Outside of underwear, wear a baselayer made of polyester. For optimal function the baselayer should fit tightly, even in the armpits. Otherwise the moisture may not be transported out of the garment but instead remain on the skin where it creates a chilly “lid”. For cold and windy conditions you can choose a baselayer with wind-protective fabric at the front. However, it’s often enough with a normal baselayer combined with a pair of underwear with wind protection across the genital area.
For those of you who prefer to take it a little bit slower in the tracks, underwear with a mix of polyester and wool is a great option. Wool doesn’t provide as efficient moisture transport as polyester but has very good thermal properties, making the combination of polyester and wool the perfect choice for low-intensity workouts in low temperatures.
Socks should also be made of polyester, or polyester and wool if you are prone to cold feet. In cooler conditions, some skiers prefer to wear two thin socks, which provides a warming layer-on-layer effect, while others choose to have a thicker wool/polyester sock. Be sure that it doesn’t get too tight in the boot, which would eliminate the insulating layers of warm air between the boot, sock and foot. Another tip is to ensure that your feet are dry when putting on the socks. Then you reduce the risk of freezing, since moisture transfers cold rapidly.
Remember that it’s always better to buy thinner clothes and wear multiple layers. This creates layers of air in between the garments that provide more warmth than one thick garment. And if it gets too hot, you can easily remove a layer.
Many skiers have a tendency to sometimes dress a little too warm. Dressing correctly will improve both your performance and overall ski experience. A good tip is to always take a look at the thermometer before you hit the tracks, and then test your way during the training sessions. Eventually you will learn how many layers you need at different temperatures. It’s usually preferable to wear less clothes and be a little bit cold during the first 5 to 10 minutes of the workout, because that’s when the body heats up to reach its working temperature.
No matter how many layers you wear, it’s always important that the clothes are not too loose. Tight, form-fitting garments keep you warm and increase your mobility. Furthermore, tight clothes eliminate the risk for your poles to get stuck in flapping pants. By dressing optimally all the way from the inside out you will stay both warm and dry, allowing you to perform better and work out longer. Happy skiing!