Preparing for a Ski Trip - 5 Insider Tips
After the long summer, or off-season, as skiers prefer to call it, we sometimes forget all the nitty gritty details of preparing for a ski trip, particularly the first trip of the season. We have put together a short list of some things that can really make or break a good ski holiday or ski weekend.
Getting fit is a no-brainer part of preparation for skiing, but from year to year, your fitness needs may change. Between the squats, planks and jumping lunges, a skier may also need to focus on cardiovascular fitness, losing a few kilos, strengthening muscles around the knees or, in my case, re-gaining strength in the thumb I twisted last ski season. Give yourself a pre-season health check to determine your weak points, what you need to focus on and then create some fitness skiing goals for the coming season. Then it’s time to squat, plank and jump.
Reach far into the back of your closet for your ski jackets and ski pants, base layers, ski shirts and gloves and goggles. Try on everything before you leave home. Check that all items are still in good condition and robust enough to protect you from the wind, cold and snow. Check that zippers still zip, snaps still snap and that the fabrics are waterproof, particularly along the seams.
If your skiwear is too old, too tight or just not right, consider renting your ski clothes. SkiGala (www.skigala.com) provides brand name skiwear for reasonable prices and delivers the kit directly to your ski hotel.
Don’t forget the suncream! As the tan of summer is fading fast, your skin is vulnerable to the ultraviolet rays at high altitudes. Bring at least a SPF30, and one that is formulated for mountain sun. Lip balm is just as important to protect against dryness and chapping.
A third cream that skiers often only think about after their first or second day on the slopes is a muscle relaxant. Even if you are tip top fit, those first few days on the slopes can be very demanding on your legs. Give them a break every evening with a rubdown of A535, Diana Menthol or other relaxing cream.
Ski resorts usually follow the lay of the land, so the runs and lift lines are not always easy to navigate. Look at a map of the ski resort before your journey, or at least before you start skiing for the day, and keep a copy in your ski jacket. Become familiar with the names of at least the main lift lines, particularly the lift and ski slope nearest to your hotel. It’s safer for you to know your way around the mountain and it certainly makes getting home at the end of the day a lot easier.
While researching the ski resort, check out where the chalets and restaurants are on the map. Check the reviews and circle the good ones. Ski grub is not particularly fancy and there are many mountain restaurants serving lukewarm soup and stale bread at eye-watering prices. A skier needs a good, hot meal to stay fit for an afternoon of skiing, so it is worth the time it takes to find chalets that are worthy of your patronage.
By following these simple insider tips, you will swoosh into the new ski season.
What are your insider tips for great skiing? Let us know: firstname.lastname@example.org