Skiing is sliding which is very similar to rolling.
We are all familiar with rolling in our cars or on a bicycle - but that kind of rolling is done while sitting down.
Rolling or sliding while standing is a whole other challenge because our center of gravity is higher when standing than sitting and there can be an unpleasant kind of "leverage effect" if our feet trip up when we are walking or rolling/sliding while standing up.*
I tell people in my first time ski lessons when they want to practice at home for skiing: "What other sport do you put five foot boards on your feet and walk around and slide on?"
Answer: "Nothing." **
So, what can we do during the Summer to make our first ski lesson this Winter be the best?
Roller skate. Do it indoors in a rink in a controlled environment with a uniform surface so there is one less variable to worry about. Along with renting your skates (four-wheel side-by-side is best to start on rather than rollerblades (which were designed for outdoor rougher surfaces), rent elbow pads and wrist guards (or buy your own - they are cheap - if not available to rent).
A rink also has music so your body/psyche can be energized by the rhythm. And a rink has other people around so you won't feel alone and vulnerable. Hopefully there will also be little kids around. Because if they can do it. Dang it, you can do it too! And besides little kids are often very encouraging to cautious adults. And their joy from moving their bodies in a relatively frictionless environment is, quite frankly, contagious.
So, if you can, look around for a roller rink and try an afternoon skate. Because here is the deal, you will get used to rolling which is the same as sliding and being able to balance on a short little roller skate will make balancing on a longer snow ski as easy as standing on a "moving sidewalk" at the airport.
See you on the slopes!
* Don't even get me going about snowboarding. Just let me say now, that skiing falls, when they occur, are usually more gentle than snowboarding falls.
** Not really true. Here's the deal why snow (and even water) skis are long. When the surface we will be sliding on is soft, we need a longer ski to slide on to avoid sinking into the surface and getting stuck. But when the surface gets harder, we can use shorter skis. And when the surface gets harder still, like ice or a hardwood floor in a roller rink, we can use the shortest "ski" yet (when skis get really short they are called "skates").
Edited by Tim Hodgson - 9/20/16 at 12:53pm