Dry ski slopes can be painful to fall on as well as being notorious for ripping up your clothes when you do take a tumble. So what’s the best gear to wear when you’re having lessons or getting some ski practice in on a dry ski slope? Here’s what we think... Indoors or Outdoors?
First of all, you need to choose whether you are heading to an indoor or outdoor dry ski slope and what time of year it is. If you are hitting the slopes in the middle of winter and it’s outdoors, the obvious solution is to wrap up warm. Although it might not be as cold as it is on a mountain top, you need to keep your body warm so that moving down the slopes isn’t too difficult. Also check the weather forecast – if there is a chance of precipitation, this could affect the type of clothes you should be wearing and you may need to wear waterproof gear. Also note that precipitation may also create a more slippery surface. If you are at an indoor dry ski slope, check their temperatures first. Some like to keep it cold inside the venue (especially if they are also home to a real snow ski slope and need to maintain that temperature).
Trousers Don’t wear expensive ski gear on a dry ski slope. If you have never skied before, chances are you’re going to be falling over quite a bit. Many people recommend wearing comfortable and old jeans when skiing on a dry slope. Tracksuit bottoms are comfortable, but they are usually flimsy and offer little protection against the tough bristles on a slope. For this reason, thermal underwear under your trousers offer an extra layer of protection but jeans also prevent you grazing yourself quite as badly.
Padding Padded gloves are an absolute must if you are skiing on a dry slope. They aren’t just great for keeping your hands nice and warm so that you can properly grip your ski poles, they are also ideal for protecting your hands should you fall. The mesh which creates the slope is covered by stiff bristles, and although the design of this mesh is always being improved, they can be painful to land on. Padded clothing can be bought from ski shops, but again remember not to wear your brand new skiing gear when you go to the dry slopes or you could end up burning friction holes in your new trousers. Above all, it is important to stay safe on the slopes. Many skiers will tell you that skiing on real snow is easier than dry slopes, so when you do eventually reach your skiing destination, practising on real snow should be made easier. Just save your old padded gear for the dry ski slopes at home and your new, waterproof ski clothes for the real snow of the mountains!