Winter sports with small children

Are you a true snow enthusiast? Would you like to ski down the mountains with your skis or with a snowboard? Children certainly do not have to stand in the way of this hobby. Babies, toddlers and preschoolers can also take part in winter sports. But of course you have to be well prepared!

Winter sports - Location

There are plenty of child-friendly winter sports resorts with all kinds of facilities that you can use. Just think of crèches, babysitters, mini-classes sometimes from three years. Let yourself be well informed at the travel agency and put your wishes and demands on the table. They can often provide you with the right information. There are winter sports organizations that specialize in winter sports holidays with (small) children. The nice thing about this is that in addition to the child-friendly locations, there is often an extensive entertainment program on site. This entertainment ensures - partly - that children can have fun. And if you see that your child is having fun, so do you!

Think about it

Preferably find a location that is not too high in the mountains and stay with your children on a children's slope. The higher you go up, the drier the air. This dry air ensures that you dry out earlier. Give him something extra to drink regularly. For very young children it is even advised not to go to great heights. Babies can get anxious at high altitudes due to the reduced oxygen in the air.

Do not take your child in a carrier on your back down the slope. Because of the speed with which you slide down, the air temperature cools down a lot, which is not pleasant for your child. In addition, your child is not protected when you fall ...
Make sure that the lips of your child remain fat, because they dry out quickly in the cold. Make sure you have a good lip balm with you. Also take a handkerchief with you, also snottebellen can freeze in the cold.

When it is extremely cold, you should not stay outside for too long with your baby. For other temperatures you can possibly use a plastic cover with an air hole in it, over the pram. If you do not have these (yet), you can buy them at baby specialist stores, fitting every pram. You protect your child against rain, snow and wind.

Mini-classes

Of course you can try to teach your own child to ski, but it is better to put your child in a mini-class. With the other children together it is very cozy and the mini-classes usually use shielded pieces on the slopes. That is so safe. In this way, they learn to play under gates through or through houses in a playful manner. The ski teachers and ski masters know very well how to handle toddlers and preschoolers to get used to those long slats that glide in all directions. The mini-classes usually start from 4 years old, but there are also mini-classes where your child can go to for three years.
The lessons for children take a bit shorter than the lessons for adults. So keep in mind that you may have to pick up your child a bit earlier from his class.

Play

Of course your child does not have to learn to ski at all. Playing in the snow, on the sled from a small slope, can already be an experience in itself. When you use a child-friendly winter sports resort there will undoubtedly be snowcrèches that you can use. In the meantime, you can go ahead.
You can also choose to alternate yourself with your child. In that case, the two of you have enough of one ski pass. Would you like to ski together - and that is of course very cozy - and your child is not in the shelter, you can take an extra (babysitter) travel companion. That way, you never have to leave the mountain alone and are assured that someone will always fit your baby. Make good arrangements in advance so that no misunderstandings can arise during the holiday.

Ski equipment for your child

You can buy a whole ski outfit for your toddler or toddler, but he may only use one holiday before he has grown up again. Take a look at second-hand winter sports outfits on websites such as www.marktplaats.nl or www.ebay.nl. But renting a complete outfit is of course also possible. The material is usually of good quality (but always check this yourself !!) and if something is not quite right or does not fit well, you can always exchange it.

But whether you buy or rent there are some details that you should look out for:

To prevent freezing your child needs good waterproof and suitable ski clothing. You can choose the best for special ski clothing because only an extra legging under the pants is certainly not enough. Of course, this clothing can also be rented. Check with the travel agency whether there are options for this on location, or whether you should arrange this here. Good ski clothing also protects your child against points of ski poles.
The ski boots must also be of good quality. These can often be rented on the spot, but in advance, ask the travel agent for the security. That way you will not face any unpleasant surprises.
Protect your child's body not only from the cold but also from the sun! You do not burn anywhere as fast as in the snow. The white snow reflects the sunlight so that you catch two or sometimes three times as many UV rays. It is therefore important that your baby is well smeared (factor 30 or higher). Even more than in the sun holiday!

Do not use a water-based sunscreen - it can freeze on the skin - and ensure a high protection factor.
Always provide a handkerchief. Slots can also freeze.
The sun on the white snow can be blinding. Provide good quality sunglasses for your baby, toddler or toddler! Children's eyes are extra sensitive to the harmful UV rays. A good ski goggles fits well and also keeps the side well covered.
Good gloves. Rather no gloves made of wool, these are not waterproof. Gloves are important for allowing your child to play in the snow without freezing his fingers. If your child is skiing, he needs genuine ski gloves. These are not only against the cold, but also to protect sharp edges of skis. Think also of a few extra thick warm socks!

Crash helmet

Always have your child wear a (fall) helmet. He can just get on his head. This does not only apply if your child is going to ski, because accidents can also happen when he is sitting on a sled. Head injuries at a young age can cause many problems later in life, even if everything seems to be bad. When choosing a good ski helmet, pay attention to the following points:

Does the helmet meet the European standard EN 1077 (label in the helmet).
Does the helmet have the right fit (do not buy on growth, some helmets have an adjustment possibility).
Does not the helmet a ski goggles in the way.

Put on the moments when your child is not wearing a helmet, a nice warm hat on his head.

By car

It has many advantages to go on holiday with the car. It is fast and you can take a lot of luggage with you. Because you can decide for yourself, you can also adjust everything to the rhythm of your toddler. Of course there are also disadvantages associated with it. It is less safe than flying and how do you keep quiet (and satisfied) in the car for the smallest hours? We have already put some tips for you in a row.

Do not forget the vignettes!

Traveling with the car? Do not forget to check if a vignette may be needed. For example, if you travel from the Netherlands, via Germany to Austria, you need Germany for example: a German environmental sticker, a safety vest, a warning triangle and a first aid kit. A first aid kit and the warning triangle are mandatory for almost all countries. For Austria you need an Autobahn vignette to use the motorways!

A good preparation

Proper preparation is indispensable and try to ensure that everyone can start the journey well rested.

Stop

Stop every 2 hours for a breath of fresh air and stretch the legs.

Safety

Without a car seat it is dangerous for your toddler in the car. Always put him in his seat, even if you 'just go around a block'. If your car has an airbag in the front, you may never place the seat in the front. Make sure that the back door is properly on (child) lock.

Read and listen

Children like to listen to stories, you can choose to read for yourself, but there are also enough CDs or audio books with fun stories for children. You can use the central sound system for this, but with a walkman on their own head, you can listen to a cozy music at the same time. Music also works soothingly, but music in combination with a story will fully appreciate your child. If you opt for new music, let your baby hear it a week in advance. Then it is well known to him.

Candy and food

You will be annoyed by a lot of snacking and eating. Therefore, set the sweets as long as possible. You can of course give your child something of fruit or a biscuit.

Toys

With the choice of toys in the car, take into account the fact that your toddler can throw it. That's why you better choose soft toys (if it should be thrown at your head). There are also boards for sale for the car seat. This makes it possible for your toddler to draw, color or puzzle. Even with plastic window figures you can keep your baby nice and sweet. Also think of your own steering wheel for him!

Video: All About Winter Sports. Skiing, Ice Skating, Sledding & More. Wiki for Kids at Cool School

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