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Choosing Ski Sizing and Length

Categories: Ski

If you want to have the best experience on the slopes, you need to choose the proper ski size and length for your body and skill. Ski sizing can be confusing if you aren’t sure where to start. Virgin Islands Ski Rentals can be your guide to picking the correct ski size and length when you visit Colorado so you can have fun on the trails and improve your performance.

What Length Should My Skis Be?

The first thing to understand about ski sizing is ski length. Your skis need to be an appropriate length that corresponds to your height, weight, ability, and skiing style preference. Most skiers start their ski sizing by looking at a ski length chart and using their height to determine a basic recommendation. Heavier people may need to get a larger ski than their height indicates, and people who are lighter may opt to size down their skis.

4’4”115-130 cm
4’6”125-140 cm
4’8”130-145 cm
4’10”135-150 cm
5’135-155 cm
5’2”145-165 cm
5’4”150-170 cm
5’6″155-175 cm
5’8”160-180 cm
5’10”165-185 cm
6’170-190 cm
6’2”175-195 cm
6’4″180-200 cm

Beginners

Beginners may want to size their skis down a few centimeters, especially if they plan on skiing slowly and not taking turns quickly. Beginners may be people completely new to the hobby, those without a lot of confidence in their abilities, or ski enthusiasts who prefer to ski green trails.

Intermediate Skiers

An intermediate skier may be ready for the next challenge, but they may also want to make navigation easier by sizing down their skis. Intermediate skiers may tackle blue trails, or they may attempt a few black diamonds as they feel more comfortable on the slopes. They may also go with the recommended ski size for their height.

Experts

The most experienced skiers can take their ski sizing recommendations and size up a few more centimeters. These are the people that feel the most comfortable on the trails and are consistently navigating the hardest black diamonds. Sizing up the skis allows for more speed and aggressiveness on the trails.

Ski Width

After determining the ski length that works best, the next thing to consider is ski width in ski sizing. The Colorado area is home to many iconic ski resorts and trail conditions that aren’t found anywhere else in the world. Skis that are appropriately sized for length and width can help visitors and residents get the best experience on the slopes. Ski waist width indicates the measurement of the ski in the middle. Beginners may want to choose a ski that is narrower, so they have more control. A wider waist width on a ski may be more challenging to navigate.

Rocker and Camber

The next thing to understand about ski sizing is the profile of the ski. The most common profiles are rocker and camber. Camber skis are generally flat, rise up in the middle, and rise up at the ends of the skis. A rocker ski is the opposite of that. Rocker skis are best for off-trail conditions with powdery, untouched snow.

Terrain

The terrain you plan on skiing also matters with sizing. Most beginners and intermediates can go with the standard all-mountain skis that are optimal for any type of condition. Skiers that ride specific trails, such as backcountry, moguls, or terrain parks, may want to choose a terrain-specific ski, such as powder, big mountain, Alpine-touring, or freestyle. 

Turning Radius

Another element that also should be part of ski sizing is the turning radius. Each ski brand assigns a turn radius measurement to the product to assist consumers with choosing the right match for their skiing style. Most beginner and all-mountain skis are made with a short turn radius of 16 meters or less. Longer turn radius skis of 22 meters or more are best suited for backcountry and freestyle skiers. Skis are also made with a medium turn radius of 17 to 22 meters for all-mountain skiers who want better turn control for higher speeds.

Find Skis That Fit Your Body and Match Your Style

Let the Virgin Islands Ski Rentals team help you determine the correct ski size for your body and skill. We offer 10% off for rentals that are booked online. Visit us at our retail location in Silverthorne, Colorado, right in the middle of the best ski resorts in Summit County, to try out some ski sizes and pick out your accessories.