More than 20 million Americans participate in snow sports from Nordic skiing to snowboarding, and ski professionals say that most first-time skiers will be cold when hitting the slopes this winter. More than 75 percent of ski pros said that the majority of new skiers do not dress appropriately for the weather conditions with the most common mistake being not layering properly, according to a recent survey of professional ski and snowboard instructors conducted by Duofold by Champion base layer, the official base layer of the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA) and the American Association of Snowboard Instructors (AASI).
“With more than 31,000 members, we certainly see our share of student mishaps when it comes to dressing for the elements,” said Andy Hawk, marketing director for PSIA-AASI. “To truly enjoy the experience on the slopes, it is absolutely critical that you have the gear to keep you warm and dry all day long.”
More than 60 percent of survey respondents said that base layer was “extremely important” for any type of snow sports. Ski instructors highlighted the value of layering as conditions and temperatures on the mountain change during the course of the day. “It is not uncommon for temperatures on the mountain to vary throughout the day,” said Hawk. “A chilly morning can easily turn into a warm afternoon and vice versa. Dressing in layers allows you to adapt quickly and easily.”
Instructors are taking their own advice as well. According to the survey, 96 percent of respondents wear base layer on the slopes as well as for other activities. More than 18 percent of respondents said they wear base layer year round for all types of outdoor sports.Base layer is about more than just warmth. Although survey respondents highlighted warmth as the No. 1 key feature for base layer, there were other important considerations including quick drying performance, stretch and odor control.