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Introducing the Magnestick: A Ski Safety Device for Kids by Laura Jeeves

Introducing the Magnestick: A Ski Safety Device for Kids by
Article Posted: 07/27/2017
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Introducing the Magnestick: A Ski Safety Device for Kids

Travel & Tourism
As you’re basking in the summer sun, snow and skiing are probably the last things on your mind. However, as every avid skier knows, you cannot start planning your winter holiday soon enough. So it’s time to stop tanning and start booking – especially if you’re travelling on a budget and would like to snag the best deals.

There are many factors to consider when organising a ski holiday: where to go, where to stay, where to rent equipment. As if that weren’t enough already, parents are often left wondering which areas and pistes are safest for their children. Fortunately, I’m here to answer these all-important questions for you.

For a stress-free and enjoyable getaway, I highly recommend France’s famous Three Valleys, an economical ski region whose snowy slopes are also rich in variety. In addition to our family-friendly Three Valleys chalets in Courchevel and Meribel, this area has another big bonus: some of its lifts are equipped with the Magnestick, a handy safety device for children. Let’s take a closer look at this practical apparatus.

What is a Magnestick?

The Magnestick is a magnetic safety mechanism that prevents children from sliding about in overly spacious chairlifts or – in the worst case scenario – falling out. The mechanism is very straightforward: children are equipped with back protectors that weigh a mere 200 grams, but consist of a durable metallic plate. This device not only shields children from critical back injuries while zooming down the pistes, but also attaches to the chairlift’s magnetic surface.

Part 1: Getting On

Upon sitting down, the metallic plate on your child’s back immediately latches onto the back of the lift. What’s particularly remarkable about this process is that children are protected right from the start, regardless of how long older passengers take to secure the restraining bar.

Part 2: The Ride

If you think that the Magnestick is useful but perhaps too constraining, let me ease your mind: although the device prevents youngsters from inadvertently gliding beneath the restraining bar, they can still move their legs, arms and shoulders without restraint. Your children will barely notice the magnetic force. The apparatus merely secures their backs to the seat, preventing dangerous movements.

Part 3: Getting Off

After a care-free ride, you may be wondering when the magnet is deactivated. Although overeager passengers often lift the restraining bar before they’re able to get off the lift, worry not: the magnet is only deactivated when your child’s skis make contact with the ground. As you can see, the Magnestick offers full protection at every stage of the ride, ensuring that young skiers are safe and sound at all times – and that parents never have to worry.

Where Do I Find the Magnestick?

When you stay in our Three Valleys chalets in Courchevel or Meribel, be sure to pick the pistes that offer the Magnestick: so far, this new technology has only spread to a limited number of ski resorts.

In Courchevel, check out Signal, which has four magnetic chairlifts in Signal, Pralong, Gravelles, and Roc Mugnier, respectively. While only about one fifth of Courchevel’s lifts are Magnestick-ed at present, Courchevel plans to install these mechanisms in all lifts by this coming winter.

Meribel, Combes, Arolles, Chatelet and Plan des Mains each have one Magnestick-ed chairlift. While some four-seaters have two magnetic seats, the six-seaters generally only have one child-friendly seat.

Upon arriving at one of our Three Valley chalets in Courchevel or Meribel, you’ll be able to rent Magnesticks. Both resorts offer these devices for various ages, and – for additional safety – they are contained in cheerfully coloured vests that are easy to spot on the pistes. In Courchevel, take a look at hot rental deals at Société des 3, while Muller Sports and Sport Boutique are your best bet in Meribel. Ready, set, ski!

Belinda Smythson works for Ski Amis, a specialist ski travel agency and booking service that has been helping avid skiers craft their perfect winter or summer holiday for over a quarter of a century. If you're looking for the best catered or self catering Three Valleys chalets, Ski Amis is the go-to company for those searching for the holiday of a lifetime in the French Alps.

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