I am a new tele skiier and have heard from multiple friends that knee pads are a very good investment. Any advice about good ones would be appreciated. Should they be foam or some sort of hard plastic?
Knee pads are a must. I am so addicted to mine I wear them even if I'm just snowshoeing. Any of the one's on the market are fine just make sure you wear them. I have known great telemarkers who have shattered there knee cap from folling around. If anyone tells you that you don't need them they are not doing the type of telemarking that I'm sure you are trying to learn. I have meet some old duffers that claim not to use them but they are doing a very different type of skiing than most of us, if you know what I mean.
Get the ones with a hard plastic shell. Another thing that will save your knees from stumps in the coming years, once you're going intothe back country, and arthritis when you're a few years older will be to get into the habit of having a higher stance in your tele turn. Don't let your the toe of your back foot get more than about a foot behind the heel of your front foot. Most of the old duffers I know ski with a higher stance and know better than to go out without kneepads.
Kneepads also really help keep your knees warm (and prevent stiffness)when downhilling and are really handy to have for taking a break on your knees when you're snowboarding.
Definately hard plastic. The slickest are the Arcteryx - $30 - 35, I have a pair of Life link $25, I have also gotten rollerblade elbow pads size large -$10. Choose which kind but I have two pair with the plastic caps that are cracked so get em. I like the warmth factor as well.
I have used the Life Link and the Arc Teryx and I like the Life Link more. I think they are warmer and they extend all the way down to my boot for total protection. I will say they have chewed up my pants a little bit, but my pants have 400+ days on them and it might be there time. Just one opinion.
Try before you buy. A lot of people talk up the Arcteryx, but they slip on me and aren't as comfortable as some others. Whatever fits and is comfortable is the way to go. The roller blade option is cheap and they work well, but a little too warm. My 2 cents.
I would have to recommend the Arc'tryx. They are the most comfortable and have extended protection to cover your tibial tuberosity(the bulge right below your knee cap). Also, whichever kind you get don't wear them too tight or they will interfere with the way your patella tracks across your femur and you will have (eventually) a lot of pain. I have to agree with the additional warmth factor!
A forum community dedicated to whitewater kayaking, boating, and rafting enthusiasts. Come join the discussion about safety, routes, gear, models, styles, gear swaps, reviews, accessories, classifieds, and more!