To Edgie or not to Edgie Wedgie, that is the question?

26 04 2010

“Okay, slow down…tips together…pizza, Pizza, PIZZA! Bigger, Slow Down, STOP!” as heard from a fellow ski instructor, Heidi Walker.  If these words make no sense, then you have never been on the beginner slope at a local ski resort.  Parents teaching their kids how to ski are one of the most dangerous events in the life of any child.  There is only one thing that could possible make this traumatic experience remotely better: An Edgie Wedgie.

Before we get into what an edgie wedgie is, let us first talk about how little children learn to ski.   The first step is asking the child if they have ever eaten pizza before.  The teacher then asks them what is the shape of a slice of pizza?  The teacher then tells them to make a triangle or pizza shape with their skis (tips together, tails apart).  If a child is younger than five or six years old, they have a very hard time moving their bodies.  For instance, you tell a four year old to make a pizza shape with their skis they put their knees together and call it good.  Only until you grab his/her boots and pull them apart does he/she understand how to make a pizza shape.  Here is where our little device comes into play.

As the child starts down the ski hill, one tells them to make a pizza.  They attempt to pull their legs apart or push them together, continually going faster and faster down the hill and eventually falling down losing both skis.  Crying follows and then later, therapy bills.  When a child cannot make a pizza shape with their skis, one puts an edgie wedgie on the tips on the skis in order to keep them from coming apart or crossing each other.  The device only has three parts: two plastic clamps, and rubber tubing holding the two claps together.  You screw the two clamps onto the tips of the child’s ski, and presto, instant pizza.  Now your only instructions to the child are push or pull your legs apart.  Because the edgie wedgie is holding the tips of their ski together the only shape the skis make is a perfect pizza.  And because the skis make said pizza shape, it will slow the child down and prevent them from falling and/or crying.

There are some down sides to this simple yet revolutionary invention.  When you get to the bottom of the hill and need to scoot/slide over to the lift, there is only a little bit of wiggly room for the child to shuffle their skis.  My advice is to take the edgie wedgie off each time one gets to the bottom of the hill and put it back on at the top of the hill.

Another disadvantage is the child could use this amazing device as a crutch and not learn how to make a pizza shape on their own.  My suggestion here would be to try a periodical run without the edgie wedgie to see if the child can make a pizza shape.  About 80% of the time, the child has made muscle memory from skiing with the egie wedgie that they are able to make a pizza shape instinctively.

I suppose the question would be, should we start kids on the edgie wedgie from the beginning or wait until we see if they need it?  The answer lies in the question.  Take the child up part way up the beginner hill, let them ski down a ten-foot section, and see if they can make a pizza.  If they can, then take them up the lift, if they cannot have an edgie wedgie ready, because they are going to need it.  And because one has chosen to purchase an edgie wedgie before hand, one will realize very quickly that said purchase was a very smart decision.

Anthony Hind is a kids ski instructor at a local resort in Utah.  He has been teaching little kids how to ski for the last four years.

Other Places to find edgie wedgie and other products to help teach your children how to ski:

http://www.amazon.com/Edgie-Wedgie/dp/B000JUTE08

Do not get me started on this one:

Lucky Bums Ski Trainer

Buckman’s

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