Are you as ready as you could be for your ski holiday?
There's nothing worse than a frustrating day on the slopes where you just can't find your rhythm, you're struggling to keep up with your group, and your legs are already burning after the first first couple of runs.
Don't risk feeling under-prepared this winter. Read our top ski preparation tips to help you save valuable time on the slopes.
Get fit for the slopes
Want to get in shape for the upcoming ski season? If you don't have a gym membership, it's not a problem: you can make the outdoors your gym with a little creativity and dedication.
Health and fitness coach, Amelia Burton has put together four ski exercises to help you work on your strength, coordination and agility.
Ideally, you should start your ski exercises two or three weeks before your holiday. But the best news is these ski exercises don't require any equipment so you can do them at home, in the park or wherever you want.
Watch Amelia's four ski exercises to get you pumped for the snow
Refresh your ski skills
Hit your local dry ski slope or indoor ski centre to brush up on your skills. If you're a first-time skier, it's definitely a good idea to take a few lessons in the UK first as this will save precious skiing time in The Alps.
You'll see a range of lessons and refresher courses on offer. For example, as well as lessons for each level (from £29p/h), SNO!zone real-snow centre (Milton Keynes, Castleford and Scotland) offers themed coaching: two-hour SNO!academy Freestyle Coaching (£32); three-hour Ski/Snowboard Excel for intermediate and advanced instruction (£60); and three-hour Moguls Coaching (£45). For kids of all levels, there's the SNO!camps for ages 7-15 (8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.) from £43.
Take your skis for a service
Give your skis or snowboard some TLC before the start of the season with a ski service.
Whether you're servicing your own equipment or taking it to a pro shop, these are the five areas for attention: base repair, base grinding, base structure, edge tune and waxing.
Leading ski brand, Atomic have put together a step-by-step ski service video.
Watch Atomic's ski service video
Choosing new ski gear
Browsing the latest ski or snowboarding gear is a great way to ramp up the holiday excitment, but buying the wrong gear can put a serious dampener on your holiday.
Have no fear, we've taken the guesswork out of it with the launch of the 2012 Ski Gear Guide. You'll find reviews, prices and pictures for the very latest skis and snowboards from the biggest brands.
If you prefer to try before you buy, there are a number of demos taking place at UK indoor ski centres. The Snowboard Asylum (0844 499 1414) has shops at Tamworth's SnowDome, and Milton Keynes, Castleford and Glasgow's Xscape slopes. On special demo days, take your choice of snowboards on to the indoor snow for free, and if you like the board enough to buy it, they'll knock your lift pass price off the final sale. Ski/Snowboard demos also take place at the annual ski shows in London, Birmingham and Glasgow.