Forums Splitboard Talk Forum Why Can’t I Skate Ski?
Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 15 total)
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  • #579569
    136 Posts

    The other day I was out with some skiers and the approach included a mile long flat snowmobile road. In a nut shell, the skiers left me in their dust while I wallowed in skinless ski mode all over the place trying to do what they were doing. I could have traveled faster if I put my skins on but I think skate skiing is a skill that would be helpful to have. Was it my gear? My inexperience with the technique? The road (chewed up by snowmobiles)?

    1448 Posts

    I did ten miles of groomed track in December with skins and was able to get a pretty decent skate going, I’d never dream of riding two boards without skins due the squirleyness and potential for serious ligament injuries – it’s a personal thing, not preaching.
    Anyways, the biggest obstacle to smooth skating in my opinion is the flat edge on each ski – in my case these are the outer edges in ski mode and its just not well suited to the necessary motion. Again, just my personal experience YMMV

    Shark Snowsurf Chuna
    Voile V-Tail 170 BC
    Voile One Ninety Five
    Spark R&D Arc

    679 Posts

    We did an egress out across a frozen lake a while back and the skiers skated along at a good clip. I know how to skate ski, but the wide boards and soft boots of my split basically made generating much edge very difficult. You essentially can’t push off without totally exaggerating the effort to engage your inside edge.

    136 Posts

    That makes sense. Thanks guys. I can get a good glide going with skins on but skating looks so much easier. Oh well.

    94 Posts

    It _seems_ like I can skate a bit easier with the board split into skis, and the sides not swapped. That is to say, straight edges on the inside. The AT boots probably help with the edging, too.

    I think kick skins of some sort would probably be the best.

    See the thread about DIY “waxless” ski scales on splitboards for more ideas.

    498 Posts

    While I am interested in the waxless spiltboard, I have decided to pursue a thin Kicker skins


    Attach skins with K2 Z-CLIP SYSTEM SET


    1490 Posts

    The main obstacle to skating on a split is the width. Of course, if the skiers you are with are rocking’ DPS Lotus 138s they would probably not skate so well either.
    I suspect it would be a little easier to skate with the straight edge to the inside, just beware of any downhills (actual skate skis sure do not have sidecut).
    It can be done by highly skilled folks with well developed musculature, but who practices skating that much?

    Matt Wood
    328 Posts

    Musculature… Oh my…

    700 Posts

    @barrows wrote:

    It can be done by highly skilled folks with well developed musculature, but who practices skating that much?

    I do! Unfortunately for many zones here in southwest Montana, it’s a fact of life as much as splitskiing is. Lots of miles on flattish roads and drainages. If you are (un)fortunate enough to get to practice this skill a lot, you’ll find it’ll come in handy on a number of tours.

    I skate skied on my high school nordic team and as far as comparing the two… it’s the same, just different 🙂 . I had to relearn how to do it on the split. Different power points, even different “musculature” as barrows says. Sorry that many of you have struggle with it because it is a really great tool to have access to. I’ve been doing fine for years in the “normal” splitski setup (powering off the sidecut edge on the inside). So it definitely works.

    @SwitchBack wrote:

    I can get a good glide going with skins on but skating looks so much easier. Oh well.

    Don’t give up! It is easier and WAY faster/more efficient in the right situations. Just takes time to develop the technique, as with anything in our sport. Don’t get frustrated if it doesn’t click the first few times out. Are you extending your poles? That’s an essential element often overlooked by folks with no nordic experience. the condition of your exit track definitely doesn’t sound ideal either. Snowmobile “grooming” can be advantageous if it’s consistent, but can be a real PITA if it’s not.

    Powder_Rider, how are those working for you? Those are REALLY thin, a lot thinner than I’ve seen before.

    385 Posts

    It really is a practice thing, the smoother the snow surface the more efficient you would be in moving instead of flopping around, and a rough cut up snowmobile track is definitely a skate ski challenge no matter how many times you’ve done it.

    what setup are you using when trying to skate? heel lockdown or tele style?

    1490 Posts

    Yeah Nick, good to hear that it is possible! Around here there is just not enough flat access points where one would use it much, so one never gets any practice (unless one would go somewhere specific to learn, and not be actually going riding). Most longer acces points here are via narrow trails, which are not packed out by beltheads. Also most of these access points are either steep enough, or have enough steep sections, that skins are really required.
    I agree though, if you can skate a split it can really help speed things up in certain situations, I wish I could occasionally…

    34 Posts

    @Matt Wood wrote:

    Musculature… Oh my…

    Dry oatmeal

    Hey now!

    8 Posts

    @barrows wrote:

    one never gets any practice (unless one would go somewhere specific to learn, and not be actually going riding)

    Heh, I’m just trying to imagine the faces if I turned-up on splits at one of the local sci di fondo (nordic) tracks. I think they might choke on their lycra. Might be fun though… 🙂

    Matt a.d.
    35 Posts

    There’s a zone around my home turf that is accessed by about 2 km of biathlon track so I actually skate the split fairly regularly. It’s not pretty, but once you get the hang of it, you can get a pretty decent clip going. My advice would be to do up your boots, max out the length of your poles and get low. Instead of trying to make long strides by putting a lot of energy into each kick, try to get a more fluid shortened stride going. It should feel kind of like you’re waddling. 😉

    24 Posts

    Anyone here having an opionon whether this is easier with AT setup? However Id imagine skating is easier with the heel locked. Is there any AT heel locks typically used by splitboaders?

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