Freeski guide: everything you need to know about skis, ski bindings, ski boots and ski poles
Freeskiing is the ultimate freedom in the mountains. Dropping in on untracked faces, throwing down in the park and mastering the constantly changing, varied terrain is what makes freeskiing so fascinating. With so much adrenaline and creativity coursing through our veins, every day on the hill is an adventure.
1. Freeski equipment: Tips and suggestions for your new setup
In freeskiing riders are constantly pushing themselves and their equipment to the limits. That’s why it’s so important for both to be constantly improved. While you tend to those little things like fitness, creativity, style and equipment maintenance, the manufacturers are working all year round to develop and improve their freeski products. So year after year we see more amazing equipment from the likes of Armada, Atomic, K2, and Rossignol, whether freeskis, ski bindings, ski boots or ski poles.
So… just how exactly does it all come together? Don’t worry - our guide will take you through your new setup step by step. For more personal advice head to one of our many stores where our shop staff will be able to help you with everything you need. You might already have some ideas about what suits you or you might be completely new to the sport. Everyone is welcome here.
2. Ski: from all-mountain to freeride, from freestyle to jib
Whether you’re looking for all-mountain, freeride, freestyle or jib skis, there’s something for everyone here. The first thing we’ll do in this guide is clarify some basic terms before getting into things like specific setups for different riding styles. This way everything should be nice and clear so you’ll know exactly what you need for your style of riding. With this knowledge you should be able to find which shapes and profiles work best for your style.
Hopefully, with reading this guide, you can gain some valuable knowledge and navigate through our broad selection more comfortably.
3. Ski bindings: DIN values, materials and touring bindings
Ski bindings bring everything together by connecting your boots to your skis. Marker, Atomic, Salomon and Look are some of the best known binding brands. Choose the kind of bindings that suit your riding style and ski width best – between 85 mm and 130 mm. High-performance materials are always a sign of quality. There are even special bindings for freeride and touring, which feature a hike and ride mode. But be careful – not every ski boot is compatible with every touring binding
4. Ski boots: comfort and fit for optimal power transmission
When choosing your new pair of ski boots you have the option of various different grades of stiffness: 6 or 60 – 90 for softer and 10 or 100 – 130 for stiffer boots. These stiffness ratings are referred to as flex and vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. As well as getting the right size – measured in Mondopoint (your foot length in cm) – it’s also important to get the width right. Most medium width ski boots from Full Tilt, Dalbello or Salomon are around 99 mm or 100 mm. They also usually have additional models that go as far as 103 mm for wider feet and also narrower fitting models. Ski boots usually feature two, three or four clips or buckles. They often come with heat-mouldable or thermoform liners to guarantee the perfect fit. When it comes to fitting the liner your best bet is to head to your local Blue Tomato shop.
5. Ski poles and telescopic poles: help with hiking and balance
Aluminium or carbon poles are the standard for freestyle, jib and all-mountain freeskiing. If you feel yourself drawn more in the direction of freeride and touring a pair of telescopic poles will come in handy. These are length adjustable poles that can be easily stowed in your backpack when not in use. Our ski pole guide will tell you all you need to know about the different materials, the right lengths, grips and straps as well as the perfect baskets and tips for your riding style. The weight of your poles is particularly important for touring as a heavy pair of poles will tire you out much quicker when hiking up to your drop-in point. Manufacturers like Leki, Scott, Armada, Atomic, Komperdell and many more have a huge selection of telescopic and traditional aluminium and carbon ski poles for you to browse.