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Each year, ski technology becomes more "intelligent." In the year 2008 you can take advantage of this intelligence that is reflected in the new designs by a variety of ski manufacturers. While all of this sophisticated technology can be very exciting, if you are new to this great sport, keep in mind that you should choose a ski that is appropriate for your level. You may be tempted to feed your ego, by choosing an expert ski. However, expert skis are stiffer because of the loads that an expert skier is capable of putting on them.
Beginner or intermediate skiers are often unfamiliar with the techniques required to position their bodies in a manner that would facilitate the amount of knee and hip angulation that is required to sufficiently flex their skis. An inability to flex a ski often corresponds to an inability to smoothly initiate a ski turn. On the other hand, if you are very enthusiastic about skiing, buying a ski that is too basic might be a waste of money. With frequent lessons and practice, you will probably make significant improvements in the course of the first year. At that point, you will have outgrown that ski. For this reason, once you are committed, it's best to choose an advance beginner/intermediate ski. The K2 Blackhawk, for example, is a great value (with bindings!) for under $400.
The Atomic Nomad Sativa is an excellent ski for advanced beginners. Its nano-technology gives it an exceptionally smooth ride, allowing it to remain stable even when you change the direction of your turns. Its two-chamber design provides superior edge grip on all types of snow.