Woman Skis

 

There’s been lately a more sensible approach that shows a better understanding of what should be a woman ski, but it doesn’t go far beyond the aesthetic changes. This is unfortunate for all, but specially for women.

The main and differential features of woman skis are:

  • Lower height in relation to the unisex or male models
  • Specific construction (less reactive skis)
  • Forwarded binding position
  • Decorations and external design

 

All these aspects have reasons behind them. If we take a look to the first two, we’ll see they are clearly related to women’s general morphology. Usually women are shorter and weaker than men. This has been considered by the FIS regulations. If we take a look to those FIS-compliant female skis, we’ll see sizes are between 7 and 10cm lower and sometimes even more in relation to the sizes found in the male category.

The Fischer RC4 WC is the FIS ladies ski for Giant Slalom. 183cm and 188cm sizes and no less than 30m radius. © Fischer Sports GmbH

The Fischer RC4 WC is the FIS ladies ski for Giant Slalom. 183cm and 188cm sizes and no less than 30m radius.
© Fischer Sports GmbH

 

This doesn’t mean women should ski only with woman skis. There are quite tall women, taller than many men, and stronger too. Therefore, if we do not comply with the specific average woman characteristics, we can safely avoid dedicated woman skis. Women and men skis are just that, skis.

The scaling between the different women models is related to height and technical, physical skills. The same rules mentioned in the Skis Height Chapter apply here. No one should be surprised of a women dedicated range, but at the same time we should not give it too much importance. In fact, woman skis range from every brand have been recently widened and there are some powerful models specially designed for women.

They got it right at Stöckli: elegance and performance in the woman skis category. © Stöckli Swiss Sports AG

They got it right at Stöckli: elegance and performance in the woman skis category.
© Stöckli Swiss Sports AG

 

The third characteristic of woman skis is the location of the bindings. Being it competition or not, it is very common mounting the bindings a bit forward compared to man’s models. The hips’ width, their shape (deeper) and the location of the gluteus muscle (further out in relation to men’s gluteus) are the determining factors.

This is a feature not only used with women but also with racers who are still growing. Mounting the bindings a bit forward has helped a lot of racers in their teens to relocate them on the skis and gain good postural habits to unleash and evolve their skiing abilities.

The Vist Snowleopard is an example of a bold Woman ski design. © Vist

The Vist Snowleopard is an example of a bold Woman ski design.
© Vist

 

Regarding the aesthetics factor, the matter is very subjective and debatable. Being as objective as we can, we can safely state that there has always been a close relation between some aesthetic clichés and one or the other genre. In today’s world, some examples of this are rather ridiculous, but some others still seem natural and well accepted.

There are designs that are really attractive to the female market, while the same designs can be found ridiculous or even offensive to a part of the female public. I mean, sales rates don’t reflect that success has been achieved. There seems to be still some work to do, and probably this is the main reason why manufacturers have widened and improved their women ranges, making them more complete and less flourished in the literal sense of the word.

 

SkiReviewer’s Buying Skis Guide

Introduction

1.- Sailing the Ski’s Gear Ocean – An introduction to variety

2.- To Buy Skis or To Rent Skis? – How worth is to own your skiing gear

3.- All Types of Skis Quick Guide

4.- Types of Skis – Explained one by one

5.- The Skiing Terrain – The conditions of the snow, terrain and weather can vary a lot even in the same country

6.- The Skier’s Height and Weight – And some other important considerations

7.- Ski Size Chart – Which size to choose depending on your height, weight and the type of ski. All in one chart

8.- The Ski Size Chart explained – Tips and ideas for choosing the right ski at first sight

 

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Albert Valbuena - English (84 Posts)

My name is Albert and I am from Barcelona. I started skiing when I was 10. At the age of 32 I started this project called Ski Reviewer after having been professionally involved into the skiing world since 1999. I started from the bottom but after several years of dedication and hard training I achieved the official Ski Instructor Certification (ISIA certified) in 2006 at ETEVA. From then on I spent several seasons as an instructor as well as a kid's trainer in the local club. I was also a member at the core team in the ski resort for racing and events management. That period ended on 2011 and now on 2014 I've started Ski Reviewer.


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