There are essentially three type of ski bikes. There's the traditional ski bob that you use with foot skis attached to ski boots, peg ski bikes that are essentially downhill mtn bikes on skis with pegs where the crankarms would be, and board bikes that are snowboard based.
Ski bikes are easier on your knees than skiing and snowboarding. If you have blown decrepit knees, a ski bike is the answer. WP uses them in their adaptive programs and has for years.
The traditional foot ski bikes would be the ski bike with training wheels. If you can ride a bicycle, you can learn to ride one of them in about 100 yds. You might fall over once. Yeah they look goofy but, they are fun. I'll ride around WP on them in uniform and I'll get people chasing after me trying to ask me about them. Many know someone who just has horrible knees and find standing up painful. An older gentleman last year was so happy when he found a way he could get his wife out with him again. You can be riding down intermediate slopes in 1.5 hours if you know how to ride a bicycle. I typed up a brief article on how to ride one
. Brenter also has a cheesy but good demo video
. You don't have to do all the bouncing up and down that they show in the video. That just makes for a sore bum and thighs. Just sit on the seat. You don't even have to use the foot skis to stop or turn. They are just balance outriggers. I did a review of the Brenter C4
which is the dominant rental model in the USA and Canada.
The pegger ski bikes are a different story. They are somewhere between downhill mountain biking and skiing. They are NOT like riding a bicycle and you have two less points of contact with the snow as you don't use foot skis. You do need lessons for it to learn how to skid then carve turns. If you start off leaning into a turn like a bicycle, the skis will get on edge and carve, you'll get too much speed, and you won't know how to stop. I wrote up my first experience on a pegger ski bike
. I'm now going in the trees and off small jumps. Devin Lenz takes them into bump runs, the half-pipe, does rock drops, and other crazy stuff. Vail Plum interviewed Devin last year
. It tells how he got started and why others started cause of blown knees. Devin is an incredibly nice person. I did see him last weekend and Winter Park Resort will have a feature interview with him in their upcoming magazine issue. Bob Barnes has been taking them down chutes at Winter Park. That's the Winter Park Bob Barnes. I did a review of the Lenz Sport Alpine Brawle
A good comprehensive ski bike resource is http://www.ski-bike.org/index.htmlEdited by daysailer1 - 10/25/09 at 12:03am