Are Short Skis Better for Beginners?

Are Short Skis Better for Beginners? - snowfeet*
Starting a new sport can be challenging. Moreover, if you don't have the right equipment. In today's article, we will tackle the topic of optimal ski length for beginners. 

What are short skis called? 

Short skis are called a number of names: skiboards, snowblades, skiblades, little skis, mini skis, Snowfeet...

Short skis are typically no longer than 120 cm. Sometimes, they are wrongly considered solely beginners' skis but their potential is much bigger than that.  

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Types of Short Skis

The term "short skis" encompasses skis ranging in length from 44 to 120 cm. The skiing experience varies significantly with length. To clarify, let’s categorise short skis into two main groups.

Gear up for your next winter adventure

Skiboards by Snowfeet short skis little skis snowblades

Skiskates | Skates for Snow

Skates for snow fall under a unique category of short skis. Known as Skiskates or Snowfeet, these skis are compact, measuring no more than 50 cm. Skates for snow are not always the best choice as the beginner's skis, since the balance is fairly different than with skiing. However, they might be actually more suitable for hockey players or ice skaters than regular long skis. 

Snowfeet

Snowfeet are innovative skates for snow that easily attach to your winter hiking boots, allowing you to ski almost anywhere. Constructed from fiberglass-reinforced materials with adjustable bindings, Snowfeet accommodate all sizes. They are ideal for any winter excursion, easily fitting into a backpack for hikes, visits to local sledding hills, or even use as cross-country skis.

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Skiskates

Skiskates claim the title of the world's smallest skis at just 44 cm in length. They can be attached to ski or snowboard boots and perform best on groomed slopes or in snow parks. Although termed as tiny skis, their function aligns more with skating on snow than traditional skiing.

Skiskates mini skis by Snowfeet

Skiboards | Snowblades | Skiblades

Skiboards, also referred to as skiblades or snowblades, are another variety of short skis. Unlike Snowfeet or Skiskates, they don’t mimic the skating-on-snow sensation as closely. Skiboards come in various lengths, each offering a distinct skiing experience. If you’re curious about how different lengths affect performance, consider the following details:

65 cm Skiboards

The 65 cm Skiboards merge elements of snow skating and skiing, offering a unique blend of both sports. Traditional skiers might struggle with front-back balance, but this challenge often adds to the enjoyment. Conversely, hockey players and ice skaters typically adapt quickly due to their familiarity with similar movements.

This length is ideal for ski instructors, freestyle skiers, and children beginning to ski.

Skiboards 65 by Snowfeet short skis little skis mini skis

99 cm Skiboards

The 99 cm Skiboards are a popular choice, providing plenty of maneuverability while still supporting those who find shorter skis tricky to balance. They are excellent for carving, suitable for snow park activities, and function well as all-mountain skis, making them a great selection for a first pair of skis.

Skiboards 99 by Snowfeet short skis little skis mini skis

120 cm Skiboards

At 120 cm, these Skiboards are the longest within the short skis category, appealing to those seeking lighter, easier-to-manage skis without the worry of losing balance. They are perfect for carving and rapid descents on the slopes.

Choose length that suits you best

Honestly, we know a thing or two about skiboards. If you want to learn more, check out our thorough article on Snowblades | Skiboards | Skiblades - All You Need To Know. 

Short skis by Snowfeet skiskates skiblades snowblades skiboards

What are short skis good for? 

Everything and anything: short skis overcome long skis in multiple ways.

Compare to long skis: 

  • short skis are very light and they make skiing very easy and enjoyable
  • they are easy to control - you don't need to put too much strength into turning or stopping 
  • short skis aren't as clunky as long skis and that's what makes maneuvering very natural
  • the stance on short skis is more natural than on the long skis and therefore less strenuous 
  • the learning process is very fast and simple - most skiers using short skis can get the hang of it on the first day

 Skiboards snowblades by Snowfeet

 Are short skis easier?  

Absolutely! 
Compared to long skis, short skis are easier in all means of the word: they feel lighter on your feet, they are easy to carry around, and they are easier to master. 

Should beginner skis be longer or shorter?

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Are short skis better for beginners?

As a beginner, you should focus on choosing skis that are light and allow decent freedom of movement but at the same time provide enough support.  Here’s why short skis are a great option to help you check all the boxes above: 

1. Easier Control and Maneuverability

Shorter skis are lighter and easier to handle, making them more maneuverable than longer skis. For beginners, this ease of handling is crucial as it allows for quicker and more precise turns. This responsiveness helps new skiers feel more in control, which is important for building confidence.

2. Better Balance

Shorter skis facilitate better balance. They make it easier for skiers to maintain their center of gravity, which is essential when learning basic skiing techniques. The increased stability helps reduce falls and injuries, making the learning process safer and more enjoyable.

Skiboards 99 by Snowfeet short skis little skis mini skis
3. Less Physical Effort

Since shorter skis are lighter, they require less physical effort to move and steer. This is particularly beneficial for beginners who may not yet have developed the muscle strength and endurance needed for longer, more demanding skis. Reduced fatigue means more time can be spent practicing and enjoying the slopes.

4. Easier to Learn Turning Techniques

Turning is the number one skill in skiing, and shorter skis simplify the learning process. Their design allows for shorter, sharper turns, which can be easier to execute than the long, sweeping turns required with longer skis. This makes it easier for beginners to learn and apply basic turning techniques effectively.

Skiskates by Snowfeet short skis little skis mini skis
5. Versatility in Various Conditions

While longer skis are often preferred for specific types of skiing, such as racing or deep powder skiing, shorter skis are more versatile across different types of terrain and conditions. This versatility makes them ideal for beginners who are learning and may be skiing in a variety of conditions and slopes.

One of the categories of short skis that are just made to be your first (and only) skis, are definitely skiboards. 

Skiboards 65 by Snowfeet short skis little skis

Why choose skiboards as the first skis?   

1. Skiboards are short enough to allow you unlimited movement. 
2. Skiboards have a wide base which will help you to keep your balance easily. 
3. Skiboards have got fast learning curve - you master them in a day.
4. They are very light, allowing the turning and stopping to be much easier than with long skis.  

    What length skis are best for beginners? 

    Short skis from 65 to 120 cm are the best for beginners. 

    The shorter skiboards (usually around 65 cm) are great for children since the size is more compatible with their height. They provide less stability than long skiboards but they allow more freedom of movement and allow you to combine skiing and skating on snow, possibly trying some tricks. If you are a ski instructor, or a parent teaching skiing, you will appreciate the 65 cm length, too. 

    Longer skiboards (ranging from 90 to 120 cm) are more suitable for learners: they help to keep balance and are perfect for carving. If you are likely to go skiing in powder, these will be your go-to skis. 

    short skis, mini skis, snowfeet, skiblades, skiboards, snowblades

    Will shorter skis go slower?

    No, actually short skis can go as fast as long skis.

    Or at least, you will not be able to tell on your regular slope. Short skis are more agile and easier to turn, which makes them feel even faster than long skis. However, should you one day attend the Olympics and race, the longer skis would be probably faster. 

    Skiboards snowblades 99 by Snowfeet

    How to control your speed as a beginner?

    If you are a beginner and you wish to go slower with your skis, point the tips of your skis towards each other and push on the edges of the skiblades. This method is a little bit strenuous but it will help you to control your speed.

    Once you feel like trying a faster ride, straighten your skiboards to go faster. This is where the fun begins.

    Skiboards, snowblades, skiblades, snowfeet, skiskates, short skis, mini skis, snowfeet

    Do you use poles with snowblades?

    Snowblades are great both with and without poles. Even though it is not necessary to use poles when skiing on snowblades, many people opt to bring them to the slope is poles give the feeling of a better stability and provide an extra support. When you transfer from long to shorter skis, we recommend using poles at least for a couple of first rides to have some extra support.  

    Skiboards with poles by Snowfeet

    When you are a beginner, poles are a great equipment, at least for a couple of first rides: you will get more support, they will help you maintain your balance + you will generally feel safer. 

    Conclusion

    Our final recommendation for the first skiing attempts would be the combination of mild slope, skiboards, and poles. Even though everyone enjoys different styles and techniques, we have tested this one for you and it works like a charm! 


    Are you a pro or a beginner? Have you tried skiboards? Let us know in the comments. 

    Something shorter for more fun

    Reading next

    Skiboards & Snowblades FAQ & Customer Reviews - snowfeet*
    How to Choose the Right Skiboards - snowfeet*

    2 comments

    groorceaf

    groorceaf

    cialis otc ROUTE ONSET PEAK DURATION PO 30 60 min 1 2 hr 6 8 hr IM 10 30 min unknown 4 8 hr IV 5 min 30 min 2 hr

    Frank Robinson

    Frank Robinson

    Thank you the information was very helpful.

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