Ski Tips for Beginners

Rachel Rasmussen

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We are now right in the middle of Colorado’s prime ski and snowboard months, which means the slopes, parking lots and highways are packed. And if you’re one of five people in this state that has never gone skiing and you want to try it out or you’re a beginner, there are a few things to keep in mind before you hit the slopes.


French fries vs. Pizza pies

Remember the two basic positions your skis can point by thinking about french fries and pizza pies. French fries means keeping your skis parallel toeach other as you go down the hill. This allows you to gain speed.

Pizza pies means pointing the front tips of your skis inward so your skis make a triangle, or pizza slice. This can allow you to turn by leaning into one of your skis or to slow down and stop if you need to. Just know it can be a leg workout to maintain.

Look uphill . . . A lot

This can prevent some terrible collisions or some small heart attacks if you almost hit someone because you didn’t know they were getting close. It’s also good to look if your run and another run are merging. It’s like driving, you gotta watch for people coming up on your blind side.

Losing a Ski of the Hill

If you lose a ski while on a run the best way to pop back into your bindings and go on your way after losing a ski is to turn your ski so it is perpendicular to the hill and you’re facing sideways with the ski you need to put back on above the other ski.

No Texas Tucks

You’ve probably seen ski racers tuck to gain speed as they race down a course and thought “hey that looks cool, I should try it when I ski.” Don’t try it without someone teaching you the proper way to tuck. If you attempt it on your own, most likely the result is what’s known as the Texas Tuck. Named after the stereotype that people from Texas can’t ski, a Texas Tuck makes the skier look ridiculous.

Enroll in a few lessons

It may seem childish to be an adult enrolled in ski lessons, but you can sign up for private lessons so it’s just you and your instructor. And don’t worry, your instructor has probably taught a ton of adults so it isn’t weird. And taking lessons to learn is better than just thinking you can handle teaching yourself then wiping out four feet into a run.

Wear the proper gear

Listen, I know ski gear can get expensive, believe me, but it is important to have the proper equipment so you don’t get pneumonia or seriously injured if something happens. Some of the equipment includes a helmet, waterproof everything, gloves (and not those knitted ones that get soaked the minute they touch snow), and no jeans … seriously, just trust me don’t wear them.