There is new snow in Colorado Ski Country USA â€“ lots of it. The SIA trade show and the World’s Largest Apres Ski and Ride Party take place this week. And, there is still a week left in January Learn to Ski and Ride month. The stars could not be in any straighter alignment for honing your on snow skills.
We asked our resident ski technique guru, and Colorado Ski Country USA’s 2009 Ski Instructor of the Year, from Winter Park, Julie Pierce, to pull to together a little cheat sheet of ski tips. Below, Julie has outlined several bits of advice for beginners, what to do when skiing bumps and what do to in powder (will come in handy this week).
In the two years that Pierce has been employed as a full time instructor at Winter Park Resort, she achieved her PSIA (Professional Ski Instructors of America) Level 3 Certification and Trainers Accreditation in alpine skiing. She also has her AASI (American Association Snowboard Instructors) Level 1 Certification in Snowboarding.
Julie had a very successful Jr. USSA/FIS Ski Racing Career for 10 years prior to coaching, placing in the top five in the Junior Olympics many times. As a result of her experience ski racing successfully at such a high level, Julie has many well-developed skills that she translates into her career as an instructor and trainer. Take a gander, practice on the hill and send her a thank you note when you get sponsored.
– Stand up straight and tall…Students first starting to learn to ski love to crouch down low, and they get tired very quickly, standing up tall with flexed ankles is a more effective way to go.
– Make sure you equipment is adjusted right – boots snug, and dins (release settings on skis correct for weight and height.
– Don’t be afraid! Remember you are there to have fun! If you relax a little bit, it will be much easier to learn how to ski.
– Make sure you are using a pole plant. It will help you keep your rhythm.
– Try and keep your upper-body (hips and above) facing down the fall-line, in the direction of travel, while letting your legs do the turning.
– Try to SKID your skis. You don’t need high edge angles to ski bumps, don’t try and carve- try to skid, and it will make your skis easier to turn.
– Stand on BOTH feet – Keep weight on both skis and tension in both legs, not just the outside/downhill leg.
– Don’t drive to be forward. Try to stand in the middle of you skis, this will give you a much stronger base of support.
– Ski the fall-line and avoid traversing if possible. Most times in powder you are better of with a little bit of speed, and traversing in deep snow can lead to getting stuck.