Learning to Ski – A Beginner’s Guide

Shauna: When Sam first suggested skiing to me I was not very into the idea. Anyone who knows me will know that I am the clumsiest gal around. However over time he wore me down, if I didn’t go now I probably never would.

So how did an uncoordinated person such as myself fare with a pair of skis on? Pretty well! Day one was tough, Sam dropped me to my group lesson first thing in the morning and we spent a fair amount of time waddling about and getting our ski legs. That afternoon we had a private lesson booked, which is something I would recommend to anyone learning to ski. It was really helpful to have that one on one time with an instructor and pinpoint the mistakes I was making early on.

In terms of my ability, day two was pretty similar to day one. I was going fairly slowly down small slopes (in snow plough position) and I was terrified when I picked up even a small amount of speed. We had a really disheartening ski home that afternoon down a blue slope where I am pretty sure I spent more time on the ground than on my skis. And I hobbled to the restaurant for dinner that night having used muscles I didn’t even know I had. I went to bed feeling a bit down and thinking that it’d be easier to give up and spend the rest of the holiday reading my book in a bar.

However, day three was completely different. I got back on the skis and was amazed to find that I could do it. I was starting to pick up a bit of speed and even get my skis parallel at times. It was a turning point that I can only compare to learning to drive, it’s tough until everything clicks and suddenly it’s not so bad anymore. Not only was I getting it but I was starting to enjoy myself.

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After this the days started to blend into each other. I was able to ski now and was improving slightly every day. I wasn’t anywhere near as good as Sam or Josh but I was happy to sit the steeper slopes out and have a coffee (or a pint depending on the time of day). If I was feeling adventurous I’d even do a little run on my own. I still fell over and found it tough at times, but I was getting a lot better at picking myself up, dusting myself off and continuing on.

While it may not always sound like it, it was one of the best holidays I’ve ever been on and I’m dying to go back next year. For anyone who is thinking of learning to ski I would say lessons are a must. Even if you’re going with someone who is a seasoned skier, as I was, I think they are definitely worth investing in. It is time dedicated to learning how to ski, not just getting down the slope, and it will ensure you don’t pick up any bad habits. Also, falling down does not hurt as much as you think it will, just let it happen.

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All that being said, my main take away from my first skiing trip was: There is nothing cuter than kids on skis, but you will feel terrible about yourself every time a little kid flies past you.

If you’d like to see how I progressed day to day, check out the little video I made down below (I’m in the red):

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