Instructors Important Information
Use the instructor upload link to send us the documents you have completed above as well as your SSE licence card once it has been renewed. To make life easier you can also use this link on a mobile phone when you click on upload it will load the camera so you can take images, then upload, the relevant documents.
Instructor Code of Conduct
The ongoing Instructor Development Programme at Sharks Ski Club
As part of what The Sharks Ski Club offers is an opportunity to get on the Coaching and Instructing ladder. Over the years the Sharks Ski Club has produced some excellent Instructors and Coaches. The first rung of this ladder is simply to be the “tail ender” of either the Whales or Tigers group, this gives the Instructor a big help in the control and the safety of a group of young people and it also allows the “tail ender” to gain some experience of working with such a group.
The next rung on this ladder is the Level 1 Training Course!
The Sharks have recently run a Level 1 Training Course and this is a brief description of the course and an explanation of what it is all about.
UK Snowsports have developed a comprehensive and very professional Coaching structure that is open to anyone with enthusiasm and dedication for snowsports and for teaching or coaching. The process is as the diagram below:
I must say that when I did my Level 4 Qualification it was a 14 day training Course in the Alps followed by 60 hours of coaching that had to be logged and recorded in a portfolio. The examination was a full 5 day residential process which included technical skiing skill, analytical observation, coaching programme design and preparing and delivering lectures each evening! Norman.
Then I did further training Courses to become a Tutor; yes it is a very tall development ladder!
The Level 1 Training is a very important first step in the training of a Ski Coach, it is crucial that it is done in a professional and in a thoughtful manner that ignites a candidate’s enthusiasm and self belief. The Home Nation Governing Bodies have published the definition below and it is the Tutor’s job to train the candidates to this defined level:
UK SPORTS official definition of a LEVEL 1 Instructor:
“Level 1 Instructors must demonstrate a solid foundation of information and experience necessary to introduce skiers to the sport and to provide foundations for further learning. The award is intended for use only at artificial ski slopes within the UK.
A level 1 Instructor is authorized to operate at a local artificial ski center, working with skiers ranging from complete novice to skiers approaching parallel skiing. These ski centers may be operated by clubs, local government or the private sector.”
How good a skier do you have to be to be a Level 1 Coach?
“A Level 1 Coach must be able to ski all areas of artificial slopes demonstrating appropriate posture, consistent balance and control of speed and direction.”
In addition to this the Level 1 Coach must be a good enough skier to demonstrate what it is they are asking beginner skier to do!
“Demonstrations must display an “understandable picture” of the technical elements of skiing that are suitable for novice skiers; the ski turn characteristics are therefore limited by speed and terrain.”
Teaching is not just telling a novice skier what to do; the Coach must be able to explain in a language the learner can understand as well as demonstrate what it is they want the learner to try and do! This simply because we all learn practical movements in different ways; some people learn by watching and some learn by doing! (especially men; who take the new camera out of the box and play with all the switches and buttons but will not read the manual!)
On the Level 1 Training “how people learn” is covered as outlined below:
Explanation – for the listeners.
Demonstration – for the watchers
Their turn to perform the task – for the doers.
Them ‘doing’ and you giving appropriate feedback – for the feelers!
Explanation Demonstration Doing!
The stepping stones to teaching someone to ski are acknowledged throughout the skiing world – referred to as
The Central Theme:
Simple basic introductory activities; to develop co-ordinated movements with planks on the feet!
it is SLIDING – becoming familiar with the sensation of sliding, developing an appropriate posture and good balance in a new tilted world!
PLOUGHING – to introduce an element of control of speed of descent and to build an understanding of creating resistance between the ski edge(s) and the snow (mat)
PLOUGH TURNING – developing control of both speed and direction and introducing a steering of the skis.
PLOUGH PARALLELING – working towards greater, more precise, control of speed and direction on longer and steeper ski runs.
PARALLEL TURNING – an awareness and a skilled application of the sequential movements necessary to steer the skis in a new direction and keeping the ski parallel and using the edges of both skis.
The Level 1 training course also looks at the candidates own personal skiing skill and there is time given to have personal training from the Tutor/Coach as well as from the other candidates on the course. This enables each candidate to be observed on several ‘free runs’ and for the observers to give candid criticism and to devise tasks, drills and exercises to improve the skier.
This part of the course always proves to be ‘interesting and fun’. . . . . . . . . . . yet is always taken with a sense of humour that is so necessary in the art of ski instruction and of learning how to ski and beyond!
What is it they are looking for in a good skier?
Sequential movements; actions (proactive) rather than reactions (reactive)?
A carved turn against both the ski edges? Precise control of direction and speed? Anticipation and awareness?
The Training of these candidates really starts on the slope with a real class of learner skiers in front of them! Each candidate will have to do a minimum of 20 hours supervised instruction; that is teaching skiers under the watchful eye of, at the very least, a Level 2 Qualified Coach and with skiers at a very early stage of their development of the Alpine skiing discipline.
The candidate will then be required to complete a log of every hour of their work, but only after a feed- back session from the observing Coach. This is a requirement of the Training Course and we are very lucky here that in Sharks Ski Club we have the experienced coaches to do this.
Each candidate will have to register as a Level 1 Candidate Instructor with Snowsport England, this they will pay for themselves!
I hope you will support these candidates by giving them some encouragement when you see them and I hope this brief article explains some of the work done in developing the skills of the Sharks Instructor team. If you would like to know more or you have any questions then please don’t hesitate to talk to me! Norman – Level 4 Snowsport England Coach & Level 2 Tutor