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Confused on Ski Length

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I just made a purchase of K2 Burnin Luvs. I demo'd these skis in 160's and they seemed fine. Fine enough that I decided that these were the skis for me. The sales person at the store was pushing the 153's on me. He said I would have more control with shorter skis and did not recommend the 160's. I am 5'3 and 120 lbs. I am a strong intermediate/not quite advanced skier. I love making quick short turns on the groomers and shooting in and out of the trees and crud. I like exploring off piste but only if the conditions allow it for me. Did I buy skis too long? I am worried because the skis I have been skiing on for the past six years are 175s and they are a little too long for me. I don't want to make the same mistake again. Does anyone have any advice?

post #2 of 5
160 sounds about right for you.
post #3 of 5
I ski the Lotta Luv in a 153cm and I am advanced/expert and ski mostly off-piste and relatively fast. I am 5'2", 110lbs. I haven't skied the Burnin' Luv, but the 153 in this ski is just fine at my height and weight, though I probably could ski the 160 without any problem. (Other favorite ski before I bought this one was a 158c, Dynastar Legend 8000 *unisex* ski.)

I felt weird about going so short, but the ski felt good in that length. I figure I am very much at the small end of the spectrum, so if they weren't designing it for me, then who were they designing it for? I am thinking of getting Phat Luvs as more of a big mountain/powder ski, and I will probably ski those a bit longer.

End result is, if you feel good and look good in 160, then you are probably in good shape. If you still have questions, you could talk to K2 (they have great customer service) or get in touch with my recommended *chick ski* people at They are a bunch of hardcore women in Boulder, CO who only test and sell women-specific equipment. They might have some thoughts.

post #4 of 5
Sorry about a minor hijack (from a guy no less!)- but it does tie to the topic...

A woman at 110-120 pounds gets more float from a 153 Phat Luv than a 200 pound guy would get from a 191 Mantra. In fact for a 200 pound guy to get even close to that amount of float would require a Mantra somewhere in the range of 250cm!!!!!! And not too many guys are complaining about the float they are getting from their Mantras (or similar reasonably fat skis). Taking a quick look at the numbers, and allowing for the type of ski it is, similar comments can be made about the Burnin Luv.

Yeah, surface area is not the only thing it is about. But still, look at the surface area, length, etc. proportional to women's typical height, weight, etc. and it seems to me that most women are overbuying for their size -- even if they are reasonably expert.

Why is it that so many women are reluctant to use lengths that are finally being engineered for them? Am I missing something? Are the designers off base? Are people just afraid to go that short? Are they demo-ing and finding the results unsatisfactory? I ask because both here and in my local shops I keep seeing women reluctant to move onto skis that are between 145 and 155-ish (maybe 160-ish). Yet those lengths seem to be the design center for many of the decent women's skis that are finally starting to appear.

And BTW, I'm not talking about people buying skis they have a very specific use for. I'm talking about "all mountain" and vanilla "powder" skis. People doing Alaska faces or serious race courses know what they need and want - and get them. I'm talking about normal mortals skiing on and and off piste at decent sized resorts - which probably covers 90% or the people on this board.
post #5 of 5
The 153's would likely have been more ideal but you'll adapt to the 160's and end up feeling just fine.
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