Skiing has become one of the most famous winter sports globally, and a host of people participate in it each year. Like other equipment, including ski boots, goggles, and pants, ski poles are also essential skiing gear, and you can’t afford to overlook them. They not only provide you with force to drive yourself forward but also allow you to climb and descend the backcountry quickly. Even snowboarders leverage ski poles to facilitate their journey. Finding a suitable pair of ski poles can be a daunting task because of ample options available on the market. Our guide will take your pain away and make your job easy. Here we have compiled a list of the best ski poles in 2021 that will offer you the right balance of everything while giving you an excellent skiing experience.
Zipline Lollipop is an easy-to-use pair of ski poles that has a quirky design. These super lightweight sticks fit the bill because they grant seamless swing weight. Thanks to their graphite carbon composite technology, they are highly durable and have the ability to absorb more shock than aluminum poles.
These ski poles are considered the best adjustable gear because they have improved non-slip grip and are manufactured with thermoplastic material, allowing you to hold them firmly while preventing slippage. They also feature a hard tungsten tip that lasts long and enables you to stick them in icy or hard-packed snow in a better way.
On top of that, Zipline Lollipop poles come with a 14 mm pole shaft that provides ultra-light flex as well as balance from top to bottom. You can also easily adjust their zip straps for perfect fitting. Their affordability and availability in several vibrant colors make them the best choice for almost any skier.
Medium-sized baskets for any terrains or conditions
Nylon-made, adjustable strap that provides good grip
Elegant designs available in different colors
Salomon Arctic Lady Ski poles are an excellent option for intermediate and advanced skiers. Specially designed for women, these poles have a high-quality aluminum shaft that makes them light, strong, and durable. Besides, they are manufactured elegantly with a sleek geometric shape graphic and are available in multiple colors that will match any ski in the range and any outfit in your closet.
The ski poles by Salmon Arctic feature a bi-material ergonomic grip with rubber on each side of the pole, which provides easy grip and comfort. Besides, their all-mountain baskets are medium in size that are ideal for groomed terrains as well as powder conditions. These poles are also reinforced with a nylon strap with easy adjustment to help you hold them firmly when you jump off a big cliff on the mountain’s backside.
The WINGET Alpine Ski Poles are one of the lightest options available in the market for women. They are designed with a blend of 50% carbon fiber and 50% aluminum to ensure the strength, reliability, and durability you have been looking for.
The shaft diameter of these sticks is 16 mm from the top and 9 mm at the bottom. Besides, they are 1350 mm long, which makes them ideal gear for skiing as well as training. The adjustable straps are built with soft material that provides easy handling. These poles also come with ergonomically designed handles that feature a raked back angle to offer better ergonomics as well as handling. Moreover, they have manganese steel tips that enhance the durability and resistance of these poles. The tips are also topped with a mud basket that you can remove to clean and replace with powder baskets as per your preference.
The Rossignol Poker Pro is a versatile pair of ski poles that is ideal for all-mountain as well as off-piste skiers. They are designed to allow you to climb while touring and offer you the flexibility to firmly hold them without using the basket. Thus, you will quickly get into the backcountry without compromising performance on the groomers.
These ski poles come with a 6061 aluminum shaft that has a tensile and yield strength of 18,000 psi and 8,000 psi, respectively. They are not only terrific in strength but also have a lightweight design that facilitates portability. Besides, they feature both powder as well standard baskets that help you keep your poles clean when you are sailing through the deep stuff. You would be glad to know that Rossignol Poker Pro Ski Poles are preferred by professional skiers who seek a fixed-length pole that can be quickly turned into a powder pole, depending on the conditions.
You won’t believe that the length of a ski pole can significantly impact your performance on-piste as well as off-piste. You will need longer or shorter poles according to the terrain and your skiing style. Besides length, you will have to consider many other factors and features to get your hands on the right ski poles so that nothing gets in the way of you having the best skiing experience in the snow. Below, we have shared nuggets of information to help you know the ins and outs of choosing a perfect pair of ski poles. So let’s dive right in!
What Factors Should You Consider When Purchasing Ski Poles?
Selecting a pole of suitable height and size is vital to have a functional piece of equipment. An ideal pole should be situated below your armpit height slightly. To measure the height of your ski poles, turn them upside down and make sure the tip is facing upward while the grip is touching the ground. Also, check if your arm is bent at the right angle. If your arm is outstretched beyond the right angle, then the pole is shorter. However, the pole is longer if your arm is more bent while your fist sits above the elbow.
Most ski poles are manufactured with high-quality aluminum, carbon, or a blend of both. You will most likely find poles having aluminum shafts that are the most basic type of construction. However, higher-grade aluminum and carbon-made ski poles are advanced-level gears that offer more durability and are slightly pricey. Now it is up to you to find the best balance when it comes to durability as well as economy.
Ski poles come in a variety of designs and colors. Though the designs do not impact the performance of your pole, choosing the best design and color can help you express your style and personality. So, don’t hesitate to go for vibrant colors that match your skis and outfits if you are also a fashion fanatic besides an enthusiast skier.
Ski poles are designed to suit the requirements of men, women, and kids. While poles designed for men are usually longer and have various styles, women’s poles are relatively shorter and come with small grips to accommodate their hands. Besides, the length of kids’ poles can be adjusted so they could use them when they grow. They also have smaller grips that perfectly fit the hands of little children.
Basically, there are four types of ski poles available in the market, depending on their intended use.
All-mountain ski poles are built with basic aluminum to high-grade carbon fiber. They usually have a straight shaft and are engineered for skiers of all styles, ages, and abilities
Racing ski poles are made with the highest quality materials that can be shaped for aerodynamics. They mostly feature cone-shaped baskets that reduce the likeliness of getting hooked on the gates
Freestyle ski poles have smaller grips and are specially manufactured to be used at the terrain park. They also have a short length that facilitates maneuverability
Backcountry or Side Country poles have adjustable lengths and come with tools designed for backcountry travel, such as an inclinometer and ice ax
Key Features You Should Look For In Ski Poles
The strap is a flexible nylon loop attached at the top of the pole. In case you fall while skiing, the straps will stop the poles from sliding down the hill. But make sure to always loop your wrists through the straps to make the most of them.
A basket refers to a plastic disk that sits slightly above the tip of the ski pole. The main goal of this component is to prevent poles from sinking into the snow. Usually, baskets are available in two different types:
Power Baskets: They are wider in size and are designed for powder conditions
Standard Baskets: They are smaller in size and are ideal for groomed terrains
The grip is a sculptured handle situated at the top of the pole, which allows you to hold it tightly. Always make sure the grip fits perfectly in your hands and is made of soft material so that you can hold the pole for as long as possible.
Telescoping poles are usually designed for backcountry skiers or ski-mountaineers. You can extend them for uphill climbs and again minimize them for steep descents. Since these poles are ideal for skiing in the backcountry, investing in them if you spend most of your time in the resort would be a waste of money.
Ski poles built with composite materials are the strongest, most durable, and best for skiing in a resort. Poles made with a blend of aluminum and carbon are considered the best because they offer a good balance between strength and weight.
Having a pair of ski poles is necessary to get the best ever skiing experience. They are an irreplaceable piece of equipment that even professional skiers have to utilize to move downhill. From enabling you to propel forward to helping you maneuver tricky corners on the slopes, the uses of ski poles are innumerable.
Since ski poles have a lot to offer, picking the right pair that makes you confident is paramount. A perfect ski pole should be made of high-quality materials that ensure a steady plant, strength, comfort, and durability. Keeping all these factors and features in your mind when you go out shopping will help you get your hands on the best ski poles that guarantee a smooth ski down the mountain.
Ski Pole FAQ
How can I choose ski poles for different genders?
Women’s ski poles are mostly shorter in length and can extend up to 120 cm, whereas men or unisex poles are slightly longer and have lengths up to 135 cm. Besides, the grips on women’s poles are smaller in diameter, while men’s poles have regular-sized grips.
Are there any specific types of ski poles for beginners?
If you’re a beginner, all you need is a robust pole. As you get better with time, you can try out different types of poles like downhill ski poles and backcountry ski poles to level up your skiing experience.
What is the significance of straps in ski poles?
Straps usually come in handy when you are taking a tricky turn downhill. They also ensure your ski poles don’t slip out of your hands and slide down the hill if you fall.
Noah grew up out on frozen lakes playing hockey with the neighborhood bunch. After a brief stint as a junior college hockey player, Noah decided to dedicate his free time to helping others with their winter sports needs. His meaningful insight has helped athletes both young and old maintain a solid athletic career and work ethic. His need to help people brings him here to write product reviews, and he hopes you find exactly what you're looking for!