How to Stand up After a Fall on Snowshoes or Cross-Country Skis

December 23, 2016
Stand Up After a Fall
JARI HINDSTROEM/SHUTTERSTOCK Follow the instructions below to stand up after a fall on snowshoes or cross-country skis.

Think of it as a sign of progress rather than failure: Falling on snowshoes or cross-country skis is part of learning a new skill. Although it’s never enjoyable to fall, practice makes perfect. Try righting yourself on varying grades and standing up from both your right and left sides. Working on these skills in a simulated environment will save you time and effort in a real-life scenario. With a little practice and determination, you’ll be back on your feet in no time.

Although it’s easier getting up on snowshoes than it is on cross-country skis, it’s still important to know the basics.

1.  Remove your backpack if you’re wearing one.
2.  Roll onto your side. On sloped terrain, position your feet downhill.
3.  Still on your side, plant the crampon of your slope-side snowshoe into the ground for better traction.
4.  Use your poles as a brace to help you stand up, first on your slope-side leg and then on your outer leg.

Cross-Country Skis
Because cross-country skis aren’t equipped with a crampon underfoot, beginners tend to have a harder time standing up after a spill. It’s important to assess the terrain first to figure out where you should point your skis.

1.  Remove your hands from the pole straps.
2.  Depending on how you landed, uncross your skis, if necessary, and place them perpendicular to the slope, pointing across the hill.
3.  Bending your knees and using your arms to push off the ground, shift your upper body over your skis, keeping your feet about hip-width apart. It’s sometimes easier to shift your weight onto your downhill ski while your other leg remains bent.
4.  Using your poles, push to the uphill side of your body to help you stand up.
5.  Dust yourself off, put your hands back in the pole straps, and ski on.



Search AMC Outdoors and Blogs

Search for:

Ryan Smith

Ryan Smith is a former managing editor of AMC Outdoors.