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So I'm afraid of hills...

SkiNana

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Pick up some tech wash and try washing it. Tech wash is specifically for waterproof clothes
Is that the brand name? I have the Nix Wash one (it says Tech Wash on the label too), but I really hate to wash a brand new jacket::fear:
 

snowhound

Diva in Training
Inoffensive Nickname, a book that really helped me get over my fear is In the Yikes Zone! by Mermer Blakeslee. Mermer is a ski instructor and says the book is a conversation with fear. It made soo much sense to me. Give it a try.:dance:
I think I might be searching that out for a read - thanks for the recommendation :thumbsup:
 

SkiNana

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
My Geishas were demos and the topsheets are quite dinged up, but I got them freshly tuned with bindings for $400, which ain't bad.
Well, I tried that out on DH: he was so unimpressed! Drat! He likes me on my short skis b/c he's convinced I'm not very strong and likes to watch my twitchy little turns . . . from behind!
 

AliceH

<span style="color:#F89F07";">Angel Diva</span>
Oh, and I feel like I should give you lovely ladies an update since I started this thread and it seems to still be going.

The K2 First Luvs that RhodySkier sold me did wonders! At first I was wondering what planks I had on my feet (since they were heavier than the Lotta Luvs). I skied my first blue run in about March of last season. I did notice I was still guarding my knees - a LOT - but was able to ski greens fairly confidently and even wrestle the occasional mild pale baby blue. I ended up injuring a nerve in my leg in a fall and had to sit out the last few weeks of skiing, but got my boots adjusted at the beginning of this season to take care of the pressure point on that nerve.

I also had Hyalgan knee injections done over the summer, and did six weeks of PT (I still have to do the exercises several times a week) to strengthen my hips and ankles. Funny how all those things are tied together... When I went to my PT, I told her it was with the intent of being able to ski better that winter, and she structured the program around that. (I'll gladly give her name to anyone who needs PT, she's in Thornton, CO.)

I started out this season still skiing those First Luvs, and then decided to demo some other skis a couple of weeks into the season. The guy at the rental shop asked me a few questions and then put me on a pair of Blizzard Vivas. I tried them and then tried putting back on my First Luvs and had this huge realization that OMG I'd actually outgrown my beginner skis! I bought a pair of the Vivas a couple of weeks later, after grilling SnowHot to death about them.

Now I'm skiing middling-steeper groomed blues, and I've skied some not-quite-moguls (not fast, not really well, but I'm not going to freak out on a baby mogul field). I took a lesson weekend before last and my instructor said that in order to make it easier to switch from the old technique of using foot pressure to make turns or going way up on my edges, to lightly edging to make turns but mostly keeping the skis flat, I should get my boots fitted to correct my pronation, and I had that done this weekend. First impressions are that it's helped enormously. I'm also not feeling the need to guard my knees the way I used to - I'm still a bit careful but I know they'll do the job, and I don't worry about if I hit some bumps that they won't shock absorb.

So I hope this helps someone who is where I was a year ago. And I hope it helps anyone whose spouse or instructor or friend is telling them the gear doesn't matter, because it does.

And I hope you ladies realize how much you have helped me over the past year. This is a wonderful, supportive, awesome community where I feel I can ask anything and not be snarked at or dismissed because it's a girl asking the question, and it's helped both from an advice standpoint and on an emotional level. :grouphug:
 
bump

Came across this thread looking for something else. A great read for beginners or those who recently started skiing blue runs. Good stuff about why it's worth knowing enough about skis to know why beginners and advanced skiers usually ski on different models of skis.
 

sandella

Diva in Training
MarzNC, thanks for bumping this up! This is my first post, though I've been reading the comments since last winter. I skied for the very first time in spring 2009 at age 54. It was painful--literally-- the rental boots left big welts on my shins! The next time out I had different boots (purchased on Craig's List) and a pair of hand-me-down 170 Atomic Beta Carves that my then-BF thought would be perfect for me (I'm 5' 6" and about 145 lbs). Wow, did I struggle trying to control those skis! It wasn't until I got some better advice (some of it here from reading the Ski Divas) that I realized that my boots were too big and the skis were too advanced! My last ski trip in April, I had boots that fit and a new pair of Rossi Temptation 74's. SO much better!! Equipment really does make a BIG difference!
 
sandella: Glad you found it useful. I've found I like any Rossi. Where are you skiing?

MarzNC, thanks for bumping this up! This is my first post, though I've been reading the comments since last winter. I skied for the very first time in spring 2009 at age 54. It was painful--literally-- the rental boots left big welts on my shins! The next time out I had different boots (purchased on Craig's List) and a pair of hand-me-down 170 Atomic Beta Carves that my then-BF thought would be perfect for me (I'm 5' 6" and about 145 lbs). Wow, did I struggle trying to control those skis! It wasn't until I got some better advice (some of it here from reading the Ski Divas) that I realized that my boots were too big and the skis were too advanced! My last ski trip in April, I had boots that fit and a new pair of Rossi Temptation 74's. SO much better!! Equipment really does make a BIG difference!
 

gardenmary

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Alice - SO GLAD you got off those Lottas and onto Firsts. Isn't it amazing what a difference it can make? And now look, you've outgrown those. Way to go girl!

Sandella - welcome to SkiDiva! There's a lot of us in SoCal that either have met up or are working on it; I know we're all trying to make a Mammoth trip happen at some point. We'd love to have you join us! Or if you are heading down to Big Bear, let us know.
 

mustski

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Welcome, Sandella, from another SoCal skier. You should have a great time in Mammoth. I believe that 6 feet of fresh is predicted this week! I am aiming for a trip in April.
 

SkiNana

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
Inoffensive Nickname, a book that really helped me get over my fear is In the Yikes Zone! by Mermer Blakeslee. Mermer is a ski instructor and says the book is a conversation with fear. It made soo much sense to me. Give it a try.:dance:
I cannot find this book! I seem to recall that it is also known by another title, however. Does anyone recall what that is? I would really love to read it, but first I have to get my hands on it! Wouldn't it be great if I could get "out of my head" while I was "off my feet"?!?!:rotf:

Btw, it has been snowing hard here all day. I guess everyone who asked Santa for powder is getting their wish! :snow:
 
C

CMCM

Guest
I can relate because I struggled to overcome a fear of steep hills for a long time. I was continually focused on keeping my speed down so I wouldn't fall. Age wise, you are NOT too old to learn this. I came to serious skiing (getting beyond a snow plow) in my mid-50's, so you can do this. I don't know if I have anything magical to tell you, but I do know this: I had to develop a good sense of balance on skis, something which took time but gave me confidence, because for a time I didn't feel my balance was that great, I had to get in a LOT of ski miles, I just skied as much as I could because I realized I would be taking longer to become a good skier, and I just practiced a lot. I took some lessons here and there, but mostly I just practiced and practiced on good hills that I could ski on well enough. At some point I realized a somewhat steeper slope (compared to a fairly flat beginner slope) was my friend, that the steeper slope helped my turns improve, and once my turns improved EVERYTHING changed. I also got more and more comfortable with skiing faster, and that helps too. It's hard to ski well and turn well at a snail's pace! Suddenly it was like magic...I knew what a good turn felt like, it became intuitive, I realized I wasn't going to "lose it" and go barreling down the hill out of control, I learned to feel comfortable in that point of the turn where you are pointed downhill, and things just fell into place at some point without me even realizing it. Progress was gradual for a long time, then the last few years things just accelerated and my skiing improved by leaps and bounds. Now I'm comfortable going faster and not stopping all the time, comfortable on steeper slopes (although I just don't particularly like anything real steep and probably never will.). Finally I can keep up with my husband! I came to realize a lot of what held me back for so long was purely in my head, but if you work at this enough, you'll get there. You can do it if you want to and if you work at it!

Another thought: I had a couple of male ski instructors who took me down some VERY steep, mogully and totally beyond-my-ability runs, as if that was how I'd learn to ski well. The experience was good for me in that I learned that yes, I could actually get down alive and without falling, so I felt good about having done it, although I didn't want to go down them again, and still haven't! I prefer groomed blues and greens and I like to enjoy leisurely runs down the hill rather than being a ski demon challenging myself all the way. That's not for me, and I'm OK with that. I've always learned the most and improved the most skiing on the less steep runs, and I can't see that the really hard hills would help my technique since I don't want to do that kind of skiing anyway. So there!
 

Sherry

Diva in Training
I was 41 and plus size (have changed that since then) when I started learning to ski...took me 2-3 years & a bunch of boot changes before I was able to get off the greens (my first year I never really got off the learning hill)...it can take time (and decent fitting boots!) to get comfortable with this sport (yes, there's a HUGE spread in how fast different people learn/get comfortable with skiing) - the fact that you're comfortable with side-slipping is a BIG plus! Feel good that you're out there doing this & don't judge yourself harshly - sounds like you're doing just fine..

...btw, 6 years in now & I'm back on the learning hill learning tele! :becky: (and progressing about as fast as I did with regular downhill...:redface:...oh well, I'll get there)
I did the same thing. There are days when skiing big hills is just too much...too much ice, too much fog, etc. Then tele skiing is just the thing. Since I am just learning, it is pretty much like starting over. So it's on the greens and blues. I'm a Tele-granny.
 
Post #1 in late Jan 2011, update from Feb 2012. Wondering what @AliceH thought of her Vivas last season.

A great read for beginners or those who recently started skiing blue runs. Good stuff about why it's worth knowing enough about skis to know why beginners and advanced skiers usually ski on different models of skis. Especially relevant for moms who want to be able to keep up with their rapidly improving kids.

...which doesn't really fit with skiing, does it?

I really want to be able to ski, I've taken half a dozen lessons but I still can't even ski over the steepest parts of the bunny slopes at Loveland Valley. I tried pushing myself further today, and got myself going pretty fast, so I decided I'd try just pointing myself down one of the steeper slopes since I'd been doing pretty well using my snowplow turns on the moderately steep slopes. I ended up stuck parallel to the hill, completely unable to even make myself turn a little to get the speed up to start making turns again. I had to sideslip down to a less steep part to get going again. I don't think the speed itself is the problem - on less steep sections I can zip around fairly quickly.

I don't know exactly where this fear is coming from. I don't know if it's because I'm plus size and so I'm worried gravity will drag me down the mountain faster than other people, or if it's because I'm late 30s and am too old to try to learn this, or if I don't trust my muscles to do what they're supposed to, or if I just need to practice more (which is what I was told after my last two lessons). I see other people zipping down the steeper parts of the ski school and it's gone from being encouraging that it can be done to a serious self-esteem issue - if that four-year-old can do it, why can't I? :help:
Oh, and I feel like I should give you lovely ladies an update since I started this thread and it seems to still be going.

The K2 First Luvs that RhodySkier sold me did wonders! At first I was wondering what planks I had on my feet (since they were heavier than the Lotta Luvs). I skied my first blue run in about March of last season. I did notice I was still guarding my knees - a LOT - but was able to ski greens fairly confidently and even wrestle the occasional mild pale baby blue. I ended up injuring a nerve in my leg in a fall and had to sit out the last few weeks of skiing, but got my boots adjusted at the beginning of this season to take care of the pressure point on that nerve.

I also had Hyalgan knee injections done over the summer, and did six weeks of PT (I still have to do the exercises several times a week) to strengthen my hips and ankles. Funny how all those things are tied together... When I went to my PT, I told her it was with the intent of being able to ski better that winter, and she structured the program around that. (I'll gladly give her name to anyone who needs PT, she's in Thornton, CO.)

I started out this season still skiing those First Luvs, and then decided to demo some other skis a couple of weeks into the season. The guy at the rental shop asked me a few questions and then put me on a pair of Blizzard Vivas. I tried them and then tried putting back on my First Luvs and had this huge realization that OMG I'd actually outgrown my beginner skis! I bought a pair of the Vivas a couple of weeks later, after grilling SnowHot to death about them.

Now I'm skiing middling-steeper groomed blues, and I've skied some not-quite-moguls (not fast, not really well, but I'm not going to freak out on a baby mogul field). I took a lesson weekend before last and my instructor said that in order to make it easier to switch from the old technique of using foot pressure to make turns or going way up on my edges, to lightly edging to make turns but mostly keeping the skis flat, I should get my boots fitted to correct my pronation, and I had that done this weekend. First impressions are that it's helped enormously. I'm also not feeling the need to guard my knees the way I used to - I'm still a bit careful but I know they'll do the job, and I don't worry about if I hit some bumps that they won't shock absorb.

So I hope this helps someone who is where I was a year ago. And I hope it helps anyone whose spouse or instructor or friend is telling them the gear doesn't matter, because it does.

And I hope you ladies realize how much you have helped me over the past year. This is a wonderful, supportive, awesome community where I feel I can ask anything and not be snarked at or dismissed because it's a girl asking the question, and it's helped both from an advice standpoint and on an emotional level. :grouphug:
 

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