The 10 Best Freestyle SkisPublished on 05/23/2023 · 6 min readLooking to step up your terrain park and freeride game next season? Check out these top 10 ski options for freestyle skis from Skiing Expert Aidan Campbell!
tl;dr Freestyle skis fall into two main categories: park and freeride. Park skis are typically fairly narrow and are designed to shred groomed snow and man-made features found in the terrain park. Freeride skis are often wider, and perform best on unnatural features and ungroomed terrain. Further, all freestyle skis feature a twin tip shape and a mount point towards the center of the ski, which allows the athlete to ski them backwards and stay balanced in the air. In this article, we’ll take a look at five of the best park and freeride skis on the market today.
Expert-Recommended Park Skis
Armada’s ARV 96 is an incredibly well-rounded park ski. They feature a fairly stiff flex for stability at high speeds and on hard landings, yet are playful enough to jib around on handrails and smaller features. Known for its extreme durability, the ARV features nearly full-length sidewalls to resist damage from huge impacts.
The ARV 96 is a great option for any skill level between intermediate and professional. It’s also available in women's models, and 86mm, 106mm, and 116mm widths to shred any snow conditions.
The Edollo is a very unique park ski, being that it features an asymmetrical shape with a stiffer, more cambered tail, and a softer, more rockered tip. This stiff tail provides stability on landings, while the soft tips allow the skier to butter every feature in sight.
At 98mm wide, the Edollos are not the lightest skis on this list, but they make up for it with stability and durability. These are a great option for a skier who loves big jumps, but also wants a softer flex for lower-speed bonks and jib tricks.
The Prodigy 1.0 is a directional park ski that carves better than most of the other options on this list. It is an effective, all-mountain park ski for athletes who live on the East Coast, or who spend a lot of time on groomed snow.
Featuring a medium-stiff flex and an 88mm waist, the Prodigy has tons of pop and is stable at high speeds. The lightweight construction allows them to spin and swap any rail in the park while maintaining enough stability to stomp the landings.
4. Head Oblivion 84
The Head Oblivion 84 is a stiff and narrow park ski built for large features and halfpipes. Of all the options on our list, these skis are the narrowest, and offer the best edge grip on firm or icy snow.
However, due to their stiff flex and shallow rocker lines, the Oblivion 84s are not the most playful ski. Instead, they prioritize stability for the biggest features in the park. As such, it’s not uncommon to see the Oblivions on X games and Dew Tour Podiums.
5. Line Blend
The Blend is the softest ski on this list, making it the best for butters and low speed jibs. It features a 100mm waist—fairly wide for a park ski—to offer more stability on landings and floatation in softer snow.
Further, the Blends are fun on rails due to their lightweight build and buttery soft flex. Though when it comes to jumps, these skis are not as stable as other stiffer options, but certainly have a sweet spot if you can land clean.
The Blend is recommended for either beginners or younger riders who prefer smaller features and lower speeds, or advanced skiers who tend to land bolts almost every time.
Expert-Recommended Freeride Skis
The Atomic Bent 100 is a very lightweight and playful freestyle ski that blurs the line between park and freeride. Being the lightest ski on this list, the Bent 100 can also be used as part of a touring setup for backcountry adventures.
At 100mm wide, these skis perform just as well on groomed snow as they do in freeride terrain. And their medium-soft flex keeps them playful enough to butter and slarve (sliding carve) across the entire mountain, though they’re just as comfortable in the park. Atomic also makes the Bents in widths from 85–120mm for any snow condition.
The Black Crows Atris achieves firmness and stability while maintaining a light weight. Their stiff flex and 105mm waist width provide stability to charge steep, firm slopes at very high speeds with confidence. And their lightweight design keeps them quick, agile, and ready to spin.
What the Atris lacks, however, is the tail splay that the other options on this list boast; these skis are more in their element in switch, on firmer, more consistent snow. As an update, Black Crows gave the Atris a relatively straight sidecut for stability at speed and added maneuverability.
The Reckoner series by K2 comes in four different widths, from 92–122mm. The 112mm is a solid daily driver ski for an athlete who lives in an area that receives a lot of snow and skis with a playful style.
With enough float for powder days and enough power for choppy days, the Reckoner 112 can rip in any snow conditions. Featuring a medium-stiff flex and a full twin-tip shape, the Reckoner can handle high speed charging as well as slashing and buttering down the mountain.
The Moment Wildcat 108 is a very well rounded, big-mountain, freestyle ski. They offer a medium weight and flex to stay stable at speed while maintaining a very playful feel.
Their full-twin-tip shape allows them to be skied switch through most snow conditions without any problem. And their dramatic tip and tail rocker, combined with a camber underfoot, keeps the Wildcat surfy in soft snow, and grippy on hardpack.
5. Volkl Revolt 104
Volkl’s Revolt 104 can transition all the way from hardpack groomers to a foot of fresh snow. Their medium-stiff flex along with a centered mount point specifications allow these skis to feel equally stable and playful. And while the Revolt 104 is not quite heavy enough to blast through choppy snow, they maintain confidence at medium speeds and are very nimble in tight terrain. The "3D Radius Sidecut" provides a versatile turn shape, and the Revolt also comes in widths ranging from 86–121mm.
Chat With a Real Expert
These are five of the best freestyle skis from both park and freeride categories. Each of these skis will help you push your limits both inside and outside of the park. Feel free to reach out to a Curated Skiing Expert for any advice picking out new ski equipment!