Who doesn't want to spend some quality time with their loved ones in the close vicinity of white snow-covered mountains while staying away from the hustle and bustle of daily office schedule? If you are looking for ways to have some precious family moments this winter vacations, then skiing in the best places of the world can turn out to be the best option.
Skiing is one of the most popular winter sports that attract thousands of people every year from all around the world. There are different types of skiing, including Cross-country, Nordic, Super G, Alpine, etc. Though all types of skiing are full of adventure and fun, Alpine skiing is a more popular winter sport.
If you are a beginner and planning to go for Alpine skiing, there is no doubt that you are going to have fun. However, you should know how to control direction and speed while going downhill and also handle balance using the ski poles. Otherwise, you may end up while having a frustrating experience, which may lead to the cause of fear of skiing. Hence, before you go ahead, it is wise to know what is Alpine skiing and how to get started. In this guide, we are going to tell the same.
What is Alpine Skiing?
Unlike Cross-Country skiing and Sky jumping, Alpine skiing is sliding down snow-covered slopes on skis with fixed-heel bindings. It is also known as downhill skiing. It is a crucial part of the Winter Olympics since 1936, when a combined event for men and women was held in Garmisch Partenkirchen, Germany.
Alpine skiing is not only about going down the mountain edges; it can also be skiing straight to mountains. This sport involves longer skis, which help you in giving higher control whenever you are going down a hill. It also includes the natural speeds whenever you are going to travel down the hill. So, properly controlling of skies is really important as you need to change directions or slow down at some point. This winter sport is really good for your body and mind. It enhances your physical abilities and skills while making you entertained.
However, before you go ahead, it is recommended to undergo some training and all the basic techniques : how to turn, how to fall, how to stop and gain huge confidence. Also, the type of alpine skies you will use also affect your overall performance. Hence, make sure you choose your skies carefully while considering some crucial factors. Let's understand what is alpine skiing and how you can prepare yourself for Alpine skiing.
How to get started?
Select your Equipment
Skies are the most crucial gear of skiing. Right size skies make your skiing easier and allow you to perform your tricks efficiently. It is wise to go through a ski size chart to choose the right skies as per your size. Make sure you are picking only those skis which are shorter than you. Longer size skies will take more time to turn and slow down as you have more ski to move.
Boots play a crucial role in skiing as they help you to control the skies over the edges. Hence, your boots should be fit your feet in such a way that your heel doesn't come out once you are done tying up your boots. You must feel comfortable while wearing the boots. Though your ski boots size won't be smaller than your sneakers size, they should not be tight enough that your toes feel crunched. You should be able to walk comfortably in your ski boot without any problem. On the other hand, they should not be loose enough that your feet should not slip from side to side in the boot.
Ski poles play a vital role in skiing. They are used to help you balance and turn. Hence, make sure you are selecting a set of poles which come to your chest. Always search for poles that allow you to grip comfortably.
Your ski clothing should not be only warm, but they should be breathable. Avoid using bulky clothes as it would give you more sweat. Apart from this, you need to learn how to layer while skiing. Layering is vital while skiing as it offers you the freedom to add or remove a layer of clothing as per the environmental conditions.
Apart from your body, you need to cover your head, face, hands and feet as well in order to shield yourself from cold. Hence, it is recommended to invest in a good pair of gloves and socks, a helmet and facemask or balaclava. Make sure your socks and gloves are made up of moisture-wicking material. Otherwise, it may lead to irritation. Also, your helmet has proper ventilation.
Eyes are the most vital part of your body. Impaired vision not only makes your skiing difficult but also lead to severe injuries. Hence, it is recommended to wear ski goggles while skiing. They will also give protection to your eyes from harsh wind and also from sunburn. Always wear good quality sunscreen to protect your face.
Establishing your stance
The basis stance for alpine skiing is to keep your legs in line with your hips. You should keep your both skis parallel to each other with your toes slightly inward.
Now, you have to bend your knees to maintain balance. It also helps in taking on the impact of the bumps in the slope.
Always keep a balanced and well-centered stance. You should pass your weight onto the feet balls. By keeping your balance centered on the feet, you would be able to keep going straight without any issue.
Learning to Turn & Stop
It is easy to find a number of ways to turn, but one of the easiest is to lift one ski off the snow. Your body would move to that direction. Just lift your left ski if you are going to turn left. The best technique to stop is the snowplow method. You can stop by keeping your toes toward each other. It is better to practice skiing in less speed until you master in stopping.
It really does not matter how much speed the other skiers are using; it is only your responsibility to follow only controllable speeds. You should remember that racing is only for expert skiers and not for the beginners.
For more information and vital help, you should take a ski lesson. Your instructor would teach you everything by giving proper instructions and valuable feedback.
Making your first run
You should understand all the slope ratings. You would be able to notice the difficulty level of each slope by going through the Ski parks post signs. The slope ratings go from black diamond (hard) to green circle (easy).
If you are going for Alpine skiing for the very first time, then you need to proceed slowly and carefully. You can take the help of snowplow method to keep moving further at a slow speed until you really master turning, slowing and stopping.
If you feel that your speed is high enough that you won't be able to control it, then immediately stop on the hill. After stopping for a while, you can again start and finish your ride. Always stop on the trail side, so other skiers would never running into you.
To reach the next stopping point, you should learn to take at least one or two turns. Only you have to practice slowly and gain more confidence for better expertise and run in this game.
You should also slow down your speed before you get to the bottom of the hill. You should learn how to stop completely, which is really harder if you are new into this. It should be your top priority without any second thought for sure.
Finally, now you know what is Alpine skiing and how you can be ready for it. Alpine skiing is a famous winter pastime game & there are more than 300 million snowboarders and skiers in the world right now. You need to be very careful while going for it. If you are making any attempt which leads to committing an offense in Alpine skiing, then it would be considered as conduct for penalty imposition. Also, give more priority to your ski gear and other accessories. It is better to visit the Amazon online shopping site for buying high-quality skiing accessories for your first trip. Make sure you are not compromising on your safety while purchasing quality accessories.
So, start your first Alpine skiing right now!