The season of skiing has come again, so many families are booking winter holiday trips at the moment. Despite the pandemic, people are still eager to go out, considering that an open outdoor environment spreads the virus slower.
If you’re planning to ski with your kids for the first time, the young ones may feel intimidated by the activity. The snowy downhill slopes can be an ominous sight, even for some adults. But if you are an experienced skier, you can assure your kids that the downhills are nothing to be afraid of.
Still, don’t forget to consider your kids’ safety, too. Though skiing accidents among children are uncommon, and 15% of them are caused by musculoskeletal immaturity, there’s still a chance of injury. So educate your kids about proper skiing, so that they’d know what to expect from the activity.
Giving them the right gear is crucial too. Sometimes, accidents happen just because of a low-quality helmet or footwear. So without further ado, here’s how to choose your kids’ skiwear, and how to ensure their safety:
Choosing the Right Gear
Below is a list of gears every kid needs for skiing:
- A pair of skis appropriate for their age
- Ski boots
- Bindings and poles fitted by a professional
- Skiing helmet
- Tinted skiing goggles
- Warm clothing (including a hat, gloves or mittens, snow pants, and a winter jacket)
- Neck gaiter
- Sunscreen and lip balm with SPF
Layer their clothing as well with a T-shirt and jumper or hoodie. You may also dress your kids in thick tracksuit bottoms and thermal underwear. For the latter, choose ones made of wool or synthetic material. Cotton thermal underwear takes longer to dry and may make your kid cold.
Some parents opt to borrow instead of buying their children’s ski wear. Borrowing or renting is a good option, considering that children grow out of their clothing fast. Just find a good-quality rental service, and ensure that their gears are well-sanitized.
But it’s also great to buy your kid’s ski gear. Since safety is a top priority nowadays, it’s unwise to risk your kid’s health by letting them wear used ski gear.
When you start shopping, mind the ski gear’s brand. Choose tried and true ones instead of cheap, unknown brands. Sporting gears are an investment, so don’t skimp on it. For your boy’s helmet, consider men’s ski helmets from Giro and other trusted brands. You can choose among its impressive array of designs and colors. Little girls may also choose their skiwear from the same brand.
Ensure that the helmet’s straps are snug against your kid’s head. The chin straps should fasten securely. And to increase your child’s comfort and warmth, buy a liner fabric that fits exactly inside the helmet. You may also jazz up their helmet by putting on a stylish cover over it.
With regard to your child’s socks, don’t make them wear two pairs. It may seem like a good idea since two pairs would give their feet more warmth, but in reality, it only rids your child’s feet of air. So instead, buy them a pair of well-insulated ski boots. It would allow your kid to wear thinner socks without feeling cold.
Ensuring Your Kid’s Safety
If your kid becomes too excited in the snow, they may start running around without their complete gear yet. To ascertain that they won’t hurt themselves, take them only on slopes that are appropriate for their age and skill level. If you want to ski on a more challenging slope, avoid bringing your kids with you. You have to make them accustomed to a beginner slope before exposing them to difficult ones.
Once you’ve arrived in the resort, keep your eyes locked on your kids, and spot warning signs such as “Caution” or “Slow Skiing Area.” Guide your kids on marked paths, and never let them stray beyond those.
Before starting to ski, check their gears one-by-one, and look around the trail, especially uphill, to make sure that no skier will collide with you. And when you begin, call out warnings to your kids when another skier is coming their way. Let them also know when someone’s coming fast from behind them.
Never stop in the middle of the trail, or in any spot where skiers from above cannot see you. Stopping on a blind spot makes you vulnerable, and even if you have complete gears on, you may still hurt yourself. Not to mention suffer a trauma that may stop you or your kids from skiing again.
Despite the risks, though, skiing is a relatively safe and fun sport. It develops a deeper love and appreciation for nature. Prepare your kids for skiing by letting them watch videos of it first, so that they’d look forward to it instead of feeling daunted.