Learn everything you need to know about the characteristics of alpine skis

Den ultimative ski-guide! - Brugteski.dk ApS

This ski guide is made for you who would like to have your own skis, but can't quite figure out what to buy! Buying skis can be incredibly difficult. There are an incredible number of different skis to choose from, and it is difficult to find out what is the best solution for you. The guide here is made to give you a good understanding of the different ski types, as well as what characteristics they have. That is why we have made it as clear and easy to understand as possible.

To buy skis online, you need to know:

  1. Which skis suit you best
  2. The different ski types you can choose from
  3. The properties of the skis
  4. How high should my skis be?

1. Which skis suit you best

Finding the type of ski that suits you best doesn't have to be difficult. But when you search for skis, it can be incredibly overwhelming, and you can't find head or tail in...

We at Brugteski.dk have made it easy for you by dividing all our skis into 3 categories; Piste skiing, All Mountain and Park/Off-piste skiing.


2. The different ski types you can choose from

Ski types

There are different skis, depending on what you need them for. Piste skis are best for the hard groomed slopes, where off-piste skis are best for the soft snow in the off-piste. With that said, all skis can be used anywhere, however some skis are specially developed for certain areas on the mountain. It's like taking a racing bike into the woods. You will be able to use it, but it is much easier on a mountain bike.

There are an incredible number of different ski types: Racing, Freestyle, Freeride, Carving, Big Mountain, All Mountain and Powder skis. We have boiled all these variants down to 3 categories:

1. Piste skiing

Piste skis are the most used skis among Danes, and you probably already know them. This ski type covers concepts such as Racing and Carving skis.

Piste skiing is for you who love to rush down the groomed slopes, and spend most of the time on these types of slopes. It is this type of ski that is best and easiest to swing safely down the slopes on. If you are a beginner, or just not sure about the boards yet, then this is clearly your best choice of ski type.

Piste skis are in most cases 70 to 85 mm wide at the middle, and can be up to 110 mm wide at the top and bottom of the ski. This means that the skis are naturally curved, and provide the best properties for being able to swing on the slopes.

2. All Mountain

These skis are, as the word says, for the whole mountain. These skis are a mixture of piste skis and off-piste skis, and make them easy to use on the whole mountain.

All Mountain skis are for you who also love to ride off-piste, along the groomed slopes or into the trees. For you who like to drive in all kinds of places other than just on the slopes! All Mountain is for you who feel pressure on the slopes and want to try your hand at some new areas of the mountain!

All Mountain skis are often 86 to 95 mm wide across the middle and only slightly smaller than decidedly Off-piste skis. As the skis can be used on the whole mountain, they are not exclusively perfect for just one discipline, but here you get a good all-round ski.

3. Park/Off piste

Park/Off-piste skis, also known as Freestyle and Freeride skis. This category of ski covers the more specialized ski types, which are made for special places on the mountain.

These skis are for you who want to challenge yourself. For those who want to go far away from the groomed slopes, right into the soft untouched snow, or make the big jumps in the fun park. Here you are more experienced and maybe want to buy your second pair of skis, or just in love with powder!

Off-piste skis are often 96 to 110 mm above the center, and Park skis are twintip skis, with center bindings. This means that both ends of the ski point upwards, so that you can also stand backwards on the skis.

3. The properties of the skis

In addition to the width of the skis, there are some different characteristics that characterize the different types of skis.

Radius and Sidecut


Sidecut is the curve the ski has. What we mean is that if the middle (Waist) of the ski is narrower than both the top (Tip) and the bottom of the ski (Tail), then the ski takes on an hourglass shape. Sidecut thus describes how wide a ski is at the wasit, tip and tail, and thereby what shape the ski has.

Radius describes how strongly a ski can turn. A smaller radius makes it easier to carve and turn on the edge of the ski. The radius tells something about how many meters the ski needs to make a 180 degree turn when the ski is pushed to its limit. The 180 degree semicircle which now achieves gives a circle center. From the center out to the swing line, you can now measure the distance, which is the ski's swing radius. The smaller the radius of the ski, the faster you turn.

Rocker and camber

Rocker/camper also known as the "bend in the ski", and is different according to ski type. Camber is often seen in piste skiing, for example, as it provides better skiing on hard prepared slopes. Rocker, which is the opposite of camber, also better known as "reverse camber", makes the skis flow better in the soft snow in the off-piste, and is therefore often seen in All Mountain Skis. A mix of camper and rocker provides the ultimate best skiing.
There are many different ways to combine both rocker and camper. Below you can see different combinations of rocker and camper, and what significance it has on the skis.

Camber is where the center of the ski curves upwards. It provides suspension and rebound of energy, which is good on the groomed slopes.

Twintip both tip and tail are bent upwards, and this gives better opportunities to ride backwards and tricks.

Tip rocker has an early lift of the tip - suitable for powder snow.

Tip and tail rocker, both tip and tail have an early lift, this ensures good buoyancy.

Full rocker is a profile without camber, but where the tip and tail are lifted early, it gives good floating properties.

Reverse Camber is best suited for off-piste with its large arc at both ends.


Ski flex describes how stiff or soft the ski is. The proportion of flex in your skis depends on your driving style. If you are lighter and have a calm riding style, you should consider getting some skis with a softer flex. If, on the other hand, you are heavy and have an aggressive driving style, you should consider getting a strong ski with a stiffer flex.

4. How tall should my skis be?

Choosing ski size can be really complicated... But it doesn't have to be! A professional will use aspects such as height, weight, type, style, level, rocker and radius to find the size. We make it a little simpler, while at the same time achieving the right length for you:

Ski size

-By level

Level and ski type are the most important aspects when it comes to ski size. As a new skier, it is an advantage to have skis that are not as tall and thus more controllable. Skis that go up to your chin will make it easier to swing, and are therefore suitable for beginners. As an experienced skier, your skis should be longer as it provides more stability at high speed on the slopes. As an expert, you should have the longest skis, which either go to the top of your head or even higher.

Your skis don't know how heavy you are! Therefore, the starting point is that you are within the normal range in terms of weight. If you are either underweight or overweight, you can subtract 2 cm from the ski size (if you are underweight) or, conversely, add 2 cm if you are on the large side.

-By ski type

The type of ski also has an effect on how tall your skis should be. If you own 2 pairs of skis, e.g. piste skis and off-piste skis, then your off-piste skis will have to be quite a bit higher than your piste skis. This is because off-piste skis often have a large rocker, which means that the contact layer between the snow and the ski is less than on regular piste skis. Therefore, your Park/Off piste skis should be longer than your piste skis, in order to have the same contact surface.

It is important that you are realistic in relation to your level and do not choose skis that are too long. Better start with a pair of short skis and practice on these. Then it may be that you get the courage for a couple longer when you have become just experienced.

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