How do you size cross-country skis?


Quick Answer

Select the length of cross-country skis by choosing the type of skis you want and comparing your weight with the conversion chart. Consider your use and ability in determining the appropriate length. While the traditional method of selecting length uses on height, REI recommends weight as a more precise measurement.

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Full Answer

  1. Determine the type of skis

    Touring skis are longer, lighter in weight and faster than metal edge skis; however, metal-edge skis are a wider and more maneuverable option. Touring skis are a better option when skiing on groomed trails, but metal-edge skis are better at gripping ice and when skiing in ungroomed snow.

  2. Select the length

    Use the appropriate chart to determine the length of ski needed based on body weight. If your weight is between two sizes, choose the shorter ski if you are new to the sport. Choose the longer length if you are athletic or an experienced skier.

  3. Select the width

    Cross-country skis come in several widths. Choose the width depending on your intended use. For use on a groomed track, select skis less than 70 millimeters at the tip; otherwise, the skis do not fit into the track. Make sure the touring center allows metal-edged skis before selecting them.

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