8 essential tips for any newbie skiers thinking of hitting the slopes this winter

Dipping temperatures and shorter days are no reason to suggest the holiday season is over. If you’re a fan of the white stuff and willing to give winter sports a go, then the fun is only just beginning.

Never strapped on a pair of skis before? Don’t worry. These handy tips will have you perfectly prepared for the pistes.

1. Layer up

Temperatures can fluctuate considerably on the slopes as you reach higher altitudes and break into a sweat on challenging runs. Then there’s the diving in and out of clammy bars for apres-ski action. The trick is to wear layers. Start with a thermal baselayer, another top and a thin fleece under your ski jacket, and a pair of thermal leggings under your salopettes. Waterproof gloves, ski socks, a neck warmer, hat and goggles will see you right on the mountains.

2. Stay hydrated

High altitudes can leave you dehydrated, and you’ll no doubt be parched after an active day on the piste. It’s a good idea to have water in the morning to start your day and to bring a bottle with you if you have a rucksack. And don’t be tempted to substitute water with beer.

3. Keep your phone warm

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Batteries can give up easily in cold conditions. If you want to use your phone to capture pictures or video ski sessions, it’s a good idea to put it inside a sock and tuck it into the inside pocket of your ski jacket.

4. Practise walking in ski boots

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The first time you walk in ski boots, you will look and feel like Robocop. Try side-stepping slowly on your journey from the hotel to the slopes to avoid slipping before you get on to your skis. It’s also a good idea to do up your ski boots at the end of the day and keep them somewhere warm – they’ll be much easier to put on the next morning.

5. Brush up on pizzas and ploughs

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You’ll hear a lot of different ski lingo – but perhaps the most important is the V-shape pizza or plough position of your feet on skis. This helps you to slow down and stop.

6. Grab some poles

 

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Don’t be afraid to use ski poles to help you stay upright. They’ll give you some grip on steep slopes and will also help prevent you from sliding.

7. Always carry sun cream

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OK it’s winter but the sun is still intense – even more so when reflecting off brilliant white slopes. Make sure you put sun cream on any exposed body parts – face, ears, neck and lips.

8. Carry a sweet treat

Yes, you’re having a great time – but you’re also a little cold and feeling the challenge of staying on your feet. Reaching into your pocket to find chocolate perks you up and gives you an energy boost to keep going.

 

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