There are several manufacturers selling folding/collapsible poles, usually for hiking or splitboarding. Are they also suitable for cross-country skiing?

  • AFter giving this question more thought I realized that unless you could collapse your skis then there's little advantage to having collapsible poles. For hiking the poles are the longest thing, for split-boarding you want the poles out of the way, but for cross-country, you're still going to always have those long skis.
    – furtive
    Feb 12, 2013 at 22:27
  • Funny you should mention it, I asked this question too: outdoors.stackexchange.com/q/3678/2064 Unfortunately the migration to this site deleted the previous answers (but they weren't a perfect solution anyway). Feb 13, 2013 at 8:21
  • @furtive: There are actually some advantages for adjustable poles: If you can also put on different baskets and/or tips, you could use them for alpine skiing and/or nordic walking. Plus you could lend them to someone else who has a different height. Feb 6, 2017 at 9:19

1 Answer 1


There aren't any x-country specific adjustable poles because there are no real benefits.

  • The skis will always be longer than the poles.
  • Unlike hiking or splitboarding, scenarios where you need to stow the poles but not the skis don't exist for x-country skiing.
  • It adds weight in a sport where weight is a big factor.
  • Unlike hiking and skiing, double polling, where maximum force is applied to poles, means the risk of poles collapsing (losing length) is significant and detrimental to performance.
  • A single shaft will transfer more force than a double shaft.

Currently available collapsible poles are mostly too short for the long stroke necessary in cross-country skiing, and probably wouldn't stand up well to hours of double polling.

  • That's a good point about double polling. As for the length, I have seen collapsible poles (also from BD) that extend up to 155cm, thought that's still too short for the tallest skiers. And I know little of the reliability, especially when extended to full length. Feb 12, 2013 at 9:31
  • For rollerskiing there would be an advantage as it would be much easier to transport rollerskis + poles + boots. Sep 15, 2018 at 22:42
  • Decathlon is now selling collapsible cross-country ski poles (only for casual skiers): decathlon.co.uk/p/… Feb 14, 2023 at 13:36

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