If you have a love of skiing, or snowboarding for that matter, and are looking for an exciting way to spend your gap year, or perhaps forge a long term career, then enrolling in a skiing or snowboarding instructor course could be right up your alley.
Every year thousands of people from all around the world, and from very different walks in life, enrol in ski and snowboarder instructor courses, some of whom choose to pursue long term careers because they love what they do so much.
If this is something that you’d be interested in, you will find no end of skiing and snowboarding training courses to provide you with the qualifications required of you to make a career out of doing something you love. Why not get started today?
Why Enrol in a Training Course?
Along with a love of skiing and the desire to forge a career doing something that you love doing, there are a number of great reasons why you should consider enrolling in a training course. Here are a few to whet your interest.
- Because the sector is so competitive, you need to have the right qualifications to stand any chance of sourcing a good job. Or a job at all.
- Enrolling in a training course will help you gain the experience, the skills and knowledge, that you need to become a great instructor.
- Ski and snowboard instructor schools are great places to meet likeminded people and network. The more contacts you have the better.
With so many excellent training courses for ski instructors and snowboard instructors, you will find yourself spoiled for choice. However, some courses are better than others, and not only with regard to the required knowledge, skills, and qualifications that you will earn, but also with regard to your interests.
After all, if you are an anglophile, wouldn’t it make sense to enrol in a course in a country where English is not only the first language of the instructors at the school at which you’ll study, but also the majority of the clients whom you’ll instruct?
Kick-Starting Your Skin Instructor Career – Pick the Right Course for Your Interests
It is therefore very important that you pick the right ski or snowboard instructor training course for your interests, so give your career plans some thought before you enrol so as to decide upon the best course for you.
A good place to start is deciding whether you are interested in, for instance, working as an instructor for your gap year or whether you see instructing as a long term career.
But that’s not all that you need to take into account before selecting a course that will provide you with the required knowledge, skills, and qualifications that you will need to earn, as you should also give some thought to the following points.
- Your experience. How much skiing or snowboarding experience do you have to draw upon?
- Your skills. How good a skier or snowboarder are you at the present point in time?
- Your interests. Are you interested in, for example, off-piste instructing, half pipe and trick instructing (snowboards), or just general skiing instruction?
- Your preferred clients. Do you like working with children, beginners, seniors, or more advanced skiers and/or snowboarders?
These are all very important points for you to take into account before you decide upon a course to enrol in. With so many skiing and snowboarding instructor courses to take your selection of in parts of the world synonymous with alpine sports, like Whistler Blackcomb in BC, it suffices to say that you want to pick the course that best suits your interests and your career plans to a tee.
A Few Courses for You to Consider in Canada
General Instructor Qualifications
There’s rarely anything that could be described as ‘general’ about these training courses – CSIA/CASI Level 1 to Level 4 – though they are somewhat ‘general’ in relation to the other courses discussed here, all of which you can enrol in at any good ski or snowboard instructor school in Canada.
These courses are a great introduction to ski and snowboard instruction, so unless you already possess qualifications, it’s advisable that you start here.
To earn a CSIA/CASI Level 1 certificate, you will need to enrol in something along the lines of a 4 to 11 week instructor course, depending on a few factors, including the school at which you enrol, your experience, etc. This certification is easy to earn, and you will generally be learning in a decent sized group, unless of course you opt for bespoke training, which to be honest, isn’t necessary at this stage.
However, to earn CSIA/CASI Level 4 certification, which is the highest, you will generally need to join a small group or receive individual training, and the courses are usually bespoke, i.e. designed specifically for the needs of the students.
Freestyle or Racing Certification
You don’t need to have earned CSIA/CASI Level 4 certification to start training to receive freestyle or racing certification, though a CSIA/CASI Level 1 or Level 2 certificate will come in handy, since some schools may not employ you without it.
CSIA Snowpark Certification, CASI Park Instructor and Canadian Ski Coach Federation Level Entry Level (CSCF), are some of the certifications that you might be looking at if freestyle or racing is something that you’d be interested in.
However, it’s also important to bear in mind that these aren’t general instruction courses, but rather courses aimed at those looking for a career in snow sports.
Avalanche & Off-Piste Training
Canadian Avalanche Association Avalanche Skills Training Level 1 (AST1) should be included in all ski and snowboarder instructor courses. There are also a number of off-piste training courses for those interested in instructing off-piste skiing.
For anyone who has an interest in forging a career for themselves as a skiing or snowboard instructor, these courses are a great way to kick-start their career. With winter, i.e. ski season, fast approaching, you had really better get a move on.