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In the past few years, ski manufacturers have begun to experiment with binding/plate combinations that are specifically designed to fit women's smaller feet and shorter ski length. Additionally, these bindings are usually composed of lighter weight materials. In some cases, they include a slight ramp angle, which places the heel in a position that is higher than the toe. This might put the female skier in a more balanced position, which may in turn correct the "backseat syndrome" that is common amongst female skiers.
Women's skis are also developed with sidecuts designed to accommodate the female form. In some cases, the forward mounting position is built into the mold. This eliminates one step from the ski-buying process, since the skier does not need to have her bindings adjusted from a unisex center.
In the past three years, female-specific skis began to change in more than just their structural design. Manufacturers began to experiment with adding "feminine" colors and graphics. This drew a mixed response. While some women loved it, others took offense. However, many pointed out that snowboarders had been using interesting, often "feminine " graphics for a number of years. Gradually, the graphics trend began to catch for men's skis. However, whether you prefer graphics or not, you should not assume that all female specific models are for passive skiers. There are female-specific race skis, park skis, backcountry skis, etc. Some of these ski designs are just as aggressive as their male counterparts.
|Sheri Ann Richerson|