Cross Country Poles


Cross Country Pole Shopping Tips


When it comes to cross country skiing you won’t get very far without a set of poles. The various styles of cross country skiing have led the cross country pole manufacturers to produce different types of poles. Some cross country poles are designed for backcourntry use while others are suited for classic trail skiing or skate skiing. Backcountry or BC poles have large baskets on them to help stay on top of the deep snow. Racing poles are very strong, but light and have small baskets since the racing trails are groomed. Design wise, most of the classic touring and combination fall somewhere in between these two kinds of poles; featuring a midsized basket and a lightweight, durable shaft at a reasonable price.


Sizing Poles


With the cross country skiing techniques the poles are used to aid in forward propulsion. This being said, having the proper sized cross country poles will help you get the most efficient stride possible. Since each style of cross country skiing has a slightly different technique, the recommended length for poles varies based on the type of skiing you will be doing. As a general rule of thumb recreational poles should be sized so that they come up to the skiers arm pits when they are standing up right. Skate style cross country poles are sized longer, and should come up to the skiers chin.


For more detailed sizing information, on each product’s page you will find a “Size Chart” link above the “Add to Cart” button. Click on that link to view the poles size chart without leaving the product’s page. Simply find your height on the size chart and see the recommended cross country pole length for classic, skate, and touring styles.


Types of Poles


In addition to finding a cross country pole which is designed for the correct style of skiing and in the proper length, there are a few other things to consider when purchasing a set of poles. The shaft material and grip can make a difference in both comfort and performance. There are a variety of materials used to make shafts of cross country poles, including carbon fiber, aluminum and composite materials. Aluminum is generally the strongest but is also the heaviest. If you are going to be on extremely long ski adventures you might notice additional fatigue from heavier poles. On the opposite end, bigger guys might find that a carbon fiber or composite shaft bows too much to give a solid push and opt for the aluminum shaft. When it comes to grips, look for the description to mention an agronomical design. An ergonomic grip will allow you better control over the cross country poles without having to squeeze the grip too tightly.


Hopefully the array of poles information available in the Ski-O-Pedia will help you make an informed decision about getting the perfect set of poles. However, if you have any questions or would like to be pointed in the right direction please contact our customer service department via phone, email, or LiveChat.



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