When you are focussed on becoming a ski instructor; you are usually thinking about passing your exams above anything else! However, there are many aspects to being successful in the snowsports industry. When you are a new instructor, you are filled with enthusiasm. Skiing every day equates to ‘living the dream’. Throughout all of this, it’s important to make the most of your journey. Here are some things to think about while you’re on your way!
5 Things I Wish I Had Known: Becoming A Ski Instructor
1 – Skiing Can Be A Career, Not Just A Job!
During your ski instructor course, you are completely focussed on improving your technique, passing your exams and finding your first job. With a busy schedule, both on and off the slope, you don’t always have time to sit and ponder what the future will hold. Once you become an instructor, it’s difficult to imagine doing anything else. Skiing every day, commuting to work on a chairlift and making new friends never seems to get old. Then you realise; ‘maybe I don’t need to do anything else!’
The ski industry is full of opportunities across the world and is seemingly expanding to new territories all the time. Whether you want to be an instructor or just work in the industry, skiing can definitely be the career you might never have thought possible.
2 – Time Goes Fast During A Ski Season
When you arrive for your first ski season, it feels like you have all the time in the world. Ten weeks on snow can seem like forever, especially when you have only been holiday skiing before! However, when it comes to skiing, an old saying rings true…
Time flies when you’re having fun!
It’s important to maximise every moment you’re on the mountain and make the most of your opportunities. Whether you’re training, teaching or relaxing; every day is a chance to make unforgettable memories.
3 – The Importance Of Health And Fitness
When you’re working in a ski resort, it’s easy to get caught up in everything happening off the slope. Après ski can almost seem as exciting as skiing itself! With loads of friends around and a resort full of holiday skiers; it’s easy to get carried away! This coupled with the fact that many people see skiing as an activity, rather than a sport, can make you forget the importance of diet and fitness.
However, staying sharp for your time on the slope is something that should always take top priority. The days of ski instructors living off booze and burgers are gone! Ski seasons take a lot of energy, both mentally and physically. If you look after your health and fitness, you will reap the rewards, especially when spring comes around!
4 – The Importance Of Language Skills
When you’re in school, it’s sometimes difficult to see the importance of learning languages. If you’re growing up in your home country, everybody speaks the same language as you. Language skills are something that many people always wish they had paid more attention to in younger life. Ski instructors are no different. When you become a ski instructor, communicating in different languages can suddenly become an integral part of daily life. This is that moment when you might wish you paid more attention in school!
When it comes to being a good ski instructor, communication is key. If you want to improve your communication, it’s definitely advantageous that you speak the same language as your student! Furthermore, speaking a second language is a necessary part of the level 3 and 4 instructor qualifications.
It’s definitely better to get a head start on your language learning because it’s something that will be become more useful than you could ever have imagined.
5 – Learn From The People You Meet
The life of a ski instructor can be ever-changing. Due to the nature of seasonal and resort work, you will be constantly meeting new people from all over the world. Working as a ski instructor gives you a chance to meet like-minded people from all walks of life. With a great mix of cultures comes an opportunity to learn from your new friends, colleagues and acquaintances. It’s important to stay open-minded and absorb as much information as possible. Mixing with colleagues and clients from all over the world allows you to pick up valuable information to improve both professionally and personally.
When you go through your ski instructor journey, you can also expect to make friends for life. Although the ski industry is spread across the globe, it can often feel like a small world. If you are new to the ski instructor world, your focus should be on meeting new people, expanding your knowledge and having the time of your life!
If you can learn from these five things I wished I had known, you will set yourself up for many great seasons ahead.