Slope Essentials for 2014 Ski Season

Well and truly into our UK winter, and most people cringe at the thought of colder weather and snow. But if you’re a skier or snowboarder, then you’re probably anxiously keeping an eye on the weather, just waiting for the inches to start piling up on your favourite mountain. Before you start waxing your skis, get yourself gear-ready with some slope essentials.

Abi is a fitness fanatic. She particularly loves snow sports and is currently gearing up for the 2014 ski season. For those looking for cheap snowboarding equipment Abi recommends companies such as The Board Basement, who stock a wide range of discounted products.

Grab crucial accessories to add to your gear package

Once you’re all set up with your foundation, consider adding accessories such as a helmet and good eye wear. Whether you’re a beginner or advanced, a helmet really is necessary. When you’re just starting out, you’ll probably be falling a bit (or a lot), and if you’re advanced you’ll likely be hitting up some challenging runs. Either way, protecting your head is never a bad idea. Add to that, it’ll help keep your body temperature at a toastier level.

Ah, the eye wear debate: should you wear goggles or sunglasses on the slopes? They both have pros and cons, but the answer will depend on what you feel most comfortable doing. You may want a good pair of each for days when conditions vary. Look for glasses or goggles that have UV protection and are polarized to help reduce glare. Because you will likely be experiencing temperature fluctuation, anti-fog capabilities are a beneficial feature.

Layer, layer, then layer again

Can you tell that layering is important? The best way to keep yourself warm is to use a layering technique. When you’re out skiing or snowboarding, you’re exerting energy that will make you sweat. Yes, even in the freezing snow. If you've chosen wisely, your layers will keep you dry and warm.

The most important aspect to consider when you choose your layering piece is the material it’s made from. Opt for something that is moisture-wicking or has features that help to keep you dry. Cotton is the worst option because once it gets wet, it will stay wet, leaving you cold. Man-made materials or wool are your best picks. An outer layer that includes zippered openings will help ensure air circulation, keeping your mid and base layers dry.

Sunburn isn't just for summer

You may have left your sunblock stashed in your beach bag, but it’s time to pull out your highest UV protection. Remember that altitude plus sun reflection can equal a serious burn. Sunblock is often forgott en in the winter, but it’s never as important as when you’re hitting the slopes. Choose a thicker lotion or cream that will also help protect your skin from wind burn or chafing. And, as always, don’t forget to re-apply.

With these essentials on your list, you’ll be ready for the upcoming ski season before the first snow starts falling.

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