The best way to dress for winter is to follow the 3-layer guideline of layering. Layering gives you the flexibility to add or remove layers, depending on the weather conditions and your activity level.
1. Wicking Layer
This layer is worn next to your skin, usually consisting of long underwear. Look for thermal underwear made of a synthetic — usually polyester — fibre that wicks or moves the moisture away from your body.
2. Insulating Layer
This middle layer includes sweaters, sweatshirts, vests and pullovers. The purpose of this layer is to keep heat in and cold out, which is accomplished by trapping air between the fibres. Popular insulation materials include fleece or wool.
3. Protection Layer
The exterior layer, generally a shell and pants, serves as your guard against the elements of winter. It should repel water from snow and block the wind, while also letting perspiration evaporate. Jeans alone are not recommended as they will quickly absorb moisture from one fall. Most genuine winter shells and pants are made waterproof and breathable to some extent by using tightly woven fabrics teamed with a coating or laminate.
Although toques are warm, they should not be worn for skiing/ riding. School Boards require that helmet use is mandatory for their students. Snow sport helmets are warm on their own; however a thin covering such as a balaclava may be worn underneath. DO NOT wear a bulky toque under the helmet as it will affect the proper fit – essential to your safety. A neck warmer is the best bet to keep the heat in and cover any exposed skin. Scarves are dangerous around ski lifts and even tucked in the jacket can become loose over time.
Gloves or Mitts
Either is good as long as they are properly insulated for winter. Mitts are better for those susceptible to cold hands. Wool is not good as an exterior surface for gloves or mitts, since it tends to stick to metal lift components when wet.
Happy feet are a skier or riders best friend. One pair of light or medium weight socks is the best. Two pairs or a very thick pair could limit circulation and cause cold feet. Throw an extra pair in the packsack – damp socks become cold and uncomfortable.
Although not necessary, protecting your eyes is a wise thing to do when skiing or riding. Sunglasses or goggles can protect from harmful UV rays. Goggles will keep the wind and snow out of your eyes – after all, it’s a lot more fun when you can see where you are going.
Do not send your child with old, unsafe or borrowed equipment as binding may not be fitted properly. If you are bringing your own ski equipment or have decided to borrow some, please remember that the bindings must be properly adjusted for height, weight, boot size, age and ability. Schools receive a very favourable price when it comes to equipment rental and Vorlage’s certified technicians adjust each pair to the individual’s requirements.
Not only is wearing a ski/snowboard helmet mandatory for most school boards, it is just good common sense. It should be fitted properly and be specific to these sports – a hockey or bicycle helmet is not designed for skiing or snowboarding. More information can be found at https://www.skicanada.org/safety/why-wear-a-helmet/