How do you improve your powder skiing technique? Here are our 5 top technique tips for skiing powder and getting the most out of the fluffy white stuff…
As opposed to piste skiing, a narrower stance is better when skiing in powder snow, especially if you’re lucky enough to be skiing untracked fresh powder! The reason for this is simple, you’ll have more float because the 2 skis close together will act as one large ski. This helps as you need to be close to the surface in order to easily turn the skis.
2. WEIGHT/PRESSURE DISTRIBUTION
Try and ski with more of an equal weight distribution over the 2 skis. As mentioned in the first tip, you want to try and ski as though you are on one large ski so pressing hard on your turning ski will result in that ski sinking deeper than the other, which isn’t good.
Also you want to keep your weight more centred over the skis and avoid leaning forwards as the ski tips will sink, usually resulting in a faceplant!!
3. RHYTHM AND MOVEMENT
Exaggerate your vertical up/down movement much more than you usually would when skiing on-piste. Try and get into a rhythm as soon as possible and keep those legs working as much as possible.
Up till now you’ll have always been able to see your skis whilst making turns. When you get into powder snow, even if it’s not that deep, you’ll lose sight of your skis as they sink downwards. This often leads to skiers panicking and trying to force the turn at the wrong time, so be patient and wait for the skis to rise back close to the surface before turning.
As with all aspects of skiing, and indeed most sports, being relaxed helps the body to move more freely. This is especially important when skiing off-piste and you need to exaggerate the movements to help with flow and rhythm. Even being tense with the upper body can have a huge adverse affect on what happens with the skis so try and stay relaxed and enjoy it!!
Thanks to James Allen for this post
James has over 23 years’ experience skiing in the Espace Killy and is based full-time in the French resort of Val d’Isère.