There are a couple of stereotypes in the skiing world that we’ve seen in movies for years. On the one hand you’ve got the ski bum, the single guy who’s been skiing the same slopes for years, partying at night, and not being willing to admit that he’s getting a little too old for this. On the other hand is the wealthy businessperson who skis on the weekends, then goes home and counts his money. Why is there this gulf between these two stereotypes, how accurate are they, and how to people learn how to be one or the other?
Stereotypes are loosely based upon reality. Ski bums exist, as do monied ski enthusiasts who live for the slopes. Anyone who skis also knows that there are many people in the middle, but that most people lean in one direction or the other. We’re not going to presume here that being the first stereotype is bad, but let’s agree that this common narrative is based on the fact that the character doesn’t seem to have much of a future?
So how do people who love to ski or do other extreme sports invest in their future, both financially and physically? We’ve all known skiers who have damaged their backs and knees through years of abuse. Here are some of the best ways to invest in your future if you love extreme sports.
- Live Near Where You Play. One of the best ways to ski as much as possible is to live near an accessible and affordable slope. If you have to travel long distances one or more times per year just to do what you enjoy, you’ll burn a lot of money. If skiing or snowboarding really is a vital part of your lifestyle, make the investment and get close to where you do your thing.
- Practice Sound Finances. Don’t let your love of skiing prevent you from practices sound financial decisions. Invest for your future with Betterment or some other easy retirement investing source. Financial independence is the best way to give yourself the time and opportunities that you’re going to crave as you move through life. It’s likely that you will be physically able to ski or snowboard for years or decades to come, so give yourself the financial resources to do so by having a good career, saving prudently, and investing well.
- Get Good Gear and Learn Good Techniques. Many self-taught skiers and snowboarders do just fine on their own, but some damage their bodies over the long term because they never learned good fundamentals or use sub-standard gear. Investing in coaching and training will help you keep from injuring yourself in a chronic manner. Investing in good equipment will give you the support and performance you need while you’re hurtling down the slopes.
- Train When You’re Not Skiing. It’s important to be fit and physically active even when you’re not skiing. This will help you build a body that can handle some bumps and bruises while you are at the mountain. Muscle mass will take weight off of your joints, preserving performance and pain-free living in your knees and back. Practices like yoga will help you stay loose and limber so that you can do all of the maneuvers that make skiing and snowboarding fun.
Being a lifelong skier isn’t something that many people attain. While there’s nothing wrong with being a ski bum, if you want to build a more secure future for yourself and also have a little more variety in your life, there are some important financial practices that can help you make important investments for your future, both physical and financial.
China has canceled their Everest climbing season, and Nepal's situation around COVID-19 is deteriorating rapidly. | Wikipedia photo. This year’s mountaineering season on Everest seems to be about two separate stories, one of extremely limited access to the Chinese side of the mountain, and one of the typical crowds on the Nepalese side. China has now officially canceled mountaineering access to the north, largely as a precaution against a raging COVID-19 outbreak in the Nepalese base camp.
Fact: Climbing is a popular sport. And it’s gotten even more popular during the COVID-19 pandemic. In places like Yosemite, the mecca of North American big wall climbing, that popularity has led to ever-increasing amounts of climbers on multi-day routes like those on El Cap or Half Dome. In response to those growing crowds, and the impact they have on the walls they climb (read: leaving poop and gear on routes) the National Park Service is testing out a new system requiring all overnight
Are bikes in wilderness areas a good idea? Utah Senator Mike Lee seems to think so. | Max Ritter photo. Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) reintroduced the Human-Powered Travel in Wilderness Areas Act last week, a bill that would empower local managers of wilderness areas to decide whether to allow and how to regulate non-motorized travel in wilderness areas. In other words, this is a big step in the direction of potentially letting mountain bikers ride in wilderness areas. Currently, The Wilderness