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Tips for Switching to Longer Skis?

ktp

Certified Ski Diva
#1
Hello Ladies!

I am 5'6'' and have been skiing on 140's, probably far longer than I should have, and will be switching up to 158's once my new skis come in:thumbsup:. I have to admit I am fairly nervous about the 18cm difference, any tips to make the switch easier?

Thank you!
 

pinto

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#2
Hello Ladies!

I am 5'6'' and have been skiing on 140's, probably far longer than I should have, and will be switching up to 158's once my new skis come in:thumbsup:. I have to admit I am fairly nervous about the 18cm difference, any tips to make the switch easier?

Thank you!
It will probably be easier than you think. But, just use common sense, take them on a nice groomer at first, not into anything gnarly or with bad snow, and ski a few runs first, feeling things out.
 

Christy

Angel Diva
#3
There was actually a thread recently with this exact question, so you might get some good tips if you search. There were some varied opinions but I had zero problems going from 146s to 156s (I'm 5'4")--the only difference I noticed was that I was actually stable for a change! But there was absolutely no change in the way I had to ski, and the skis did not feel long in the least.
 

ktp

Certified Ski Diva
#4
Cool! I have to say I have some nightmarish image in my head of crossing my tips and going head over heels down the mountain!
 

B.E.G.

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#6
Ditto to what the others said - take a few easy runs first. I went from 146 to 153 then to 156 (eventually ended up with 156) and I made sure to take the skis out on the easiest runs first to get a feel for the extra length.
 

marymack

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#7
I recently switched from 145s to 155s (same ski brand/model) and It did take me a couple of times out to get used to it mostly because they wouldn't let me get away with the bad habits that shorter skis let you (turning at the last second because you and physically pick up and move the ski if needed, was my big one. Also, I found it was very important not to let yourself feel intimidated, because when you feel nervous that you will go to fast, you (or I at least) tends to lean back and get in the backseat and then you pretty much guarantee that you are going to get taken for a ride. Once you do get used to it though, you do feel so much more confidence! Good Luck.
 

maggie198

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#8
You will feel more stable, and that should probably help you gain confidence in your new skis as you're getting a feel for how they ski.
 

Liquid Yellow

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#9
I recently switched from a 156 carver to a 170 all-mountain ski and I found the difference quite marked - in a good way though. I did notice the extra length (and width!) but you soon get used to it. I think another week's skiing on mine and I'll wonder how I ever managed on shorter skis.

Maybe stay off the double-blacks til you've got a feel for them :wink:
 

marge

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#10
I think you'll be pleased. I routinely ski a 156 (WAY too short for me) and I love them. This weekend I demo'd a 175 and a 187 and had no problems with them. :D I was worried as well. The other thing to take into account is where they're mounted. The longer ones I tried this weekend were almost perfectly center mounted where as my Volkls are more rear mounted. The longer skis didn't really ski that much longer or feel longer than what I ski now. :thumbsup:
 

litterbug

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#11
As long as we're talking ski lengths, does the stability of a longer ski make them less responsive? I always think of things as trade-offs, but that may not be true in this case.
 

volklgirl

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#12
The gain in stability is usually much greater than the loss in maneuverability, but yes, there's a trade off.
 

Jenn

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#13
Shorter skis are like eating popcorn - all fluff and no substance, they're like playing baseball and never being allowed to hit - just bunting.
I'm 5"4" and currently on 163 Atomic 7th Heavens. Before I figured out how to talk to the guys in the shop they kept pushing me to skis 150- 155cms. Renting those shorties my turns were all smears - there was no length for follow-through; they would turn easily, but it wasn't fun.
If you change be prepared for some hard work the first couple of times out. Once you're comfortable you'll never go back.:smile:
 

litterbug

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#14
Oy, don't get me going again! :yield: I'm 5'3" and have been enjoying the Rossi S80 155 and bought Geishas in 153 (demo sale--won't have them for another month!). Now I'm going to have to go demo the S80 160 or the Geisha 164--but I suspect it'll feel long to me. As for carving, I'm not sure I'm ever getting a pure carve down, and I doubt it's the ski's fault at this point!!
 

snow addict

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#15
158 is a good length for you and you shouldn't have many problems adjusting - at your height (unless the ski is very demanding itself) it may even allow to keep some bad habbits if you have them.
The length might actually feel more 'natural' than what you've been skiing on before. 140 seems very short. At your height you should be able to turn them quite easily even out of the backseat. 158 may require tips to be more constantly weighted to prevent them from crossing.
 

ktp

Certified Ski Diva
#16
I have now done 3 days on my new 158's and its been one heck of a ride! What Volklgirl said is absolutly accurate, the gain in stability is much greater than the loss in manueverability. Actually, I havent really noticed any loss of manueverability at all, but I do need to be a bit more accurate.

The best way I have been able to describle the skis I got is that they really seem to have my back, so to speak. When I do really dumb or sloppy things, the skis keep me upright and never lose their grip. Then when I am doing a good job, they let me know!

*knock on wood* but I have actually not fallen once since switching to the 158's. My best guess is that all my falls were the results of backseat skiing, but with the additional length behind me, I was able to regain my balance and move it foward again-rather than just toppling backwards. All in all? Yay longer skis!
 

maggie198

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#17
Shorter skis are like eating popcorn - all fluff and no substance, they're like playing baseball and never being allowed to hit - just bunting... Renting those shorties my turns were all smears - there was no length for follow-through; they would turn easily, but it wasn't fun.
Well put, and absolutely true.

Once you're comfortable you'll never go back.:smile:
Nope. Never. :smile:
 

drjoyous

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#18
I think you'll be pleased. I routinely ski a 156 (WAY too short for me) and I love them. This weekend I demo'd a 175 and a 187 and had no problems with them. :D I was worried as well. The other thing to take into account is where they're mounted. The longer ones I tried this weekend were almost perfectly center mounted where as my Volkls are more rear mounted. The longer skis didn't really ski that much longer or feel longer than what I ski now. :thumbsup:
I second Marge here.
I did something of the same thing and discovered awhile back that shorter skis (which everyone uses and which are touted as easier) are NOT easier for me--they feel unstable and/or just plain short for me. You may find you are a "long" ski person.

Re taking it out first on an easy groomer--i would think about what kind of ski you are switching to. If it is a wider all-mountain ski or a powder ski (and you haven't gotten used to that kind of ski yet), try them out on the kind of snow they are intended for. Otherwise, you might double your chances of feeling weird on them at first (longer AND different style of ski).
 

Celestron2000

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#19
Me too

I've been having this same nervousness... I'm 5'8 and 140 Lbs, and I've been learning on a pair of 154 Oceanas, decided to upgrade to a big mountain ski to better handle the powder this year and calculated based on several charts that the 168 was the right ski for my size even though I'm a fairly cautious intermediate skiier. I'm excited as all heck, but worried about such a big change.
Guess I won't get a chance to see how it goes for a couple of months still...
And no I didn't demo (which I guess I should have), but I do have the option of returning after up to 5 times on the mountain.
:bounce::fear::bounce:
 
#20
You'll love it!

At your height, your old short ski was probably pretty hard to balance front and back. The longer ski should make that a lot more comfortable.
 

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