Learn To Ski or Snowboard
Thinking about taking your first trip to the snow?
We’ve created a list of helpful tips to make your snow holiday more enjoyable!
Dressing yourself for the snow
1. Dress in layers so you can stay warm no matter the conditions and strip down as you warm up throughout your day.
2. Base Layer – Next to the skin you want to wear thermals, these will help regulate your body temperature by moving perspiration away from the skin. If you can, grab yourself some merino wool ones as nothing beats wool in the snow.
3. Middle layer – This is an insulating layer, a skivvy, or long sleved cotton top is fine as long as it has some warmth, there are a range of great ‘dry ride’ products available these days which are similar to hoodies and made with waterproof fabric.
4. Shell layer – Make sure you pick a waterproof shell layer, that way you can stay as dry as possible in the wind, rain and snow.
5. Your feet and your head are the first places which will allow your body to cool down if they are exposed. Grab some woollen socks and if you're keen to feel as comfortable as possible however long you're in your boots, there are many brands available which make socks specifically to fit better in your snowboard or ski boots.
6. Keep your head warm with a good beanie, covering your ears, and keep your head safe with a snowboarding or skiing helmet. Most ski hire shops will offer these free when you hire, especially when hiring children’s gear, but if you need to pay its usually only around $10 for 5 days and definitely worth the money.
7. Good gloves are essential, you can ruin a great day on the slopes if your hands are freezing.
8. Outerwear will have a rating in mm, from 5000 up. The higher the number, the better the waterproofing your jacket or pants have. There are ways to keep your own gear waterproof wash after wash but it does require a special treatment available from most snow hire and retail shops.
Thredbo and Visit Snowy Mountains have packaged this great Kids Stay and Ski Free offer including accommodation, lift passes, lesson and optional gear hire, so you can all enjoy the snow this season!
Dressing your Children for the snow
Dress your child like an onion – in layers!
1. Start with the moisture absorbing layer to keep their skin dry and warm
2. Add an insulating middle layer, either a hoddie or a jersey will do then the protective outer layer!
3. The one piece – These are great for children on the slopes, whether snow play, skiing or snowboarding, one piece suits prevent snow from getting anywhere its not meant to and keeps children warmer for longer. Kids will often keep quiet in a group lesson situation if they are cold, so prevent anyone from being chilly by hiring or buying a waterproof one piece for your child’s shell layer.
Water conducts heat away from the body roughly 25 times faster than air so children get chilled faster when they are learning.
4. Mittens allow more warm air to circulate around little fingers.
5. A good pair of warm, moisture absorbing socks are and a set of waterproof gumboots or après boots will keep little feet warm and dry.
Always have an extra set of mittens and socks.
6. A warm hat or beanie and preferably a helmet will keep your children’s head warm and safe.
7. Don’t forget the sun-block and goggles as your children need protection from the sun in the snow, as much as they do at the beach.
Equipment on the snow
* The most essential part of your equipment is well fitted boots. If you are buying new ski or snowboard boots, make sure you spend the time to get them fitted to your feet. This is usually a free service provided by all good industry retailers.
* Snow-blindness is a burn to the cornea (the clear surface of your eyes) Temporary snow-blindness is caused by the ultraviolet radiation the sunlight reflected from the snow. Make sure you wear goggles or sunnies to avoid this and if you cant afford a good pair you can usually pick them up for around $20 at rental shops.
* Choose the right lenses – when you buy your goggles they will usually come with a standard issue lens. If you get a bright light, rose tint and clear lense you will be set for all conditions.
* Low light is when the clouds are overcast and there is no definition; so you can be skiing along and not realise there are bumbs and berms in the snow. In low light its recommended you wear a bright light or rose tint lenses as they increase the contrast in the snow.
* Whiteouts and storms require the clear or rose lenses depending on how bright it. The brighter the day the less colour you want in your goggles.
* Remember to speak to your specialist in store at snow retail or hire shops to get the best advice on what to take to the snow!
More tips for first timers to the snow: