They make the skier stay rather centered. No sitting in the back seat here....
Also, when the conditions get iffy and booring, break out the blades... You won't have more fun on snow.
I tried to go back to regular ski's after having a blast with Blades -- NO WAY! They are so agile and quick, plus they don't strain your knees as much, are easy to turn, and if you are into tricks you can ski backwards. I HIGHLY recommend them!
The SKI & GOLF shop in Chantilly rent them real cheap. They have great prices too on new & used equipment. Tell Greg that Rodney sent you and they'll give you a discount -- I've been turned into a loyal customer!
Blades look fun; I sometimes ski backwards on regular skis but I can see that blades would make it much easier. I imagine you fall a bit more though, no? Surely, there must be lesser stability. I'm amazed to see people going down the expert slopes with blades. It's almost like a violation of physical laws. Are they nuts - or do blades work well on the steeps?
Snow blades are great for maneuverability, but you have to be balanced over your skis. You will NOT be able to get away with leaning back or leaning forward even the tiniest bit like with conventional or shaped skis. If you do, you'll fall over! Snow blades are good in the steeps because of their maneuverability, but you will also give up stability.
Ski Liberty also has intermediate lessons that use the snow blades. Otto - who posts from time to time - is a PSIA Level II instructor (demigod status) that teaches on those things. You may want to give him a shout. You can usually find him Saturdays and Sundays after 2pm by asking at ski school.
Sno-blades are a great developement for the ski industry and for skiers in general. So are those carving "shorty skis". I rented a pair of 140cm carving shorties in Tahoe one afternoon, and they really do carve up a storm, but this thread is about blades.
My wife rides sno-blades and loves it. She has been using them for 2 years on our few winter vacations. When we went to Tahoe last week, she was going down the all black diamonds with all us expert skiers and riders. If she were on skis, there would be no way she'd be hitting the expert slopes. Granted, she does in-line skate pretty well, so that helped her pick up the sno-blades pretty quickly. But she was looking like a pro and loving it.
Sno-blades opens up so much more terrain and fun for people who are not seasoned skiing veterans. It is just one more way that people can enjoy the variety of slopes, runs and trails provided by ski areas. Diversity is a great thing to have.
Sno-blades, freestyle snowboards, alpine snowboards, shorty skis, hourglass skis, downhill skis..........IT'S ALL GOOD.
The only problem w/ ski boards is high speeds: if you're a fast skier, you may get frustrated that you can't go quite as fast without them getting squirrelly on you. Also, helmet and wrist pads are smart choices.
I demoed ski boards from Ski Chalet in Gaithersburg. You can find directions to the shop online at skichalet.com
What's up with the anti-skier policies at the terrain parks/pipes at the PA areas?? No skiing or they clip your tix?? Ridiculous!! For a skier/rider "renaissance wintersportsperson" like myself who likes to rip it on 2 boards & one, I find these park rules enough reason to steer clear of these areas.
In regard to lessons, I see people sometimes show up for group lessons with snow blades on. That would be fine if everybody, including me, also had them for the lesson. Unfortunately that does not happen and these people are wasting their time and mine.
However, Liberty (and a bunch of other mountains) has a special lesson package using very short Elan carving skis - the "downhill" model is 133 cm and I ski on 123's - and these are great for teaching people how to make carved turns. These are "true" skis with release bindings and great things are happening for a lot of students on these skis. For more information on this program, see www.getskiing.net To see what the skis are like, check this out:
As far as half-pipes and terrain parks are concerned, I think it is a shame that skiers are often kept out of half-pipes etc. Unfortunately, as an instructor I spend a lot of time on the slopes and get to witness a lot of the "idiot" factor at work. To be sure, stupidity and recklessness is not confined just to skiers with release bindings, but I think the resorts are justifiably concerned about allowing skiers into the mix in half-pipes.
(somebody get Scott to turn HTML on!)
I tried sno-blades yesterday at Winter Park. I loved them. Going down some of the blue-blacks (no blacks open) they handled moguls, got great speed on the flats, and gave me lots of joy all day long.
However, there was a blue glade open and the powder just stopped them. They dont handle well in deep powder (even 6 inches). So when I want to ski glades, I'll have to use skis.
For what we get on the east coast, these things will be awesome. I cant wait to get home.
The only problem I found is they can't handle deep powder. I was able to ski in powder to my boot top. It was pretty tricky though. I had to lean back the entire time which goes against all conventional ski wisdom. In Tahoe, I was able to ski in my buddy's tracks in the boot top high powder. Going outside of those tracks got pretty hairy. Once we got another foot of snow, I had to switch to skis.
I have found that they are great for moguls. I've begun to use poles in the moguls and I surpassed my friend on skis. The turns are quicker and cleaner. My legs don't burnout as quick as when they did without using poles. The poles also were handy when standing in crowded lift lines. Later in the day, when the lines became icy, it is hard to control the blades without stepping on other peoples skis. It's also harder to stop as precisely as you need to in lift lines without creating mass havoc. However, skiing all day on groomed trails becomes a pain in the butt carrying around the poles.
I've just recently learned my landing point on the blades. I would try to do jumps and was having trouble hitting the landings. This week at Wisp, I finally felt comfortable hitting the landings and not falling. Now I have to work on the tricks.
Overall, I'd recommend these to anyone. I especially think beginners could benefit because their feet do not get as big. My wife who is becoming a good skier, still has the trouble at the beginning of the season getting used to long feet. Next time out, we are renting blades for her to see how she adapts to them.
2)--they get really boaring fast
4)--while they help ur skien form they really hurt it
5)--you mist well rent them because there is nothing special about them and they are over price
5)--THEY SUCK IN POWER
my advice is dont sue poles with those thing u will do major damange to ur skien form and look gay......just dont use poles i tried it once and i did horrlbe u might think ur doing better but your doing worse.....
i would of gone with twin tips but i hope u like them and have fun!!
Since I am gay, in my case they would probably make me look straight. Eeeeek!
I'm curious Air, why do you say they get boring? When you can't go in powder, then they do limit what you can do and that's not boring to me, that's frustrating because I now have to rent skis to go hit the powder.
Also, you should try poles in moguls with them. Unless your already an Olympic caliber mogul skier, you'll have a blast in there.
Guess what they used to say about snowboards?
As far as getting the snowboard for jumps, then I'd have to wait at the top of the jump for 30 minutes before I went down. I like to spend more time moving. Most boarders cant hit the same jumps as skiers anyway. It would be a waste of my time.
People say you can't use them in powder. In fact, I've said it in this same forum. But last weekend at Copper Mountain, I did the back, back bowls in my ski blades. The powder was knee deep. Now granted, it was not easy. I felt every muscle in my shins and hams to keep standing and skiing. I fell a couple of times. But once I got the rhythm, I was doing super G's down the steep slope.
I will continue to push the limits on these things. I can't wait till next season!!!
I beg all manufacturers including Dynastar and Salomon to produce ski blades with RELEASE BINDINGS.
((It might cost a bit more to manufacture, but it sure would make the product a lot more safer..))
It's the wrong season in the northern hemisphere to find much ski equipment online, but I did see skiboards at this site:
Is this what you're looking for? I'd bet they're on eBay too.
Here's another site:
Amazingly, the same three boards are shown and in the same order. I wonder what that means.
Airhawk is right. You can't put release bindings on blades because one tiny twist and they would pop off. However, the risk of fibula breaks is smaller. I've taken some nasty spills on these things with no problems. They're small enough that they don't catch on things like skis will.