Skiing is fun! That’s what all your friends have been telling you. But you’re still not convinced. The lessons at your local dry ski slope were, er, okay, but that was on a short and easy slope. And now, there you are on your first skiing holiday, and looking around, all you can see are skilful and confident skiers. They are everywhere, whizzing gracefully downhill, proficiently skiing moguls, freestyling with aplomb. AndButall this does is make you feel even more nervous. As a newbie skier, it can often feel as though you’re the only one who isn’t utterly brilliant.
But don’t panic. (That’s the worse thing you can do). And don’t head back to the chalet and sit around feeling glum. (That’s a huge waste of money.) Instead, take on board a few of these confidence-building tips for beginner skiers.
Great tips for novice skiers
Look ahead not down: One of the biggest mistakes for first-time skiers is to focus on looking at your skis, and not ahead at where you’re going. It is not at all necessary to look at your skis, because they will always be on the ends of your legs. Looking forward will help to keep your body more upright and to plan where you’ll be skiing. If you're a cyclist, just imagine what it would be like cycling while staring at your front wheel and not the trail ahead!
Take your time: If you’re with a group of friends it’s too easy to be caught up with their enthusiasm and set off at a bonkers pace.
[caption id="attachment_1177" align="alignleft" width="122" caption="Ski blue runs beautifully"][/caption]
But skiing too fast for your own ability is not only dangerous but it also means you will fail to learn the basic skills of confident carving. Skiing at your own pace means that you are in control and not subject to the speed and will of other people.
Take it easy: Beautiful carving on easy blue pistes will boost your confidence much more than throwing yourself down a difficult red run. Learn to ski on easier runs before pushing yourself to tackle more difficult slopes. At the end of the day, no one is going to chastise you for skiing only blue runs, but they will give you a hard time if you break your leg on the first day attempting a red run.
Pole position: It might seem as though the poles are incidental to skiing, but in fact they are a vital component. If you do not position the poles correctly, you’ll be more likely to fall down or ski too slowly. Make sure your arms are at your sides, slightly out in front of you and with a small bend at the elbows. The poles should point in a back and down direction.
Lean forward: It is a common mistake of new skiers to lean too far back. It might be a natural instinct to want to lean backwards, but this will only hinder your skiing ability. Leaning back slows you down and also affects the contact of the skis with the snow. This usually means that a skier who leans back has less control of their skis. Instead, lean forward and take control of your skis.