Skiers ability levels range from basic intermediate skiers wishing to get off the typical intermediate plateau to skiers taking their instructors exams and performance training for competition (alpine racing, freeride or freestyle). On the first day of the course we have a ski-off where we split the whole group into smaller individual groups based on their ski ability and confidence. To easily identify the level of skiers, and roughly assess which level you currently are, you can use the following system.
Level 0 (Beginner)
Our group courses do not cater for this level. If you are a beginner or not capable of skiing confidently down a steep blue/flat red slope in varied conditions (regardless of technique) please don’t book onto the group academy courses but book private instruction. For private instruction please email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
This group consists of skiers who are trying to make basic parallel turns but use a snowplough wedge in between the turns to help turn initiation. Skiers of this ability can confidently get down blue runs but struggle on Reds. They still have the confidence to tackle red runs but make technical mistakes on them. They have little or no experience in moguls, steeps or off piste terrain but hope to attempt these areas as their skills improve.
Advanced Level 1 skiers will demonstrate the same technical problems as the basic level 1 skiers. However, confidence levels will be higher and skiers may explore skiing at higher speeds on slightly steeper red slopes.
These skiers can get down red runs confidently. On red runs however their technique suffers and the body weight moves over the back of the skis making the steering more difficult. These skiers have usually attempted moguls, steeps and a bit of off-piste skiing but with little success.
Skiers in the advance category will show similar faults to the basic skiers but will generally be happier at higher speeds and on slightly steeper slopes. These skiers will also show early signs of dynamic movements, including, strong outside leg extension on the turn initiation, and greater lateral angles.
This group consists of skiers who can make parallel turns with confidence on red runs. When they attempt black runs or steeper gradients they lose their technique and their body weight drops back. Skiers of this level have usually learnt the basics of carving and how to make their ski edges grip. These skiers can generally get down moguls and off piste terrain but quite slowly and with less confidence than how they ski on piste.
Skiers in the advanced category will show good consistency of technique on steeper pistes and higher speeds with the occasional loss of accuracy. These skiers will be wanting to spend more time in challenging terrain to increase mileage and confidence. Technique will still be lost on occasions but recoveries will keep the runs alive and positive. Moguls, steeps, powder and other changeable conditions will be where these skiers want to develop new skills.
Skiers in this category will show consistency of technique on steep pistes and at high speeds rarely losing accuracy. These skiers will enjoy spending time in challenging terrain including variable off piste conditions, powder and moguls. Level 4 skiers will be wanting to push their emotional and physical thresholds as well as developing technique.
Skiers in this category will show consistency of technique on steep pistes and at high speeds rarely losing accuracy. These skiers will enjoy trying different techniques and tactics in variable off piste conditions, powder and moguls. Level 4 advanced skiers will continue to push their emotional and physical thresholds while being able to maintain a more consistent level of technique in all areas.
This group consists of skiers who can ski all terrains and gradients very comfortably but want to be able to ski at higher speeds on harder slopes through greater dynamics. Skiers of this ability would be beginning to develop the basics of race training, steep couloirs, instructor exam technical requirements, freeride performance and challenging conditions.
Much like the basic level 5 skiers, this group consists of people wishing to push their performance at higher speeds and on more challenging slopes. Off piste including moguls, powder and variable snow is where these skiers wish to spend the most time. Technical levels may be similar but these skiers will show more flair and control. They will use the terrain and features to be inventive and add an element of style to their runs.
Level 6 (Athlete / Performer)
This group consists of skiers who are actively competing in selected disciplines including Alpine Racing, Freeride, Moguls or Freestyle events. These skiers will be wanting to push themselves to their absolute physical and psychological limits by skiing in the most challenging terrain. These skiers may also be training to acquire their level 4 ski instructor qualification.