I don't remember learning to ski, I just know that I could from when I can first remember doing it - I was around 2 when I started and I learnt skiing within my Dad's skis and outside the hotel on our first trip, with my mini ski's which your normal boots attached to. I do, however, remember fondly the ski lessons I took one of the highlights up till I was a teen was joining in those groups and heading off with the instructor for a week of morning lessons or afternoon lessons. You'd think being on vacation that it would be the worst thing ever to go to SCHOOL but boy was it fun.
Now I'm an adult for our next ski trip I'm contemplating having a ski lesson for 1 morning or 1 afternoon, I can ski and even by the end of our week's trip to Les Arcs 1950 I had discovered my ski legs again but I feel that even though I know I could tackle a black run and survive it my technique needs work it always has done and I haven't had a ski lesson since I was around 13 but the pull to improve is there.
If you've never been skiing the thought probably puts you off - ski school sounds like you'll be sitting in a room learning theory and then after you know the theory like who has the right of way on a slope or how ski works they may eventually let you on the slope instead it's nothing like that. It's a met in the spot either carry your skis to the nearest slope/lift and heading off in your group to ski.
Kids Ski School
The kids ski school is split into age and ability groups - most kids that have never skied before will spend at least 1 morning on the nursery slopes at the beginning or even if it's their 2nd time just so that the instructors can split them into their groups - groups have between 8 and 15 kids in them the younger the child the smaller the group size in my experience. Then they work during the week moving the kids to complete the next stage in their ski experience.
Starting with young kids is an excellent way to get them on the slope and the younger the learn the quicker they pick it up - it's true it becomes second nature to them. The kinder groups for the various ski school usually start in snow gardens and combine play and learning to ski. Both of my kids, this time, were with Evolution 2 ski school at their Spirit 1950 groups which were booked through our Crystal Ski Rep whilst we were on the coach to the resort.
Benefits of Ski School
- No matter how good a skier you are you know from experience that there are some things that your kids just learn better from someone else skiing is one of them - you avoid teaching them all your bad habits that you've picked up since venturing out on your own.
- The instructors are experienced with the age range of your kids. An instructor who works great with teens will not be placed teaching the kinder class and vice versa they are fantastic and work well amazingly to get even the most nervous skier of that age out there and succeeding
- Kids succeed - yes they may not be the best in the group but with 6 days of lessons for 2 and a half to 3 hours a day they really do achieve at the level of the group. My youngest was able by the end to side step, my eldest able to tackle a blue run without fear both of them achieved the level and got their badges and certificates.
- Making friends - yes they really can make friends - way back in 1987 I went to ski school in Alpe d'huez with my younger brother and there we met 2 other children and their parents, turned out that they lived just over 30 miles away from us from that point on a friendship was formed and although we never shared a chalet for the next 10 years we did plan which resort we were going to and flights and head off for a week skiing together our family and their's
Adult Ski School
Whether you can ski or never put on a ski boot in your life then ski lessons for adults are a good idea either way. Most ski schools have beginner lessons for adults for both ski and board as well as for improvers. They also have instructors that you can book for a private lesson whether it's getting your ski legs again after a break - I wish I had done this for my first day this time or improving your style and technique which I will be doing next time.