A Smile Fit For Skiing (How Orthodontics Improved My Skiing)

This might be the weirdest article you’ve ever read about skiing. But I want to tell you about how getting braces and my teeth straightened actually improved my skiing performance. No, I am not kidding. Now of course I did not go out and seek orthodontic treatment in order to improve my skiing abilities; that would just have been ludicrous.

Instead, what happened was that I saw the orthodontist to fix my really crooked teeth. After that was all done, I noticed an unexpected side effect; I was skiing better than ever before! And more interestingly, this jump in skill occurred only after I took of my braces, not while I was wearing them. It was as if the process of removing my braces resulted in concrete jump in my performance.

Of course, I wanted to know why. How was it possible that a cosmetic dentistry procedure could affect my skiing; which had nothing to do with my teeth whatsoever?

But the more I thought about it, the more it made sense to me. In fact, after thinking about it for a while; it became patently obvious.

Let’s work backwards from the roots of sports performance.

Performance Comes From Confidence

No one can deny this. It is impossible to succeed in any physical endeavor without confidence. You need confidence in yourself, confidence in your abilities, and you know what, just confidence in general. The problem with confidence is that it is intangible. That’s why the common advice of ‘just be more confident’, while true, is also pretty useless.

Confidence’s intangibility must rest upon a solid foundation of skills and success. You see, the brain wants proof not promises. There is another avenue that gives you confidence, one as old as our species, and that is social approval and validation.  The more people approve of us and validate us, the more confident we are. And the more confident we are, the better we perform.

What is one way to get social approval and validation? The answer is aesthetics.

Confidence Can Come From Aesthetics

Please note that aesthetics is just one avenue of increasing your confidence. Especially in the case of a physical skill, it is far from the most important. However, there is no denying its utility, even in a case that may seem far removed from aesthetic needs. That’s how strong our need for social approval and validation is.

And for those of you who want to argue that aesthetics doesn’t lead to confidence, then I can say you don’t live in the real world, or are simply willfully blind. A great orthodontic given smile is a huge factor for your aesthetics and aesthetics in turn feed into your confidence which feeds into your performance.

Aesthetics Comes From Orthodontics

You may have been blessed to be born with a row of perfectly straight, which means that as you developed, your jaw was sufficiently wide enough to nicely accommodate all your adult teeth without overcrowding. That’s why it’s often necessary to remove certain teeth before beginning your orthodontic treatment; there simply isn’t enough room for all your teeth in your mouth if they are going to be nice and straight.

Anyway, unless you have that, then orthodontics can definitely improve your aesthetics. I was skeptical myself until I tried it, but here’s the cold, hard, and shallow fact: people treat you better when you have a Hollywood worthy smile. I got more attention from the public, from the people on the slopes, from the ski instructors… I have to admit, I almost became disillusioned at the shallowness of it all.

What snapped me out of my temporary malaise was the knowledge that I was no better. I too reacted in the same manner to more attractive people; most of the time purely subconsciously. So how could I blame them? Instead I followed the other cliché saying “If you can’t beat them, then join them”.

So join them I did. I joined the rank of confident, attractive people, and all I can say is that life, both on and off the slopes has just been much better. So I have to give a shout out to my orthodontist Dr Bernstein; he’s simply the best orthodontist there is in Birmingham. If you’re in the area, there’s no one else to go to.

From the bottom of my heart, thank you Dr. Bernstein!