For those just embarking on the “teaching your kid’s to ski yourself” adventure, you may forget to put some thought into what your kid is wearing. Or yourself for that matter. But a cold kid puts an end to that long awaited ski day. A sweaty parent can be more than a trifle annoying. The trouble is, advise for layering up yourself or your kid is bound to be wrong. Because the skill level, fitness level, and weather all contribute to vastly differing needs in terms of clothing.
Next post, I will highlight a couple different scenarios…and what we have learned in preparing for them. Remember your clothing choice needs to be a two fold decision. First, what is the weather forecast? Second, what is my activity level? Will I be picking up and carrying a toddler half the day? Or cruising green runs with my older and slightly more self-sufficient grade school kids? Each situation requires different levels of clothing. But today, some tips you want to keep in mind!
Ten Tips to remember:
- If you plan on being more than just “fair weather” skiers, get yourself and your kids a balaclava (a.k.a. Ninja hood).
- Don’t put the boots on too early. Or the ski socks for that matter. It is nearly impossible to keep damp feet warm. Just riding to the hill wearing snow boots can cause sweaty feet. So do what it takes to keep the kid’s feet dry!
- They should dress in light weight, wicking, and breathable materials. No cotton!
- The kids? As a general rule I try to dress them one layer more than I’d wear…
- The human body looses body heat most rapidly from the head, the groin, and the armpits. SO…keeping the head and neck covered and warm helps keep the body warm.
- In addition, I’ve noticed the warmer the legs are, the warmer the feet stay. A battle us parents are always fighting in the cold and snow… so consider snow pants that have fleece liners rather than just a pair of shell pants.
- Mittens are warmer than gloves. Mittens that stay on are golden! My favorite pair of kid’s mittens are the Mittz by Stonz Wear. They come up to the elbow, are easy to get on, durable, and have never slipped off.
- Need I comment on helmet issue? They are safer…period. But more than that. They are very warm!
- Faces are hard. And when it is snowy and cold, my kids complain most of having cold faces. Get everyone a good set of goggles. Or a cheap set. I don’t care. Even my tag along baby last year had a pair. It not only kept her eyes safe, but her cheeks and nose covered.
- Down-fill really is warmer than synthetic. Just like with sleeping bags. If you are silently cursing me right now cause you know how much kid’s down jackets cost (usually $60-$130), here is some encouragement. I bought my daughters Mountain Hardware down jacket on REI Outlet in September for $35. REI down jackets usually go on sale late in the season for a reasonable price.
Come back for our next post, which will highlight cold, windy, and spring skiing scenarios with specific tips for layering and our brand suggestions!
Other resources to check out: