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Returning to skiing after 18 years

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
After an 18 year break I've got the urge to return to the mountains, looking for a little info/advice on how skiing has changed in the last 18 years, I started skiing in 1984 spending two/three weeks each year skiing until March 2000, I was a reasonable skier by then, I still have what would probably be now referred to as antique ski gear, should I dismiss all thoughts I may have of putting it back into service? thoughts on this one please.

Will everything come flooding back once my skis hit the snow once more, or am I in for a rude awakening, my first post so please be gentle Madeye-Smiley

Cheers
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Maurice100, Welcome to SnowHeads snowHead

If you learned on, and only ever used traditional straight skis, then carving skis will be the biggest change (I'm not sure they had appeared or become common by 2000).

The feeling of skiing should come right back to you (like riding a bike), but some lessons to give you pointers would be a good idea.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Maurice100, welcome aboard. I had a 30 year gap 1981 to 2011 and it was like riding a bike in terms of balance etc. Get some lessons and enjoy Toofy Grin
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@Maurice100, memories may have diluted how physical demanding skiing is, so hopefully your in shape
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Life is now easier and less effort...you just need to get your head round "Rockers" and that there are different skis for every condition you can think of.

A few lessons will make the appropriate changes and allow you to use the skis shape and design to turn.
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You'll need to Register first of course.
@Maurice100, welcome!
Don't even think about using your old gear Smile Get your hands on some modern gear (hire or buy) and some lessons in the best way to ski it (before you practice back in old school techniques that you'll then want to unlearn).
You should find modern equipment easier to ski, but some of the movements you learned will be unecessary and/or undesirable to ski well on todays gear.
A trip to a fridge might be a good idea depending on your location.


Last edited by You'll need to Register first of course. on Tue 13-02-18 22:51; edited 1 time in total
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@Maurice100, I had a 25 year break from skiing. Learnt on straight skis then got back on it. Do it...it is actually easier than back in the day.Just like riding a bike and welcome to Snowheads, snowHead
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
By 2000 saw shaped skis, parabolic.

Hire skis to see what you like. Splash out on good private lessons and ask for a conversion course. No need to jump or even pop up to turn.

Enjoy!
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@Maurice100, One word: Carving!
You're going to lurrv it! snowHead

You may not need it, but who doesn't like new kit?
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
I jumped back in 6 years ago after a 20 year "break." I enjoy it a lot more now.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
I had an 13 year gap between 18-31 (even learning to snowboard one weekend trip in that time). When I convinced the missus to join me on a trip and got her lessons at the dry slope I thought I'd give skiing a go again and it was honestly like those 12 years hadn't happened, straight back into jump turns, moguls etc.

It's even more like riding a bike than riding a bike IMO
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Embrace technology, it makes skiing life a lot easier.
Only thing to watch for I think is the trend for 'do it all' all mountain and/or freeride skis, imho chances of venturing off piste for most are exaggerated wildly through all the ski media and you'll more than likely spend 99% or all your time on piste so get shaped piste skis to max the fun and improvement. Smile
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
I started again last year after a 14yr gap - everything is different and worth getting some refresher coaching in my opinion.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I was about same as you , skied from aged 6 (1980) until aged 21, few times per year.

Then "inexplicably" stopped (couldn't afford it after my parents stopped paying for it...) until I took the kids (and a reluctant wife) 5 years ago.

All came back pretty quickly , just had to adjust to the carving ski technique instead of the old fashioned up-weighting from the longer straighter skis.

DO NOT use your old gear. Hire some modern (short - maybe between chin/nose height) carving skis and take a few lessons.
Once you have the carving sorted , try out some fatter / longer/ rockered skis if off piste is your thing.

Now my wife has gone from terrified beginner to capable red run skier. My daughter aged 10 is a natural and my son aged 14 was carving up blacks last week in Selva - he is probably better than me now...

We are already planning next seasons trips (and who knows , maybe one more this year if conditions allow).

A happy skiing family !
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Maurice100,
I also suffered an unfortunate hiatus of 10 years or so. Getting back in is probably not so much about the skills. You can ski old-fashioned, if you want, it will work. Getting some pointers about carving technique will improve the fun, though. You can still skid if you like to.

Apart from equipment, the following have changed:
- Skiing with your feet glued together is no longer cool.
- Adults use helmets these days and helmets are cool.
- People without helmets look like numpties.
- One-piece suits are no longer cool.
- Ski boots are now modified to fit your feet, rather than vice-versa. Very Happy

Regarding your equipment, I guess your poles will still be usable. Toofy Grin To be fair, your skis should be skiable, but your boots need to be exchanged. They may be brittle after such a long time.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Thank you all for your comments and input, It's nice to know I'm not alone in having a long break from skiing and also that those who returned found that the familiarity of sliding around on frozen water came back quite quickly.

I get the feed back on how equipment has evolved and that the style in which you ski has adapted to these changes, my plan was to stick to my old gear at first, return to a resort that I am familiar with, take a few hours of private tuition and then consider what direction to take.

I was a little surprised to read that skiing with your feet together was now considered uncool (guess I need to keep my mono ski in retirement wink ) I understand that fashions change but why ditch the one piece ski suit?, much warmer and more comfortable than jacket and pants.

My old skis, Rossignol Roc Limits, were at the time an evolution from traditional straight skis, being wider both front and rear with a narrow waist, I was always a fan of Salomon rear entry boots mainly due to the comfort they offered and also the micro adjustments to the fit, I can understand why some would wear a helmet, I'm likely to be the numpty Smile

Cheers everyone
snow conditions     
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Maurice100, it'll come back to you very quickly. However, how long are your skis and how tall are you?

Nothing wrong with a one piece, IMHO, but you won't find a new one in the shops.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Maurice100, I teach on a dry slope, every year we get people who last skied in an LBK (Land Before Kids), and say they need to be beginners again. They don't need to be beginners. But what they do benefit from is having an instructor take them through the stages from basic back to what they can do, teasing out the good bits, and leaving the bad bits deeply buried in their minds, so they don't jump straight back into what bad habits they used to have. It's actually quite a good opportunity to potentially come back a better skier than you were before. And people are always amazed by what their body can remember when their brain can't!
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2000 ain't ancient history in skiing terms - there were Twin tips, Pocket Rockets the Mothership and shaped skis had been going for years.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@karin, I agree with Karin. I started again after a 30 year gap, which I was nervous about as the first attempt was going to be Hillend. I asked an instructor to come with me for the first hour & it was very useful indeed for confidence but probably not essential. For me the biggest fear was falling on the plastic (I'm not a nervous skier on snow). As all have said above it's remarkable how much you remember & I'm so glad that I went to the trouble.
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I also had a long gap actually 32 years..1978 with the army then went again in 2010. After knee injuries due to rugby I was convinced for all that time, skiing was out for me. However some friends were going skiing and I decided to go to a snow dome just to try it out. To my surprise I could still do it.
Now in my late fifties it's really all I want to do and boring my non skiing freinds as a result..
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Alastair, I'm 1.86 meters and my skis are 1.93 meters.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@Maurice100, for comparison I'm 180 and my skis range from 164-180. People have commented that the 180s look big.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Maurice100 wrote:
Alastair, I'm 1.86 meters and my skis are 1.93 meters.

I strongly recommend, like others above, that you leave your skis behind and hire something modern. If you are of average weight for your height, you are likely to be on Piste skis of about 176 - 180....much easier for someone very rusty.

If your boots have brittle plastic, they could be dangerous (if they were stored in the dark, they might be OK) - if that's the case, you are better hiring.

If you then take up skiing - first get properly fitted boots. There are pros and cons for owning skis...but you need to find out what you like before committing.
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Maurice100, I had a 27 year break from skiing between the age of 45 to 71. It is a bit like riding a bike - you don't forget but you do fall Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy . I have now had one week a year for the last three years including two bashes. I did find this year confidence and skill was coming back until I had a bad crash damaging my ankle putting an end to this season's skiing. Now looking forward to next year Smile


Seriously it does come back and modern shorter skis do help. I do find I am not as brave as I as I was so i need to be careful not to bite off more than i can chew
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@Old Fartbag, My boots have been stored in total darkness and at + or - 5 degrees, the shell is still supple and the liners are in perfect condition, I'm not dismissing the idea of new gear, my thought was to start back on familiar kit, then go from there.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Maurice100 wrote:
@Old Fartbag, My boots have been stored in total darkness and at + or - 5 degrees, the shell is still supple and the liners are in perfect condition, I'm not dismissing the idea of new gear, my thought was to start back on familiar kit, then go from there.

My boots were about 20 years old, stored in the dark and looked in great nick. I could have had a nasty fall - there was a blizzard, so was skiing slowly. When I got back, I noticed that the plate that lifts the ski brake up had a section broken off. When I got to the hotel, I checked the sole of my boots. One boot had the rubber heel piece missing, leaving the metal "holding screws" sticking down like stalactites. Due to the blizzard and worrying more about my son, I hadn't noticed, clicked into the bindings and had skied with it like this.

If you haven't skied for 18 years, unless your boots were new when you stopped, they will be older than this. Is it really worth the risk....I thought so and was wrong. My reason for hanging on, was they were so comfortable and was worried that new boots wouldn't be. I was wrong again.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
My Flexion Comps had been stored for fifteen years. They lasted less than one week of skiing.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@pieman666, they have a reputation for doing that
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@under a new name, ahh, it was a shame as I loved those boots back in the day.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Boots might be fine, my shells are on season 6 or 7 I think and I see no particular need to replace this year, probably not next year....

Skis almost certainly not such a great idea.

Your Technique, may or may not be as it was when you stopped, but anyone current is skiing rather differently - exploiting modern kit.

So I’d echo getting at least a little tune-ing up of your technique and on to modern skis.

My 203 Super G skis have way more sidecut and turn much easier than my 1998 slaloms... snowHead Laughing
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Although I snowboarded through the years, I have recently started skiing again after a 26 year break.

Top tip: Buy new boots. Modern boots are incredible compared to what we used, back then.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I don’t think my current 2012 Salomon Labs are very different from my 1990 Tecnica TNTs...

Not all boots have changed much.
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Thanks for all of your input and advice, I've spent most of the day researching skis, I have to admit I'm totally confused as to what ski would be a suitable replacement for my old pair, I never found my old skis anything but a pleasure to ski on, however if today's skis add value I'm up for a change, on the boot front what if any would offer the comfort , esae of access and micro adjustment of my SX95's again I'm up for a change.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Probably best to hire skis initially, then you can change then if you don't get along with them! Maybe start with an intermediate level 'carving' ski and see how you get along.
If you can find a decent hire shop in resort explain your situation to them and they should be able to recommend something suitable.
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@Maurice100,
Welcome to forum and welcome back to the mountains.

By all means use your old gear, its not even 20 years old yet.

I think its still cool to slap your feet together, why not?
You spent years perfecting the Wedel and these youngsters can't ever do it.

The snow has not changed that much, so it should all still work.
I salute you for not wearing a helmet or goggles, I wish I was still brave enough not to.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Was at Glenshee yesterday & there were plenty of people on older-stlye skis skiing very elegantly.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
While snow hasn’t changed much, @DrLawn, equipment and technique has changed significantly.

Why would you not want to take advantage?
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@under a new name, it's not so much about the models being different today. If a boot was fitting 20 years ago, it's certainly going to fit today. However, plastic gets brittle with age. Some snowheads have reported boots falling apart mid-turn. That's why I'd get new boots as the first item.

...but that's just me. FWIW, I often rent skis, but boots I can't rent.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Maurice100 wrote:
Thanks for all of your input and advice, I've spent most of the day researching skis, I have to admit I'm totally confused as to what ski would be a suitable replacement for my old pair, I never found my old skis anything but a pleasure to ski on, however if today's skis add value I'm up for a change, on the boot front what if any would offer the comfort , esae of access and micro adjustment of my SX95's again I'm up for a change.

If you give a few details, we might be able to make some suggestions:

- What do you weigh
- What level are you
- How fast do you ski
- How much of your time is spent On Piste vs Off Piste
- Do you prefer long turns or short turns
- Do you prefer a stiff, damp stable ski, or a lighter, easier more playful one
- What is the Sidecut and Turn Radius of your current skis (may be marked on them)

I understand that you may not know what will happen when you jump on some skis, so base it on how you last skied...as it will come back quickly and will now be easier.


Last edited by Ski the Net with snowHeads on Sat 17-02-18 15:41; edited 1 time in total
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