Skiing In Austria

What Should I Expect On My First Day Skiing?

Last Updated on March 20, 2021 by James

You’ve listened to the advice of your friends, you’ve watched the YouTube videos and you’ve read the magazines. The day has finally come; it’s your first day skiing.

There is only so much preparation you can do for your first day skiing. When it comes to skiing, every person is different. Everybody learns at a different pace.

When you arrive at the beginner slope, you can see the look of excitement mixed with fear struck across the faces of all participants.

It’s your turn now…it’s sink or swim!

It will be tiring

No matter how fit you are, your first day skiing will be one of the most tiring days on the slopes you will ever have!

Ski boots and ski’s are heavy! Add to that the amount of ski gear you’re wearing to keep warm and you are sure to feel the weight.

It’s very common to find out on your first morning that it’s really not as cold as you were expecting it to be! So don’t be surprised to find yourself taking off a few layers.

At least that will lighten the load!

You should also expect to find yourself walking (or ‘side stepping’) up the beginner slope before each decent.

This is common on your first day. Even a very basic lift, or ‘magic carpet’, will take you higher than you are ready to go!

However, all of this walking around on the slope does serve a good purpose. It’s key at the beginner stage to become comfortable having skis on your feet.

After your first day, those skis that once felt heavy and awkward should be feeling a lot more natural!

ski, skiing, sport
You Will Be This Natural In No Time!

It’s more slippery than you think

The slope might feel a lot faster than you are expecting. Once you start going, you will see why your instructor has started you on such a shallow slope!

Even a slope that is five meters in length can send you sliding another 20 meters across the flat section at the bottom.

The further you slide, the further you need to walk back. This is when your fitness gets tested!

The faster you learn to stop, the better you will control your speed and the less walking you will need to do. If this isn’t motivation to progress, I’m not sure what is!

Skiing, Beginner Slope
It’s More Slippery Than It Looks!

Your first day skiing will be difficult (for most!)

Remember those videos you watched online? ‘Simple!’ you thought…

Skiing is a sport where it is certainly more difficult than it looks (like most sports!). The good news is, it’s like riding a bicycle; once you’ve got it, you will not forget in a hurry!

On your first day skiing you can be almost certain that your instructor will tell you to ‘lean forward!’

Skiing is very counter-intuitive. It’s a sport that demands you learn to do the opposite of everything your body naturally wants you to do.

Re-training your brain to these demands seems to be a process that happens very naturally for some people, but can prove so difficult for many others.

Hint: If you’re still unsure about taking lessons, we have written that answers the question ‘can you ski without lessons?’.

Some people learn faster than others

It’s somewhat difficult to assess who will progress fastest on the snow before you arrive at the beginner slope.

You will find that sometimes the most athletic of competitors will struggle to make any progress at all. Meanwhile, the less sporty person may leave everybody in his or her trail wondering what happened!

I’m not saying that fitness doesn’t play a part (it certainly does!). If you are in good physical condition, you definitely have an advantage.

Although, I do believe skiing is more a sport of technique than endurance. If you can master both, then you will have some great holidays in the years to come!

Ski Lesson, First Day Ski Lesson
Kids Usually Learn Faster Than Adults!

Expect to love it or hate it

I’m a ski instructor, skiing is my life and I love skiing.

Just because I love skiing, doesn’t mean everybody else must agree!

Everybody is very quick to form opinions (including me – I am human!) in the fast paced lifestyle we lead these days. After your first day skiing, you will usually know whether this is the sport for you or not.

Occasionally (yes occasionally!), I will come across somebody who will decide on the first morning that skiing is not for them.

It’s too cold, too tiring and too difficult – they think. If you feel this way during your first day on the slope, my advice is definitely not to quit.

Skiing can be difficult for many at the beginning, but it’s a wonderful sport.

One great thing about skiing; the more you improve, the more fun you have! It only gets better and better.

Most people will only spend one or two days on the beginner slope – so put in the effort here and your basic technique will serve you well for the years to come.

You will have some laughs

Whether you’re struggling or improving; skiing is full of funny moments. Whether its crashing into your instructor, or taking a snowball in the face, skiing is all about making unforgettable memories.

If it’s your first day skiing, don’t take it too seriously!

Whether you’re skiing in a group, with friends, with your family or by yourself; this will be a day you’ll never forget.

Enjoy every moment.

Beginner Ski Lesson
Instructors Also Want To Have Fun!

Expect to have some aches and pains

Skiing uses a lot of muscle groups that we do not train very often. Especially on your first day where you will be learning to do a snow plough (or ‘pizza’).

When was the last time you trained your groin muscles? Or how about hip flexors? Probably not very often right!

Most people will find they have a few sore muscles by the end of the first day. Skiing uses many different muscle groups and your first day skiing will usually be a physical one!

That covers muscle aches, now how about pain? Well, that depends on you!

The most likely pain you are going to get is boot pain! Ski boots are not always comfortable, especially when you’re not used to them!

Usually after a day or two either your feet adjust, or you change them for a different pair. Either way, problem solved!

The chances of falling and injuring yourself on your first day are very slim. The beginner slope is a safe learning area and the speed you will have will not usually be enough to cause any injury.

As with all skiing though, be safe and ski within your limits. Follow advice from your instructor and I’m sure you will learn a lot while staying safe at the same time.


Your first day skiing will be a day you never forget. It could be a day that you recollect many years later – struggling to remember how you found everything so difficult!


How was your first day skiing? Do you have any advice for people? Or is there something you’re feeling nervous about? Leave a comment and let us know!

3 thoughts on “What Should I Expect On My First Day Skiing?”

  1. I tried once skiing and all you said was true, the fear, the pain, the cold… now almost 3 years from the last time I tried skiing, I regret didn’t push myself hard to patiently collecting my courage, be friend with the pain and put more cloths or more excitement to heat the cold 🙂 very useful article. Now I want to go back again to snow and to skiing

  2. We had ski instruction from day one and it proved to be the best thing we did.
    They teach you all the simple things that become important when you go up to the top
    Of the mountain.

Comments are closed.