Q & A with Rossignol’s Nick Castagnoli
Nick Castagnoli is Communications/PR Director for Group Rossignol North America
Q: What makes today’s equipment - especially rental equipment - better than equipment from 10 years ago?
A: Well ski and snowboard equipment in general has become more intuitive, lighter weight, more comfortable, and easier to use and progress on than ever before and this has all made its way into modern rental equipment. If you have to pinpoint the one technology that has had the largest impact it would undoubtedly be “rocker” and it’s refinement from being a powder-specific technology into one that’s not only made learning to turn easier but has fast-tracked progression into new terrain and snow conditions.
Q: What should a beginner know about good boot fit - especially when renting?
A: First and foremost every skier should understand that the ski boot is your most important piece of equipment and your steering wheel on the mountain. It’s responsible for driving all of your energy and movement into the ski and needs to fit snug yet comfortably in order to function efficiently and keep you out on the hill. If your foot slides around inside the boot it won’t allow you to steer your skis as well and often causes foot and lower leg cramping. Ski and snowboard boots will not fit or feel like a tennis shoe and most will need to size down from their street shoe size in order to find the correct balance of comfort and performance.
Q: What is the best advice you can give a beginner (skier or snowboarder)?
A: Use layering to stay comfortable, invest in good ski socks, keep your eyes and hands up and always look on where you want to. Most importantly don’t take it too seriously and have fun!
Q: How and when did you start skiing or riding and who introduced you?
A: I first went skiing on my best friend’s family ski trip to Mount Kato, MN when I was 13 – been hooked ever since. And like countless others, that weekend trip learning how to slide down a hill with sticks strapped to my feet has shaped the entire course of my life, leading me from the Midwestern plains of Iowa to Colorado, Utah, ski trips around the world and a career in the ski industry.
PS – that same friend who introduced me to skiing lives right up the block from me to this day – been skiing together for over 20 years!