Last year I’ve participated in a Freestyle Course – on my snowboard. Since I’ve been skiing a lot more this season I thought it would be a good idea to do the Freestyle Course on skis this year. Well, a good idea in theory is not necessarily a good idea in practice. After so many falls from boxes and after kickers I am now sure I’ll never become a freestyle skier. Good fun anyway and Planai has been epic, with fresh snow!
An essential part of the Austrian Ski Instructor Education is the Alpine Safety training, mandatory for everybody who wants to finish his or her certification (Landesschilehrer). And to be honest, I would actually consider doing the whole Ski Instructor education just for this one course. During the seven days we spent on Krippenstein (an off piste ski area) and Dachstein (the nearby glacier, both located at the southern tip of Upper Austria) we learnt how to guide guests in off piste terrain, where to find the best snow, orientation in unknown terrain but most importantly: loads about alpine safety factors such as weather and natural hazards. The week was intense but at the same time incredibly instructive & rewarding. One highlight was definitely the simulated avalanche exercise we had to complete as a group of sixteen people – from receiving the emergency call up to finding several avalanche victims – with and without transceivers, and finally digging out and transporting an injured avalanche victim to the helicopter. Even when you think you know a lot about it, there’s …
Just after an epic fail at the Snowboard Instructor Freestyle exam I decided it was about time to improve – or should I say get? – some Freestyle skills. I signed up for a course at Planai – close to Schladming and as usual I was the only girl -always slightly worse than the boys but still a great week at the funpark.
Why would anyone jump into freezing Lake Traunsee in March? While it’s still snowing? Well, here’s the story: It all started with a bet, of course. Christoph and me took the Snow Sports Instructor Course around Easter – consisting of the Snowboard Instructor Qualification (easy) and the Ski Instructor Qualification (not so easy). I don’t remember who started the whole betting thing but when we heard that we had passed the Snowboarding exams we agreed on a bet: to jump into the lake if we also pass the Skiing exams (both being quite sure we would never pass). Seeing the pictures you can guess the rest of the story…. (hooray for passing the exams though!) Freezing! But so good as well – looking forward to seeing you next year, Christoph!
That’s what it looks like when you’re waiting until it’s your turn at off piste exam. Congratulations to everyone who passed the exam! Looks like it’s time for a swim tomorrow…
We’re in the middle of Ski Instructor qualification and every day is the same: Getting up the mountain at 8 am, skiing until 2 pm, getting down the mountain, quick shower, classes from 4-9 pm with a quick dinner break. And exams. A lot of exams… both on- and off-piste, on the mountain and off the mountain. Doing the same run over and over again and you can never reach perfection. Just when you think you’ve bent your knees the right way this time, you can be sure another part of your body did something wrong. Highlight of the week is getting a “Yeah, not too bad.” from your Instructor. And then hearing “Do it again.”
No time for grasping! Just when you’re done with Snowboarding and happy about passing all the exams the Ski Instructor Course is about to start. Had a look at the timetable today: