Skiing on ice can be a burdensome task, as you have to tread carefully to avoid falling. Majority of the people that ski on snow, find it excruciating to maneuver on ice since the conditions are different.
Hence, one must learn a few skiing tricks and techniques to hack the icy trail. For instance, you need to know how to manage icy conditions and how to properly turn on skis and slide while on ice. The tips discussed below will give you the confidence you need to ski on ice.
What Contributes To Icy Conditions?
Every skier will often encounter ice while skiing since snow easily turns into ice when the temperatures drop. Ice can also form in areas where the snow cannons are off, on moguls, when it suddenly rains, and in places where snow has melted making it possible to freeze. Similarly, the snow that has been there for a while can easily freeze and become hard, making it difficult to ski.
Why It Is Hard To Ski On Ice
Ice tends to be slippery in comparison to snow and due to the absence of friction, more people find it difficult to stay upright, turn, and ski confidently.
Friction is essential when skiing as it helps a skier to maintain speed, make a hop turn, and stop on skis when necessary. Ice makes it impossible to balance if you do not have the skills needed, putting you at risk of ski injuries.
What To Do When Skiing On Ice
1. Sharpen Your Skis
Skis tend to get rusty and dull at the edges after being used for a while, which will require you to use more energy to turn and stop on ice. After all, when you buy skis you are advised to sharpen your ski edges frequently.
You can either do it yourself by learning ski tuning or visit a ski shop for these services. Remember to wax your skis regularly too to keep them in good shape
2. Take Control Of Your Skis
Learn to control your body while ice skiing, as it is difficult to maneuver on ice without this skill. Start by lowering your center of gravity by bending your knees and leaning your body towards the uphill side where your skis are facing.
Avoid back seating when skiing on ice as it will lead to you going at a fast speed that can be dangerous especially when skiing steep slopes lest you plunge into your death. Ensure that you maintain control of your skis at all times by properly positioning yourself.
3. Body Positioning
Learn to keep an ice body position by spreading your skis apart, lowering your hip, and leaning slightly over your downhill ski, which will make it easier for you to lift the tail of the uphill ski from the snow.
Try rolling your feet and ankles up on a hill to make the skis firm on the edges and have your chest facing the fall- line if you are to ski smoothly. Learn how to ski on powder first before you venture on to ice skiing to know how to position your body.
Your body position will be determined by the type of skis you are using, the length of the skis as well as your weight distribution.
4. Lean Into The Edges
Hone your skills on ice skiing by learning how to lean on an edge and pressing the skis into a slope. Sharpened edges can help you have a grip on the slippery ice. The trick is to avoid keeping your skis flat on the snow; they should dig deep into the ice by the edges.
You have to be more precise with your movements when ice skiing. Be patient and avoid making rash decisions to turn when you are not ready.
5. Remain Calm
Although it can be scary to get to a mountain and discover that snow has suddenly turned into ice. You must remain calm and collected if you are to make it down the slope safely. There is no need to worry when you have basic skills in skiing.
As a good skier, you should be prepared to brace all weather conditions; it is what will set you apart from other skiers. Keep tabs on the weather updates to learn of the best time to go skiing if you want to avoid ice skiing.
6. Traversing On Ice
If you find that you have gone off-piste on frozen powder, do not panic. Try locking your legs so that your muscles can be activated to move over the frozen powder.
Ensure that you maintain a stable posture to avoid tumbling down unexpectedly. Do not slide sideways across the slope. Maintain a forward movement by putting more weight on the downhill ski.
Additional Tips To Skiing Properly On Ice
- Separate your skis a little bit to increase your stability while skiing on ice
- Avoid stopping on ice suddenly; try side slipping if you are looking to stop gradually. Release your edges, slide, and quickly grip the edges if you want to regain control. Do this process continuously when sliding in a steep icy section.
- Do not skid on ice. While skidding might seem easier or safer for you, it could lead to your skis sliding out from your grip.
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Knowing how to effectively ski on ice can be quite a thrill. But you can only hack it if you learn how to confidently position your body and take control of your skis.
Practice on a normal trail before treading on icy conditions to avoid injuries and have a successful ski day. And remember to check the weather forecasts so you can learn about any existing icy condition before setting out on your skiing adventure.
Skiing on ice can be fun, but if you are scared, it is best to postpone until the atmospheric conditions are favorable for you.
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- How To Ski On Ice, coachup.com