Should I go skiing? Am I too old to learn? Is it too late? Will I be freezing? Am I going to get injured?
Skiing is not your everyday activity. The thought of sticking two long, slippery planks to your feet and setting off downhill with no brakes can bring up the most terrifying of thoughts. We’ve all been first-time skiers ourselves, so we know what can run through your head before you ever get to the mountains. However, skiing is not what it was 60 years ago, ski resorts, ski equipment and ski instruction have evolved drastically over the years, and it’s honestly never been easier to learn to how to ski.
So if you’re on the fence and wondering if you should learn to ski as an adult, don’t worry – here’s why it’s not as scary as you may think.
Beginners have their own safe spaces on the mountain
If comical pictures of people being dragged up drag lifts on their side come to mind, fret not – those are a thing of the past. Many ski resorts, including Morzine, have invested in their beginner areas with magic carpet escalators, where you stand on a moving rubber mat (think airport-style!). So, as long as you can stand up, you will get to the top of the beginner slope. This is definitely a tranquil way to start your skiing career.
These are also put in specified beginner areas, situated out of the way of other slopes and speedy skiers. So you’ll be taking your first turns in a calm area of the mountain, with other first-timers.
They also keep these areas – along with the entire mountain – well groomed. Ski slope grooming has come on leaps and bounds. The end of the day mogul field after 3pm is no longer the case. New grooming techniques and improvements to the snow grooming machines as well as snow cannons have made reliable surfaces that often are in great condition from the start of the day until the end.
You don’t have to learn everything in one go
Take your time on day one. Don’t expect to learn everything in one go, but also know that you won’t! You’re learning a new skill that takes time. A good instructor will lead you through and make sure that you have learned what is necessary before pushing you on.
Skiing can be a big confidence game and if you learn meticulously and thoroughly at the start then you will make each advance with confidence and ease. If you rush onwards and skip bits that you don’t like then when the difficulty ramps up, you may well find yourself struggling on day three and have to go back to the drawing board. You can’t build a strong house with bad foundations.
Ski equipment doesn’t resemble medieval torture devices
Much work has gone into ski boot design in the last 20 or 30 years. Now there are special women’s boots designed for their morphology, heat moulded boots, boot fitters who guarantee comfort should you want to invest in your own ski boots [that is not a bad idea and probably the first bit of hardware to buy if you like it].
Skis have also vastly improved to tailor to all types of skiers. Whereas before the only difference you could choose in your skis was length, you can now find beginner skis that are specifically made for those who have never put on planks before. Beginner skis will usually be relatively short, light and soft with a fair degree of shape making it very easy to turn.
Wrestling with ill-fitting boots, fiddly bindings and cumbersome skis was all part of the skiing of yesteryear. You’ll be surprised how the advances in equipment genuinely compliment the activity nowadays.
Start out alongside a professional
Some people do succeed and get themselves going without instruction but they are often fit, fearless or a number of adjectives that I had better not state here. For every person that takes on skiing using their wits, courage and determination to conquer all, there are a multiple who end up injured or saddled with a technique suited to competing in a survival contest hosted by Bear Grylls.
Saving a bit of cash on lesson may seem like a good idea, but generally you’re setting yourself up to collect a handful of bad habits that you’ll eventually have to pay an instructor to help you get rid of.
You don’t want to end up spending every evening of your holiday watching ski tips on YouTube and then trying to re-enact what you learned everyday on the slopes. If you’re constantly asking your spouse or friends to ‘check that angle’, you may end up risking divorce or with friends who won’t be joining you on your next ski holiday. We don’t want that for you – and neither do you!
Start out alongside a professional at New Generation Ski & Snowboard School, and rest assured that their experienced, fun and professional instructors will get you up and skiing safely – no bad habits in tow!
Learning to ski is well within the grasp of most reasonably active adults of any age. Despite the famous myths and often hilarious mishaps associated with learning to ski, it’s actually relatively common to not fall at all in your first lesson or even your first week of lessons.
If you are deliberating or wondering whether you should do it, we’d unreservedly say give it a go, it’s not nearly as scary as you think.
Ready to give skiing a go? New Generation is breaking down ski barriers with their Learn to Ski package. Beginners receive an extra lesson on Monday afternoon absolutely free, to get you up and about sooner. Meaning more independence and fun, and hopefully, a better holiday! Book online or give them a bell +44 (0)1462 674 000.