Taking Science to Skimo: Skin Glide Testing



Montagnes magazine recently published an article detailing a scientific study sponsored by POMOCA and carried out by the Technologie Zentrum Ski und AlpineSport (TSA) laboratory in Austria. I’ll leave it to you to Google-translate the entire article but here are a couple of the most important points.

The TSA lab used a special device ‘Das Lineare Tribometer’ to measure the friction of the skin gliding on snow. The DLT is a 23 meter long machine with a snow surface that can be temperature controlled and a ski with friction gauges that glide along the surface. The TSA evaluated six race skins on glide, weight, and water absorption. They also measured the friction created by each skin on the snow surface in three temperature conditions (-2 C, -5 C, -20 C).

The CollTex and Pomoca skins scored the best on overall weight and water absorption.


  • CollTex appears to maintain the best glide in very cold conditions (-20 C).
  • Pomoca Race 2.0 glides best in moderate and warm conditions (-5 C and -2 C).
  • Pomoca Race Pro Climb has high grip with moderate glide and light weight.

 Montages magazine selected the Pomoca Race 2.0 as the ideal compromise.

Friction created by each skin.  Photo: TAS-POMOCA

Friction created by each skin.

Where to buy your skins

Pick up a pair of Pomoca Race 2.0 at one of our two preffered stores: SKIMO.CO and CrippleCreekBC.com

Training Plans for Skimo Racing

Skimo Racing Manual


  1. Looks like the same test that Wildsnow posted about in May of this year. Here’s a link to that article, which is written in english: https://www.wildsnow.com/19981/pomoca-tsa-climbing-skin-science/

  2. Eric Carter says:

    The French version of the article mentions something about ideal being ~1000m of use on the skins.

  3. Just thought of another worthwhile comparison parameter – How skins glide after some use, say after about 20,000m of climbing?

    We know skins get faster after some use and then again start to get slower at some distant point. Would be cool to see whether some skin improves against the others as it “ages”.

    This would likely be more difficult to measure as you would have to wear out each skins in exactly the same snow conditions to be objective. But perhaps the machine can simulate wearing skins out in such a way. It might raise laboratory’s electricity bill though :)

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