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Skis Skiing Snowboarding
If you're a skier, you've heard about K2 skis. The K2 brand was the first fiberglass ski made in the United States, the product of one innovative man's efforts. In 1961, Bill Kirschner borrowed a pair of skis to use as a pattern for his ski design, made of fiberglass. His prototype performed so well on the slopes, that Bill Kirschner decided to launch his skis in commercial production.
Previously, skis were made of laminated wood, giving the flexible “sole” required to navigate the uneven terrain of ski slopes at speed, but the main downside of the laminated wood ski was breakage under stressful conditions, usually at very inconvenient times for the skier.
In 1964, Bill Kirschner launched his fiberglass K2 skis into the marketplace with just 250 pairs. They were a hit with skiers, being both flexible and strong. The following year, 1600 pairs of K2 skis were released, and sold like hotcakes. By 1968, K2 skis were established in the marketplace, selling 21,000 pairs of skis. Kirschner Manufacturing's K2 ski division had grown from one employee in 1964 to 83 employees. The rest is history.
Today, K2 skis are still the best selling skis in the United States, with a line of skis to suit the needs of every skier, from novice to Olympic, traversing a variety of slope conditions. The K2 skis were eventually bought out, and the current K2 manufacturer has expanded the line to include snowboards and boots, meeting with unparalleled success. Much of the success is due to maintaining the stringent quality standards of Bill Kirschner's initial prototype.
In the 2006 – 2007 K2 offerings, you'll find a ski to suit your skill. Here are just a few.
The Junior All Mountain K2 skis are engineered with the younger skier in mind, engineering weight and length variables to produce an all around ski that's durable and performs well in a variety of conditions and terrain.
The Apache series is made for the aggressive skier who “goes for broke”, desiring core performance and endurance in all-mountain terrain.
The Comanche series provides a mix, delivering performance in a recreational ski. These K2 skis include the K2 patented torsion box construction with integrated Marker binding plates.
The T-Nine series is engineered specifically for women, with K2's Bioflex core and integrated binding producing a high performance ski appropriate to a range of skill levels, from novice to hard core athlete.
The Moto series will satisfy every racer's dream. Engineered for juniors and adults alike, this K2 model delivers high performance in a racing ski which is forgiving yet responsive. You'll knock 'em dead!
If you're looking for a new pair of skis, K2 is the way to go! The K2 models mentioned here are just a sampling of what K2 has to offer. Before you buy, take a good look into what K2 has to offer you.
Learn to Snowboard
For people who love being outside in the colder months, they are likely experienced skiers. It seems that skiers enjoy the brisk air and can spend hours on a hill. For them they may want to consider another sport that is just as invigorating and exciting. If you are already a good skier, you can learn to snowboard without too much difficulty.
You may think this sport is just for the younger set. It’s true that many teenagers and young adults in their twenties are adamant about this sport, but you can learn to snowboard even in your forties or fifties. The main requirements are a spirit of adventure and a great sense of balance.
There are several different ways you can get the knowledge you need to be successful on the slopes. The Internet is a never-ending source for how to information and this is true of snowboarding as well. Although you aren’t going to get the hands-on experience by reading a website, you will get a good understanding of the fundamentals needed to be a good snowboarder. It’s a wise idea to peruse a few of these types of websites to get some basic pointers before you take an actual class.
Most ski clubs now offer a full range of lessons in outdoor sports. Not only can you sign up for beginner ski lessons, but you can also learn to snowboard from a qualified instructor. If you’re a bit more mature than the other students you may feel self-conscious about taking a class. If that’s the case you can always learn to snowboard through private lessons. This is going to cost you a bit more than a traditional class, but the extra personal instruction is worth it.
It’s important to feel comfortable with the board itself before you actually attempt to snowboard. For this reason, you should rent a board before purchasing one. This will enable you to see if you feel comfortable being on a board, as opposed to skis. It’s certainly similar, but there are also many differences when a skier wants to learn to snowboard. You may decide it’s really not for you and if you’ve just rented a board you’re not going to lose too much money.
Once you feel confident and you’re ready to give it a go, try a simple run first. Granted many people, particularly those who view themselves as sports pros, want to impress everyone when they try a new sport. When you are learning to snowboard, you do need to be wary of how steep or sophisticated a run you take on is, as injuries can be catastrophic. Slow but steady is definitely the safest way to go, and once you’ve mastered the bunny trail you can hit the killer hills in no time at all.
Choosing a Snow Boarding Instructor
Choosing a snow boarding instructor can be a very difficult choice, and one that comes down to your judgement more than anything else, however by following a few basic rules and asking the correct questions you can be sure that your choice will make a more informed one. When I first started learning how to snow board I was only 20 and in fact the sport was just getting started. Snow boarding began when a man decided to attach his son’s skis together in order to ensure that his son’s technique was correct. This has lead to snow boarding being one of the most popular winter sports even making an appearance in the Olympics. Despite this, the rules and regulations that surround other sports are different with snow boarding and for that reason alone it can be difficult to find an instructor that you are able to trust.
Does your instructor have any customers that you can speak with?
Ask your instructor if he has any past pupils that you are able to speak with. If he does then you will be able to ensure that he at least has some experience, and you can ask those pupils how they found the training that they were given. This is something that I consider with all my pupils. I ask them if they would like to speak with any ex pupils and give them their telephone numbers. Although most don’t bother calling them up, it gives them a certain level of confidence in my ability.
What rates or charges will you incur for instruction?
This is an important question and one that should be considered as a major factor in who you choose. If an instructor is charging more then it probably reflects on one major issue and that is his ability. If you are being charged more then this may be reflected in his service and experience and therefore it may be worth it. On the other hand, if you are mainly looking for the ability to master basic skills, then perhaps it is not worth paying extra. It is also imperative that you ask if the rates that you are paying reflect every cost element that you will incur. What do I mean by this? Some instructors may charge you an hourly rate, but then the course may ask for more in order to use the facilities or rent equipment. Be sure that you know about everything that you are paying. Another point for consideration is that if you intend to train on a better slope then the costs of tuition will surely be higher. I would say it is probably worth paying that little extra to learn on snow, and on a diverse and challenging range of slopes.
How well do you think you will get on with your instructor?
This is something that we must all consider before choosing an instructor, and although we cannot always tell, meeting them in person is a great way to get a feel for their personality. Many instructors choose to make friends with their pupils however this is something that I refrain from doing. In my opinion students attain the best results, when they have a relationship of mutual respect and understanding with their instructor. When the pupil and instructor become too chatty problems arise. However, this is just my opinion. If you feel more comfortable with a chatty instructor then this should be your choice. Think about what is best for you, and allow this to influence your choice of instructor.
The times the instructor is available
If your instructor will only be available between the hours of 9-5 and this is when you will be working then the chances are that this instructor is not very well suited to you. Stop and discuss with an instructor when both of you are available and you be sure to have a better working relationship.
Cross Country Skiing
Human beings have been moving around on skis since pre-historic times, combining this with hunting animals for food. Nordic skiing, otherwise known as cross country skiing originated in Scandinavia and is still a common means of transportation in Finland, Sweden and Norway. It is an increasingly popular leisure pursuit and there are numerous competitions for the serious sports skier.
There are different techniques used in the sport and many different events, such as sprint, relay and pursuit. Races take place over various distances, including long distance cross country skiing known as Ski Marathons. The longest distance of these events, at 160 km, is the Canadian Ski Marathon. There are international competitions and a World Cup.
The sport has been included in the Winter Olympics since 1924 for men and since 1952 for women. The Biathlon, a combination of Nordic skiing and rifle shooting, has featured in the Olympics since 1960. Norway leads the table of most medals that have been won in the Nordic category. Armies such as the Finnish Army train their soldiers to ski and many champions in the sport belong to the military.
This type of skiing, even more so than downhill skiing, requires a good level of fitness and stamina. Most recreational skiers follow trails, sometimes traveling further afield and camping out. Some more experienced skiers ski off piste in what is referred to as backcountry skiing. In addition to helping to keep fit, cross country skiing is a terrific way of seeing spectacular scenery that would not be accessible in any other way.
Nordic skiing is a fun activity for all the family. Children can ski from a very young age or parents can tow them on sleds. Resorts will give information on trails that are suitable for young people or beginners. It's also advisable for anyone not in tip top condition, to seek advice on how to build up muscle and endurance before embarking on cross country skiing vacations.
The correct clothing and equipment is vital for an enjoyable vacation. Skis must be properly waxed and maintained. Choosing appropriate clothing is also essential. Obviously, temperatures can get pretty cold but exercise can make skiers too warm. The clothes need to be warm and waterproof but allow for breathability and not restrict motion. Gloves, which can be bought specifically for the sport and hats, are essential. The head and hands lose a lot of heat from the body and must be protected.
If you are considering doing some snowboarding activities then I simply must tell you about the kind snow boarding activities that I have tried in the past, and the kind of activities that I intend to try In the future. The fact is that when I first tried snow boarding I had only been skiing a couple of times, so I was really a newbie that was looking to have a little bit of fun and experience some snowboarding activities for the first time.
Me and my friends all decided to go out their and see what kind of fun we were able to have on the slopes, and we sure did have heaps of fun and in fact far more than I would ever have imagined. We went out their, and because we had a rough idea how to ski we were far more cocky than we should have been but that did not stop us from having the most fun in our lives. The slope was very quiet, which just made it so much better. They way you move on a snowboard just makes you feel so much more in control, however you feel like you are taking more risk. When you are skiing it is just that little bit too comfortable at times, but the fact is that you never actually notice it until you give it a try. It really does not surprise me that people are choosing to give up skiing and are taking up snow boarding in its place, lets be honest you cant actually jump on ski’s. So OK, it is possible but you could hardly suggest that they are custom built for doing Ollie’s. That is why I have to tell, you that when I done my first jump on a snowboard and successfully landed it, I was sure to give it a try again, in the future.
Me and my friends all decided that the most fun thing that we could do was have a race down the slope, and this what we done. I was actually very nervous, as I was very anxious to win, but I knew if the worst came to the worst then I could always say that I tried my best, and trying my best is certainly what I done. Over the next minutes as we went done one of the most daring runs on one of our first times I was sure that I was going to win. That is not to say that I was, I could have hit a tree, or took a wrong turn and in the end I done the later. I lost and I was gutted, but the exhilaration just meant that I wanted to do more. I proposed doing it again, and everybody was up for it. It was the fact that when we done the first run, we had managed to grab some “Air-time” and I can assure you if you think that is good on ski’s you have experienced nothing yet.
The main problem with doing this run was that we were failing to abide by the rules of the slope with aggressive turning and twisting. The last run my friend Alan actually pushed Collin into a tree for a laugh. Although most people would not see this as being fun, it was the kind of think that happened based on excitement and I have to tell you that this snow boarding day has to be one the best days of sport that I have ever experienced, and even when I go skiing and snow boarding these days I often think back to the stuff we got up to that day on the slopes. I have to say that skiing just doesn’t seem to compare to snow boarding and it really does not surprise me to see people migrating from snow boarding to skiing at all. The thing is though we really should not compare them, I suppose they are both good in their own way.
The Rise of Snow Boarding
Everyone has surely noticed the way that snow boarding has been rising and rising in terms of popularity in recent years, and I am sure that it is not just me that’s noticed. In the last decade snow boarding has went from skateboarding on snow, to the Olympics quicker than you one could ever imagine.
Firstly snow boarding started when the little known Sherman Poppen decided to nail kid’s skis together in an attempt to improve their skating skills. This was just the start, as Sherman noticed the economic potential of this he decided to go about getting them into production. Millions of dollars and thousands of happy boarders later, Sherman will always be remembered for bringing snow boarding to the masses.
The first official competition took place in 1982 and since then snow boarding has seen more and more competitions take place. As the competitions started to spread, snow boarding changed from a hobby to a professional sport, that requires skill and agility in equal measure.
The biggest achievement for snow boarding occurred in 1998 when snow boarding made it to the winter Olympics. Held in Nagano Japan, the sport was given more than its fair share of coverage. The sport was watched by so many people that have never seen the sport before. The sale of snow boarding and snow boarding equipment was said to has risen by 47% following its appearance in the televisions of millions around the world. As the amount of competition rose, and as the amount of boarders rose in more than equal measure the standards within the sport became phenomenal. The kind of things that people are doing these days weren’t even heard of 10 years ago.
The rise of snow boarding has not just been a result of competition. It is also because it fits under the category of a fun, exciting sport and more importantly: a sport that can be done freestyle! Making appearances on TV alongside motor cross, skateboarding, and skate boarding snow boarding has also been aided by the personalities that have come through the sport. The fact is that skiing doesn’t have the cool look that snow boarding has. Surely you know what I mean? The skier looks to rigid, and just doesn’t have the relaxed, in control look that makes snow boarders 100 times cooler.
So you are probably wondering why I got into snow boarding? The reason really is very simple indeed. My friends and me were always skate boarders, but I also liked other things like roller skating and skating even riding a BMX. The truth is I just loved anything that made me move on wheels. However, when I seen skiing I always thought it looked plain dumb. I did not want to move around with two big planks of wood attached to my legs. But then I started to notice and hear a lot more about snow boarding everywhere I went. For a start, it was appearing more on TV and in the kind of magazines that I bought. Then I thought that if I tried it then I would already have some of the skills that I would need from the fact that I was already able to do skate boarding. So me and my friends decided that we would book up a lesson, and give it a shot. Why not I thought?
However folks, if you are really in to skate boarding and you think that’s fun, then you really have not experienced any real fun yet. DO you know that feeling from skate boarding when you are going down a road that has zero bumps? The fact that you almost glide through the air. That is what snow boarding is like every single step of the way and that is why I love it so much. If you ever decide to give it a shot then I am sure you will do it time, after time again.
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