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In my family, ski poles were passed down as children got older. The same poles my cousin used, I used, as did my little brother after I was through. We never had a problem with them, but once I reached my teens, it became apparent that this hand me down poles were restricting me from growing as an advanced skier.
Ski Poles warp with time and are difficult to repair. I have found that a quality pair of ski poles can make all the difference when tackling challenging terrain. As with all ski equipment, I make sure it is in working order each season, and remember to make any repairs as they are necessary. But once every few seasons, it becomes time to replace the poles. I am always amazing with my skiing ability when I am using a new set of poles.