How do you properly size ski poles?


Quick Answer

To properly size ski poles, have an accurate measurement of your height, and compare it against a size chart. Even with suitably tall poles, however, you must try the poles out on the slopes to ensure they suit your ski ability and style.

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Full Answer

  1. Know your height

    Sizing ski poles is dependant on your height. If you are unsure exactly how tall you are, stand flat-footed on the ground with your shoes off for an accurate measurement.

  2. Refer to the size chart

    Outdoor enthusiasts standing 3 feet 4 inches tall require poles 32 inches in length, while those 6 feet 4 inches and taller need a pole length of at least 54 inches. Pole length increases by one size (typically 2 inches) for each 4-inch increase in height, up to 5 feet. After this height, length typically increases one size every 3 inches.

  3. Try your poles

    Standing with your shoes or ski boots on, turn the poles upside down so the grips are touching the floor. Gripping the pole just underneath the basket (with thumb touching), the elbows should rest at a 90-degree angle, parallel to the ground. A lesser angle means the poles are too long, while a greater-than-90-degree angle indicates the poles are too short.

  4. Make necessary adjustments

    Go with the shorter pole if you are between sizes. You should also move down a size if you are a park or speed skier, whereas you should increase your pole length by 2 inches if you prefer powder skiing.

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