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Straps on Poles??

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Do the straps on poles have any greater uses than keeping the poles with you when you fall? It seems to me they are more a nousense than anything else. Unless they actually have a real use that envolves skiing.
post #2 of 28
When I first started skiing I was told NOT to put my hands through the straps because new poles were cheaper than broken wrists.
post #3 of 28
Two uses for the straps: Stop, maybe three: First, they prevent you from losing the poles in a fall or other situation where you don't want to have to climb back uphill to get them [or it]. Second, they help to keep your hand positioned on the pole - cross country skiers probably could not operate very efficiently without the straps, although this function is less important for alpine skiers. Third, in an accident, they prevent the pole from being pushed through your body, incuding your face. Don't laugh, this kind of accident happens, can be life threatening, and at least in one instance was deadly. However, when skiing trees, the greater danger is from having your shoulder ripped off by a pole caught in a tree, so take the straps off before you go into the trees.
post #4 of 28
How are you wearing them?

post #5 of 28
Another reason for the straps...
When worn the way that Tanglefoot has displayed, the strap changes the swing point up from your wrist and to the top of the pole/strap. It lets your pole swing forward more efficiently. It just takes a little push of the palm or pull back of the trigger finger to get the pole basket to swing ahead instead of having to muscle the whole thing.

Also, when you are stopped you can plant the pole and just let your arm rest by hanging on the strap without releasing your grip.

See if this verbal description helps.
Put your hand thru the strap and let the pole hang freely, loop around the top of your wrist.
Pull the pole up into your grasp with the strap going up across the palm, nestling between the thumb and forefinger. Grip the pole and trap the strap.

Give it a few twitches to get a feel for the new swing and enjoy the longer pendulum.
post #6 of 28
Wearing your pole straps as per the diagram will also help your hands to stay warm as you don't need to grip the pole which may stop good circulation of warm blood. Also, if you are skating it allows a much better push off with the pole. Very nordic.
post #7 of 28
I won't wear the straps anymore after I read about the guy who put a pole through his femoral artery and died. If I fall, I want those things away from me. This is the same reason why seat-belts have never become must have items on motorcycles.
post #8 of 28
I weigh the odds of dropping a pole v catching a tree limb and having my shoulder yanked or my wrist yanked. Which has happened. Talk about a jolt. Stabbing myself has never crossed my mind. People seem to be able to find amazing new ways to hurt themselves.
post #9 of 28
The whole 'skating' effect is one of the big reasons. If you have ever raced you know that the straps are critical for your initial push off and thrust.
post #10 of 28
This is one of those topics where everyone's got an opinion and no one's wrong.

I spend a lot of time in the trees and also backcountry skiing. I don't like wearing straps because of the tree-snagging potential and I also don't want them attached in case I'm ever dumb enough or unlucky enough to get caught in a slide.

Personally, I only wear straps in two situations. One is in a race course. The other is when I'm skiing very hard snow on something very steep, where I think I might end up needing the pole(s) to self-arrest.

Everywhere else, I'm strapless.

post #11 of 28
The biggest practical use for having the straps on is that when they are properly used with the straps underneath the palm they give a great deal of potential leverage use if you need to push off of your poles - whether that be for skating, planting hard to assist in a jump turn, stabilizing yourself for balance purposes, spearing a snowboarder . . . etc

Personally once I discovered the Leki strapless system, I gave up straps for good. They are much faster to connect and unconnect, and are instantly perfectly positioned.
post #12 of 28
And if you are an instructor who talks with his hands pointing hither and yon while standing in front of a class, straps are nice since the poles just dangle from your wrists [img]smile.gif[/img]

post #13 of 28
Argus is right on, that straps are a must when racing. i once forgot to put the strap on and when i pushed out of the start, my pole got stuck in a hole. it's very weird racing one pole.

but that goes for everyone, if you are skiing along and your pole gets stuck in a plant, you won't have to hike to get it again.

it's so much more relaxing being able to relax your grip and the pole stays put.

everyone, please review the diagram above! please review how you put a strap on. most strap injuries will result in people not using the equipment correctly!

also, please remove straps on the lift. those two pieces of advice will prevent most strap related injuries, except for the freak injuries. and if you're affraid of freak injuries, you should just give up skiing.
post #14 of 28
I have never had a problem with straps. I always have worn them as indicated in the diagram. Gives me more "pole power" in dificult conditions. Sticking a pole into a hollow bump or breakable crust in steep back country and the strap helps me wrench the pole free without loss of rythmn.

I now use the Leki strapless system and it is fantastic. No more in out with straps and a better positioned swing point for the pole. Nicely balanced poles as well.

post #15 of 28
Can someone please post a photo, drawing or diagram of the Leki "strapless" system? I have no idea what it is, if not just poles without straps.
post #16 of 28
Here's the Leki Trigger strap:
Leki Features

As for the strapless pole, I've seen the, but can't remember who made them.

post #17 of 28
I use the Leki Straps. When many other people are messing about with straps as they get off the lift I just click and go.

I've had a few big falls and most of the time the poles stay clicked in but when there is too much force they click out like bindings. You don't use straps on your feet any more (except for powder straps) why use then on your hands?

post #18 of 28
Do discussions about strap-on poles really belong on this forum?
post #19 of 28
Oh. Never mind.
post #20 of 28
Miles, stop being purile.

That's my job.
post #21 of 28
Swixsport's new Wishbone straps are a safe, comfortable, ergo efficient strap.
Swix Sports

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ January 04, 2002 08:52 AM: Message edited 1 time, by PinHed ]</font>
post #22 of 28
I would run in fear of any women using a strap-on!

[img]tongue.gif[/img] (Ducking and running)
post #23 of 28
Todd, funny, twice I have been given poles to use that had strapless systems. The Goode/w glove and the Leki. Although they are alright for skiing, farting around with the palm velcro thingee is a pain. Also hard to set gates with the little metal dealy in the crotch of your hand....does a hand have a crotch....Doctors????
post #24 of 28
Robin, did a littledigging and the meat between the thumb and forefinger is called the "Dorsal First Web Space" or Dorsal First Interosseous" when talking about just the bones. The crotch of the hand gets the idea across. [img]tongue.gif[/img]
post #25 of 28
I use the Leki trigger and love them. Easy to snap in, and they come off if too much pressure is applied.

Don't get those strapless plastic molded handles. You can't skate with them!
post #26 of 28
A lot about skiing is staying relaxed. Squeezing the pole handles will can in most cases make you tense and affect your skiing. I do agree that tree skiing could be dangerous relative to snagging a pole, so in that case I usually take the straps off.
post #27 of 28
Wear the poles like TangleFoot's post shows.
Except when you are doing the trees. Unless you would rather lose an arm then a pole. When you are doing the trees, just hold on to the handle and let the straps fly. : :
post #28 of 28
I usually keep ze pole straps on no matter vot I ski.... Recently during a tree run in poder, my pole got stuck on tree, but because of my big beefy muscles, ze piece-of-scheiss Scott pole break just below ze handle...sometimes my own strength surprise even Arnie.

Luckily I keep extra poles in my Humvee so I vas able to continue skiing ze excellent poder for ze rest of ze day.
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