Aiming to harness the mobility of skiing without the uncomfortable and cumbersome footwear, the team behind FATblades has designed a pair of customized skis with which riders can wear traditional snowboard boots.
FATblades are an adaptation of snow blades (also known as ski blades or trick skis) that are approximately 40 percent wider in order to accommodate regular snowboard bindings.
In arriving at the final design, the company found that the blades performed best at a length of under a meter, making it possible to ski with the feet closer together and allowing for sharper turns.
The extra width compared to traditional skis equates to a larger surface area, which the company says elevates the rider to the surface of the snow, allowing them to "surf across the top."
While FATblades work with all bindings and boots, the company recommends exoskeleton-style bindings which provide extra support between the high-back and baseplate and increase the response from the blades.
This isn't the first attempt at merging the two conventional snow sports. In 2012 we looked at a product from Dual Snowboard which essentially took the typical snowboard and cut it in half, offering a board for each foot and opening up al kinds of possibilities for creative snow bunnies looking to expand the repertoire of tricks.
FATBlades are currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign and a pledge of CAD$395 will put you in line for a set. Shipping is targetted for April if all goes to plan.
You can see the FATblades take to the slopes in the video below.