I recently bought a new pair of cross-country skis that matched my weight (with or without a backpack), but when I tried them out for the first time (over a two-day period), I didn't have as much grip as I had with my previous pair (which I got as a hand-me-down and didn't know if they matched my weight, but they worked well enough), even with a backpack on. Too much glide and not enough grip going uphill or even on level paths. Did I somehow get the wrong size, or do I need to use the skis for a while before they start to work for me?

One more thing: these are NIS skis with the NNN binding all the way forward--meaning I should have maximum grip.

I should also note that I put a bit of wax on the fish scales on the first day (I assume mistakenly), but that shouldn't make that much of a difference?

1 Answer 1


XC skis don't need to be broken in. Older skis may grip better because they are more scratched up, but they also won't glide as well as new ones.

Wax doesn't seem to hurt waxless skis unless you put tons on so it fills in the cavities behind the scales.

  • Thanks for the answer. Could older skis also have more grip because the curvature in the middle section is reduced? Feb 26, 2013 at 9:05
  • That's possible, I'm not sure. The snow temperature and texture might have more effect than that, as well as the ski width.
    – xpda
    Feb 26, 2013 at 16:05

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.