10 Ski Tips & Guide for Skiing When Overweight

Freestyle skiing is a fantastic winter sport that a wide range of people can enjoy. However, if you’re overweight and considering your first ski adventure, you’re bound to have some doubts.

skiing when overweight

Fortunately, you’ve landed at the detailed guide for overweight skiing.

This article intends to answer all frequently asked questions regarding overweight skiing and provide some useful guidance for remaining safe even if you’re lugging excess weight.

Is There a Weight Limit on Ski Lifts?

The answer is NO — there is no specific weight restriction. It’s hardly unexpected because the ski lifts are typically intended to carry 2-8 people comfortably.

It’s good to check with any ski resort you’re planning to go to; unless you’re not too big to even consider your skiing plan, you’re unlikely to have any problem at the ski lifts.

Is There a Weight Limit on Skis?

In general, most ski size guidelines have a maximum weight limit of up to 220 pounds or more. This does not imply that persons weighing more than 220 pounds are not allowed on skis, but it does indicate that you should contact the ski rental service if your weight is significantly more than that to see whether they can allow you.

Can You Ski if You’re Overweight?

The answer is YES. However, it still depends on your weight and if you can walk effortlessly with your current weight.

Although you don’t have to be in fantastic shape for casual skiing,  being fat or grossly overweight won’t make things easier.

With that, the basic and typical suggestion is to lose weight before venturing into the highlands.

But, you want practical guidance rather than the old weight-loss advice, so let’s start.

If you’re ready for ski adventure being overweight, then below are a few useful suggestions for you:

Skiing Tips for People Who Are Overweight

Rent Your Ski Gear in Advance

If you don’t have your ski gear, it’s strongly recommended that you get it from the rental shop before trekking to the mountain. This way, you can easily check the fitting and try them on with the help of an expert and avoid the last-minute hustle at the resort’s ski store.

Ski Size

When it comes to picking the correct ski size, the first point to consider is your weight. In general, the long ski size is more suitable for overweight skiers. Experts would typically advise you to cut a few inches from the ski size you selected solely based on your weight if you’re a novice skier. They may extend a few inches if you’re more skilled.

Make sure to choose a ski that can withstand the increased strain and pressure placed on it. So,  it is critical to contact a trustworthy ski store if you are grossly overweight. You’re most likely to find the perfect sizes for you in ski rental shops compared to the resort’s stores.


Your boots are one of the most important aspects to consider. Unfortunately, many standard-sized items will not fit properly on someone with larger ankles and calf because ski boots are designed to fit tight. So, it’s essential for you first to check and rent boots that fit perfectly.

When skiing, the ski boots influence more than simply your feet’s comfort. They affect most things, including your balance, joints, and circulatory system. So unsuitable footwear might be the reason for a terrible first day on the slopes.

Visit a reliable ski store in your area and read the online reviews. Make sure that you’re dealing with a responsible shopkeeper who will help you find the perfect size boot rather than just throwing their typical sales pitch on you. 

Many ski areas will expedite this process because the queue may become longer and tense.

How to Get Up While Skiing

Regardless of your weight, getting back up after falling is one of the most difficult aspects of skiing. It’s primarily a question of skill, although being overweight may make the skills more difficult to perform. Even if you learned during ski session but have never practiced. (Ski lessons are a must for novice skiers)

If you followed step #1 and booked your skis in advance, now spare a day or two to find a soft and curved spot to learn the proper usage before moving out.

Least technically, it would help if you studied some of the strategies for standing up so that you can recall them when the time comes.

Work on Techniques

The more you practice, the simpler it becomes. For example, it’s not uncommon to see overweight people skiing on challenging and steepest terrains in their fifties and sixties. This is just because they have practiced skiing for years and have mastered the skill.

Of course, you can’t accomplish this on your first try, but with little effort, it is doable. Again, it depends on your size. But keep in mind that recreational skiing may be an easy and low risk after just a few fun sessions.

While it’s difficult to find solid cases of obese individuals skiing, this video proves the argument 🙂

Take Care of Your Knees

Skiing may be a difficult activity for the knees, but it can be considerably more difficult if you are overweight. Constant stress to the knee is inescapable even if you master the excellent technique. Due to the overweight body, the pressure on the knees amplified.

Don’t Overwork Yourself

If you begin to experience knee discomfort, consider taking a break or stop till the next day. Pushing yourself too hard might result in an injury that can take a long time to recover.

It’s also vital to identify the particular positions that put the most pressure on the knees. When mixed with gravitational force, increased weight may propel a skier into such postures with added force, resulting in frequent ski illnesses such as ACL tears.

Explore Injury Prevention Methods

The video above does a wonderful job of outlining some points to keep in mind that will help protect your knees. I strongly recommend watching it, but if you’re in a rush, below I’ve mentioned a few strategies to keep your ankle alignment from being tugged wrong.

Learn how to keep your center of gravity under control while skiing. Avoid extending your arm long back that it causes your body to move backward. When it comes to your knees and arms, skiing is one of the riskiest activities.

If you fall, your first reaction will be to dig in with your downhill ski, but this can put a lot of strain on your knee. If there is no imminent risk (such as a tree or other obstruction), you should continue to slide a little and come to a natural halt instead of digging in forcefully from the bottom.

Helpful Precautions If you Fall

Keeping your skis together when skiing is difficult for beginners. However, flexing your knees when you fall can help minimize your knee’s chances of turning the incorrect way.

Your body will flip as one unit, not in two separate ways. Helping to preserve your knees by keeping your hands on the ski tips as you touch down is another method to limit how much your entire body swings. According to a study done on snowboarders and skiers, skiers have a greater chance of having knee injuries because of the mechanics of snowboarding.

When seen in the video above, there are times where you will want to keep your hands close to the body. In essence, you should not let your arms and hands be the root cause of your twisting body movements.

Get Ski Training

If you want to master ski tactics, you must first get some training. Even though several useful resources are available online, only a qualified instructor can offer in-person corrections. A few simple adjustments might make the difference between skiing comfortably and be exhausted.

You can only apply what you learn on the internet to a limited number of situations. You can only rely on this information to assist you to a certain extent, and it is possible to be misled as a result. When you are skiing, a qualified ski instructor can tell you right away whether you are putting any part of your body in danger.

If you’re still not convinced, you can always take personal lessons. The level of customization that is provided may be significant.

Final Thoughts

Being overweight doesn’t rule out the possibility of having a good time skiing. With patience and determination, there is a strong chance that you will improve significantly. For anyone who is severely obese, it is recommended that they consult with a medical expert beforehand.

Many overweight athletes participate in sports that are more physically demanding than recreational skiing.