Get a ski that has some torsional rigidity, not a beginners ski (even though you are a beginner).  At 250 lbs, there is a lot of force pushing you down the hill and it will take a lot of force to turn you out of the fall line, so you need at least an intermediates ski.  You don't need to go all the way to race skis or cheater race skis, but you need something with a little oomph.

3.  1/2 day private lesson with good instructor.

post #6 of 67

For a big guy, as already mentioned, you want a ski with torsional stiffness (difficult to twist) and that is best accomplished with ski that has one or two layers of metal, usually a composite called Titinal.

 

You are going to have trouble finding a rental boot that is stiff enough so as others have said buy boots (and rent skis for now) from a recognized boot fitter.

post #7 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Well the first thing to worry about is your boots, since they control the ski. If the boots are too big, you'll be in the back seat, struggling to get the skis to go where you point them. So, get to a real bootfitter, NOT A GUY WHO SELLS BOOTS, and get boots that fit. SNUG!


What she said.  Read the following, which has already been suggested, and take notes.

 

http://www.epicski.com/a/boot-fitting-which-boot-will-work-for-me,

 

Then go to a ski shop (not some big box store, but a real Ma and Pa ski shop that only has ski and snowboard stuff inside) and try on boots.  Call ahead first and ask for an appointment with their most experienced bootfitter, and see him (her) when you go in.  Take your notes with you.  Make sure this person does a shell fit as described in your notes from that link.  Expect to spend 2 or more hours in that store.  If you take your wife with you, budget $$ for her to spend while she waits.  She deserves it!  

 

Be prepared to spend $$$$ on boots.  Part of what that money buys is more visits back once the boot liners begin to settle into their ultimate shape, and once your feet have been out on snow for a while.  Things will feel wrong here and there, so every time you go skiing, take notes of the pressure points  that bother your feet, or the air spots where the boots are not tight (there shouldn't be ANY).  When you go back to the shop, the same bootfitter should grind out the pressure points for free.  You already paid for that.  Usually the visits back are covered for a part of or for the whole season - ask when you buy your boots.  It takes a while and a number of visits often to get good-fitting boots dialed in.  The more snug the boots initially, the easier it will be to learn to ski with control.

 

Boots that fit will be hard to get on, and they will feel extremely cramped at first.  For controlling those skis, you need this.  But those snug boots should not be painful, nor should they cut off circulation.  You can see this is a delicate science, getting the right fit.  Most recreational skiers out there are in boots 2+ sizes too big, and they don't know it.  They have waaay less control over their skis than they would have if their boots fit.  Get ahead of the crowd and don't do that.

 

If you feel tempted to try on boots in a shop with a trained bootfitter, then go online and buy the same model for cheaper, what you are not paying for online is those extra visits to get the boots dialed in.  You'll need those visits, most probably, and they will cost you when you go in to the bootfitter who you didn't buy from and show him (or her) the boots that you bought elsewhere.  And you are not being fair to that bootfitter, nor to the Ma and Pop shop.   


Buying boots is not exciting.  Quite the contrary; it's a real pain, in more ways than one.  But it's very important and it sounds like you are going to be a skier so you might as well get it over with and do it right the first time.  Most people don't.  

 

Best of luck on your new endeavor, and keep us informed of your progress.

post #8 of 67

As others have said, boot fitting takes time and most likely a few return trips to deal with little spots.  Not everyone has to spend an entire season tweaking boots every month to get the optimal fit.  However, it doesn't mean spending $1000 or more.  A good boot fitter usually has "new old stock" around.  So if you don't mind a pair of new boots from a previous model year, can be closer to $400-500.  Still, obviously a major investment.  That's why it's also worth getting a recommendation of what shop to consider, with a specific name before calling to make an appointment.  Tell the boot fitter as much as possible about past skiing experience and future plans.

 

Depending on where the OP lives in upstate NY, it could be that it's worth driving over to VT to buy boots.

post #9 of 67

What resorts you near and if every resort is giving different equipment, why not just stick with one.

 

Check with the local hill you think you can hit on a regular basis. Some resorts offer multipack lessons, maybe stay with the same instructor if not doing as MARZNC noted. Get practiced up on the same hill and instructors if you can, it may make it easier than jumping about. Different resorts sometimes have different philosophies. Too, hitting a resort with a learn to ski program may allow them and you to know one another. 

 

I agree with the reference that more stiff skis may fit your need better due to size but there's rentals that are fairly stiff and my be fine till you know what you want and while I may be wrong, believed that a slightly more flexing ski makes carving easier for you to initiate. Some ski shops allow you to rent for the season which may allow you to swap around in the season if needed.

post #10 of 67
Not sure why everyone says to buy boots and rent skis right now. If the op can afford to buy skis and boots why not go for it. This will be good so he can acclimate to his equipment and easier start for the day.

@Splitear go get the best boots you can afford and pick up some intermediate skis that will hold your weight. Find a reputable ski shop that will take care of you after the sale. I would also find out what lesson programs they have and take a half day private lesson your first day of every weekend. This will accelerate your growth as a skier. The goal is not necessarily to ski with your wife every time this year but to get to her level by end of season.


You did say one leg was weaker than other. Can you work with a personal trainer or someone in a gym to help strengthen your weak leg? Hang in there it takes time but is well worth learning this sport.
post #11 of 67

Just remembered . . . there are some pretty big ski swaps in central NY.  Unfortunately, the one in Syracuse was last weekend.  Could be a good way to pick up some skis for relatively cheap.

 

Sept. 19-21, 2015 at NY State Fairgrounds in Syracuse

http://nysfair.org/event/annual-ski-board-sale/

 

The Albany Ski & Snowboard Expo in early Nov may be worth checking out.

 

http://www.albanyskiandsnowboardexpo.com/asse/

 

Looks like Potter Brothers has sales events in various places in the Catskills in Oct.

 

http://www.potterbrothers.com/sales-events/

post #12 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohioskier View Post

Not sure why everyone says to buy boots and rent skis right now. If the op can afford to buy skis and boots why not go for it. This will be good so he can acclimate to his equipment and easier start for the day.

@Splitear go get the best boots you can afford and pick up some intermediate skis that will hold your weight. Find a reputable ski shop that will take care of you after the sale. I would also find out what lesson programs they have and take a half day private lesson your first day of every weekend. This will accelerate your growth as a skier. The goal is not necessarily to ski with your wife every time this year but to get to her level by end of season.


You did say one leg was weaker than other. Can you work with a personal trainer or someone in a gym to help strengthen your weak leg? Hang in there it takes time but is well worth learning this sport.

The reason we suggest buying boots first and not skis is because having a well fit boot is something that is very important to controlling the ski, and you'll only get a well fit boot if it has been selected and fitted for you by a qualified bootfitter. That is something that is done while in the shop. Finding the right skis for you does have something to do with reading reviews and getting an idea of what you want, but in the end the best way to pick a ski is to put them on snow and try them. So we suggest demoing skis in your nicely fit boots, rather than purchasing skis off the rack without any idea how they'll work for you. 

post #13 of 67

The reason so many are talking about boots is that the OP took a lesson five of the six times he went out last season.  He was sore at the end of each day, and never felt like he had control of either his turns or his speed. "I felt like I was a cannonball barreling down the hill." 

 

@Splitear, here's what to do if you don't want to invest in boots until you have a sense that you're going to enjoy skiing.

 

Go to a Ma and Pa shop that does seasonal rentals of boots, skis, poles.  This can be a savings if you ski a bunch of times this upcoming season, and it gives you the opportunity to work with a bootfitter as you choose your boots.  Rent boots that fit very very snugly.  Read that link I gave you and take your notes with you.  If the bootfitter in the shop doesn't have time to help you with that boot, or if you rent in the rental shop at the mountain again where they don't have time to help you, here's a quick way to see if the boot is small enough.  It isn't guaranteed to work, but it can get you sort of close.  

 

     a.  Try on a boot that's for someone who wears a shoe size two sizes smaller than the one you do.  Once you've been standing

          in that boot for a while, if it cuts off circulation or hurts very badly, go up a size.  Do not settle for a boot that's correlated with

          your street shoe size.

     b.  The boot should be difficult to get on.  If it slides on happily, go at least one size smaller.

     c.  Once you've wedged your foot into the boot, sit down and lift your foot/boot, then slam it down on the floor on the heel to jam

          your heel into the heel pocket nice and tight.  Then stand up; your toes will slide forward but your heel should not.  Those toes

          should touch the front inside wall of the boot.

     d.  Buckle the boot.  Hopefully you won't have to pull the buckles real tight.  Stand and walk around a while to let your foot get used

          to the snugness; if circulation is not cut off, you're read to go.  

     e.  If the very top buckle doesn't want to close because your calf is wide, go get help from the bootfitter.  Going up a size should

          not be done, or your foot will end up in a boot too big.

 

With snug fitting boots, your boots should now transmit your foot movements to your skis.  Skis wobbling side to side out of your control should not happen any more.  

post #14 of 67
@Splitear, there may be some technical things you can focus on that will help with the soreness and not being able to control turns and speed, once you get into snug fitting boots.  Here are some quick suggestions.

 

--The soreness often comes from sitting back, and/or from holding your body rigidly (possibly because of stress from not being able to control the skis).  Hop a few times while standing on the flats.  The way your body naturally lands should be your general stance.  If while skiing you find yourself crouching low and staying there, or sitting as if on a chair, or folding forward at the hips, stand taller.  You can stop on the slope, hop a few times while standing still to find that "athletic stance" that people are always talking about, then continue skiing in that taller stance.  Standing tall as you ski should relieve your muscles and help them not get so burned.  Stopping and hopping may also help you relax, so you aren't getting rigid.  

 

--The way to control your speed is to make turns shaped like a J.  To make a turn, go down the hill a little way, turn and go across the hill a little way, then turn uphill and coast to a stop.  That's a J-shaped-turn.  Ski your first run this way, coming to a full stop by making a J-shaped-turns left and right.  Congrats, you just controlled your speed!  Morph those stops into stalls, then into shorter stalls, and you'll no longer be a cannonball barreling down the hill.

 

--If you are not traveling across the hill with those turns, but sliding straight down with skis pointed across the hill hockey-stop style, that's because you are turning your skis around too fast to avoid that first "going down the hill" part of the turn. You need to avoid whipping those skis around.  If that's what's happening, you are cutting off the top of the turn.  Doing that causes the skis lose their grip for the rest of the turn, and this leaves you genuinely out of control.  Go back to flatter terrain where the speed you'll gain on the downhill part of each J-turn is not so high, and work on getting nice J-shapes.  It's important to be able to allow those skis to go down first, then across, then uphill to a stop, if you are going to ever feel in control of your turns.  Once you are able to make J-turns to a stop on easier terrain, work on stalls.  Then take it to higher terrain, but move slowly up in steepness.  Start with J-turns to a full stop every time you move to new terrain, to build muscle memory.

 

--Maybe the description I just gave of turning the skis across the hill fast does not match how you make your turns.  Perhaps you do start with a downhill part, but can't yet get the skis to go uphill at the end, so with each turn you gain a little speed.  If this is the case, you may be turning your whole body with each turn, so that your head and shoulders and hips are facing all the way left, then all the way right. You may even be turning the upper body before your skis turn.  This is called upper body rotation.  It sometimes doesn't allow you to get your turns to go far enough uphill to coast to a stop.  Take a lesson to find out how to "complete" those turns uphill without the upper body rotation; you'll be learning to make the turns with your legs.  Once you can do that, you're on your way.  

 

--However you are making those turns, the solution is the same.  You need to be able to come to a full stop in both directions with each turn on whatever terrain you choose to ski.  Then you need to be able to morph those turn-stops into stalls.  Then lessen the stalling a little until your turns feel more flowing.  That's the way to go to control your speed.  Best of luck!


Edited by LiquidFeet - 9/22/15 at 6:25am
post #15 of 67
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone for the great suggestions. I had never thought about the boots being such a major issue, although I will admit that I didn't do my homework. I know that was a problem, because in addition to having different sized skis each time, I know that I had different sized boots based on what felt comfortable that day. I would assume that this caused some of the sore spots on my ankles after skiing. I will make my first priority getting into a quality pair of boots and getting a few good personal lessons (all the others that I took were group lessons). I may hold off on the skis for now, and just focus my budget on the boots to begin with.

 

Thanks again, and I will be sure to keep you posted on my progress once the season starts!

post #16 of 67

It is impossible to ski in rental boots.   Just look at all the gapers on the hill in rental boots.  None of them are skiing even passably well. Then look at anyone who appears to be in control - they are skiing in their own boots that have been fitted to their feet.  So, get some snug fitting boots of your own. 

 

Don't cheap out.  You owe it to your relationship to ski with your girlfriend, and I'm guessing that most of the guys reading this are jealous of your situation.

 

Don't buy boots based on your street shoe size.  My feet measure at size 11 1/2 and my ski boots are size 8. I tried on a size 9, but my bootfitter and I both agreed that it was way too big for me.

post #17 of 67

Wife, not girlfriend!

post #18 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

Thanks everyone for the great suggestions. I had never thought about the boots being such a major issue, although I will admit that I didn't do my homework. I know that was a problem, because in addition to having different sized skis each time, I know that I had different sized boots based on what felt comfortable that day. I would assume that this caused some of the sore spots on my ankles after skiing. I will make my first priority getting into a quality pair of boots and getting a few good personal lessons (all the others that I took were group lessons). I may hold off on the skis for now, and just focus my budget on the boots to begin with.

 

Thanks again, and I will be sure to keep you posted on my progress once the season starts!

 

You are well on your way to a better season!

 

If you are willing to provide an idea of what's within reasonable driving distance (< 2 hours), then you can get recommendations of boot fitters to consider.  Note that just because a place sells ski gear, that does not necessarily mean there is a highly experienced boot fitter working there.  Since you've found EpicSki, might as well get as much advice as you can.

 

Sometimes early season group lessons can be with experienced instructors and only 1-2 other students.  Part-time instructors usually haven't completed instructor training yet.  If you can get away mid-week, then may even end up with a private lesson at a bargain price.  If you find an instructor you like that way, then can schedule private lessons later on.

 

Paging @XLTL (a Clydesdale working to keep up with his wife in the Mid-Atlantic)

post #19 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post
 

Wife, not girlfriend!

 

An even better reason to go for it.

post #20 of 67
Thread Starter 

I'm open to all suggestions for a boot fitter. I'm located in Ballston Spa, NY, near Saratoga Springs. With our most recent move, I think we are going to try to spend quite a bit of time at Gore this year.

post #21 of 67

First you might want to decide if you and your wife might love skiing like most of us do. Then think about how aggressive you are in sports. If you decide you might one day really want to be a great skier in as short about of time as possible then a good tight but not uncomfortable boot fit is imperative as is a very good ski for you because of your weight. I would attend a ski swap and buy used and if you do this right you will be selling your equipment the next year, probably getting what you paid for it or close. You are going to need a good quality ski and you can cheat a little by going shorter which will accelerate your learning. Your boot has to be stiff enough to support you. If you take the boot info on this site you have a good chance of buying the correct boots for both of you. With this method both of you will learn quicker but will need new gear probably the second year. Lessons are vital and we all will want to hear how you are doing. 

Skiing is a special sport especially with a lady and you will find there is nothing else like it.

Good luck and enjoy, ask all the questions you need to.

post #22 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

I'm open to all suggestions for a boot fitter. I'm located in Ballston Spa, NY, near Saratoga Springs. With our most recent move, I think we are going to try to spend quite a bit of time at Gore this year.

Mud, Sweat and Gears in Holiday Valley is a top rated shop but 5 hours away. A great place to ski also.

post #23 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

I'm open to all suggestions for a boot fitter. I'm located in Ballston Spa, NY, near Saratoga Springs. With our most recent move, I think we are going to try to spend quite a bit of time at Gore this year.


Aah, I'll ask my friend who lives in Saratoga Springs.  May also be able to get instructor recommendations for Gore.  Are you going to get a season pass?

 

You might check out NYSkiBlog.com .  There are several Gore season pass holders you can ask about a boot fitter.

 

I learned to ski at Whiteface long ago.  Only went to Gore for the first time last season because my daughter is up at school in Lake Placid .  Definitely more beginner/intermediate friendly than Whiteface.

post #24 of 67
Thread Starter 

I don't know that we will get season passes, as it is quite the financial commitment, and I'm not sure we will go enough to make it pay. However, we are going to get the "frequent skier" cards for the discounts. I would appreciate the recommendations. Thanks!

post #25 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by levy1 View Post
 

First you might want to decide if you and your wife might love skiing like most of us do. Then think about how aggressive you are in sports. If you decide you might one day really want to be a great skier in as short about of time as possible then a good tight but not uncomfortable boot fit is imperative as is a very good ski for you because of your weight. I would attend a ski swap and buy used and if you do this right you will be selling your equipment the next year, probably getting what you paid for it or close. You are going to need a good quality ski and you can cheat a little by going shorter which will accelerate your learning. Your boot has to be stiff enough to support you. If you take the boot info on this site you have a good chance of buying the correct boots for both of you. With this method both of you will learn quicker but will need new gear probably the second year. Lessons are vital and we all will want to hear how you are doing. 

Skiing is a special sport especially with a lady and you will find there is nothing else like it.

Good luck and enjoy, ask all the questions you need to.


Umm, if you read Post #1 carefully . . . the OP's wife already "loves to ski" and the OP is the beginner trying to figure out how to keep up with her.  It's not always the husband who is hoping the spouse is willing to learn to ski well enough to enjoy ski vacations. ;)

post #26 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

I don't know that we will get season passes, as it is quite the financial commitment, and I'm not sure we will go enough to make it pay. However, we are going to get the "frequent skier" cards for the discounts. I would appreciate the recommendations. Thanks!


Good idea.  Note that the ORDA ski areas (Whiteface, Gore, Belleayre) have quite a few special discount days.  For instance, there have been Coke Sundays at Whiteface.  You can also pick up 2-for-1 coupons at the ski show for a number of smaller ski areas in the region, meaning central NY and VT.

 

For getting in a little extra practice, the Hickory Ski Center in Warrensburg might be worth considering.  Plenty of terrain compared to most places in the midwest.

post #27 of 67
Inside Edge in Glens Falls. Long time, family owned. The also own Reliable Racing and World Cup Supply. The shop is NOT just race oriented, at all. I'd suggest them as a place to start. Exceptional shop in your back yard.

Agree with the comments. Boots are critical, and the first step.

Good luck. You'll make huge gains, and will come to love the sport!
post #28 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

Thanks everyone for the great suggestions. I had never thought about the boots being such a major issue, although I will admit that I didn't do my homework. I know that was a problem, because in addition to having different sized skis each time, I know that I had different sized boots based on what felt comfortable that day. I would assume that this caused some of the sore spots on my ankles after skiing. I will make my first priority getting into a quality pair of boots and getting a few good personal lessons (all the others that I took were group lessons). I may hold off on the skis for now, and just focus my budget on the boots to begin with.

 

Thanks again, and I will be sure to keep you posted on my progress once the season starts!

Glad you've gotten good advice on the boots. 

 

You will be surprised when you get into your own boots, just how much it helps your skiing and feeling in control. 

When you get boots, you can easily demo or rent skis but be careful to get skis that aren't too advanced for you.  No rocker (especially tail rocker) until you get your control, under control. 

 

If you want, I can elaborate more but I don't want to overload you with information right now. 

post #29 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

I don't know that we will get season passes, as it is quite the financial commitment, and I'm not sure we will go enough to make it pay. However, we are going to get the "frequent skier" cards for the discounts. I would appreciate the recommendations. Thanks!


You might look into joining a ski club in the Albany area.  There are several; google to find them.

Ski club membership will give you discount ticket options you won't have otherwise, and also others to ski with.

You'll have an immediate doorway into the ski culture in your area.

post #30 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Splitear View Post
 

Thanks everyone for the great suggestions. I had never thought about the boots being such a major issue, although I will admit that I didn't do my homework. I know that was a problem, because in addition to having different sized skis each time, I know that I had different sized boots based on what felt comfortable that day. I would assume that this caused some of the sore spots on my ankles after skiing. I will make my first priority getting into a quality pair of boots and getting a few good personal lessons (all the others that I took were group lessons). I may hold off on the skis for now, and just focus my budget on the boots to begin with.

 

Thanks again, and I will be sure to keep you posted on my progress once the season starts!

Glad you've gotten good advice on the boots. 

 

You will be surprised when you get into your own boots, just how much it helps your skiing and feeling in control. 

When you get boots, you can easily demo or rent skis but be careful to get skis that aren't too advanced for you.  No rocker (especially tail rocker) until you get your control, under control. 

 

If you want, I can elaborate more but I don't want to overload you with information right now. 


Yes.  About those boots, usually once you go to a shell that won't be too loose all over, the boots will be too tight in spots.  That's one reason you need a good boot fitter too stretch, punch, or grind out those spots.  The other is to get you set up with the correct for you forward lean, ramp and delta angles.

 

And for skis, stay away from wide skis until you are no longer spending over 75% of your time on hard-packed snow and groomed trails.  There is no point on putting extra stress on those ankles by levering a 100 mm wide ski up on edge on a hard surface.

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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Suggestions for a frustrated beginner. [in upstate NY, big man]