Purchasing a Ski Beyond Your Skill Level

PrzybylaPrzybyla Posts: 7 Baller
edited August 2017 in Skis Fins Bindings
I am in the market for a new ski. To date, I have learned on a family member's ski. It is only my second season skiing occasional weekends, so I am fairly new (15 off @ 28mph). I am in the process of moving to a lake where my wife's family owns a submersible course. I am extremely looking forward to being able to ski almost every day. I, like many others, have become obsessed with sport and have long term goals of getting into shorter lines. I am only 26 years old, so I'm feeling like I have a lifetime of skiing ahead of me.

My short term goals consist of getting to 36 mph, and then working on shortening the line from there. After I hit 36 mph and feel consistent enough to start working on -22, I would like to get a ski to call my own. I am not afraid to lay down some cash for one, but what I would prefer not to do is purchase a ski that I would grow out off sometime in the near future. Is it an issue to purchase a ski beyond your ability that you can grow into? Or is it better to get on an intermediate ski, followed inevitably by another purchase down the road?

Current Ski
66 in. Connelly HP series
Stoker front binding w/ rtp
It can be seen in this brochure (page 7).


  • TallSkinnyGuyTallSkinnyGuy Posts: 551 Crazy Baller
    If you end up skiing a course almost every day you will likely find yourself wanting a new ski every year or so anyway, so my suggestion is to buy a ski that will work well for you up through getting up to max speed if you don't already have access to one (you might let the group here know what the "family member's ski" is that you are currently riding). At that point, if you are athletic and skiing almost every day my guess is that the more knowledgeable people on this forum would say you would be fine on a high end ski.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 31,489 Administrator
    @Przybyla you need to get off that HP. There are a million choices but that old HP is "No Bueno". Connelly Carbon V or HO Omni or Radar Senate or O'Brien Conquer or even some random skis you might find on BindingSideUp

    Support BallOfSpray by supporting the companies that support BallOfSpray

    Connelly ★ DBSkis ★ Denali ★ Follow ★ Goode ★ GiveGo ★ HO Syndicate ★ MasterCraft

    Masterline ★ Performance Ski and Surf★ Reflex★ Radar★ Rodics OffCourse ★ Stokes


  • Than_BoganThan_Bogan Posts: 6,983 Mega Baller
    If you execute your plan and wait until you can run 36/-15, I don't think there will be any ski made that is fundamentally beyond your skill level. You won't necessarily "need" a top-end ski, but I can't see one hurting you at that point. One man's opinion, anyhow.
    Nathaniel Bogan -- GUT Padawan
  • RazorRoss3RazorRoss3 Posts: 1,405 Mega Baller
    Once you are seeing near daily course time you should get a ski to call your own. You don't need/shouldn't go and buy the top of the line because you won't need that until 36/15 is 100% and you are looking down line most sets but even working through speeds there are a number of second tier skis that would be better than what you have and help you as you work through the speeds.
  • h2onhkh2onhk Posts: 355 Crazy Baller
    Sounds like your heading to a good setup. Skiing almost everyday is a huge bonus! Once you find a newer ski that fits your style and comfort level don't feel like you have to upgrade every year. Go with what works for you. My dad is 60+ and still rides his vintage Connelly Shortline into 32off year after year (looks just like this, with a newer binding of course) bought it new in the 70's. Says he likes it and has no need to change.

    Lot of support on this site. I upgraded from an old KD7000 to a used D3 x5 a couple years ago and was really happy. Bought it off of @swc5150 right here on BOS and plan to hold onto it for a while.

    Go chase some buoys!
  • Just1MorePassJust1MorePass Posts: 11 Baller
    Like some of the other are saying I would recommend that you get a newer ski. I come from a similar situation as you where I started skiing at 21 and am now 24 so still fairly new to the sport. I struggled to run 32mph on an old ski (at least 8 years old) earlier this season so I went out and bought a new one (Obrien conquer). The ski made a huge difference. It felt so much more stable and the 32mph passes started to fall. I can even run 34mph passes pretty regularly now and almost ran my first 36mph pass last night until I crashed my ribs into the wake after 4 ball.

    Plus look at the ski as an investment. In the worst case if you grow out of it too quickly you can always sell it without taking too big of a loss.
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 4,001 Infinite Pandas
    I'm so much better than any ski!

    Some skis work better at faster or slower speeds. So you might match the ski to your speed advantageously. But almost any top ski from the last couple years is capable of running at or above your skill level. And you want a ski that is at or above your skill level.

    Old skis are fun and comfortable - but not your best learning curve.

  • PrzybylaPrzybyla Posts: 7 Baller
    @Just1MorePass - "worst case if you grow out of it too quickly you can always sell it without taking too big of a loss." Interesting thought that hadn't crossed my mind until now. Very true!

    I definitely agree with @Than_Bogan . I wouldn't "need" a top of the line ski. Coming into the discussion my hope was that I could stay on this ski for a little while longer, and then buy a ski that I can ride for several years (who knows, maybe this mindset will change with time). Just to clarify, what I wanted to ensure is that getting a high end ski that I can "grow into" as I progress beyond 15off isn't going to be detrimental to the learning process. It sounds like the group does not think that should be an issue.

    Overall the majority recommend me getting a newer, intermediate ski sooner rather than later while I'm trying to progress to max speed. It is probably a good idea too considering I plan on spending a decent amount of time at 15off trying to form good habits early on.

    Thanks for feedback, everyone.
  • kcrosskcross Posts: 16 Baller
    I was pretty similar to you started skiing at 26 on an entry level Obrien world class. I purchased a Radar senate the following year and went from barely making it through the course to always running it. I now run 34 on a good day, and can pick up a few at 36mph, I recommend radars mid level skis for you scenario. this is my second season with it now and we have had some good times, but next year I think I will upgrade to a high end ski. If I can stash the money away without my wife knowing he he.
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 827 Crazy Baller
    Ny 2 cents as a 15 off skier
    I believe that you progress faster on a less advance more forgiving ski until you are resonable stacked.
    Grow out of the first skis.
    Grow into the later skis.

    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • thagerthager Posts: 5,385 Mega Baller
    Everyone except possibly Nate, Willi, and a few others buy skis beyond their skill level.
    Stir vigorously then leave!
  • UWSkierUWSkier Posts: 1,822 Mega Baller
    What's your height/weight?
    boats are like girlfriends you love them however there is another one around the corner - bananaron, July 21, 2020
  • MrJonesMrJones Posts: 1,823 Mega Baller
    I see people on BOS talking about skis that are the second or third tier in the manufactures' line up. My recommendation is that if you are planning on skiing the course and fall into the average skier weight range, get the top of the line ski!

    The most important thing is to quickly ski with someone who can give you some direction on technique and ski set up. This can be professional, or if you can somehow fall in with some experienced course skiers in your area.

    There are a couple of brands that currently have skies that skiers across the board seem to be able to hop on a ride. Some time looking through threads on BOS should lead you in the right direction.

    BTW.. Hang on to the old HP! My first slalom ski was a Connelly Short Line. Still have it somewhere in the shop.
  • PrzybylaPrzybyla Posts: 7 Baller
    edited August 2017
    @UWSkier 5'11", 150 lbs

    @MrJones - it will be around for around for a while. I'm not the owner, and when I buy my own I doubt the owner will replace it. I'll definitely keep the advice in mind when I buy my first though!
  • UWSkierUWSkier Posts: 1,822 Mega Baller
    Darn. Was gonna say I have a whole quiver of skis that are more modern than that one I'd be willing to part with... but they're too big.
    boats are like girlfriends you love them however there is another one around the corner - bananaron, July 21, 2020
  • PrzybylaPrzybyla Posts: 7 Baller
    Wow! Thanks for the offer. That would have been great.
  • ScottScottScottScott Posts: 1,256 Mega Baller
    The cost savings of a mid level ski is a consideration also. A good mid level ski will take you pretty far into the course, so it can certainly be with you a couple years, and it will probably cost about 1/2 of the top level skis. That will help you when you're ready to buy that top level ski in a couple years. Especially, as was mentioned before, if you are pretty serious you will want to get the latest/ greatest ski that just came out every couple years.
  • scorban2scorban2 Posts: 107 Baller
    @Przybyla I'm at a similar skill level right now and am on a Radar Senate. I love the ski. It's forgiving, yet fast when you're on edge and stacked. Pretty sure it's not what's holding be back at this point!
  • JGrayJGray Posts: 67 Baller
    edited August 2017
    As stated above many of today's high end skis are pretty forgiving. There are some a few years back that were less forgiving so definitely get opinions/feedback when/if you narrow your list down. When I was where you were I bought a D3 X5. Which I and a fellow skier still tell people starting out is probably the best ski to get you from starting through really whatever you want, but will find at some point you want something a little faster. But they seem to be indestructible mine is an 05 and my wife was skiing on it until recently and you can find them used here and there pretty cheap. There are a lot of good skis out there, but would say being at slower speeds, make sure you get a ski that will carry you. A 66" high end ski might be tough at 28 mph. But a mid level ski or longer ski will build confidence and carry you. Once you get to shorting the rope at 36, that is when you will start feeling you want something more and you will know when that time comes.

    PS: Budget in good comfortable bindings. That can make long sets so much better. When I moved away from ultra tight rubber bindings where I had to quit skiing when I couldn't feel my feet to comfortable bindings where I had to quit skiing when my muscles gave out was an awesome day!
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 6,066 Mega Baller
    From a size perspective I think a 66" ski at 28 mph for someone who weighs 150 would have enough support. Might not be ideal but would be serviceable. I do think a slightly wider ski would be better. My son who weighs about 190 just recently skied 30 mph/22 off on a 67" Vapor and it didn't look too small at all for him. He does run in to 36/28 but it was his first set of the year.

    I do feel like the newer skis in general have more support in general than a Connelly HP would have.
    Mark Shaffer
  • GlydonGlydon Posts: 231 Baller
    edited August 2017
    Radar Senate and HO CX are 2 skis that will take you a long way and should be able to just get on and ride ... both course capable both forgiving.
  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 4,968 Mega Baller
    IMO I'd let the speed wait, and do some time on shorter lines sooner rather than later. Being on public water with limited sets in the course it seemed that every summer you'd run out of time before getting 36 working properly, not to mention harder on the boat driver with the chop.

    Intermediate skis with a bit more lift running a bit slower are just so much more fun than working the same pass out at 36 and having lots of missed passes.
Sign In or Register to comment.