11 Tips for Parents of Beginner Skiers
From decades of starting out kids skiing on the right foot, ski expert Bob Danzeisen provides his best tips for parents of new skiers:
1. Why battle the crowds at the slopes? Get kids’ ski gear in advance.
There’s a lot of excitement for first-time skiers and their parents when they get to the slopes. Getting ski equipment in advance reduces stress for both parents and children, while providing better quality and better fitting gear.
2. For growing kids: lease, don’t buy.
Leasing ski gear costs less out of pocket. Even better, at the end of the season, you’re not stuck with outgrown skis, boots and bindings that you will (maybe) sell second hand. It’s much easier to return the leased gear to the store.
3. Independent, local ski retailers take the time to fit your child properly, even on leased equipment.
Not only do local ski shops offer superior quality equipment, they take the time to fit your child properly — skis, boots, binding, helmet, and goggles — for comfort and safety.
4. Encourage children try on their equipment at home before they get to the slopes.
Not only is trying everything on at home fun and exciting, it gets your child comfortable putting on her gear in the quiet, relaxed environment of home.
5. Tuck an energy bar or snack into your child’s pocket.
Your child is going to love skiing, and, therefore, want to stay on the slopes all day. An energy bar gives him a needed lift without slowing him down.
6. Start your child off in ski school at the mountain.
You can’t beat initial lessons in technique and safety from professionals who are experienced in starting kids off right.
7. Purchase a good helmet for your child; then have a professional fit it.
Proper fit for all equipment is very important, but wearing the right head protection, the right way, is simply safer.
8. Dress kids in layers, starting with a synthetic under-layer.
Cotton is a no-no for physical activity because it retains sweat and ultimately cools the body. The first layer or two should be a synthetic designed to wick sweat away from the body to maintain body heat.
9. Don’t believe the old wives' tales about socks.
Thicker socks are not necessarily warmer, especially if they’re not designed to wick sweat away from the skin to keep feet warmer. And contrary to popular belief, don't wear double socks because they rub and cause blisters.
10. Let kids wear mittens, not gloves.
Mittens keep the fingers together, helping them stay warmer. Mittens also help children better grasp ski poles and other gear.
11. Make sure goggles fit properly as well.
When childrens’ goggles are fitted by a professional, they will feel more comfortable for a longer period of time, while permitting more air to flow to prevent fogging.
“Start kids skiing properly, and you will have given them a wonderful sport and activity they will enjoy all their lives," Danzeisen says.
Founded in 1961, Danzeisen and Quigley is South Jersey’s sports specialty superstore, with one of the largest ski, snowboard, swim & bicycle selections in the region. D&Q has won the distinction to be named a “Top 100” bicycle retailer in the United States and 2013 “Best of Philly” sporting goods store by Philadelphia magazine. The store is known for its devotion to quality and expert skill at fitting products to sports and outdoors enthusiasts at all skill levels. Danzeisen & Quigley is located at 1720 E. Marlton Pike (Rt. 70), Cherry Hill, NJ. Phone: 856-424-5969. Visit the website and check them out on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.