Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Thoren Theory.

If you don't know Jeannie Thoren, maybe you should.

Named one of the 100 Most Influential Skiers of the Century by Ski Magazine and one of the Top 25 Most Influential Skiers of the Past 50 years by Skiing Magazine, Jeannie has had an incredible influence on women's skiing.

Jeannie developed the Thoren Theory more than 30 years ago -- perhaps the main impetus behind many of the developments in women's equipment today.

What's her theory? By today's standards, it seems fairly obvious:

Women are not small men!

We're built differently, with wider hips, narrower shoulders, smaller feet, and a different stance. All this means its harder for a woman to get forward over her skis, keep her skis flat against the snow, or get enough power out of her equipment. Which means that women's skis and boots need to be engineered to accomodate the biomechanical differences that can make a world of difference in our skiing.

For years Jeannie offered ski clinics at ski areas across the country, helping women adapt equipment to their special requirements and coaching them to become better skiers. Lately she's moved on, working to develop women's boots and skis for Dynastar/Lange.

Jeannie is a great resource for women's skiing, and someone to be admired. Truly a women ahead of her time and someone who should be saluted for making a difference.

Be sure to visit TheSkiDiva.com, an internet forum especially for women skiers, where women skiers can connect with one another to talk about everything and anything ski-related.

Friday, August 24, 2007

I'm off to ESWA!

That's the Eastern Ski Writers Association, to you.

Today begins their pre-season meeting at Mount Snow, Vermont. It's going to be my very first event with the group, and I'm kind of excited.

Tomorrow I'm on a panel about bloggers and blogging, exploring whether bloggers should be recognized as legitimate members of the ski press or not.

This is a tough one. With the right equipment, moderate computer skills, and something to say, just about anyone can blog these days. The problem is separating the wheat from the chaff -- and there's bound to be more chaff than wheat.

I've had this blog for over a year now, and maybe it's time for a review. What do you folks think? Is it something you enjoy reading? Do you check it often? Has it proven helpful in any way?

Post your comments. I'd love to read 'em.

Be sure to visit TheSkiDiva.com, an internet forum especially for women skiers, where women skiers can connect with one another to talk about everything and anything ski-related.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The reviews are in.

Haven't seen them yet myself, but the Gear Review issues are starting to appear. Powder and Skiing are out, and Ski is sure to come, in a matter of weeks.

Gear reviews are useful. The provide a good place to start your search for new equipment. They can provide important information, like ski dimensions, point out new features, and just let you know what's new for this year and what the trends are.

All the same, it's important to remember they're exactly what their name implies: a GUIDE! View it as a source for information -- not the final word. Talk to knowledgable people in ski shops. Register at TheSkiDiva.com and take advantage of the great discussions about equipment. And more importantly, try before you buy. Hit a Demo Day at a mountain near you. Or see if you can rent it from your local shop. What's right for someone else may not be right for you.

Ski gear ain't cheap, so use all the tools you can to make the best decision possible. After all, the only review that counts is the one you make.

Be sure to visit TheSkiDiva.com, an internet forum especially for women skiers, where women skiers can connect with one another to talk about everything and anything ski-related.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Skiing and pregnancy.

There are lots of opinions about this. Some people say if you're a good skier, then there's no reason pregnancy should interfere with your skiing -- as long as you stop before the third trimester, since your center of gravity may be off.

Me, I don't think it's worth the risk. There's never a guarantee you won't fall or someone won't collide with you. And there are a lot of worse things than missing a ski season.

Apparently I'm not alone. Three-time Olympian and four-time US slalom champion Sarah Schleper just announced that she's going to miss the 2008 World Cup season because she's expecting a baby early next year.

Granted, she skis a lot differently than just about any other woman on the planet. And even though she's giving up racing, maybe she'll still take a run or two. The reports I read didn't say.

Everyone is different. And of course, the final decision is up to you. But if you do plan to ski, discuss it with your doctor. Stay away from double black runs. And be extra careful, okay?

Be sure to visit TheSkiDiva.com, an internet forum especially for women skiers, where women skiers can connect with one another to talk about everything and anything ski-related.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

The high price of skiing.

No one ever said that skiing is cheap. When you figure in the cost of equipment, clothing, day passes, food, and transportation, it's amazing that anyone other than Bill Gates is able to afford it. (Does Bill Gates ski?)

Now I see that Aspen is raising its day pass to $87. for the '07-'08 season. Granted, Aspen is not my local hill. And granted that I am not paying anywhere near that to go skiing. And granted, also, that Aspen seems to thrive, no matter how much they seem to charge. (You know how it goes -- for some people, the more you pay, the more it's worth.)

Still, last season Vail charged $85. for a day pass. And many ski areas have no problem cranking their prices up and up every year.

I know costs are going up. Improvements made by a ski area can cost millions of dollars. And this is a business, not a charity. All the same, in an industry that's been lamenting a downward trend in the number of skiers, this doesn't seem the way to correct the trend.

At least that's how it seems to me.

Be sure to visit TheSkiDiva.com, an internet forum especially for women skiers, where women skiers can connect with one another to talk about everything and anything ski-related.

Friday, August 03, 2007

A Half Marathon, A Complete Committment

One of my favorite people will be running a half-marathon in Philadelphia on September 16th.

My daughter, Emily, along her very good friend, Wendy Levine, will run to raise funds for The Children's Tumor Foundation—an organization whose mission is to end Neurofibromatosis (NF) through research. I don't know about Wendy, but Emily's never covered that kind of distance before. So it's a huge commitment on her part—but a commitment to acting on behalf of something she truly believes in.

NF is a progressive and debilitating genetic disorder that causes tumors to grow randomly throughout the body, along the nerves and nerve endings. It can cause brain tumors, blindness, deafness, bone abnormalities, learning disabilities, and more. NF occurs in more than one in 3,000 births and is more common than Cystic Fibrosis, hereditary Muscular Dystrophy, and Huntington’s Disease combined. Currently, there are no effective treatments and NO CURE for NF.

If you'd like to support Emily and Wendy and their commitment to NF, click on over to Active Giving.com and make a donation.

Tell 'em Ski Diva sent you.