Ski instructor training in Tignes: We’ve had our fun, now let’s get serious!

Ski Club of Great Britain member Tessa Regan is in Tignes for a ‘gap-year’ – saying goodbye to city life and hello to sun, snow and seasonnaires… better late than never!

Avalanche training

Avalanche training

Well I’m not sure where the last 8 weeks of our Gapski  course have gone, but all of a sudden I find myself about to begin the final two week assessment for BASI Level 2. Am I ready? I’m not sure, but I guess I’ll soon find out!

During half term week I was lucky enough to be able to spend every morning shadowing one of the TDC instructors, which I found immensely valuable, giving me some much needed insight into how to structure lessons and how to systematically build the learning throughout the week, while still making sure the lessons were fun and enjoyable. In the afternoons our personal ski performance training continued, including a lecture and practical session on avalanche awareness. Although I have done transceiver training before, it is the sort of thing that needs to be practised regularly, so that if you are unlucky enough to be caught in an avalanche situation you can react quickly and efficiently to locate buried victims. This time we actually practiced probing and digging for victims too and were able to experience just how exhausting it is to have to dig heavy snow at high speed even for just a few minutes and to learn the most efficient strategy for doing this.

Ski servicing workshop

Ski servicing workshop

Snow Park

Snow Park

We also had a freestyle session in the Snow Park, much to the delight of the younger members of our team – not really something I would normally dream of doing, but I did enjoy the jumps, although I will admit to giving the rails and boxes a wide berth! Last week we also learned how to service our own skis, something I may conveniently forget to tell my husband about, as I know how much he enjoys spending hours in our cold shed servicing my skis for me!

So that’s it, our 8 weeks of training is complete and we are awaiting the start of our Level 2 assessment tomorrow with some trepidation. We all have our different problem areas that we still need to work on, but that’s something our BASI examiner will be helping us with over the course of the next 2 weeks. Will we emerge at the other end as qualified ski instructors? Who knows, but we will all be giving it our very best shot. I can feel a few early nights and some serious swotting coming on…

Read the next blog in this series: It’s Au Revoir but not Goodbye to my BASI Level 2 course

Read the previous blog in this series: Ou est le soleil?

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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