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How to carve on skis like a boss

August 20, 2018
Georgina Cleave
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Georgina Cleave

Check out our Snow Sports School's top 5 tips for carving on skis like a boss!

Here at Cardrona we all wish we could carve on skis like a boss... well more specifically, our boss. She really is a beautiful skier! We’re also pretty sure you’d be stoked to carve like a boss too.

If you want to have better control & enjoy the added bonus of looking good while you’re skiing, look no further than these 5 tips from our Snow Sports School team for carving like a boss!

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Speed is your friend. If you think about it, it’s a bit like riding a bike, it’s harder to ride a bike slow than fast & it’s the same with skiing. There are natural forces at play that help when you allow yourself to move faster down the hill. So what we’re really saying is… use the force!


The shape of your turns makes a big difference to how in control you are. Once you’re comfortable that you’re able to move faster down the slope while staying in control by making rounded S-shaped turns, you can really get into your carving.

Carved turns have three parts: initiation or beginning of the turn, control or middle of the turn, & completion or end of the turn. By steering your skis through each of these phases of the turn & focusing on the other movements we’ll talk about next, you’ll feel more in control even though you are probably moving fast than you were when you were skidding your skis around the turn.


Roll your knees & ankles at the beginning of the turn to get onto your skis’ edges earlier. You do this by pointing your knees down the hill & rolling onto the big toe of the outside foot.

Carving skis were designed to make turning a whole lot easier. The sooner you can get your skis on their edges, the sooner they can do their job!


Keep your weight forward throughout the end of one turn, right through to the beginning of the next one. If you do this you’ll be able to steer your legs where you want them to go. If you start to lean back this becomes much, much harder. Thigh burn anyone?

To keep your weight forward, keep your ankles, knees & hips slightly flexed & feel for the balance over your feet. You should feel slightly more weight on the balls of your feet but still keep your heels down. You’ll feel the front of your shin in contact with the front of  the cuff of your boot.


Keep your body as stable as possible, your legs do the turning & tipping. Look in the direction of travel & feel how your legs turn more than your hips & shoulders. It’s tempting to turn your body with your legs, but trust us, it’s much easier to carve if you don’t. It can help to pick a point down the hill that you continue to look at & face your body towards while your legs are moving underneath you.

By keeping your body’s momentum moving down the hill, you’ll be able to keep your weight forward & on the outside ski & that’s where you want to be.

Carving can help you stay in control & allow you to comfortably ski more of our favourite maunga. There’s a lot to think about, but it will become more natural the more you do it. If these tips have got you tempted to carve it up at Cardrona, but you think you want some extra pointers, why not book a lesson with one of our experienced instructors?

About the Author

Georgina Cleave

Georgina Cleave is a freelance marketer & content creator based in Wanaka. She's had a long love affair with our maunga. Currently a ski instructor, you may have seen her working in many other departments over the last couple of decades.

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