Equipment and Gear
Words of Wisdom:
- Teach and remind your athlete to be responsible about their gear and belongs.
- Every race parent should own an permanent, black, fine point Sharpie and put their child's name, CRT and telephone number on everything!
- Check out the training center bimonthly for missing items,
Working with ski shop personnel is a big part of your equipment selection process. When shopping deal with a reputable ski shop that is knowledgable and understands youth race development and the athlete's needs. Stan and Dan Sports has been a supporter of CRT for many seasons knowing and understanding our athlete’s need. If you ever have questions or concerns on equipment and gear with recommendations, double check with your athlete’s coach. Slightly used equipment is fine as long as it fits well and works for your athlete and our coaches’ recommendations.
Dress for Success:
Make sure your athlete dresses warmly and in layers. Not only will your athlete have an unpleasant day if they are underdressed, but the entire group will be impacted as the coach ends up spending more time inside warming up than on the hill training. Avoid these common mistakes: cotton socks, gloves with little insulation or waterproofing, and goggles that fit poorly in the helmet leaving a gap of exposed forehead. Be prepared for all weather conditions. Don’t forget to label everything. Things will be left behind over the course of the season and you will want to get it back!
The Boots are very important piece of equipment. Proper fit and flex are essential. Don't fall into the trap of buying boots that are a size larger than your child's feet for them to grow. A serious loss in performance, and often comfort, is the result. Boots will pack out some with wear, so they should be tight to begin with. Let your child walk round the house before their first training day to get their feet used to the boots. Boots must fit well and the athletes must be able to flex. Recommendation for boot flex 70 - for U10/U12 and flex 90 - U14. Always check with your coach if you are in doubt. Click here for a great video on proper boot fitting.
Ski choice is based on the athlete’s height, weight, physical maturity, skill and ability levels and athletic propensity. Other considerations include long term athlete development, optimizing the athlete's learning curve as well as our teaching methodologies. Ski manufacturers each have their own design and philosophy. Characteristics vary from brand to brand. Fortunately, all skis made for junior racing are high quality products. Coaches understand the needs of their athletes as well as ski characteristics and can recommend the best match for results.
General recommendations for those athletes just entering racing program:
One Ski - SL ski or a comb ski - length - head height. Once an athlete has developed the necessary skills or a U14 athlete it is time to consider two skis.
Two Ski - SL nose height & GS 20 CM longer than SL choice
You should check with your coach, when it doubt. It always a good idea to save a pair of last year’s skis to start your season out on until the mountain has good cover.
USSA has set lengths and turning radius for U14 and older athletes. See chart on resource page.
Helmets and Goggles
Look for comfort, warmth and protection. It's about fit and function, not brand and look, be sure the forehead is covered. All younger athletes are required to wear helmets with ears flaps. Goggles should fit the face well.
Beginning season 2015/16 athletes U14 and older must use helmets that meet the new FIS standards for all USSA GS, SG and DH competitions. This sticker will need to be on all helmets wore by U14 and older. leaving no space between goggle and helmet. When purchasing your goggles do not forget to take your helmet along.
They are not required, but who doesn't have one? The suit should fit snugly behind the leg and butt, with minimal wrinkles, yet provide no restrictions or discomfort through all ranges of motion. Fit your suit with garments you plan to wear underneath, like long underwear or a light fleece microfiber. That extra dry layer sure comes in handy on cold training or race days. As kids grow out these tight fitting suits fairly quickly, there is a pretty good second hand market for them; ski swaps and ski clubs are a good place to look for a reasonably prices used suit.
Warm Up Pants
Functional for movement, warmth and dryness. They should stay up high on the lower back in all ranges of motion and help seal all air from comin between them and the parka. Seriously consider buying bib type pants made of a water repellant / waterproof fabric. Full length leg zips are required ease of putting pants on and off at races and training.
Not too long, not too bulky, functional for layering and movement with water repellant fabrics.
Use ski socks made for skiing and fit properly. They are made with quality material that help keep feet warm. Wool blended socks are the best. The wick sweat well, and help keep feet warmer even when wet. Ski socks are cushioned in all the right places. They are higher up the leg for warmth and are not made to slide down off the calf. Have at least one identical pair for everyday you ski each week; a minimun of two identical pairs are essential for a weekend athlete.
Team Jackets must be ordered in early March for the next season. Jackets are ordered directly from Stan and Dan Sports. Although you may find some slightly used ones on our ski swap page.
Sweatshirt & sweatpants, t-shirts, hats are Cranmore Race Team logo gear. See the order form list in the documents. Orders must be completed by November 15th.
Sources for Equipment and Gear:
Reliable ski and sports shop specializing in ski racing and posses a good understanding of youth ski racing needs. Work with a sale staff that you can build a relationship over the years and is interested and knowledgeable in offering the brand and fit that works best for the success of your athlete. Talk to your coach for recommendations. They are the ones out on the hill working daily with your athlete and watching how the athlete works the ski though the turn and the results they are looking to achieve.
Local Ski Swaps are great place to pick up slightly used gear. Remember, the key here is it fits well, functional and works well for your athlete. It is a great idea to see if your coach might be able to meet you at the swap or recommend someone you can talk to at the swap. Eastern Slope Ski Club is a great place to find or sell gear you no longer can use. This year’s date is November 11thand 12th for dropping off gear to sell and the sale itself is Nov 13th & 14th at the North Conway Community Center. Many ski clubs run their annual ski swaps during October and November.
CRT Swap board - Need to buy or sell equipment? Looking to buy or sell gentle used equipment or gear? Check out or list items on the CRT swap board.This site should be self service but if you need any help posting or deleting posts, we are happy to assist. E-mail us at email@example.com CRT families may list items they are looking for or need to sell at this site. For the 2016 season we will be using the CRT Facebook page to post.
Wanted or Sale Postings may be placedon the Training Center bulletin boards. This is year three for the CRT Team jackets so check around for jacket sales if you missed purchasing in March. There are athletes who have out grown their jacket or have moved on to an older program.
Turning in Your Skis:
The importance of Ski Tuning cannot be understated – do not send your athlete out on the hill without gear that is ready to perform the tasks necessary to become a successful ski racer. Skis need to be freshly tuned, sharpened and waxed for every new day. Dull skis on icy days? Take the day off. Training in those circumstances will set an athlete back in their progression. Sharp means very sharp! Skis require daily care after each day of practice.
There are many good videos about tuning, waxing and caring for race skis. The following links are excellent resource:
New skis are generally not ready for skiing directly out of the wrapper!
Learn to Ski Tuning Clinic is Offered in December
Swix hosts a ski tuning clinic over the Christmas week in the training center. It is very informational and covers both tools needed and how to use them. Even if you are not planning to tune your athlete’s equipment it is a good session so you understand the importance of keep gear tuned and waxed. We try to schedule this clinic before the Pot Luck Super over Christmas week.