As the 2016-17 ski season approaches, there are two ways to get ready: the “smart” way or the “whaaaat???” way.

From how you prepare physically to how you get your gear ready to the first time you step on the slopes for the season, you can get ready like a “PRO” or like a “NO” —it can make a world of difference for your season.

1. Make sure you’re training for the season before it starts with appropriate exercises.

PRO: “I’m going to make sure that I’m ready for crushing the mountain this season. I don’t want to wimp out after four runs.”

Lunge photo

Photo credit: Men’s Fitness

NO: “I don’t need to train for ski season. I’m in top physical shape.”

Photo credit: Home Alone

2. Stretching and flexibility are also important.

PRO: Ski ballet should be an Olympic sport again. Lobbies for its inclusion in the 2018 games in Korea.

Photo credit: The Ski Channel

NO: Tries stretching one time. Quits when you don’t like it.

Photo credit: Unknown

3. Take your gear out of storage.

PRO: All gear is well organized and easy to find.

Photo credit: nutsclimbing.com

NO: Gear is strewn and stored in many different places. Never actually finds both of his gloves and has to buy a new pair.

MessyRoommate

Photo credit: thetab.co.uk

4. Once you located your gear, see what needs to be repaired or replaced.

PRO: “I’ve done my research and saved up my money; I’m ready to purchase a new pair of skis.”

Photo credit: K2 Skis

NO: “Ski technology hasn’t changed that much; I’m fine with the gear that I have.”

Antique_Skis

Photo credit: fis-ski.com

5. If you find that you have gear that you don’t need, think about recycling it into something useful.  

PRO: Old skis no longer of use? Create something beautiful for the whole neighborhood to enjoy.

ski gate

Photo credit: buycrestedbutte.com

NO: Ready to get rid of some old skis? Throw them on the end of the driveway for the trash collectors.

ski-bumper-story

Photo credit: unknown

6. Purchase lift tickets early to save money.

PRO: Gets her lift tickets or ski pass early on Liftopia.com. Because she saved so much money, she purchased a multi-resort pass so that she could explore more mountains.

Photo credit: Gant Morgner

NO: Waited until she got to the slopes to purchase a ticket and was shocked at the $100+ price tag.

Photo credit: unknown

7. Start your season as soon as possible.

PRO: Even though she lives far from snow, she decides to practice on an acceptable surface.

Dry ski slope

Photo credit: Perth Now

NO: Lives in the city, but can’t wait for the season to start. Takes matters into his own hands.

Photo credit: unknown

8. Make sure that your friends are ready, too.  

PRO: Has opening day marked on the calendar and invites all of his friends to join him on first chair.

CO opening day photo

Photo credit: Arapahoe Basin 

NO: Doesn’t care if he has any friends on the slopes. Brings a dinosaur to intimidate other skiers.

Go Go Dino

Photo credit: unknown

It’s a good possibility that you’re not entirely a Pro or a No, but rather a mixture of both. However, no matter what your strategy, it’s time to get ready for the 2016-17 ski season. Break out those skis and snowboards and make your plans—winter is coming.

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