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What's a good ski size for this big guy?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
I posted this in the general discussion board and it was suggested I repost it here where I might get better information. Here's my question:

I have to give you some background to get good feedback on this question. I am 53 years old and have returned to skiing for the past three years afer a long layoff. I want to purchase my skis this year and would like some suggestions on size. I am 5'11" and weigh 250lbs. I ski green and blues and would rate myself as an intermediate style skier. I have enjoyed getting back into skiing again on the parabolic short skis. I come from the age of straight wood skis. (Three years ago I rented 160's to get back in the saddle and last year rented 170's) I want to be able to maintain good control while not going too short for my weight. Weight seems to be the big factor here. I was thinking about going with 180's.

Does anyone have any suggestions on size for this old guy who has returned to his first love?

post #2 of 5
One thing about being big is that you can safely get the biggest size of whatever model ski you get. I generally get the second or third largest size. That could be anywhere from 165cm to 190cm, depending on the type of ski.

post #3 of 5
Harry: You are right. Weight is usually the most important factor when deciding the length of ski. Another factor to consider is skiing style. You state that you are in the intermdiate range. With determination and a lots of days on the slopes this year, your newfound/refound abilities could change that. The reason I mention this is sometimes we sell ourselves short. I'm only 5 years younger and have only been skiing for the last 10 years but have now progressed to advanced/expert level so keep going; you can get there!
Now back to the ski length. The best advice is to demo and demo some more. I notice you're from Texas and that may make it difficult to demo but sometimes mfrs. have demo days at the hills and it you can arrange to be there when they are, this will make demo-ing possible.
Another suggestion is to pick up the gear guides in ski, skiing & ski canada magazines. They do a good job with their testing and also tell you the age and weight of the test skiers. Many of the male skiers are well over 200lb., are aggressive skier types and love skis under 180cm.
There are interactive ski selectors that will give you an idea as well, although they are usually not too length specific.
I would just suggest, don't go too long. If you're doing well on 170's, maybe a 174 in a little stiffer ski may be, as we say where I come from: The cats' meow.

Keep skiing faster! :

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the suggestions and encouragment. It is difficult living in Houston Tx trying to get enough time each year on the slopes. I thought about demo skis but with such little time each year I don't want to spend it back and forth trying different skis.
Yes I am impatient and don't want to miss any time off the mountain. I have a backpack lunch and keep on running.

I appreciate the recommendations on size though. There is such a hugh range of skis out there and it seems that they all come with some rave reviews about performance. I guess I will initally go with an all mountain ski in the 175 - 180 range. As a recreational skier it seems the logical choice. High speed runs and mogels are now outside my physical limits. (It was fun yesterday but that was long ago now)

Finding this forum has been a great help. Lots of like minded and very knowledgable folks here. Maybe we'll meet on the mountain one of these days.

Thanks again,

post #5 of 5
Harry, Your right there are a lot of Great skis out there. They seem to have a ski for just about every typ of snow condition and terrain. Becuse of your wieght you will be able to bend just about any ski. I wouldn't go with something super stiff Like the Stockli Storm Rider,but an Atomic 11:20 or 10:20 might be fine in a 170 for your size and ability. If your looking for forgivness maybe the K2 5500 in 174 or 181 would work. The K2 Axis is a great ski That I'm sure a guy of your size would have a lot of fun on in a 181. As you grow you as a skier it won't let you down. Check out Volants They made some great ski for guys like you and me (read in our 50's) Check out Peter Keelty's site for some ideas. Do you have a favorite place to ski? See if they have a demo day or weekend coming up. Then plan a ski trip around that weekend. In the past I have found those Demo days to be vary helpful and a lot of fun.
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