Disciplines > Ski Cross

Ski Cross

Ski cross is a type of skiing competition where skiers race head to head down a course of gates with jumps, banked corners and three dimensional features. It is considered a freestyle, rather than an Alpine discipline by FIS (The International Ski Federation). What sets ski cross apart from other alpine skiing disciplines is that there’s more than one skier racing down the course. Any intentional contact with other competitors leads to disqualification.

In a ski cross competition there are normally two rounds:-

  • A time trail or qualification round
  • A knockout round and then finals

In a time trial or qualification round, every competitor skis down the course individually and is timed. The fastest 32 skiers (fastest 16 if not 32 competitors) are then sorted into groups of 4 and compete in a series of knockout rounds where:-

  • A group of four skiers start simultaneously and race to the end of the course.
  • The first two to cross the finish line will advance to the next round.

At the end of the knocout rounds, the big final and small final rounds determine 1st to 4th and 5th to 8th places, respectively.

Competition Pathway

In Scotland the entry point into skier cross competition is with the Scottish Schools Snowsports Association annual SBX Champs in November. This is a very popular indoor event designed for primary and secondary school pupils new to skier and boarder cross. For information visit www.sssa.co

The next step up is the annual Scottish Ski and Boarder Cross Championships (SSBX) held every February at Glenshee. This is a fun and friendly open competition that accepts circa 160 entries annually. See the calendar for dates and information.

Training and Preparing for Skier Cross Competition

To train and prepare for success in skier cross, competitors will need to focus on 4 key ingredients:-

  • The building of strength and athleticism
  • Developing their technical skills in alpine skiing or snowboarding 
  • Developing their jumping skills and aerial awareness
  • Developing an understanding of good line selection and the rules of racing

These skills come from immersing yourself in the correct environment to learn, and practice over a prolonged period of time.

To reach the top level a skier cross athlete will require commitment to:-

  • A supervised strength and conditioning programme + regular multi-sport activity
  • An alpine skills training programme
  • A freestyle skills training programme
  • Regular time on task in the mountains differing snow conditions
  • Homework and study line selection and race tactics

Once athletes start to get more serious than occasional and casual fun competition they should also start to consider looking at lifestyle and nutrition considerations.

For further information please contact Ross Gardner at Snowsport Scotland on 0131 625 4405

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