Many winter sports enthusiasts love cross-country skiing. The exercise in the fresh air improves health, is easy on the joints and trains all muscle groups evenly. Another plus point in times of Corona: cross-country skiing is one of the few sports that can be practiced without major restrictions. You want to try cross-country skiing, but you don't know exactly what equipment you need and how much you have to pay for it? We provide help with our overview!
Here we go - or not?
Get into your bindings and hit the trails - but cross-country skiing isn't quite that simple! You have to decide on your cross-country skiing style beforehand, because this is what determines the purchase decision regarding your equipment.
We recommend that beginners rent equipment for their first attempts at cross-country skiing. This is the best way to find out how this sport suits you and which style of cross-country skiing you would like to practice.
Here, a distinction is made primarily between classic and skating. While in the classic style you constantly move within the tracks, in skating you glide outside on the groomed track. But also cross-country skiing in non-tracked terrain is becoming increasingly popular.
Wide range of prices for cross-country ski
For the different cross-country skiing styles there are of course different cross-country skis with different characteristics and lengths.
Classic cross-country skis have a section with grooves, scales or fur in the area under the binding. This allows the ski to interlock and build up resistance during the push-off in the snow. Classic skis are slightly longer than skating skis in order to be able to glide sufficiently in the track of the cross-country skiing trail.
In the skating technique, on the other hand, more power is transferred to the ski than in the classic style due to the powerful push-off to the side of the direction of movement. That is why skating skis are usually shorter (approx. body height up to +10 cm) and harder.
Ideal for beginners:
|60 - 600 €|
100 - 170 €
|Skating||Fastest cross-country skiing style: e.g.|
skating stride, half-skate stride,
single-stroke, two-stroke or double stick push
|100 - 600 €||170 - 250 €|
|Nordic Cruiser||For advanced skiers: cross-country skiing in open|
terrain (properties comparable to skating skis)
|80 - 250 €||150 - 170 €|
Cross country ski poles even for little money
Indispensable in cross-country skiing are special cross-country ski poles, which are much longer compared to ski poles. Since a large part of the drive comes from the upper body and arms, the right length is very important. In terms of price, cross-country ski poles differ especially in the material. It also determines how durable and robust a cross-country ski pole is.
The poles are mostly made of aluminium, carbon or a carbon mix. Vario poles, whose length can be individually adjusted, are also becoming increasingly popular. The advantage of this is that you don't have to commit yourself completely to one cross-country skiing technique.
Cross-country ski poles made of aluminium are used more in the leisure sector due to their good price-performance ratio.
Pure carbon poles are preferably used in competitions. Since carbon is the lightest material and yet has a very high stability, this expensive "high-end" product is also becoming increasingly popular with ambitious amateur athletes. The higher the carbon content, the better the performance.
|Cross-country ski poles||Material properties and advantages||Price||Average|
solid, robust, heavier than carbon
20 - 60 €
|Carbon||extremely light, robust, very good power transmission,|
perfect swing behaviour
|quite expensive||150 - 300 €|
Combination of carbon and glass fibre, much lighter than aluminium,
|relatively high price||60 - 150 €|
From simple to highly functional: cross-country ski boots
The choice of cross-country ski boots also depends on the cross-country technique practiced. There are classic cross-country boots, practical combi boots, special backcountry boots and cross-country boots that are particularly suitable for skating.
When it comes to comfort and safety, the fastening system of the cross-country ski boots also plays an important role. Here, a distinction must be made between quick lacing, velcro fasteners, buckle systems and zippers.
Particularly high-quality cross-country ski boots also have thermoformable inner shoes. Their advantage is that they can be perfectly adapted to your foot through warmth.
|Cross-country ski boots||Material properties and advantages|
allows rolling movement of the foot, soft shaft and sole,
|Skating||very stable, at least ankle-high shaft, hard sole|
Sole of medium hardness, usually detachable shaft clasp,
stable, heavier than classic cross-country boots durable sole
The price range for cross-country ski boots is wide. Beginners can already get simple or used models starting at 25 euros. With increasingly functional features, however, cross-country ski boots can cost up to 500 euros. Nevertheless, high-quality models from well-known manufacturers are available in the entry-level range for as little as 70 euros. Advanced skiers, on the other hand, should plan on 150 euros upwards for their shoes.
Pay attention to quality when buying cross-country clothing
If you want to cut a good figure on the cross-country ski trail, you need the right equipment as well as the right clothing. For cross-country skiing, an outfit with three layers has proven particularly successful.
Important: clothing made of breathable, highly functional and fast-drying materials are perfectly suited to the needs of cross-country skiers. Of course, good clothing is not really cheap. Nevertheless, this is not the area to skimp on. Functional clothing is enormously important for cross-country skiing!
Base layers are the first layer and are worn directly on the skin. They must be made of moisture-regulating material to transport sweat quickly outwards. Good base layers are often available in the sale from 20 euros upwards.
The second layer, called mid layer, separates the functional underwear from the outer layer. Light and breathable zip shirts with a collar or hood are often used here. The price range for mid layers is wide. Thus, the selection of clothes ranges from 25 euros to 250 euros.
The outer shell, i.e. the cross-country jacket and pants, is also responsible for weather protection. Here you should opt for high-quality garments, as they have windproof parts in the most important areas such as the chest and thighs. You should budget at least 50 euros per item and pay close attention to the functional properties when buying.
Conclusion: This is what you have to spend
When it comes to hard goods, you can get a reasonably solid cross-country equipment for little money. Depending on how much you want to save and whether second-hand goods are also an option for you, you can get cross-country skis including poles and boots for around 150 euros.
However, if you are looking for gear with higher quality, you should invest between 200 and 350 euros for your first equipment.
|Level||XC skis||XC ski poles||XC ski boots||Total cost hard goods|
ca. 60 €
|ca. 30 €|
ca. 60 €
ca. 150 €
|Leisure||ca. 120 €||ca. 80 €|
ca. 120 €
|ca. 320 €|
ca. 300 €
|ca. 250 €|
ca. 200 €
|ca. 750 €|
As with almost all sports, there are hardly any limits to the costs. Don't forget that there are also costs for gloves and accessories such as cross-country goggles or hats.
Our tip for beginners: Find out about so-called cross-country ski sets. These are offered by manufacturers and always consist of three components: cross-country skis, cross-country boots and poles. With a little luck, you can save a lot of money here!
This is how much snow there is in your favorite cross-country ski area