Clarification of terms for beginners: What types of skis are there?
Alpine or Nordic? Slalom or Race Carving? Freestyle or Freeride? There are plenty of ski terms - but which ski is meant for which style? The overview can be found here, starting with the first big distinction: Alpine ski versus Nordic ski.
Sport-, Slalom- und Race Carver: Carving Ski
Nowadays almost every ski you can buy is a Carving ski. This means that the ski has a certain waist that allows you to carve turns into the snow. A distinction is also made between different levels of strength:
- Allround Carver – Often also called Easy Carver, this multi-talent is forgiving and best suited for beginners.
- Slalom Carver – The name says it all. A slalom carver is not quite as long as your body and is intended for downhill skiing. Such a ski is made for experienced skiers who can handle the short radii and jagged turns.
- Race Carver – This ski calls the giant slalom it's home and therefore is designed for long radii. It is very long and hardly waisted. If you drive a Race Carver, you should bring a lot of power with you and be prepared for a spirited riding style with competition character.
- Sport Carver – In construction very similar to a Slalom or Race Carver, the Sport Carver has a stronger rocker component. It is a good middle ground for advanced skiers, who especially like downhill skiing and want to take short to medium-long turns.
The Allrounder: All Mountain Ski
An All Mountain Ski is also a Carving Ski. This is what an Allrounder has to offer:
✓ Forgiving thanks to generous turning radii and non-slip edges
✓ Suitable for various slope conditions
✓ Rather wide, also suitable if you want to ski in deep snow (Off-piste)
When choosing an All Mountain Ski, you as a beginner should pay attention to the degree of hardness: The higher the value of the so-called flex, the harder the ski. And the harder the ski, the more mature your skills should be.
TwinTip Ski / Freestyle Ski
A TwinTip is the candidate for all those who already have a lot of experience and who like to really dig deep into the bag of tricks with the Park & Pipe. This short, body-length ski can be ridden both forwards and backwards, as it is bent up at both ends. But beware: Freestyle Skis are definitely not made for high speeds on slopes!
Unlike the Freestyle Ski, the Freeride Ski is suitable for fast Off-piste descents. Freeride Skis are relatively wide, as they are mainly intended for use in deep snow instead of paved slopes. In deep, untouched snow, the wide, rather long boards give you the buoyancy needed. However, for such an Off-piste adventure you should already have advanced skills.
If you are skiing according to the motto "The journey is the reward", you have certainly already discovered the principle of ski touring. For the ascent with skis, you need skis that are as light as possible and don't let you down in rough Off-piste conditions.
The Touring Skis are equipped with skins to prevent them from slipping back. In addition, these models require a special touring binding that allows you to walk up- and downhill and is only fixed at both ends for the descent.