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Pole Guards

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
What are the pros and cons of full vs half pole guards?

Also, do all of you that race use different poles for SL and GS?
post #2 of 15
Full guards are bigger and bulkier, but there really are no cons. Half guards are smaller, but you need to be clearing in the lower half of the grip or on the shaft for them to work. If you don't have padded race gloves, I'd unequivocally recommend a full guard. If you do have race gloves, a half is fine, although I don't really see why you would get a half over a full. I've skied slalom with my GS poles and no guards, and my gloves had enough padding to keep me from bruising.

I use bent GS poles, so yeah I have different poles. A lot of WCers are using straight poles for GS lately, as they offer more power out of the start. The practical reason for using two pairs of poles is so that you don't have to take your slalom guards on and off of one pair of poles. I freeski my GS poles so that I don't have to deal with the guards, although the guards can be useful in tight trees.
post #3 of 15
I dont know why but I tend to like Half guards better... God knows why but the big con is that if (IF) you have to put your hand down the guard can hook... And break and take your shoulder with it.

I also use straight poles both for Slalom and Turny GSs for steep icy and turny GS I use a straight pole because the force of the pole plant can turn your pole into a foldable one. For non turny GS and SG and up I use curved poles that do not hook into the gates.
post #4 of 15
I like the half guards too because I think they look cooler. But they also tend to last longer because they flex a bit more and as a result don't crack as often. I have turned more than one set of full guards into half guards after breaking them...
post #5 of 15
I liked half guards until I smashed my index finger pretty bad one time and it took a few weeks until it got back to normal. That was with padded gloves. I've used full guards since.

Different poles for SL and GS because pole guards are annoying and retarded looking outside of a SL course.
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Is there a trick I'm missing to putting these on the poles?
post #7 of 15
What seems to be the problem? I find myself that it can be a hassle but I dont know what step you could be missing...
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMAS29 View Post
What seems to be the problem? I find myself that it can be a hassle but I dont know what step you could be missing...
It seems like I should be able to push the plastic clamp onto the pole but I'm already using alot of pressure and it won't quite make it. Do you have to remove the grips first? If so, any hints on getting them off?
post #9 of 15
No you should not have to take the grips off. I usually put the pole down on a work table and then just lay my weight on top of the guard. What kind of poles/guards are they?
post #10 of 15
If you snap it onto the thinner part of the pole, down near the basket, and slide it up, it should work...
post #11 of 15
In a way there are 4 different kinds of guards. Fulls come in the type you are talking about having difficulty getting on the pole and I've even seen some of those break when installing or removing down at the skinny bottom of the pole. I think they were Gabels. But the other kind of full has a separate back piece so you bolt them together. That kind which I think Archer developed also has a bit fuller shape since the top goes out level from the screw before sweeping down. Somehow for no particular reason that I know of they seem to work better for me.

With the halfs there are the smaller ones like Scott and most others including the smaller Lekis then there are the large Leki halfs which are superior IMHO give pretty much full protection. The large Leki halfs also use the bolt on separate back like above but they only use one bolt whereas the Archer design uses two and DC probably is right that the flex keeps it from shattering. One thing is you will need to buy another set eventually they all break.

- Fossil
post #12 of 15
I use the Scott halfies. I was having trouble clipping my thumb knuckle until my kids coach told me to aim for the gate just below the pole guard on the ski pole itself. this happend with full or 1/2 guards.

having 1/2 guards really makes you pay attention to where you are contacting the gate. if done properly you should be no where near your your hand! Halfies cured me really fast
!
post #13 of 15
Cool, that's a good idea.
post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voltron View Post
I liked half guards until I smashed my index finger pretty bad one time and it took a few weeks until it got back to normal. That was with padded gloves. I've used full guards since.
One of the problems with the original Scott guards is that they actually increased the chances of a finger injury on the pinky or ring fingers. These guards, which were made of extremely rigid plastic, would fill up with snow if a skier fell, wedging it into the fingers and causing the fingers to get crushed by the pressure (the stiff plastic wouldn't budge an inch).

Granted, this was 17 years ago, but ever since, I've only used full-coverage guards.
post #15 of 15
I like and use the Leki full guards. More protection means less injuries.
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