If you are like us & the first snow of Winter has you happy as a kid on Christmas, then keep reading. we have a few tips to help get you & your ski gear ready for Winter
First, let’s address your winter gear. Rocktown Adventures sells “waxless” and “waxable” skis. And while the term “waxless” conjures up the idea of “no maintenance required,” if you want them to ski like new, then you need to do a couple of things before making your first ski tracks.
Tips for Waxless Ski Maintenance
“Waxless” skis means there is no need to apply wax to the kick zone, however you still need to add “glide.” The first step is to wipe your skis down with a ski base cleaner, using a lint free cloth, like Fiberline. This will get all of the old dust and dirt off of your ski base, that you might have picked up during that last ski of the winter season, or while they were sitting in your garage (or basement). Dust and dirt are the enemies of glide.
Once your ski base is clean of debris, apply Swix Nordic Easy Glide – or for really fast skis, Swix F4 Easy Glide – from the tip of your ski, to the start of your kick zone and from the end of your kick zone, to the tail of your ski. Make sure to apply the wax in the same direction the ski travels (i.e. from tip to tail). All of these products can be purchased at Rocktown Adventures and we would be happy to show you how to apply them to your skis!
TIPS FOR Waxable SKI MAINTENANCE
“Waxable” skis, for both classic and skate techniques, require a bit more work to make them “kick” and “glide” with ease. New skis and recently stone ground skis should be saturated with a soft wax, to turn the sponge of your base into a bar of wax. The easiest way to achieve this is to have your skis “hot boxed.” This is a slow heating of the wax for 4 hours to penetrate slowly into your ski.
After this process, you should heat protect your ski base with several layers of a blue wax. All of this wax will need to be scraped and brushed out in order to accept your glide (or kick) wax of the day. If you have dirty skis that have not been stone ground, then you will need to hot scrape your ski bases and brush out the plastic before going through the hot box and heat protect process.
We offer all of these mentioned services for skis and snowboards at our Rockford, IL location. Downhill skis and Snowboards need to have clean edges for us to do this work. We also offer a shop and hot box rental, for those Gear Heads that love doing their own ski and snowboard maintenance. Stop in to Rocktown Adventures anytime to talk about waxing or care/maintenance of your winter ski investment.
Tips for You (the Skier)
Now that your winter gear has been taken care of, we need to make sure that the most important piece of equipment is ready to Gear Up & Head Out – YOU! Here are some ski-specific exercises you can do to get ready for the ski season. Some of these you can even do from home…surprising what 20 minutes a day, a couple of times a week can do!
Hill Running with SkI Poles
Find a small outdoor hill that gives you 20 yards or so of running room. Running with your ski poles in-hand, time your pole plants to coincide when you push off with your feet. Build up to 15 sprints. While developing leg strength and increasing cardiovascular capacity, this drill will help you with the proper timing of your pole plants to maximize your efficiency on the trail.
Get down on the floor, on all fours. Extend your left arm and right leg, holding for 3-5 seconds. Switch arms/legs and repeat. Build up to 20 repetitions per set. This exercise strengthens your lower back will helping stabilize your core, critical muscle groups that you do not use in the same manner as with other activities.
You spend a lot of time with your weight on only one ski. So it makes sense to do some training isolating your legs from each other. Improve your balance and increase your leg strength using this exercise. Simply start at the bottom of the stairs and hop up using one leg. Make sure you bend your leg and really push off when you hop from stair-to-stair, mimicking the motion you use when you prepare to “kick” on the ski trail.
Like the hops, but using both legs. Designed to increase the power of your kick and improve balance. Add a degree of difficulty by hopping two steps at a time. Great exercise for a quick cardio boost while building leg strength.
GET THE COBWEBS OUT OF YOUR SKI MUSCLES & SKI BASES WITH THESE TIPS!
Nothing worse than heading outdoors for the first time of the season, and halfway through, learning something is not working right. If you have any questions on getting ready for ski season, give us a call at (815) 636-9066, shoot us an email at email@example.com or stop by the store. Keep track of us on Facebook or circle back to our Events page to find out how we are Heading Out this winter!