Ski instructor training in Tignes: the oldest ‘gapper’ in town

Ski Club of Great Britain member Tessa Regan heads to Tignes – saying goodbye to city life and hello to sun, snow and seasonnaires… better late than never!

Have you ever had an idle dream about becoming a ski instructor, but never actually done anything about it? Me too, but I have finally taken the plunge and booked myself onto a Gapski ski instructor training course in Tignes in the French Alps.

So here I am excitedly waiting for the course to begin, in the knowledge that I will almost certainly be the oldest gapper in town, but who cares? Although I have been skiing for not far off 4 decades, I’m ashamed to say that I never went to ski school, but instead pretty much taught myself to ski by trial and error, watching other people, getting lots of top tips and consequently developing my own unique and probably terrible ‘survival skiing’ technique, which I fear will need to be taken apart and rebuilt! I have also always regretted never having had the opportunity to do a ski season when I was younger – however, it’s never too late!

So when a very welcome redundancy package from the pharmaceutical industry came my way and after having set up a ski resort home swapping website with my sister, I finally decided to do something about it, spurred on by a glowing recommendation from a friend who had successfully completed the Gapski course last season. TignesSo the 10 week course begins tomorrow and over the next few weeks I will be reporting on my progress as I train for my BASI Level 1 and Level 2. Everything is included in the cost of the course – instruction, accommodation, season lift pass, 3 meals a day, BASI fees, ski school shadowing, first aid course, child protection module, avalanche awareness and much more. I even get a free pair of Head skis and a Gapski hoody to help me to blend in with the young people! So I’m raring to go – the weather in Tignes is set fair for the next few days but we have had plenty of snow and the conditions are fantastic. Wish me luck!

Read the next blog in this series: Swotting in the ‘big brother’ house

Tessa Regan

Snow Swappers is a holiday swapping service for people that own property in ski resorts around the world. Membership is free of charge for the first year and there are chalets and apartments available to swap now in both Europe and North America.


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