With winter on the way, Ski Club staff wanted to kickstart ski fitness levels ahead of the season, so we headed to test out the ski and snowboard facilities at Chel-ski in the heart of London
When it comes to getting a snow-fix in the UK, there are a few options including Scottish ski resorts, dry slopes and snow domes. One of the lesser-known surfaces is the rotating faux-snow mat at Chel-ski, aptly named after its location in London’s borough of Chelsea – nowhere near any mountains at all. Ski Club's Sophie explains how it works...
Chel-Ski is London’s largest indoor ski centre and has two mechanical slopes measuring 9m by 5m, with remote-controlled adjustable incline and speed control. The slopes are made from nylon AstroTurf specifically designed for synthetic ski slopes, consisting of an extruded monofilament pile.
A lot of keen skiers will be familiar with the challenges of skiing on artificial surfaces. Dendix and Neveplast force your technique to improve due to their unforgiving nature and also throw up the risk of staving a finger if you catch it in a hole – Dendix thumb, anyone? But since the mountains aren’t quite within our reach in the UK, these surfaces provide a way to make our favourite winter hobby a summer one too. The plastic mat at Chel-ski is similar to very short artificial grass, but white, and the sensation is like a treadmill on skis.