Am I Too Old to Learn to Ski?

Skiing, like baseball, is one of America's favorite past-times.  Yet, I'm always surprised how many people I meet who have made it to adulthood without ever trying it.

Usually I hear the same reasons, I don't want to get hurt, it's too hard to learn, it's too expensive, I don't like the cold.

Well, I'm here to give you reasons why you aren't too old to learn to ski, and why you should get busy planning your trip to learn right away.

 
 

1.  Have you always wanted to learn?

I honestly can't think of a better reason to do something than having always wanted to do it.  Why on earth would you allow yourself to reach your death having not tried the things you always dreamed about?  If you want to learn to ski, go learn! 

Skiing, snowboarding, or monoskiing... it doesn't matter.  Being on the slopes with your friends, being active, breathing the fresh air, and enjoying the great outdoors is what matters! Photo by Pepe Cam Photography

Skiing, snowboarding, or monoskiing... it doesn't matter.  Being on the slopes with your friends, being active, breathing the fresh air, and enjoying the great outdoors is what matters! Photo by Pepe Cam Photography

2.  Fitness concerns

You don't have to be in top athletic shape to be a skier.  Of course it helps to be fit or to have other similar athletic abilities, like with any activitiy, but it's not critical.  A few things to consider are:  can you get up off the floor, can you walk up a moderate hill, are you fairly coordinated?  

Like with any sport, you start slowly, take some lessons, and don't go balls-to-the-wall right away.  It's normal to get sore when you're first learning to ski as you develop the unique muscles used for it.  And as you get stronger and more efficient with your form it becomes easier and you get fitter!

3.  How to make learning to ski less expensive

The one thing I would not skimp on is getting a few lessons.  The way to make ski lessons more budget friendly is to take group lessons, or find a patient friend who will supervise you all day.

You can also get deals on lift tickets at most resorts by purchasing in advance, or through places like Costco.  You can also browse Craigslist for people selling them on the cheap.

Don't rent equipment on the mountain.  Research the local rental shops in town for the best price.  This also helps support a local mom and pop shop!

READ MORE:  7 Ski Slope Pet Peeves

Buy your safety gear in your own city.  Buying things like helmets, face masks (to protect from the sun), or wrist guards in the ski town will be much more expensive.

Watch YouTube videos and read forums about learning to ski before starting your lessons, so you are more familiar with the technique and learning can go quicker.  And stay focused during your lesson to get everything you can out of it.

4.  Don't worry about how you look

I cannot stress this one enough.  Who cares how you look when you're learning something new?   You're going to be bad at first, you're not going to look cool right away.  So what?  Don't worry about having all the coolest gear, and don't worry about people seeing you mess up.  Brush your ego away and enjoy the process of learning something new and gaining a new, fulfilling skill.

5.  You can stay safe

You absolutely can stay safe while having the time of your life on the slopes if you stay conservative on your approach.  Try skiing on weekdays when it's far less crowded.  I won't even go near the mountain (or the local grocery store for that matter) on Saturdays anymore because the lines are atrocious and the runs are hectic.

READ MORE: How to Survive Your First Few Kitesurfing Lessons

Know your skill level and stay within it.  Not ready for a double black diamond?  Cool, me either, so don't go there, even if your friends want to. 

Always be aware of your surroundings and keep your head on a swivel.  Don't assume everyone is in control, and don't cut others off.  Duh. 

Take it slowly.  If you learn the proper mechanics, and follow basic safety advice, you should be well on your way to skiing into your 90's and beyond.

Have fun!

 
 

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