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New to the slopes? Here’s everything every beginner needs to know, before setting foot (or ski) in the snow!
Although you may be excited to just go out there and hit the slopes, skiing is one of those things that takes time to learn. Although your friends and family members may be offering to teach you, it is always best to be taught properly by someone who knows exactly what they are talking about. Although your family and friends may mean well by offering to teach you, there is a likelihood of them becoming bored and wanting to head off to the top of the slopes, leaving you stuck for what to do next. Having official lessons may also mean that you are less likely to have an accident while out on the slopes.
Patience is Key
Like when learning anything, having good levels of patience is key when it comes to learning the basics of how to ski. In order to become better each time you head to the slopes, it is important to continue to practice, and build up on your skills.
You don’t have to be somewhere exotic to practice your skiing skills. You can get a taste for the slopes by heading to your nearest artificial ski centre. Artificial slopes are a great way to give you an introduction to skiing, before you head off to anywhere fancy. Artificial slopes mirror what you can expect from a real slope, letting you get the feel for what awaits you. Booking a couple of taster sessions at your nearest artificial ski centre, will let you learn the basics, so you can look like a pro (or as near as) for when you go away.
If you a struggling to pick something up, watching videos online from people who have been in the position you are in can really help. They can run through everything you need to know slowly and clearly, and if you don’t feel comfortable with a certain part, you can always rewind and watch that section again and again!
Being Surrounded by Snow Doesn’t Mean You Can’t get Sunburnt!
Although it may be cold, and there’s snow on the ground, surprisingly, you can still get sun burn while out skiing. The snow reflects the sun’s rays, making us vulnerable to sunburn.
In order to protect your skin from the sun whilst whizzing down the slopes, apply sun cream before heading out. Preferably, you should apply a sun cream with an SPF of 15 or higher. It is important to ensure all parts of your body that will be exposed to the sun are covered with the cream, including your nose, ears, and neck. Water resistant sun cream will be beneficial for a beginner, as you will continue to be protected, even after a few slips, trips, and falls in the snow.
Be sure to reapply your sun cream throughout the day, in order to avoid the pain and discomfort of sunburn.
Ski goggles are a great way to protect your eyes from the sun while skiing. When purchasing your goggles, it is important to check the UV protection levels. Preferably, you want as much protection as possible for your eyes, so it is important to look out for goggles that protect you from UVA, UVB, and UVC. Most goggles these days will offer 100% UV protection, meaning that all levels of UV are covered.
Wear Practical Clothing
Although you may often want to look like a professional sponsored skier as you whiz your way down the side of a mountain, it will benefit you more as a beginner, to think about the practical side of the clothes you decide to wear. Waterproof clothing will be your best friend if you are still learning the ropes of skiing. You can expect a lot of falls, trips, and slips as a learner, meaning that you will be spending a lot of your time actually in the snow. Remember that snow is water! Falling over in it numerous times will leave you feeling relatively soaked. In order to enjoy your time in the snow, and not have to keep changing after every fall, it is sensible to wear waterproof clothing. With waterproof clothing, you will be able to ski to your heart’s content, without feeling cold, damp, and uncomfortable.
Correct Fitting Boots
It is important to have well-fitting boots when skiing. As well as causing rubbing, blisters, and unnecessary pain, ill-fitting boots can also affect the control you have of your skis, which could lead to further injuries. These injuries are preventable.
Poorly fitting boots can also mean that you may not enjoy your trip as much, due to being uncomfortable on the slopes.
In order to get boots that fit you perfectly, head to a shop that specialises in ski wear. Specialist shops will have sales teams who will be able to advise you on which boots will be the best for you and why.
Rent Equipment Rather than Purchase it
First time on the slopes? Then be sure to rent your equipment! Although it may be nice to have brand new glistening equipment when you head to the slopes, you may not enjoy skiing if it is your first time.
Renting your equipment allows you to test the water with the sport. If you enjoy it, then you can think about splashing the cash on some of your very own fancy gear. However, if you decide that skiing is not the sport for you, then you will not have a whole lot of ski equipment that you would never use again, taking up room and collecting dust in your attic.
You can also avoid spending money unnecessarily on ski suits and clothing by borrowing them from friends and family members. But be sure that they fit you properly!
Travel insurance plays a key part in any trip. Not only will it cover you for medical emergencies, but it can also cover you for trip cancellation, loss of belongings and even trip delays, before you’ve even set foot in your destination. As well as these, our additional winter sports cover can cover you for piste closure, lost, stolen, or damaged equipment, and even avalanche cover. Our winter sports cover can also cover you for over 100 different activities, including cross country skiing, sledging/sleighing, snowboarding, and ice diving. Have a worry free holiday, knowing that you are covered with Direct Travel Insurance.
Don’t forget, you can get your travel insurance from DirectTravel at either www.direct-travel.co.uk or ring our friendly team on 0330 880 3600.