SeniorsSkiing.com’s Reviewer Tried Againer Exoskeleton On His Second Day On Snow. Find Out How It Worked For Him.

I am a 75-year old, advanced intermediate skier with 10 years experience as a PSIA instructor in the East and mild osteoarthritis in my left knee.  I currently ski at Alta; that’s where I recently tested the Againer Exoskeleton.

Againer Exoskeleton attaches to thigh and boot, using a gas piston as a shock absorber.

The Againer consists of a hinged plastic frame which runs from the upper thigh to the lower calf and is held in place by two straps.  The key to the Againer system is a gas cylinder attached at the top to the upper section of the frame and at the bottom to a bracket on the rear of the ski boot.  When the gas cylinder is engaged, it works like a shock absorber when flexing the knees and provides upward lift at the end of each turn. 

The Againer helped me ski one of my favorite runs at Alta, Devil’s Elbow, a long intermediate run with a fairly gentle lower half.  On my run, I made as many short radius turns as I could—probably 50 or 60 in a row—in the lower half .  When I stopped, my legs were not tired, as they often are at the end of this drill, especially considering that this was only my second day on snow this season.

I can also see two advantages of wearing the Againer in case of a fall, which can be especially damaging to senior skiers.  First, the Againer would prevent any lateral movement in the knee, reducing chances of ligament damage.  Second, when I fall in powder, I often find one of my knees (usually my weaker left one) flexed underneath me.  The Againer system would eliminate that problem and, of course, protect against the opposite occurrence, hyperextension.

The Againer was easy to use, thanks mainly to a well-illustrated and detailed instruction manual.  I attached the brackets to my ski boots in about five minutes and put on the frames in another five to 10 minutes.  The repetition of daily use would, I’m sure, reduce the time needed to get into the frames, and the brackets would stay on the boots all season.

For more information about the Againer Exoskeleton, check out the website at againer-ski.com.

[Editor Note: Below is a product demo video from Againer Ski.]

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