Swix Quantum 4 Ski Pole

Kate Agathon

Over the years, I have dabbled in classic nordic skiing, but it was only this season where I added it as a regular to my winter sports repertoire. My partner and I are both cyclists, and we were looking to change things up with some cross-training.
Swix Quantum 4 Ski Pole
Swix Quantum 4 Ski Pole

The more we skied, I soon began to realize that my current nordic ski setup (purchased years ago from an REI garage sale) was completely wrong; specifically that my ski poles were much too long (I blame myself for buying the package because of the deal I was getting and convincing myself I’d “make it work”).

What I didn’t know at the time is that in nordic skiing, having the correct ski poles is extremely important. Poling is essential to nordic skiing because they give you the necessary power to move forward in a proper stance and negotiate terrain. Basically, if you’re in the wrong position, you can’t propel forward.

After I realized that the poles needed to be replaced, the first thing I did was find a new pair and was delighted to use the Swix Quantum 4 (Q4) composite mid-range nordic ski poles.

Part of Swix’s Quantum family that offers poles in multiple performance and price points, the Q4 features a cork urethane grip, 3d ProFit harness strap, and user-friendly TBS basket system.

Having nordic ski poles the correct length made a world of difference.

My wrists no longer hurt, and my back didn’t feel strained (because I had the correct posture due to the right poles). Additionally, I found that I could ski farther and over more difficult terrain with no problem.

After using them a few times, I’d describe the non collapsible Q4’s strongest qualities as stiff, versatile, and lightweight.

With a carbon shaft stiffer and lighter than the Swix Q5, the Q4 are carbon composite poles with extraordinary stiffness that allow for maximum power transfer while skiing. I noticeably used less power after each arm stroke.

The Q4’s versatility lies in that they can be used for either classic or skate skiing on groomed trails. The synthetic cork handles and ProFit 3D harness straps optimize performance by providing a comfortable grip, reducing hand fatigue, and improving control. In addition, the TBS basket system allows for an easy change of basket (no glue required!).

To be honest, it took me a while to get used to the harness straps (my other poles didn’t have them; just looped straps). Initially, it was strange to be attached to my poles, and I also had to learn how to adjust them snugly over my gloved hands (difficult to do with my non-dominant hand).

Finally, the lightness in weight of the Q4 produced a good swing, lessened fatigue, and provided me with better balance: all positive things!

Overall, the Swix Quantum 4 ski pole is a good, mid-range ski pole whose versatility makes it a good option for recreational nordic skiers who dabble in both classic and skate skiing.

Furthermore, although they took some getting used to, the Q4 turned out to be the right poles for me, and have improved both my skill and my interest in nordic skiing tremendously.

Kate Agathon

Kate Agathon - Dr. of Stoke
Kate Agathon – Dr. of Stoke

Dr. Of Stoke

Freelance writer, bicyclist, outdoor recreation enthusiast, social justice advocate, and mom to her furbaby, Utah the Adventure Dog.

Kate Agathon

Kate Agathon


A Colorado native, Kate considers the outdoors her mother ship. She brings her passion for bicycling, the environment, and issues of diversity to her writing. Her primary outdoor recreation activities are mountain biking, fat biking, snowshoeing, camping, peak bagging Colorado’s 14ers, road cycling, and Nordic skiing. After suffering two major knee injuries within four years, Kate hopes to return to alpine skiing next season.

Kate 14er


Kate earned a bachelor’s degree in History from Colorado State University and later an MSEd and Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from Purdue University. In addition to her education, Kate’s background serving on the Mayor’s Bicycle Advisory Committee and experience working for non-profits and bicycle sales well position her to bring depth and understanding to the complex changes currently taking place in the outdoor recreation industry.

Kate Agathon

We also heard she has a (slight) obsession for blue heelers.

REX SpecsRex Specs and RC Pets Skyline Puffy
Utah the Adventure Dog


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