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Are my skis holding back my progress?..

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

To give a quick background, I'm an occasional skier (3-4 days annually) until recently, in which now I'm able to ski much more due to a recent move north to Virginia.  Until now, I've had some frustrating days to be sure but I've progressed to an intermediate level I'd guess (very comfortable on blues, somewhat comfortable on blacks based on how I feel that day or overall fatigue, and the run itself).  However, as of late I feel that I'm making little to no progress overall; I thought by now I'd be ripping down blacks but that simply isn't happening, and some days I feel like I'm regressing a bit.  I'm 6'0, 190, and my current skis are Salomon Verse 7 (160 cm) that were given to me by a relative a few years back when I was first introduced to skiing.  After doing a bit of research here, I'm now well aware that my skis are too short, if not grossly too short for me at this point.  With that being said, are my skis at least partly to blame for the wall I've seem to hit lately, or should I chalk it up to typical growing pains in which a good day or two of instructing should cure (or both)?


I guess I'd say my main problems are that, on black runs, my skis feel unstable during turns and flat runs overall.  They seem to chatter a good bit and basically don't feel as stable as (I think) they should.  Thus my confidence goes out the window quickly and you all know what that can do to you.  Also, my legs seem to get tired very quickly as well; after a few hours today for example I was pretty much shot, and was even a bit sketchy on blues which isn't normal for me. For what its worth, fitness isn't a problem for me with my legs, as I'm a biker and do quite a bit of lifting/training as well.  Regardless, I plan on getting some quality instruction the next time out, but I'm just curious if some of you feel that perhaps my skis are to blame as well, and are holding me back.  Until now I assumed that shorter skis simply meant you couldn't ski as fast and that's about it, but after doing a few searches here it looks like proper ski length is very important for your development.


If my skis are a problem here, how exactly are they holding me back and do my symptoms above sound like someone who is skiing on undersized skis?  Finally, I'm starting my search this week for new skis, probably in the 170cm range.  Any comments here (along with any specific ski recommendations) would be appreciated.  As I mentioned earlier I ski in the east exclusively (Snowshoe mainly).


By the way, if this post would be more appropriate for the instruction form let me know and I'll move it...this is my first post so I was unsure as to which form to post this on.  Thanks.

post #2 of 7
Originally Posted by roanoke4 View Post

To give a quick background, I'm an occasional skier (3-4 days annually) until recently, in which now I'm able to ski much more due to a recent move north to Virginia.  


So, how many days have you skied? Skiing is hard to be good at, it doesn't happen in a few days... even if those 'few days' are spread over many years. 


Yes, your skis are too short and they are older, low performance and well, there are better skis out there... but I'd say spend your $$ on instruction first. The issues you are experiencing are all technique related, new skis will allow you to feel better without fixing the problems, good technique will allow you to feel better everywhere no matter what you are skiing on.

post #3 of 7

While technique improvement won't hurt, those skis were not meant for high speeds.  I would be looking for more stable skis.

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 



Thanks for your comments, especially your last sentence which makes perfect sense.  I've had some people tell me the same, more tell me that I simply need to ski more, and even more than that who have said my skis are holding me back (along with experience).  Like I said, until this winter I only had the opportunity to ski 3-4 days a year.  I've only been skiing sporadically for about 5 years, so I guess you could say that I've skied a total of 20 days tops. 

post #5 of 7



post #6 of 7

I'm surprised Whiteroom didn't say it but before you invest in new skis, go to a boot fitter and get properly fitted for boots.  I spent many years buying expensive skis thinking they would make me a better skier.  It never happened.  When I was finally convinced to get properly fitting boots and did it, I could not believe the difference they made in my skiing.  Properly fitting boots won't eliminate the chatter you're experiencing but what they will do is transmit your foot movements to the skis immediately rather than later.  Properly fitting boots are ultimately more comfortable and warmer than boots that are 1-3 sizes too large.  Once you have boots that fit properly demo some skis and see what feels good and select skis based on that.  When students ask me about buying equipment I always tell them to buy boots first and skis later.  Boots are far more important than skis, too bad they aren't more glamorous.

post #7 of 7

Proper ski and BOOTS can improve you skiing. I still remember what happened when I went from 95 to 120 boots... amazing, so much more control.

BUT... it all starts with proper technique. Take lessons/training would be my advise. Remember it is harder to quit a wrong learned technique then learning it right away properly!

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