Masters Seasonal Training Course
- Seasonal + Instructor Training
- Verbier, Switzerland
£3,000.00 (£500 per additional week) pp
About the Course
The Masters seasonal training course is the culmination of 20 years of successfully running academy courses! Throughout the years we’ve built up a super relationship with lots of clients and on any given week there tends to be numerous familiar faces who have been coming to academy courses year after year as part of their regular skiing experience.
We’ve repeatedly been asked if we could offer a multi-week/seasonal training program specifically designed for academy regulars who have no desire to do the instructor training course but would love to do a season (or the best part of one) and train with us to dramatically take their skiing to a whole new level.
In 2019 we ran the first Masters academy: a 5 to 9 week seasonal training program designed around the participants to meet their needs and available dates and offer the best possible program to not only excel their skiing to new levels but also have great fun along the way. The closed group trial program was a huge success and we’ll be adding this to our regular course calendar from 2020 onward.
The course is always built and designed around those on it and as such it can change format with regard to the exact dates, weeks and structure of the weeks. If you’re interested in joining please get in touch in April/May time the season before as this is when we start planning everything with the whole group to come to a consensus on what dates work best for the majority that will be on the course.
Being a seasonal program the course massively benefits from time to fully engrain good habits and fully develop your skiing. One of our most common bits of feedback from the week’s courses is that you feel great by the end of the course and wish you had some more time to practice and develop – the masters program gives you this with targeted ski training and periods for rest, practice and consolidation throughout.
In addition to the in resort training, the program has a much more personal and bespoke approach to the build up to the season/course. Once booked on you’ll be contacted personally and over the course of a few emails and phone calls we’ll get a gauge of your fitness, flexibility, mobility and current ski equipment. During the coming Summer and Autumn months in the lead up to the course you’ll receive targeted training and advice on the above to get you in the best place possible to go into the course with your best foot forward and get the most out of the training.
Here’s some feedback from the 2019/20 Masters participants to give you an idea of how they found the course:
“I’m an Academy regular and always plan to go once or twice a year but I jumped at the chance to participate in this multi-week training programme!I have to say this met all my expectations and with a much longer course there was more time to iron out biomechanical aspects (especially leg-steering and middle body strength) that were particular to me but at the same time within a group of like-minded people. Some days were a challenge but I would have expected nothing less and the course did indeed take me to new levels not only in my technical skiing but just as importantly on an emotional level. I gained the confidence to tackle even the steepest runs. Knowing that you are capable, something the course instils in you, not just because they want to encourage you, but because they know you can, is incredibly uplifting! Such great fun and a life-changing experience!” from Karin Tearle
One of the biggest areas of development on the courses is Ankle Flex development. Most skiers join us with a lack of ankle flex. Most skier flex at the knee more than the ankle and this puts the skiers weight back. Once it’s back it makes it hard to steer and almost impossible to ski steeps, moguls and freeride terrain. Your thighs end up being used to help you stand up rather than being used to help you steer the skis.
The reason that most skiers have a lack of ankle flex is that a lot of skiers learn to ski in boots that are too stiff for them to flex so the joint that compensates and does the majority of the flexing is the knee. A lot of skiers also suffer from having calf muscles that are too tight to be able to move and flex the ski boot.
With specific ankle flex development exercises you will learn to dominate your ski boots and flex them so as to allow you to be in balance and maintain leverage in the legs to have powder to steer. Once you have this flex you automatically have power and in turn confidence. The learning process increases dramatically with this and your skiing takes a major step change in its level.
All skiers that come on the Academy courses, whether in Group 1 or Group 6, have a problem maintaining symmetry whilst turning. Perfect symmetry is skiing from turn to turn with your hips, knees and feet the same distance apart allowing both ski edges to be at identical angles. It’s common for most skiers to ski with either their knees dropping closer together or their feet splitting wider apart. Both of these create the classic A-Frame stance.
The A-Frame stance makes it difficult to carve, ski powder, moguls, steeps and generally build on your ski technique as your ski edge angles will always be different. On the courses we address this issue and leave you with a strong, symmetrical stance that allows you to build good ski technique on.
Whilst developing your ski symmetry we will work on biomechanical aspects such as switching on certain muscle groups that help maintain the ideal stance, checking your ski boots to make sure they are set up correctly and integrating the 0-Frame stance into your skiing. Having skier symmetry is crucial in preventing knee injury, fatigue, accidents whilst skiing and allowing you to reach your true skiing potential.
Most skiers who attend the courses, even at Instructor level, steer their skis by foot steering. Steering the skis by foot steering is usually what you get taught in your first week of ski school tuition. Unfortunately it usually stays with you through your skiing life. Foot steering is weak and although it might get you through your first week of skiing it isn’t efficient for more advanced skiing. Foot steering can also put stress on the knee joint.
Thigh steering is a much more powerful way of steering your skis and allows you to steer with more confidence on steeper slopes, in moguls and in freeride terrain. It also allows you to carve more effectively and move onto skiing higher speeds without loosing control.
For thigh steering to switch on we develop specific exercises that provoke you to use the muscles in the legs that control this movement. Once you find the muscles (usually takes about 15 minutes to switch them on) you will immediately feel stronger in your skiing and more secure. Once we have you doing this, other aspects of skiing we show you during the week are easily absorbed and changes take place in your technique with ease.
Left + Right differences and physiology:
All skiers suffer from having a weaker turn direction. At the Academy we are fully aware of the importance for the skier to first feel the difference between left and right turns and then understand why there is a weakness with one side. With the sport of skiing you are only as good as your weakest turn. This is especially obvious in powder, slush, steeps and in moguls.
Skiers generally have a weaker turn due to left and right side differences with the brain, injuries to certain sides of the body, imbalances on the left and right side of the body and equipment that might not be set up correctly.
With the use of video analysis, exercises and biomechanical awareness we make you aware of your weaker direction, show you it on video and then build it up with specific exercises that benefit the weaker side of the body. Once you are balanced the sport of skiing will feel different to you and the foundation of you skiing will be strong and secure.
Nearly all skiers that join the Academy courses are never using their middle body strength to its full potential. Many skiers break at the waist when skiing moguls, powder or just carving at higher speeds. The more dynamic skiing becomes the more you need to activate your core whilst skiing to keep the middle body strong and avoid it collapsing. On the course you’ll learn how to activate your core whilst skiing with simple exercises that are easy to integrate into your normal skiing technique.
To assist your Moguls, Steeps, Variables and Freeride terrain skiing you’ll learn how to develop your pole plant timing and arm positioning. This gives your pole plant more overall strength and it will support your body effectively when initiating your turns in these terrains.
Every skier that joins a course has their own individual skiing style. An important part of the Academy course is to offer each skier feedback on their own technique specific to them. This takes places at various times during the week.
As well as the above topics various other aspects are also covered such as Short Radius Turns, Developing Leg Lean, Progressive Steering, Loading the Skis, Skidding and lots more. Many skiers attend several course during the year whether Winter in Verbier, Spring or Autumn in UK or summer in Cervinia.
Available Group Levels
Please click here to view in depth video and explanations of our levels system.
Able to make basic parallel turns but use an occasional snowplough to help. Confident to tackle red runs but make technical mistakes on them.
Able to make consistent parallel turns on piste. Confident on red runs and able to ski harder terrain (blacks, moguls, powder) but with limited success.
Confident parallel skier on all gradient pistes. Starting to create dynamics in your skiing and challenge yourself in harder non-pisted terrain.
Consistent in all terrain, rarely losing accuracy and pushing their speed whilst keeping a high degree of ski performance. Able to transition from piste to off-piste with no hesitations or issues.
Verbier is really easy to get to by train, plane or car. By train you can get the Eurostar from London to Paris and then onward to Lausanne of Geneva and then change to Martigny, Le Chable and then Verbier. It’s a beautiful journey that takes not much longer than flying (taking into account waiting time), is much more environmentally friendly and you don’t have any baggage weight restrictions 😀 You can find further info on www.sbb.ch.
If flying, Geneva airport is the nearest airport with numerous flights in and out every day. From there the train journey is very simple from Geneva airport – Martigny – Le Chable – Verbier. If you’d prefer to get a transfer, Alpybus run regular transfers from Geneva airport to Verbier at multiple times throughout the day. See their website for further details.
If driving, the journey is pretty straightforward and simple taking around 12hrs from London.
The course doesn’t include accommodation and how you choose to go about this is up to you. If you live in resort or nearby that’s super easy! Last year a number of the participants rented a large apartment for the majority of the season whilst others stayed in smaller apartments/studios and some in hotels. If you need help sourcing accommodation please let us know and give us an idea what you’re looking for when you get in touch and we’ll help out!
The course is £3,000 for the initial 5 weeks. Any additional weeks will be an extra £500 and we’re happy to run multiple additional weeks based on demand.
The course fee doesn’t include lift pass or accommodation.
The course is always built and designed around those on it and as such it can change format with regard to the exact dates, weeks and structure of the weeks. If you’re interested in joining please get in touch in April/May time the season before as this is when we start planning everything with the whole group to come to a consensus on what dates work best for the majority that will be on the course. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to express your interest and we’ll go from there. If you get in touch after April/May it’s still possible to book on but the dates may already be fixed for the season so please bare this in mind.