Schools Snowsports Magazine 2019-20

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Welcome to the latest edition of Schools Snowsports magazine.


We hope you’ll find plenty of interest in this edition, from various contributors including Physical training, schools race events, snowboarding and indoor rolling slopes to name a few. There’s been no let up in the fourth year of the NSSA. New partnerships with big players in UK snowsports such as the Ski Club of Great Britain. The National Schools Squad programme increases this coming season with bigger numbers and a more focused camp programme and more children getting to experience life as a member of a squad such as this. The changes in alpine events with the introduction of the International Schools Open Champs running last Easter, looking to increase in size for next year. The change in ownership of the ISC event in Les Deux Alpes in December has brought about an interesting collaboration for us with schools travel specialist, Halsbury ski, who have come on board with SCGB as a sponsor for our indoor series. More exciting news for the coming year is our National Schools Open Dry Slope Championships – more info on this elsewhere in the magazine. Further collaborations with Giving 4 Sport, GBX and Snow Camp are raising the profile of the NSSA and so increasing our ability to bring more children into snowsports.

We’ve spoken to national governing bodies and amongst the articles in this edition of the magazine, you’ll find information initiatives such as the Go Ski, Go Board and the NSSW from Snowsport England and information on the new and special schools level one instructor course in conjunction with the Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors. From Last years unfortunate story of Ellie Soutter, we have been working with Mental Wellbeing in Schools who have an article in this edition and will be working with us closely through the next year. At the NSSA, we will continually work toward adding value to our schools membership of the organisation with deals and member offers from retailers to access to specific gap courses, race insurance and currency cards. A great benefit of the membership is 3rd party insurance for UK events through Snowsport England. This insurance is especially welcome to many schools who, without it, cannot take part in the National Schools Races. It removes any uncertainty for many schools and gives peace of mind to teachers and school team organisers. I hope you enjoy this edition and would welcome any feedback or, if you would be interested in contributing to the next edition, please contact us on Phil Brown Programme Director of the NSSA


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MANY SKIERS COULD BE OUT OF POCKET IF THEY HAVE TO MAKE AN INSURANCE CLAIM AFTER COMPETING IN A SKI RACE. THIS IS BECAUSE A MAJORITY OF UK SKI INSURANCE PROVIDERS OFFER NO COVER FOR RACING OF ANY KIND, WHILE OTHERS RESTRICT THEIR COVER. In a study of 60 other UK providers – a significant part of the market – ski insurance specialists MPI Brokers found that: • 42 providers exclude ski racing outright • 18 others cover ski racing, but with restrictions. Michael Pettifer, Managing Director of MPI Brokers, which offers some of the most inclusive ski insurance policies in the UK, says both competitive and social skiers could be caught in the ski racing trap if they have inadequate insurance. He says: “Many skiers are getting involved in charity endurance events – for example, skiing 150km in two days – and now use GPS timing equipment on smart phones to ‘race’ their friends. Using the Oxford Dictionary definition of a race – ‘a contest of speed’ – this may be excluded under many policies.

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“Skiers who think they are covered should check their policies carefully. We found some interesting restrictions such as ‘recreational ski racing only’, ‘not competitive’, ‘Non FIS’, ‘no timed events’ and ‘ski school and training only’.

result that policies often exclude ‘normal’ behaviour that in our view is not particularly high risk. These providers appear to focus on volume, offering policies to a mass market instead of a quality specialist insurance.

“Skiers without adequate cover could face serious problems if they are injured during an organised race – and may even be disqualified if it is found they are not insured.

“MPI’s award-winning Wintersports insurance – developed over half a century by skiers for skiers – is more responsive to real market conditions. Our main ski and snowboard insurance covers racing, competitions, practice and training for events with an entry age of under 16, as well as The Masters, Inferno and inter-club races at no extra charge and also includes racing for events (any age) that are not national or international races.”

“All competitors who enter a ski race which is run under FIS rules must have ski insurance that covers that activity for – at least – mountain rescue, medical expenses, ambulance costs, repatriation and third party liability (often expressed as Personal Liability) and should therefore have their insurance policies available for inspection. “Most providers in our survey don’t seem to understand skiing with the

MPI are partners of the NSSA. For the NSSA rates with MPI, please use the link below. NSSA#/start


ASSOCIATION CONTINUES TO INNOVATE WITHIN THE SCHOOLS ARENA As we roll into the 4th year of the NSSA’s life, We have time to pause and look back at what the organisation has achieved and also look forward to plans for the future and the growth of schools snowsports. Working, as we do, with schools and colleges, we have fed racers into a number of UK based clubs and helped increase the numbers of ski racers at this grass roots level. The National Schools Indoor Series has been instrumental in this increase, with participation in the series growing, year on year so that we now have over 1200 participants across over 150 schools. To help smooth the transition from schools racing into the club environment, we have partnered with Impulse Racing to offer a pathway into the club racing world. Impulse have been running training and races for us since our inception and are headed up by an ex national team coach with over

30 years experience within the British system. NSSA Membership has grown and we are able to negotiate more and more deals, discounts and specialist offers for our schools members on full membership. There are also some changes to the membership which are listed below in order to assist schools needing the Snowsport England insurance element of the membership but not wishing access to the great offers with full membership for all the schools snowsports participants Amongst other things, we have offers and deals from retailers, brands, insurance companies and currency exchange partners. This list of all current partners and deals can be found at the end of this article and also on our website, One of the new initiatives for the coming year is a National Schools Outdoor Open

Champs. This is a National Champs dry Slope Race, to be held in October at the newly resurfaced Swadlincote slope in central England. This is the first dry slope champs we’ve run and it will form part of the National Schools Series. We’re taking our inclusive ethos to this race as there is currently no inclusive National dry slope schools champs. Some of the barriers to participation that we’ve avoided are listed below: - Open to all schools, not only independent schools. - Accept individuals. Not all schools can raise a team. - Do not require membership in order to take part. - Allow the largest numbers per event of any UK indoor one day event. - Allow teams to spread across age groups and genders. Not all schools have 4 racers in an age group. It would be restrictive to force teams into one age group with younger skiers racing in older age groups Over the last year, adding to our Snowsport England affiliation, we’ve formed partnerships with The Ski Club of Great Britain, Halsbury Ski and Club Europe. This helps us to run the events and gives more choice to the schools with which we work.

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In addition to all of the above, third Party Liability insurance for the schools ski team members for UK events and schools membership of Snowsport England (Numbers of participants must be specified at joining) Regular newsletter and information on schools snowsports. For further information or membership enquiries, please contact the NSSA at

Joining the NSSA and the benefits of membership The NSSA has set up membership with benefits for the all pupils attending the member school. Schools Premier Membership – At the time of printing, the deals and offers available to schools are listed below.

The NSSA endorse numerous alpine race events through the year, both UK and alpine-based, and pass details of these events to member schools with recommendations of training and race support for these events. Moving forward, we are now starting to fulfill our ‘snowsports’ title more fully and expand to work with Snowboarding (see the GBX article on pages 22-23), A snowsports charity partner (Snowcamp, pages 14-16), partnering with the Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors (Pages 18-19) to develop this pathway through from schools and, over the next year, freestyle and telemark. The association are more than happy to work with all educational organisations and to answer any questions on schools’ snowsports from both member and nonmember schools.

• Ski Bartlett – Retail Partner – 10% off retail • Ski Racing Supplies – Retail Partner – various% off retail • Rivington Alpine - Retail Partner – various% off retail • Head Skis UK – Brand Partner – 20% off retail (must be bought through Ski Bartlett) • FairFX – FX partner – Free currency card and great rates • Summit Goggles – Brand Partner – 15% off retail • Solutions 4 Feet – 10% off • MPI Brokers – Insurance Partner – Specific insurance packages • Skiers Edge – Equipment partner – 15% off retail • Bag Solo – Luggage partner – 15% off retail • Snow and Rock – Retail Partner – 15% off in store and online • Cotswold Outdoor – Retail Partner – 15% off in store and online • Cycle Surgery – Retail Partner – 15% off in store and online

Schools Associate Membership – This offers the joint Snowsport England membership and insurance and Newsletter as above, plus • MPI Brokers – Insurance Partner – Specific insurance packages • FairFX – FX partner – Free currency card and great rates For further information on membership, please contact us on

The National Schools Squad programme expanded to several alpine, Landgraaf and UK training events Last season with over 30 squad members attending across these events. Taking the squad forward this year, and building on the success we continue with our clear and transparent selection process of inviting medal winners from National Series events to join the squad and experience the programme and we will keep going with selection for this prestigious squad with no ‘behind closed doors’ selection meetings. Training events include trips to Landgraaf as well as trips to Tignes, France in October and Pila in Italy during the season. All those selected will be sent an invitation asking if they wish to take up their place on the squad with those accepting being considered for places at the International Schools Open Champs at Easter 2019. If you have any questions on the squad and selection, please contact us on

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THE BRITISH SCHOOLS OPEN ALPINE CHAMPIONSHIPS 2020 As well as endorsing numerous schools snowsports events, the NSSA were behind the Successful British Schools Open Alpine Championships in February 2019. We will be running this event again in 2020 and the races are already open for entry. Taking place in early February 2020. This looks to be a highlight of the schools alpine calendar with training held over the early weekdays with races later in the week. The event is open to all schools and entry is now open, closing on February 1st 2020. This closing date may be brought forward, should the event

become full earlier as is the case with some of our UK races. For the event, the NSSA are once again, engaging the services of experienced schools training organisation, Impulse Racing to run this event in their home resort base of Pila, Italy. This resort was chosen due to its accessibility, within two hours of Geneva or Milan, an hour from Turin and Chamonix. The races will be run along the same accessible lines as the National Schools Series with the fastest of 2 (or 3) runs to count, meaning that even if you don’t finish one run, you have the ability to still get a result. The event will include a giant slalom race for all ages and a slalom for U14’s and above with a Kombi for U10/U12 age groups. The final day will see the popular Parallel, or head to head, event with entry numbers dictating whether this runs as an individual or team event. The NSSA’s Phil Brown says of the event: “It’s great to host this event again, building it year on year and seeing many children take part in an alpine event for the first time. We love working with schools, getting more children to enjoy and be part of the sport that we love and have been involved with for years, and we see running competitions such as this one, along with the schools race programmes, as an important and integral

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part of this. It’s key to us that we ensure the sport is enjoyable for the children and does not become a chore or that they feel pushed into it by parents, coaches etc. The event runs on the 5-7 February 2020, with open training on the 3-4 February (must be booked in advance). The event itself will be available as entry only or, in order to help the less experienced racers and schools, The NSSA are working with local hotels, transfer companies and a travel partner to offer a package for the event, with transfers, accommodation, lift passes, flights and training for two/three days prior to the races. We welcome fledgling skiers so if racing or freestyle is something your schools skiers would like to try, please come and join us. We will also be running UK training prior to the event for anyone wanting to get additional practice. With free places available for teachers accompanying groups, this looks like it could be a must do event for schools in seasons to come. For further information, or to enquire about entry, training packages or accommodation, please contact or For accommodation enquiries, please contact






THE NATIONAL SCHOOLS OPEN SERIES 2019-20 Following on from the success of last years National Schools Open Indoor Series, The NSSA is please to develop the only inclusive national schools events series to include, initially, one dry slope event. We’ve been asked why we haven’t done this as yet and the simple answer is that it’s been out of courtesy to other bodies who run national schools dry slope events. Unfortunately, we’ve found that, in England, many schools are unable to take part in these events due to numerous entry restrictions so, as we believe there needs to be greater inclusivity at grass roots level in our sport, we have scheduled a National Schools Open Championship event. This will be held in October at Swadlincote, pretty much in the centre of the country. Swadlincote has just returned to traditional matting with resurfacing taking place over the summer, meaning that it should make for some great racing. The slope was important to the dry slope racing scene through the 90’s and early 2000’s with many national champs events and a great series of triple slalom races – three head to head courses! NSSA programme director, Phil Brown, says of the new calendar addition ‘I think it was only a matter of time before we took our successful schools race formula onto dry slope, straight to the heart of grass roots ski racing in the UK. With Swadlincotes history and recent resurfacing, I believe we have a great venue for the first NSSA outdoor event. I myself remember taking part in some great racing there in the triple slaloms, English champs etc. Even to the point that it was the venue where I once had my head shaved for charity – between runs one and two of the English Champs, back in 2000. It should prove a great addition to the series’. With numbers capped at the two Hemel events, we hope to see growth over the other events at Manchester and Swadlincote.

Tel: 01869 244424 Follow us on:

As always, accessibility is very important for these open events with an unrestrictive race entry. Many other schools events tend to restrict entry by insisting schools are members of the organisation running the events or restrict the entry to teams of single age group only.

This excludes small schools or schools with less than 4 skiers. It also handicaps schools which cannot raise a team consisting of skiers within a single age group. The NSSA format allows for mixed age groups and individual entries, so being more inclusive and less intimidating for many children. These events work as a great feeder series into club national and GBR events with many racers competing for the first time alongside children from the national team and full time academy programmes. This gives the newer racers some inspiration and exposure to skiers that they may not usually see. Placings in the races and series will qualify racers for selection to the National Schools Snowsports Squad for the following school year/season with squad training camps, races and exposure to a national programme for these pupils. More information on the squad can be found on page 7. All races will be open for entry in early October online but, for more information on any of these events or, if you’d like an event run for your school, school trust or against another school, Please contact The NSSA, or Impulse Racing, who run events on our behalf. NSSA website e-mail:

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30TH SEPTEMBER - BISS (Impulse) National Schools Indoor Open Championships The Snowcentre, Hemel Hempstead 14TH OCTOBER - National Schools Outdoor Open Championships (featuring the British Junior Schools Outdoor Open Championships) Swadlincote Ski Centre 27TH APRIL - ISA National Schools Indoor Open Championships - The Snowcentre, Hemel Hempstead 18TH MAY - British Schools Indoor Open Championships - Chill Factore, Manchester For further information, contact the NSSA schoolssnowsports @schoolsnowsport

SNOW CAMP IN 2019 CELEBRATING 15 YEARS OF TURNING YOUNG LIVES Since 2003, snowsports youth charity Snow-Camp have changed the lives of over 11,000 underprivileged inner-city young people through their innovative snowsports-based youth programmes. By using a unique combination of skiing, snowboarding, life-skills training, qualifications and vocational opportunities, Snow-Camp engage young-people-at-risk by offering an alternative path away from the innercity estates and the issues that may be facing them on a daily basis, to new horizons and positive opportunities which simply wouldn’t be available to them otherwise. Now in their 15th anniversary year and as the charity gear-up for their biggest winter season yet, we asked Dan Keeley

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to give us the full Snow-Camp update and what it means for the team to do what they do. Firstly Dan, how did you get involved with Snow-Camp? With a background in sports development, a passion for social impact and having qualified as a BASI Level 2 Ski Instructor in 2011, I jumped at the chance of joining the Snow-Camp team in early 2012 as the Snowsports Community Manager. I remember on day 1 thinking about the impact the mountains had on me when I was lucky enough to go on my first school ski trip, and now having the opportunity to channel my professional experience towards offering this

opportunity to those less fortunate than I was, just with 10x the impact given the background of so many of the young people we work with! What does the team look like today? We have an amazing & dedicated team of 15 working tirelessly behind the scenes at Snow-Camp; both from our HQ in Brighton and in each of the regions we’re running our programmes across the UK. We’ve also grown our Apprenticeship programme over recent years meaning we now employ 15 Snow-Camp graduates as full-time staff members, helping us to deliver our programmes and inspire the next generation of young people coming through our programmes. It’s a privilege to be a part of.

young people from all demographics with the power of snowsports. It’s this season where we’re taking things to new heights by getting our young people involved with the UK & overseas racing events wherever possible whist constantly evolving our partnership through other fundraising initiatives and raising awareness of each other’s work.

How has Snow-Camp grown to where it is today as an award-winning & nationally-recognised youth charity. For the first 10 years of Snow-Camp we were solely working with young people from London. That was until we received & responded to the call to support young people in Scotland which kick-started our ‘5NOW’ national expansion to establish our programmes in 5 UK regions by our 15th anniversary. We actually exceeded our target by launching in 6 regions, and now comes the next chapter for all the team as we work with over 1000 young people each year, with more young people than ever before completing the full Snow-Camp journey culminating with a life-changing week in the mountains and gaining a Snowsport England or Snowsport Scotland Level 1 Instructor or Assistant qualification. And then came #Switch180. Tell us about the campaign and why it’s so relevant now. We’ve always known that giving young people access to positive opportunities can turn their lives around. We launched the #Switch180 campaign to highlight the critical importance of supporting young people at such a key time in their lives and to highlight that we must do more as a society to provide the right opportunities for young people who need these opportunities the most. We conducted our own research in partnership with YouGov which found that 76% of young people believe that the lack of positive opportunities puts young people at an increased risk of falling into crime and antisocial behaviour.

How can the NSSA community support Snow-Camp looking ahead to 2020? We would love to hear from any coach, teacher, parent, pupil or club would like to fundraise for Snow-Camp or discuss a new charity partnership!

With funding for youth provision falling dramatically since 2011 and the results we’re seeing today across the capital and elsewhere around the UK, we know our work is needed more-so than ever: to motivate young people to achieve their potential and inspire them towards rewarding and successful futures. The statistics make it all too clear why our work is needed as we look ahead to the new decade, which is why we’re so incredibly grateful to the NSSA & Impulse community for supporting our work and joining us in our mission. You’ve prided yourself on being integral to the snowsports industry from the beginning. Tell us about the partnership with NSSA and Impulse Racing. Knowing we provide opportunities for young people that would otherwise never get the opportunity to experience snowsports and the mountain environment has always been something we’ve celebrated in collaboration with the governing bodies and all corners of the snowsports industry. Our partnership with NSSA & Impulse has been evolving year-on-year, which for us offers the perfect synergy as we’re both so passionate about supporting

Every £100 raised for Snow-Camp pays for one new young person to join us on our 2-day beginner First Tracks programme. Every £500 raised enables one young person to experiences the mountains for the first time on our Excel programmes. Every £2000 paying for a full Snow-Camp Bursary – sponsoring one young person through the full lifechanging Snow-Camp journey. Over the past few years we’ve had some amazing supporters, school groups and ski clubs taking on a whole variety of fundraising challenges & events – one of our favourite still being a school group who skied continuous laps of a dedicated ski slope one afternoon on their annual ski trip entirely in fancy dress. In this particular case there were 65 pupils rocking their onesies on the snow who collectively raised over £850 towards our work. Whatever the challenge or whichever way the NSSA community want to get involved with Snow-Camp as we look towards the next 15 years of turning young lives around, we want to hear from you! To get involved, please contact Dan directly by emailing or by calling 01273 241383 or 07803 876455. To find out more about Snow-Camp, visit

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76% of young people believe that a lack of positive opportunities put young people at an increased risk of falling into crime and antisocial behaviour. (Snow-Camp and YouGov research)

Giving young people positive opportunities can turn their lives around. Snow-Camp have been successfully changing the direction of young people’s lives since 2003 through skiing, snowboarding, qualifications and work experience.

But we need your help. Please support Snow-Camp and our #Switch180 campaign. 01273 241383

BECOME AN INSTRUCTOR WHILST STILL AT SCHOOL ACCESS THE INSTRUCTOR PATHWAY FROM 15 YEARS OLD WITH THE NATIONAL SCHOOLS SNOWSPORTS ASSOCIATION AND IASI As an organisation building participation in snowsports via schools, the NSSA is proud to partner with IASI (The Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors) to be able to offer the opportunity to schools snowsports athletes of taking instructing and coaching qualifications including GAP courses which will allow successful candidates to teach in the alps. IASI qualifications are internationally recognised. UK COURSES SPECIFICALLY FOR NSSA MEMBER SCHOOLS AND SCHOOLS PARTNERS. Ski Definition are the partner organisation offering UK courses for the IASI L1 Instructor qualification. This first step on the pathway will allow you to teach in a closed environment such as a UK indoor or dry slope. This 5 day course will work on your skiing and give you the tools required to start your teaching career, whether you intend to become a full time instructor or just use this for your personal development, this is a great course to begin with. These courses will run as bespoke and we will be looking for 6-8 candidates in order to run each course. We can also run bespoke courses, solely for either one school or for several trainees across several schools with minimum of 5 and maximum of 8 per course running either 5 days in a row, two weekends or over 12 x 3 hour evenings, whichever can be accommodated to allow participants to complete the course. The standard course price is £575.00 but this is discounted for the schools level one and will include • Exam Fee • Slope access • Rental equipment - Skis, Poles, Helmet • Exam Work Book • Exam Reference book • IASI membership is an additional £35 Ski Definition also offer L2 courses in the alps during the winter. Please contact us on for information or to book

ALPINE COURSES AND GAP PROGRAMMES The NSSA partner with several organisations for GAP courses and training and stand alone Level 2 courses, and above for the IASI and BASI Instructor qualifications. The level 2 will allow you to teach in in the mountains with ski schools in Italy and Switzerland or further afield in Japan or the emerging skiing market of China. Snoworks offer a successful GAP programme during the autumn giving the opportunity to pass and then work from December that season. Based in Tignes for the autumn courses. Sub Zero Coaching offer GAP programmes. Autumn and Winter with the Autumn course giving the opportunity to pass and then work from December that season. With the winter programme fitting the more traditional months. Based in Zermatt, Switzerland throughout the autumn and winter. For further information on these, please contact COACHING COURSES There are two Coaching courses which are run under Impulse racing. • The IASI level one race coach to compliment the instructor qualifications and to be used in conjunction with the teaching pathway. • The UKCP level one race coach – This is a stand alone coaching qualification run under Snowsport England. As with the Level 1 teaching, the L1 coaching can be run in the UK over a single weekend or 4 x 3 hour evenings.

There are a number of Level 1 courses run through the year with, currently. The level 2 is run in the alps and there are, currently, only one IASI and one UKCP L2 being run per season. On these courses, you’ll learn about coaching theory and course setting, amongst other useful skills. As with the level one teaching, the level one coaching can be run on a bespoke basis with a minimum of 5 and maximum of 8 participants. The Level one and 2 coaching courses are used in conjunction with the aligned teaching qualifications up to the remit of these and are not stand alone awards. For information, please contact Over the next year, the NSSA hope to be able to select candidates for funded instructor courses – Look out for how to apply for these. *For full validation of any teaching qualifications, the following must also be held. • First Aid Qualification • Child Protection Module • Shadowing Hours

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Revolving slopes do have their limitations, they cannot simulate variable terrain or changing snow conditions and it is difficult to simulate carving without the width that a traditional artificial slope provides. If you were just looking for a few runs to blow out the cobwebs before a holiday then revolving slopes may not be for you but if you are genuinely looking to improve your technique they have a lot to offer.


THE SKI TRAINING FACILITIES IN THE UK YOU DIDN’T KNOW EXISTED. When people talk about skiing indoors in the UK most people think of the snow domes dotted around the country but there is another type of indoor skiing facility that rarely gets a mention, and that’s revolving slopes. These are effectively giant treadmills, set on an incline and covered in an artificial ski surface. They accurately simulate the skiing experience but as the slope is continually moving underneath you the length of the slope is theoretically endless, just like a running machine.

WHY ARE THESE FACILITIES SO GOOD FOR TRAINING? Nothing beats being out in the mountains but if you want to get some practice in the U.K. then there aren’t any artificial slopes in the UK that a moderately good skier can’t make it down in under a minute. Generally a session on a rolling slope lasts for up to 15 minutes so not only do you get a great work out, you can build muscle memory and really hone your technique. Here a moderately good skier can put in over 600 turns in a normal 30 minute session.

Although these facilities are extremely popular in other countries including China and the Netherlands (over 30 centres) there are just 3 facilities in the U.K. Skizone in Basingstoke, Skieasy in Chiswick and Chel-ski in Chelsea. Sessions are always instructor lead and the speed and incline of the slope is controllable by the instructor as you ski.

The specialist surface used on rolling slopes is much less abrasive than traditional dryslope surfaces and there is less risk of injury if you fall but it is quite unforgiving in terms of technique. This highlights areas for improvement and promotes good technique, unlike some surfaces which can actually reinforce bad habits.

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WHAT ARE THEY LIKE FOR COMPLETE BEGINNERS? Revolving slopes are excellent for learning to ski. Progression is really fast as you get far more actual ski time per hour than a traditional lesson. Groups are usually 2 or 3 pupils maximum so training is personalised and the surface promotes good technique right from the start to avoid bad habits forming. We estimate that beginners progress at least 5 times as quickly than on a traditional slope.

FITNESS Revolving slopes big plus is for fitness, in addition to helping build the endurance for skiing longer as you would on holiday, or in racing, some facilities offer specific ski fitness sessions which will relate directly to what your body needs to do on the mountain. HOW DO I FIND OUT MORE?

QUALIFY AS AN INSTRUCTOR FROM 15 WITH THE NSSA AND IASI SCHOOLS PATHWAY The NSSA are pleased to work with IASI and their delivery partners to operate this exclusive Opportunity to qualify through the first step of the Instructor pathway from your 15th birthday. This gives you plenty of time to complete the on ski training and assessment, first aid course and online child welfare module, as well as the shadowing hours (some of which can be done with NSSA partner, Impulse Racing). The course can be done in the UK and, if a school have 6 or more that wish to take the course, we can run it exclusively for that group. It’s a great way to get on the instruction ladder, saving several weeks of a gap course if you should choose to move onto this.





Whether you are reading this as an athlete, parent, coach or teacher, this time of year is often fraught with concern over funding next seasons dreams…

WE WANT TO HELP EASE THAT STRESS BY SHARING THE BURDEN OF FUNDRAISING. WHO WE CAN HELP Like all UK charities, our ‘objects‘ are an agreement with HMRC/UK Government as to who we can and can’t provide funding grants to… “To promote the participation of all people in amateur sport by making grants to develop their skills, capacities and capabilities to enable them to participate in society as healthy, independent, responsible and mature citizens.” The above essentially defines who we can claim Gift Aid for…what makes us different to other UK Sporting charities is that the help we offer is not restricted to only those with a “disability” or “in education”. Our remit covers “all people in amateur sport“– that’s you, your team, your school or your loved ones - irrespective of age, sexuality, creed, gender or standard. Authorised by HMRC to collect Gift Aid on behalf of amateur sport WHERE THIS CAME FROM Rufus: “After spending over a decade watching how hard my sister had to graft for funding even when competing at the very top, I could only imagine how desperate the annual sourcing of money must have been for unfunded athletes. I am immensely proud and grateful for the time I spent with GB Parasnowsport, however it was not all roses…despite being utterly intoxicated by this random, and supposedly temporary, re-introduction to competitive sport after almost 25 years, it soon became apparent that the scramble for funding remains one of the most stressful and distracting hurdles faced by amateur sport. Considering myself well equipped to look into this issue after many years pouring over spreadsheets in the city and trying to help UK Snowsport find funding from the side lines, I decided to build a framework to help ease the burden of fundraising on sport.” CROWDFUNDING COSTS There are two types of crowdfunding pages/campaigns, each type defining the benefits & costs applicable to donors and donations:

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Charitable: Attached to a Gift Aid eligible entity Personal: Ineligible for Gift Aid There are currently thousands of ‘personal’ crowd funding pages set up for amateur sport…not one able to offer Gift Aid, donor/corporate rebates or other tax efficient solutions to those who so generously offer their support……in fact, these pages actually cost the cause money due to the processing charges associated with them! Based on our wider reach, many previously ineligible pages/campaigns on behalf of amateur sport could now benefit from Gift Aid and other tax incentives with our help. HOW WE HELP Whether you want to receive funding via a personalised text donation code, accept donations directly from a gross salary or provide a more tax effective way of receiving corporate support, simply inserting Giving for Sport between the donor and your school/PTA/team can increase the overall efficiency of your current fundraising by up to 30%!!! We help you maximise every penny of the vital financial support needed to get the most out of your sport. We will walk you through how to use the latest in donation apps, software and platforms to help you not only streamline your current process, but also apply for Gift Aid on your behalf. Even if your PTA/club or school is already registered as a charity or CASC, we’d be happy to help you add any of our donation methods to your existing funding streams. HOW TO APPLY Once you have gone through our very simple sign up process we will then consult with you to find out more about your current fundraising streams, discuss your targets and provide you with the tools to achieve those targets faster and more efficiently. Each and every one of our fundraising avenues have been selected for ease of use and efficiency to give you the best chance of maximising the brilliant support of your donors and sponsors. Imagine what fun you could have raising money for those extra gates/storm jackets/timing equipment be it putting a QR code on your school’s training bibs or sponsoring a teacher to shave their head!!! We have by no means re-invented the fundraising wheel, we have just tuned it a bit to help you achieve your targets quicker and get back focussing on the thing we all love – SPORT

Please click here for more information or email us - we’d love to help! // 21

NSSA AND GBX PARTNERSHIP The NSSA is proud to announce that we are partnering with GBX – International snowboard cross program to form a one of a kind partnership to further increase the participation of snowsports through schools. The NSSA is a not for profit, members organisation for schools run by a committee from differing backgrounds including alpine coaching, UK winter tourism and teaching. The NSSA has set up to run as a hub for schools snow sports information, building schools ski programmes, teams and generally

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develop competitive snow sports within the schools arena.

accepts athletes of all levels from grass routes to Olympic competitors.

GBX managed and ran the British National Ski & Snowboard Cross National and Olympic Teams for a number of years until 2017 when it developed its core strategy into an International snowboard cross program accepting athletes from around the World. GBX now offers snowboard cross coaching in the UK as well as running its flagship full time (6 months) snow board cross program based in Austria where athletes train and compete across Europe. GBX

Phil Brown, NSSA Programme Director explained, “ We at the NSSA have been looking to partner with other snowsports organisations for a while now, in order to open up more snowsports to schools and utilise the expertise of these bodies to deliver as wide a range of snowsports participation as we can, rather than try to run it all ourselves. We already have an alpine training and race partner so teaming up with a GBX as our snowboarding partner is a logical step’

Zoe Gillings-Brier, 4 x Olympian and GBX Director, “We are really excited to be partnering with the National Schools Snowsports Association. The coaches at GBX have been involved in delivering International snowboarding programs since 2006 but we have never had a direct focus on domestic schools. Working alongside the NSSA will allow us to increase the participation of snowboarding within the schools and give the students invaluable experiences in sport.”

to spend time with Zoe Gillings-Brier, TeamGB’s leading snowboard cross athlete of all time. Zoe has competed in 4 Olympic Games and won 7 World Cup medals including Gold. Zoe loves sharing her experiences of how sport has shaped her life, the challenges, the victories and everything in between.

GBX and the NSSA will be putting on numerous snowboarding events for schools both in the UK and on snow in Europe. All athletes attending the events will not just get the opportunity to receive snowboard coaching by World class coaches, but will also have the ability

For further information, please contact:-

The first events will be announced early in the 2019-20 academic year and are planned to start in September 2019 at Snozone Leeds.

Phil Brown Dan Brier

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THE JOURNEY TO BECOMING A PROFESSIONAL SKIER AND COACH WITH AMANDA PIRIE Amanda Pirie has recently joined the Ski Club of Great Britain as their Youth Strategy Manager and lead for their new Performance Snowsports Series. But before that she completed a remarkable journey from ski racing prodigy to British Senior Ski Team member and more recently she coached our incredible Paralympic team to a record medal tally at the Pyeonchang Winter Paralympics. We asked her to describe her journey to becoming a professional skier and latterly a top-level coach. I was lucky to be born into a ski family. Skiing was in my blood, so as soon as I could walk, I was skiing. Growing up in Scotland allowed me to ski every weekend during the winter with Aberdeen Ski Club up on the windswept slopes of Glenshee. I believe that the varied and often challenging conditions and weather at Glenshee meant that I developed strong and adaptable skiing skills right from the start. I also believe that participating in a variety of sports, including highland dancing, gave me great fundamental movement skills that I could apply to my skiing. I was also lucky that ski racing was always great fun to me. I loved hanging out with all my friends and I loved the challenge and thrill of pointing it down an icy piste. And it was a bonus that I was good at it! I was British Champion in my age group for ten years from the age of 11. Despite the national success, one of my favourite early ski memories was competing with my school team – what I loved most about this was competing as part of a team in a sport that is normally very individual.

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home as GB’s most successful Winter Paralympic Team, winning a fantastic 7 medals (2 bronze, 4 silver and 1 gold). Since then I have moved back to London and am so excited to bring my experiences as a professional ski racer and instructor to the Ski Club of Great Britain. It is a very exciting time to be part of the Ski Club as it is looking to build and develop an ever more compelling offering to skiers in the UK.

While I was at school, I did however find it tough balancing skiing and training with my studies. The biggest challenge was integrating with my peers that didn’t know anything about ski racing. It was like living two parallel lives, one following my passion with like-minded people and the other trying to fit in at school when I was never around at the weekends or holidays and often away during term time too. But my skiing was going well so I was happy. I was selected for the British Children’s Team for 4 years running with my best result coming at Topolino in Italy where I finished 5th in the Slalom. Through many years of determination and dedication, I then progressed from the British Children’s Team to the British Senior Ski Team. I was best at letting my skis run so Super-G became my preferred discipline, in which I achieved a World Ranking high of 56 in 2001. As well as the skiing, I have always loved learning and therefore it was always in my game plan to go to university and I went to Loughborough University to study sports science. As a Sports Scholar I was very well supported at Loughborough, allowing me to juggle my studies with a busy training and racing programme – without their support it would have been very hard to balance competing with uni work. Then in my second year in 2001 I competed at my first World University Games in Zakopane, Poland. At the next event in Tarvisio in 2003, I came away with two medals, a bronze in Downhill and a silver in the Combined. This opened lots of opportunities for me to study in the US and although I didn’t take up any of the scholarships due to an injury (a

broken knee and shoulder) that I got later that year, it was exciting to have options like that to consider. Following my injury, I decided to pursue other life goals rather than continue with the all-encompassing dedication that is required to be a toplevel athlete. This led me straight to teaching. I have always loved it and had already been coaching with ski race clubs from the age of 18. So naturally I pursued a career in ski instructing and perhaps even more naturally, I loved it! I was able to apply all my learning from my years of ski training to help people to achieve their skiing goals and have the best time possible in the mountains. For me, ski instructing is a brilliant way to combine your passion with your career – I was even earning as much as a school teacher despite only working as an instructor for 5 months a year. After building my coaching skills for eighteen years, I read a job advert that made me think I was ready for the next challenge – Head Coach of the British Para Alpine Ski Team. I was fortunate enough to get the job and spent an incredible two years as Head Coach of the Paralympic Ski Team in the run up to Pyeongchang 2018. It certainly was a challenge but it was also the most rewarding experience I have ever had. I had the coach’s dream of amazing resources and top-level athletes to work with. I collaborated with a team of support staff including assistant ski coaches, ski technicians, physiotherapists, strength and conditioning coaches, a performance psychologist and a nutritionist – who were all there to get the athletes to the start gate ready to give their best possible performances. It worked and we came

We’re a not-for-profit members association with a long and illustrious history at the forefront of British snowsports, reinvesting all profits into new projects, events and opportunities. We have the main purpose of encouraging and supporting people to ski and snowboard – providing all those who love snowsports with social, safe, enjoyable and inspiring snowsports experiences. The Club has a wide range of member benefits including unique events, holidays and educational courses, a huge variety of snowsports related discounts and access to a community of like-minded people. The Ski Club of Great Britain also supports young skiers through an annual bursary to join the highly acclaimed Ski Club Mountain Awareness and Leadership Course. In addition, the Ski Club is expanding its reach and relevance to the younger snowsports community through an exciting programme of film screenings, mountain safety education and unique snowsports experiences. Our Freshtracks holidays offer incredible experiences at some of the world’s top ski resorts, with a strong focus on off piste and guided holidays. There’s also a newly launched series of Performance Clinics – held at snowdomes across the UK – and intensive training course, designed to take your skiing to the next level. We’ve even launched a Ski Club amateur racing team and I for one am extremely excited to get involved with this new part of the Club. It is certainly a very exciting time for me and I can’t wait to be a part of pushing the Ski Club forward. For more information on anything I’ve mentioned, please head to our website at or if you have any direct questions, please drop me an email at

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SKI RACE EQUIPMENT RULES AND REGULATIONS - WHAT YOU DO AND DON’T NEED FOR DIFFERENT COMPETITIONS Generally, at the schools races run and supported by the NSSA, the rules are not as strict as at other, seeded, events. This is great for all those getting involved at this grass-roots level and make it more accessible which is applauded by the NSSA. We believe that this is definitely the best way forward. But, as skiers move up through the rankings, join clubs and start talking part in seeded events, they will need to become aware of, and abide by, the equipment rules applied at these competitions. This advertorial, put together by NSSA partner, Ski Bartlett, is designed to help you understand the current rules on kit such as helmets and skis so that you don’t fall foul of these as you move on to further competition. We also advocate that you speak to your coaches before buying any equipment to ensure that, as well as staying within the rules, you are getting the best kit for your racer in terms of ability and size. The rules and regulations for ski equipment can change as rapidly as the British weather and can often seem somewhat confusing! To ensure your current equipment is compatible with current race regulations we, at Ski Bartlett. have put together this handy Fact-sheet… HELMETS There are two types of race helmets… soft ear-piece slalom helmets and hard-earpiece GS helmets. Slalom helmets are similar to traditional recreational helmets with comfortable soft ear-pieces. The race versions however have a harder more protective outer shell, with the ability to attach a slalom chinguard for protection against the gates. Slalom helmets are more ventilated than a full GS helmet; ideal for UK based racing and training. Slalom helmets can be used for slalom events on all surfaces, artificial slopes and snow. They can be used with or without a chinguard depending on personal preference. If skiing through long slalom gates it is advisable to protect your face with a detachable chinguard. Hard-earpiece ‘FIS approved’ GS helmets withstand more impact and therefore are a requirement in the faster disciplines of Giant Slalom, Super-G and Downhill. To conform to GS, SG and DH regulations, hard-earpiece helmets must have a ‘FIS RH2013’ sticker on the back. Hard ear-piece GS helmets can also be used for slalom with a detachable chinguard. This is a good, and cost effective option if you will only have one helmet for racing.

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SKIS Ski length and radius regulations vary depending on the competition and the age group of the racer. There are no regulations for UK artificial slope races but the following regulations apply for British snow races that are seeded. Table courtesy of GB Ski - BCR Book VI : Version Dec 18a : 17-Dec-2018 CATSUITS There are NO regulations for catsuits other than at the following races: “NEW FIS suits are required for Downhill, Giant Slalom and Super-G competitions at the Olympic Winter Games, FIS World Ski Championships, FIS World Cup, FIS Continental Cups and FIS World Junior Ski Championships competition suits must conform to the Specifications for Alpine Competition Equipment. (Continental Cups: EUROPEAN CUP, NOR-AM CUP, FAR EAST CUP, SOUTH AMERICAN CUP, AUSTRALIA/NEW ZEALAND CUP)” Reference: FIS Ruling 606.2.1 For the above FIS events catsuits must have the new printed FIS specifications CS 2015 logo printed onto the back of the leg. Rules and regulations change periodically, but rest assured they only change for well-researched safety reasons. There is usually a warning period prior to any new regulations being enforced, so we will keep everyone updated as soon as any new rules arise. There are regular breakthroughs with equipment and some new or future innovations are things like airbags within catsuits, not dissimilar to those found in MotoGP. These have been tested at the highest level but are unlikely to filter down soon due to cost. Skis and boots are always being developed to help the racers and a recent improvement in helmets is the MIPS system, which has been adopted by numerous helmet manufacturers. Injury statistics show that when you fall and hit your head, it’s most common to fall at an angle, compared to a linear fall. Falling at an angle creates rotational motion and science has shown that our brains are very sensitive to rotational forces. In an angled impact, these forces may transfer to your brain, which can cause severe injuries. The MIPS BPS System can reduce the rotational motion and reduce the risk of brain damage. If you have any equipment questions, don’t hesitate to contact Ski Bartlett. Whether you want to know what ski is right for you, whether it’s to arrange a specialist ski boot fitting appointment, or maybe you want to learn how to service your own skis. For any help and advice, please contact Ski Bartlett, the ski race experts on 020 8848 0040 or The shop is located on the Uxbridge Road, Hillingdon (West London) and also has a very comprehensive website encompassing every aspect of ski and snowboard equipment.

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CLUB EUROPE INTERNATIONAL OPEN SCHOOLS SKI CHAMPIONSHIPS 2020 April 2019 saw the first running of this great event, run in collaboration with the NSSA and one of the country’s leading school ski tour operators, Club Europe Ski Tours and, in 2020 we are hosting the event again. An amazing 5-day ski training camp in Austria in 2020. Perfect for more intermediate to advanced skiers, the camp will feature two days of competition and top level coaching. In conjunction with Impulse Racing and Impulse Schools, Club Europe’s 2nd International Open Schools Ski Championships is a great way to offer competitive winter sports on your GSCE or A-level curriculum Students will receive top-level coaching from experienced ski coaches, in classes of no more than 8. This will be led by race programme director Phil Brown, programme Diirector of the National Schools Snowsports Association and former head coach of

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the National Children’s Ski Team. The training days will include gate training, technical drills and all-mountain skiing. The final two days will be taken up with slalom, giant slalom and parallel slalom races – the ultimate way to ski head to head with your team mates! Races will be organised in age and gender categories, and students will be recognised for achievement and commitment.

Club Europe and NSSA International Open Schools Ski Championships 2020 - the details: Dates: 4-10 April 2020

The week will be based in Wagrain, Club Europe’s flagship and snow-sure ski resort in Austria, and the package includes accommodation, flights and transfers. This is a brand new event in the UK ski race calendar, aimed at schools that may not yet have had the opportunity to take part in ski racing. The event takes place in the school holidays to make it accessible to as many schools as possible. The competition is run under the guidance of the National School Snowsports Association so it is the perfect entrylevel event into competitive ski racing.

Find out more about Club Europe Ski Tours, visit school-ski-trips/

Interested in fielding a ski team? Register your interest by 30th December by calling FREEPHONE 0800 496 4996. Or email Club Europe on

CALLING ALL SCHOOL, CLUB, COUNTY, RUGBY AND FOOTBALL TEAMS. COME AND TRAIN PRE-SEASON WHERE THE PROS TRAIN INCLUDING GLOUCESTER AND TOULOUSE. Great new initiative for school rugby and football teams for effective pre season altitude training • • • • • •

Venue – Tignes, France – 2200m above sea level Facilities – Great all weather pitches, sports centre, lake and numerous fitness and fun facilities Games arranged between schools Airport transfers, Full board accommodation and use of training facilities included Dates to suit throughout summer and early September Take advantage of the benefits of altitude training for your team

For details or to book, contact

INTERSKI THE INTERNATIONAL SNOWSPORTS INSTRUCTORS CONGRESS Interski Background and History: Interski began in Zurs, Austria in 1951 where representatives of the European alpine nations met to share information on technique and teaching methodology. Interski Congresses were initially held every two years. They then moved to every three years for a time, and since 1971 have been held every four years. The first country outside of Europe to host an Interski Congress was the USA in 1968 in Aspen, Colorado. They have subsequently been held in a variety of countries including: Germany, Former Czechoslovakia, Japan, Italy, Canada and Austria. In 2007, Korea hosted the event, The last congress before this year was held in Argentina in 2015. From its humble beginning way back in 1951, Interski has grown to become a worldwide organisation, and their congresses attract the very best skiers of every nation, the ski media, industry specialists, equipment suppliers and thousands of participants.

Held every four years, the congress, run by the ISIA (International Snowsports Instructors Association) could be described as the ‘Olympics’ for ski associations, where each country sends a delegation of their best instructors to show off their skills through demonstrations of synchronised skiing. Many associations send a team of presenters, and also a research team, to explore the views of other countries on the future of snow sport, as well as an emphasis upon their own skiing and teaching styles. There are many workshops, both on and off the snow, where the researchers can glean information about these varied styles. This year saw over over 28 countries from all over the world attend in Pamporovo, including European regulars such as Austria, Bulgaria, Germany and the GB, to nationas from as far afield as The US, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, Chile, Scandinavian teams from most of

their nations and many others. The (ISIA) who run the congress, also entered a demo team. IASI at Interski The Irish Association of Snowsport Instructors (IASI) first started attending the Interski Congress in 1991 with a delegation of 6 people. There were 30 IASI members attending in 2019, consisting of a demo team of 12 of the associations best skiers, including 2 telemark skiers, researchers, presenters and a great team of members and supporters; this certainly reflects the great progression that IASI has made especially in recent years. Each Congress offers a massive opportunity to meet old friends from the ski industry, and to make new ones and there was a genuine sense of camaraderie and respect between all of the countries at this year’s conference. As in the Olympics, on the first day there was a large opening ceremony where each country walked in a procession to the main slope, in front of the crowds, wearing their uniforms and waving their national flags. The sun was out and the temperature was over ten degrees, which made the delegates somewhat uncomfortable in their ski gear, and also had an adverse effect on the quality of

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A number of the delegations had ski suits with LED lights attached, which certainly stood out in the darkness. The big day for IASI came on the Wednesday, where not only were the demo team performing during the day and evening (all of which were in front of very large crowds) but also IASI members delivered on-snow workshops. Later that day, an offsnow presentation was made in the conference centre - the subject matter was ‘Flowing with Mindfulness’. As mentioned, this was the first time that the ISIA had sent a demo team to a Congress – selection for the team had been made months before, and each member attended the regular practice sessions held in a variety of different countries. This practice really paid off as they gave fantastic displays on all their runs. They certainly did the delegation, and the ski association, proud. Special mention should also be given to the presenters from IASI – both their on-snow and off-snow workshops were very well attended, and the feedback was extremely positive. The professionalism shown by the whole delegation has significantly raised the profile of the IASI amongst its peers.

the snow; this did not, however, detract from the festivities, or the spectacle. The crowds gathered at the bottom of the demonstration slope, and a variety of dignitaries made speeches declaring the Congress open, followed by a firework display. They were then treated to the first impressive display of expert synchronised skiing by each country’s demo team – these routines were choreographed many months before and had been practised multiple times in the preceding months. All the displays were very professional, especially that from the Irish demo team – it was the first time that they had ever exhibited their skills at a Congress; they certainly executed their runs with high precision. Another demo team also stood out in particular, the Croatians, who had a man on a pushbike straight lining down the steep slope, whilst his fellow instructors performed their intricate displays around him.

This opening day happened to coincide with St Patrick’s Day – the Irish contingent felt obliged to host the opening party at the local Irish pub to celebrate. What a start to the week! From then on, each day started with technical demos from at least 6 countries – they would perform their routines highlighting their specific strengths and focuses. These were then followed by onsnow workshops later in the morning and early afternoon, where the presenters of selected nations would present a variety of topics – these were all well attended. At 4 o’clock there were offsnow workshops in the main conference hotel, where the presenters from the onsnow sessions would generally add more background on the workshops earlier in the day, or would make presentations on different topics.

The week was rounded off by the closing ceremony where the demo teams from every country again showed their wares on the slope. There certainly was a party atmosphere. The very final act was a ‘cavalry charge’ down the demonstration slope from many attendees and it was a miracle that no one got hurt. Fireworks filled the sky to draw proceedings to a close. The venue for the next Interski Congress in four years time has been announced as Levi in Finland - this venue was chosen ahead of Kitzbuehel in Austria. It will not be long before the preparations for this event start in earnest. I don’t think my liver can take it! Ken Baynes IASI Interski Research Team, Pamporovo 2019

On two evenings, under the glare of floodlights, there were more demonstrations of synchronised skiing.

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IN SCHOOLS It seems to be all over the news today and a big talking point. In this article, Ed Anthony, a Mental Health Educator from Mental Wellbeing In Schools gives some information and advice. In early 2014, I was lucky enough to be asked to accompany the school ski trip to Austria. At the time, I was working as a teacher in an all-boys state school in Hertfordshire. This would mean chaperoning 60 teenage boys for a week across the Austrian Alps, which initially looked like a lot of fun.

On the coach, it finally dawned on me that I probably wasn’t going to to get too much rest on this excursion - plus, I now had to endure a 24-hour coach journey, in a vehicle full of 60 gassy, loud and over-excited young men. By the time we reached Austria, my expectations had been thoroughly satisfied.

The Ski Trip was a much awaited event in many of the boys lives and had always been expertly overseen by an established member of staff, so I was very honoured to be invited on it.

Fresh air had dissolved, to be replaced by flatulence. I was holding a carrier bag full of sick and hadn’t slept a wink.

However, the shine soon wore off as the coach made it’s way down the country to the Channel Tunnel. We left at the start of February half term and planned to return on the last day of the holiday - just in time to return to school for Monday morning!

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them get a feel for skiing on the practice slopes. In the afternoon, we took our first trip up the mountain. As we were in the cable car, I noticed that so many of the boys were actually quite nervous about being away from home. They had low self-confidence, were slightly anxious and insecure and many seemed to struggle to connect with their peers.

At this point, I was tired, emotional and desperate to get on a flight back to England.

What I saw was that nearly all of the students were suffering in some form from a feeling of constant mental busyness, or stress.

However, once we got settled in the hotel, ate dinner and got a decent night’s sleep, my spirits revived. The first morning, placed them with their instructors and let

They weren’t mentally slow and quiet or experiencing that “holiday feeling”, they were actually mentally quick and noisy. They felt that they had to act a

certain way, or do certain things to be happy. They essentially, unknowingly and innocently felt threatened, or insecure. This is how low-level stress shows up in human beings and I didn’t like seeing how uncomfortable some of the students felt in their own skin. Fast forward five years and I am no longer a classroom teacher, but teach a new form of mental health and well-being education called Bio-Reaction Education. I founded a company called Mental Wellbeing in Schools and now visit schools all over the country, demonstrating what our stress-response does. Essentially, I highlight what happens when we accidentally set it off all day long and help people understand how to deactivate it. The stress-response is an incredibly powerful response that, in the short term, increases our speed, strength and mental functioning. As a result, it should only be

activated fo no longer than 30 mins in a 72 hour period. Yet, most people, from the ages of five years old activate it almost constantly for all of their waking hours. This long term activation leads to a whole host of negative behaviours and physical and mental illnesses.

When our mind perceives a threat, it activates the stress-response. It doesn’t matter whether the threat is real or imagined. This ignites physical, bio-chemical changes that alter our physiology, genetics, feelings, personality and perceptions.

THE STRESS-RESPONSE The Bio-Chemical Change STAGE 1 - The senses and the mind perceive a threat. STAGE 2 - Hormones are released into the bloodstream - a huge hormonal reaction is sparked, consisting of adrenaline, noradrenaline and cortisol (among many others). This is our body trying to mobilise our defences and protect us against the “threat”. STAGE 3 - Change to our biochemistry - some processes are activated, others are inhibited. It’s essentially our body’s way of prioritising which processes it needs to keep us safe, while turning off others which are non-essential to our immediate survival. ACTIVE: Burst of energy (release of glucose), endorphins and enkephalins released (our natural painkillers), heart rate and blood pressure increased to allow more blood-flow to muscles. INHIBITED: Growth hormones stop being produced, reproductive hormones stop being produced, digestive processes stop or slow down, immune system suppressed, insulin (which usually helps us to store energy) stops being produced. When the ski trip started in 2014, it was clear that most of the boys were overactivating their stress-response. This is

why they felt so insecure and mentally busy. However, as the week progressed in Austria, this stress-response deactivated. Students then started to forgot about themselves and their thinking, so they started to become present. This resulted in human beings that were light-hearted, content, in the moment, fulfilled, secure, creative, funny, kind, engaged and genuinely happy. Interestingly, their performance on the slopes also improved dramatically. The boys were able to build up their skills much faster as they relaxed and as they stopped feeling so self-conscious, they formed bonds that were extremely supportive and they stopped taking their insecurities so seriously. Subsequently, the desire for the distractions of social media or games on their phones decreased and they really enjoyed themselves. I work with a lot of young people, their families and their teachers and I come across the same problem in many different disguises - an inability to deactivate their stress-response and allow their body and their mind to settle so that they feel like themselves and live free of stress and insecurity.

and developing the health and performance of young people as it allows them to learn how to stop their stress-response and reset to feeling like themselves. People generally experience an improvement in well-being when they go away on holiday, but can you imagine what would happen if they were able to deeply appreciate why this happens? Imagine if we could educate people so that they have that “holiday feeling” of being the best version of themselves when they are at home and at work and school? It would be impossible to have significant behaviour problems, or engage in negative and dangerous behaviours. Families, students and teachers would connect on a much deeper level and be far more supportive and encouraging with each other. Mental health and well-being are never lost, they just become temporarily suspended when we activate the stressresponse. If we could train teachers and ski instructors in new and effective ways of supporting and preventing mental illness and overwhelm, we could change a lot of young people’s lives.

Experiences such as ski trips are exceptionally important in maintaining

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HERE’S YOUR GUIDE TO THESE FOR 2019-20 DECEMBER – THE INDEPENDENT SCHOOLS SKI AND SNOWBOARD CHAMPIONSHIPS Held in Les Deux Alpes and, under new management of Halsbury Ski this year, this unseeded event will have over 300 racers across a week, including training which can be with local instructors or, for a small additional fee, with specialist race training set up, Impulse Racing. The event is open to all UK schools and has racers from a range of age groups, including under 14s, under 16s and under 18s. All age groups compete in GS and Slalom races, and there is also the chance for schools to go head to head in Parallel Slalom – the most exciting race of the three days competition. JANUARY - THE BRITISH SCHOOLGIRLS RACES Over 150 girls from schools across the UK descend upon Flaine each January as they take part in two days of racing as part of the British Schoolgirls’ Races. Unfortunately not for junior schools but seniors only. JANUARY - THE BRITISH SCHOOLBOYS RACES This event is held at the end of January each year by the DHO Club at their base resort of Wengen in Switzerland. This event allows individuals to enter as well as school teams and, as with the schoolgirls, sees a vast array of abilities and experience taking part.

Races here also include both slalom and giant slalom, with a parallel (head to head) event usually taking part one evening under floodlights. FEBRUARY - THE BRITISH SCHOOLS ALPINE CHAMPIONSHIPS This Great event is now in it’s 5th year. Held in Pila, Italy in late February. With three race days including slalom, Giant Slalom and Parallel (head to head) events, it’s proving to be a popular event. Run under the NSSA, many schools choose to attend for a week, taking in training offered by Pila resident coaches from Impulse Racing. Entry can be made as race only or as a package to make it easier to organize for many teachers MARCH - THE AIGLON COLLEGE CUP The Aiglon Cup, held in Villars, Switzerland, is another established alpine race event for schools, with individuals representing their school also catered for

and U12), and then the two sets of older age groups (U14 then U16 and above) racing separately. Run by the British Ski Academy and endorsed by the NSSA, the races see most children arrive on Friday evening to train with various groups over the weekend, competing on Monday and Tuesday. Many groups leave on Tuesday evening with others attending the prizegiving ceremony and leaving the next morning depending on time allowed away from school. MARCH – IAPS RACE This event is for IAPS schools only and is held in Passo Tonale during March. For more information, contact IAPS. THE INTERNATIONAL OPEN SCHOOLS CHAMPS


New for this season, this event promises to be a great addition to the calendar In conjunction with BISS Racing, Club Europe’s inaugural International Open Schools Ski Championships is a great way to offer competitive winter sports on your GSCE or A-level curriculum

The Interschools Challenge one of the most well established alpine race events for schools, with individuals representing their school also catered for.

For more information on these events, or on training and race support for any of them, please contact

The event usually sees in excess of 350 children racing over two days with three events per day. The events are usually split between the younger racers (U10

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Carried out by professional coaches in the UK Including hi res video We also cover the competitive element required by most Exam boards More cost effective than a ski trip and submitted in an accepted format No need to take up part of your ski holiday


We can offer specialist, professional advice on how and where to do these, take the required video and set up the competitive element in a mountain environment.

If you’re planning to assess students while on your school ski trip, it’s worth choosing a school ski company like Halsbury Ski who will be able to advise you on the suitability of resorts for your students, to ensure they have the best possible chance to succeed. Top tips for gathering video evidence As a PE teacher and moderator, when someone asks me the most stressful thing about examining PE my answer is always the same - gathering video evidence! Although the moderator will always mark impartially, there are some things you can do to at least put them in a good mood as they assess your students. Firstly, you must invest in a good quality action camera and harness. There’s nothing worse for a moderator than having to watch skiing videos that give you motion sickness!

HOW CAN SKIING WORK AS PART OF THE GCSE AND A-LEVEL ASSESSMENT? With the recent changes to the PE GCSE and A-Level specifications, skiing is becoming a more popular option as an individual activity for the non-exam assessment (NEA) component. As students can be assessed in one of the excellent indoor facilities across the country, there’s no reason why skiing shouldn’t be accessible for GCSE and A-Level PE. And if your school runs regular ski trips these offer an ideal opportunity for assessment! WHAT’S ASSESSED? Each exam board’s requirements are slightly different, but all require candidates to be assessed in skills and competitive performance.

And it’s good practice to have the candidate state their name, candidate number and piste colour (possibly by the sign or the coloured post) if you need to ensure that the moderator knows the classification of piste (for some exam boards this is an important requirement).

The skills assessed generally include control of speed or turning, stopping and traversing. These are all skills usually covered by ski instructors, making assessing skiing while on your school ski trip very easy. In addition to the skills that candidates must show, they must be also be assessed in a competitive environment. The definition of this varies from board to board. Some exam boards only require the competitive element to be ‘against the conditions’, which would include piste classification, weather conditions etc. Others state that this must be a timed slalom, in which case you might want to consider attending a ski racing event with your students, such as the Independent Schools Ski Championships in Les Deux Alpes, where extra sessions will be offered to pupils being assessed. HOW CAN WE ACHIEVE THE TOP MARKS? Some of the exam boards require students to ski on different piste classifications to access different bands. For example, if you have a top band performer and you only submit evidence from an indoor ski slope it’s unlikely that they could be awarded top marks, as the piste will not be challenging enough.

Take the time to consider your candidate identification. Of course, you need to make sure you film the candidates closely enough to be able to see who they are. And if they ski in a very popular colour jacket, consider asking them to wear a coloured bib when you’re gathering video evidence – you’ll make your moderator’s life much easier if they don’t have to keep looking for the candidate wearing black among everyone else on the piste wearing black! Kaeti Breward (PE teacher and moderator) Impulse Schools, the alpine training partner of the NSSA are able to offer GCSE assessment sessions in the UK – please contact

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..................................................................... GCSE PRIVATE LESSONS ALSO AVAILABLE Terms & conditions apply. Subject to availability.

MY NEW SKI SCHOOL VENTURE As the alpine training partner to the NSSA, Impulse Racing performs a great service to our racers, trainees, teachers and parents. In addition to this though, they are a great organisation for bringing through coaches and instructors with Programme Director, Phil Brown a tutor and mentor for both The United Kingdom Coaching Pathway (UKCP) and the Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors (IASI), they attract numerous young (and sometimes not so young) coaches and instructors with some coming along to get their compulsory hours signed off to reach the next qualification and finding that they enjoy working within the coaching environment. One such coach is Bruce Crowley, who has been working with Impulse and the NSSA for a few years now and will be launching his own venture whilst still working with us on some camps. Below is his story. Hi I’m Bruce Crowley and I’m one of Impulse Racings coaches. Growing up I was a huge rugby fan and getting involved as a young player I was lucky enough to play at some of the highest levels, enabling me to travel around the world competing in New Zealand, Australia and Japan. At university I studied sports science and coaching, furthering my degree I then pursued a masters in Strength and Conditioning.

and I’ve been teaching rugby, strength and conditioning, and basketball since the age of 16. Adding skiing to that list has made a real sense of success in my chosen career. I have been lucky enough to work in Australia, Italy, Switzerland and now to accomplish the dream life in France. While going through the BASI instructor’s pathway, I was put in touch by one of my trainers with Phil Brown to help me get hours signed off between levels as a coach. Then going on to finish the further 4 required levels to become one of the highest British certified snow sports instructors in the world. Throughout this time, I continued to coach for Phil and Impulse and envisage continuing to do this for the foreseeable future. I have found that the relationship and knowledge gained from working with this organisation and the NSSA, and seeing how running a successful ski program works, has pushed me to set up my own exciting venture. With support from Phil and family at Impulse Racing, after working for a ski school in France initially, I have made the leap to set up my own ski school. Alpine Pros is based in the 3 valleys, working out of Meribel and Courchevel. This has given me the freedom to balance work as a race coach all over the Alps with Impulse and teach in the in 3 valleys where I learnt to ski. Alpine Pros is a ski school that offers the full range of private coaching for individuals, small groups or families, of all ages. Whether you’re a beginner and it’s your first time skiing, or a more advanced skier who fancies some backcountry touring and mogul’s clinic or simply if you’re after a friendly instructor to show you around the mountain restaurants and best coffee stops while also learning how to perfect your skiing skills along the way- Alpine Pros will tailor everything to your needs and make sure you make the most out of what the 3 Valleys has to offer.

Teaching was always a passion for me

AlpinePros e: w:

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ACTION-PACKED SKI TRIPS from leading UK school ski trip company • • • •

The best ski schools The best ski resorts in Europe The best reps In operation since 1980

Tel: +44 208 772 6446 Email:

THE ANNUAL LONDON SCHOOLS SKI RACE The London Schools Ski Race is one of an increasing number of events in the school race calendar, capturing the growing interest in skiing as a school sport. The London race started in 2014, prompted by Founder and Race Director, Dominic McGonigal. In the first year, we had 140 racers, ranging from Year 2 to Year 13. It was a baking hot day, with parents and teachers relishing the excitement as spectators crowded round the outdoor slope at Welwyn. Charlotte Evans MBE handed out the awards and proudly showed her Olympic Gold Medal, recently won in Sochi as a guide for a Visually Impaired Paralympian. Five years on, we now have 280 racers, spread across Primary and Secondary and the noise from the spectators has increased proportionately. But the spirit of the race remains the same. It’s an opportunity for schools to have skiing as a sport, to train and then to take part in a competition with other schools. We estimate that about 14 schools have put together a squad purely to compete in the London Schools Ski Race. Over the years, we have built up the training programme linked to the London Schools Ski Race. We can now offer training sessions throughout the Summer term in Welwyn and Chatham. Some schools also train with Welwyn Ski Race Club and at the Snow Centre in Hemel. This is an important part of the event to give the young racers an opportunity

Courtesy of Matt Birch Pictures

Courtesy of Matt Birch Pictures

to learn the skills needed to negotiate a slalom course. Skiing is a technical sport, drawing on an athlete’s agility, balance, coordination and strength. Being able to ski a slalom course in a competition for the first time is a great achievement and we help the first-time racers on the day with course inspection and prep for the race.

The novice racers find themselves up against experienced athletes who train regularly with the clubs and academies. But because this is a team event, it’s every time that counts and one fast racer can’t bring home the medals on their own. The Dual Slalom is particularly exciting, testing the nerve of every racer. Even an experienced racer can miss a gate in the heat of the moment and get their team knocked out. Each racer has to clear each gate, with the clatter of the other team going down alongside you. We even had a photo finish one year as the fourth racer in each team hit the gates in sync right to the end. The next London Schools Ski Race is in June 2020 and it’s never too early for schools to get their squad ready to give it their best on the day. Dominic McGonigal Founder and Race Director London Schools Ski Race Image left: Courtesy of racer ready

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THINKING ABOUT RUNNING A SKI TRIP? WHERE DO YOU START? Alison Wareham, Senior Operations Manager, at specialist school ski trip operator, Club Europe, offers some sound advice for first time ski leaders. Organising a residential school ski trip is an exciting opportunity but it’s also daunting. With a good tour operator behind you, however, it can be a very rewarding and enjoyable experience! I find it’s useful to break down the organising of your ski trip into four stages: 1. Planning The best advice I can offer is - start early; preferably a year in advance or at least a minimum of 6 months. Get support from your SMT or EVC. Send a letter out to gauge the level of interest from students, making sure the dates you’ve planned – December, February half- term or Easter - fit in with exams. Use assemblies to spread the word. Top Tip 1: Consider skiing at Easter for a better choice of accommodation, better prices and still great snow! Things to consider when choosing a tour operator: 1. Get a recommendation from a colleague. 2. Check they offer a programme that matches your requirements. 3. Are their pick-up times and points convenient? 4. Is their accommodation suitable for your group? 5. Do they provide value for money? 6. Check their surcharge policy. 7. Are they appropriately licensed with ATOL and Abta. Top Tip 2: Cheapest is not necessarily the best! European ski houses, resorts, ski schools, ski instructors, ski reps, après-ski activities and modes of transport all vary enormously depending on your group and your needs. A good tour operator will be able to advise and support you on all these aspects of your trip. Ski trips aren’t cheap. You could consider doing some fundraising. Talk to your EVC,

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the parent-teacher association and other staff about how you can subsidise the cost of the school trip and how to fundraise. Meanwhile here are some ideas: • Use specific school funds to subsidise pupil premium students. • Ask the PTA to organise an event or make a contribution. • Encourage students to fundraise with sponsored events, cake sales, bag packing, carwashes etc. 2. Once you’ve booked Once you have confirmed your tour, the fun begins! Your tour operator will get in touch to find out more details about your

evening activity programme, rooming and dietary requirements, ferry times, transfers and timings. A good operator will have a client portal, which will make any updates and revisions to your tour a lot easier to make. Unfortunately there’s no avoiding lists! The tour operator will need to know: the height, weight and shoe size of every person travelling so they can pre-request ski equipment; the ages, dates of birth and gender, and (if you are flying) passport details; any medical conditions, allergies or other dietary requirements; any religious-based requirements, such as halal or kosher diets.

Health and Safety: Talk to your school’s Health & Safety Officer or EVC about the trip early on. Read and fill in any of your school’s risk assessment and safety management forms. Check the operator’s own Safety Management document/s. Top Tip 3: Consider going on a pretour inspection visit. These are very helpful for carrying out your own risk assessment; they give you confidence about the resort and a chance to get some skiing in too! A ski trip is a physically demanding experience. If some of your students aren’t very physically active, you may want to consider: • A course of ski-fit lessons, either in normal PE or as an after-school club; and/or • A visit to an indoor snow slope or dry ski slope. Or a course of lessons. Top Tip 4: Give your students a kit list as soon as they book so they have enough time to get everything they need. SCO Course: Why not sign up to a one-day Snowsports Course Organiser course? This is a Snowsports England accredited course, designed to give ski leaders the necessary skills to choose an appropriate provider and organise a successful trip. 3. On Tour This is where the adventure starts! While you’re away, your tour operator

should supply you with a 24-hour emergency phone number and some operators will also be out in resort to offer help and support in person if needed. Your bi-lingual tour manager or rep – if you have one – will also swing into action and be on hand throughout the week to ensure all goes smoothly on and off the slopes. Top Tip 5: To reduce the risk of accident or injuries, always follow your ski school’s guidance on where to ski, and when to start or finish. Top Tip 6: Have a duty rota and “chain of command” with a member of staff “on duty” on the slopes, taking it in turns to allow staff to free ski. It’s also a good idea to make sure that all students have a slip of paper with their name, school name and accommodation as well as a staff contact number in a jacket pocket. The ski school: A good operator will ensure that your ski school offers the highest quality tuition. They should be accredited by their national ski school and follow a strict regulatory code. It is important your students listen carefully and follow instructions for their own safety. But on the other hand, the instructors will do their utmost to ensure your students have a really fun time: Quick guide to slopes classification:

NB. Piste conditions change during the day; what was a cruising blue run mid morning could be more like a hard red by 4pm. Like wise a quiet red at the end of the day may be a lot easier than an icy and crowded blue. We highly recommend that you don’t take students off-piste as you may not be insured. –save it for your personal holiday! For more information on safety on the slopes visit: 4. Post Tour A good tour operator will love to hear all about the highs and lows of your ski trip, and follow any social media activity you might have made while in resort. They will pass on all your comments, both positive and negative to their suppliers and use your evaluations to continually improve their service. Top Tip 7: Consider booking for the following year as soon as you’re back: ski resorts and accommodation often get booked up far in advance. Happy skiing! Bonne ski!

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EQUIP CHILDREN WITH THE MOUNTAIN SAFETY KNOWLEDGE THEY NEED ON THEIR SNOWSPORTS TRIP Caroline Elliott is a former French trained ski patroller and search and rescue avalanche dog handler with many years of experience working in mountain resorts. She nows runs ‘FjordSAR’, a snow safety education company. Here, she writes about some education that she believes should be given to those accessing the mountains to lead people to be safer in what can be a harsh environment. According to the French National Observation System for Mountain Security (SNOSM), 94% registered accidents are due to a simple fall, and over half of accidents occur on the blue graded ‘easy’ slopes. You might think that this doesn’t concern your children because they ski at a high level or rarely find themselves on a blue or green slope. However, often more difficult slopes join these easier slopes, and more often than not, blue slopes filter towards the resort and cannot be avoided. Skiers and snowboarders which use these slopes often don’t have the control which more experienced slope users have, so it is essential that speed is reduced in these zones. It is important to remember that when you are in a winter resort you are responsible for your actions (or if you are under the age of 18 it is an adult that shoulders this responsibility). Therefore, if you end up colliding with another person and you are not respecting the International Ski Federation (FIS) code of conduct, you will be liable to pay for their evacuation and medical costs. More soberingly, injuring someone could have serious repercussions to their life and your own.

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Avalanche danger is another element of risk in the mountain environment. If you

cause an avalanche in an area which is signposted as risky or enter a closed slope, your insurance will be void. More importantly, you are putting yourself and those around and below you on the hill at extreme risk. Our education program is designed to introduce risk management at a young age. Our goal is to educate young people so that we can help prevent accidents happening on the slopes in the first place. After working in ski patrol and as an avalanche search and rescue dog handler for 10 years, it is very clear to me that a lot of the accidents that occur could be avoided with the right education for awareness. Unfortunately, the aim now for many skiers and snowboarders is to go faster in more extreme territory in winter resorts. Often this is fuelled with the desire to film the action on cameras,

maybe encouraged by social media and the new equipment that makes entering the terrain much more accessible. Often these youngsters are not equipped with the essential safety equipment and lack even the basic knowledge to be there in the first place. We need to provide those wishing to enter these areas with the right knowledge and skills – the essential tools for off-piste/ backcountry riding so that they are equipped and prepared to evaluate the potential dangers in this environment and use the appropriate safety equipment. The worst-case scenario can be seen clearly in the case of the avalanche in Sölden, Austria, in 2015. Here are the details from the accident report: On 5 January 2015, at 9:40 am, six male ski racers from the US development team, on a day off from gate-training, skied off-piste (off the groomed trail into an uncontrolled area) in Sölden, Austria. Two of them, Ronnie Berlack and Bryce Astle, lost their lives. None of the skiers were carrying avalanche safety gear (transceivers, shovels, or probes). They most likely triggered an avalanche as a group. It engulfed two of the six skiers and buried them. The two avalanche victims were found almost an hour afterwards via probing and digging. The coaches had made a plan for the six skiers to take a few runs on their own,

then join the coaches to do directed giant slalom skiing on the groomed runs. The coaches told them not to cross any rope lines (“don’t duck any ropes”) or ski in any closed terrain. There was no discussion within the group about avalanche danger. The avalanche danger that day was 3/5 on the international danger scale. There are substantial differences among all countries of the world in snow safety policies and warning systems. The meaning of on-piste and off-piste, open and closed vary vastly from place to place. Substantial differences between the U.S. and Austria resulted in misunderstandings that were major contributors to this incident. In Europe, groomed trails are called pistes. If a person leaves a groomed trail (or piste), they are entering an uncontrolled environment which may or may not have had avalanche control work done. The ski resorts do not take responsibility for making these areas safe. This policy differs from North America where all trails (or runs) — groomed or ungroomed — within the outer boundaries of a resort are controlled for avalanches and considered safe to ski. Further information on this incident can be accessed on

This case and many more could have been avoided. As is clearly demonstrated in this incident, we can’t stop young people going off-piste, but we can try to educate them. They will go off piste, whether this is due to peer pressure, exciting freeriding films or otherwise and they will often choose to go against advice from their parents, teachers and other influential people. Our view is that young skiers and snowboarders need to understand the risk, gain the skills, and above all practise them regularly. This does not encourage them to go into these areas, it equips them with the necessary knowledge to make the right decisions. It is important to remember not all snowsports instructors teach all the relevant safety points adhering to the FIS rules. For further information on Snow Education Courses please contact Caroline Elliott from or

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The sun is shining (sometimes) and the t-shirts are out, but we at Subzero Coaching are all about that winter body. If you have skied a lot the previous season or don’t have a specific aim in mind then start generic and move forwards from there. If skiing is your real passion in life then ski focused is the way to go just be aware of burning out if you focus too much during the whole year. Even pro athletes like Marcel Hirscher or Mikaela Shiffrin do a variety of sports and training techniques throughout the summer to keep things interesting and themselves engaged. Contrary to many younger and less experienced athletes, these guys do not travel to the southern hemisphere to ski relentlessly. It’s also an ideal time to rest and recover from any ski related injuries so that you are primed for next season so don’t underestimate the importance of having a break. To train, go to the foundations of all sport; The Components of Fitness 1. Agility 2. Balance 3. Coordination 4. Cardiovascular Endurance 5. Flexibility 6. Muscular Endurance 7. Muscular Strength 8. Power 9. Reaction Time 10. Speed These underpin not only skiing but are prevalent in every single sport there is, simply in different ratios. If you are lacking in one area, at some point that will hold you back from making progress in your training or competing.

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How could you recreate the conditions of skiing for a workout? Generally working for 1-2 mins, a short break, and repeat? This idea is along similar lines to a HITT type workout that many will be familiar with but with a longer and slightly less intensive work phase but still with continual movement during those

1-2mins. It could be that you start with a 30s burst and work up to 1-2mins depending on your current state of fitness. Local Muscular Endurance (LME) is defined as the “…ability of a muscle or group of muscles to sustain exercise over a period of time.” Developed using circuits and weight training by varying the reps, sets and resistance. Start with two generic strength sessions per week and target any areas of deficit you might have. After the strength building phase, it is time to convert that strength into sport-specific LME so start working into squats, single-leg squats etc. Aim for building the number of reps each time – mimicking the number of turns you do on a single run will far exceed what a gym programme may tell you, but is exactly what you want to be working towards. Don’t be duped by pre-designed programmes. Like most professionals our coaching centre only offers programmes designed around the individual after a proper consultation, so just mind out for those who offer to plan you a training programme before really getting to know you. WHAT ELSE? If YouTube or recorded videos are your thing, go for it. There has been an explosion of good quality and easy-to-follow sessions available from professionals on the internet, with plenty free of charge. A perfect, commitment free way to try out something new or fit around a busy schedule. Yoga in particular has really gained momentum amongst skiers for keeping the body fit and flexible. Flexibility is a key aspect of fitness that has huge potential to prevent injuries by having that greater range of movement. Personally I’m not super keen on the ‘practice your breathing for x minutes whilst listening to whale music’ kind so just search for a yogi that suits you. It may help give you that peace and relaxation that being on the hill provides and is one of the aspects that we don’t realise we keep going back to the mountains for. FOR THE FAMILY For kids, get back to the ABC’s. Agility, Balance, Coordination. Circular Circuits Invest in some simple equipment like cones, a ladder and some tennis balls and the possibilities are only limited by imagination. A balance board would be really good too, but not essential, and chalk is perfect for marking out ‘cones’ or a ladder too, for workouts on the go. Design a simple circuit that has sections

for the arms, legs and core. Include sections; backwards, sideways, jumping two-footed and one foot to one/two feet, bending, quick feet. Add some reaction drills and include the tennis ball; place it in every rung of the ladder whilst planking or pass it over the head whilst lying down, first one to get up and get it wins. Once they have done the circuit once, do everything backwards! Or close their eyes and try again. Pot Luck Write the aspects of fitness on to lollypop sticks and pop in a jar. Pick out one or two at random and that is your focus for your session that day. As you progress, pick out three or four. - - - -

Each person has to suggest an exercise After you have all suggested an exercise and everyone has completed it, then each person changes their exercise to make it ski focused Once it has been adapted for skiing, adapt it again for the timing or intensity of a piste/course If you are stuck - Google some ideas !

A simple, fun way to spend an hour with the kids with everyone getting more in tune with training ideas, understanding

the ‘whats and the whys’ and how to personalise training for their outcome. In the future your kids will be a lot more switched on during dryland training and get more out of it. WHAT ELSE? “I came for the winter, but stayed for the summer”. This couldn’t be truer for many mountain-goers. Whilst the powder days and perfect corduroy keep us giddy and excited, the summer in the mountains is a closely-guarded secret of locals. If all other training doesn’t appeal, get yourself out to your favourite resort and simply try walking up your favourite piste! Unorthodox, but you will certainly feel the burn by the top… Whatever you choose to do, make it as interesting and fun as you will see the professionals on social media doing. There is a big team strategizing, macroplanning and analysing their training programmes so there is a very good reason you see them mixing it up. Don’t get stuck; get out there. Caroline George Coach Subzero Coaching

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SCHOOLS HIT THE SLOPES IN WALES The NSSA have a number of Welsh schools participating in our events each year so we’ve asked Snowsport Wales for some input to this years magazine. Following the publication by Sport Wales into schools sports Snowsport Cymru Wales has been excited to note excellent levels of participation in Snowsports. The School Sport Survey 2018 identified 17% of school children in Wales participated in Snowsports, and in addition to these impressive statistics the report also identified a 12% latent demand for snowsports (school children who would like to take up snowsport). A number of key messages were identified in the report, • Boys are more likely to participate in Snowsports, although demand among non-participants is higher in girls. • Amongst existing Snowsports participants there is a higher demand amongst primary aged pupils. • Amongst non-participants demand is greater for secondary aged pupils. • Demand to do more Snowsports amongst existing participants is greater for primary and pupils. This report is great news for snowsports and excellent information the centres in Wales can use to develop programmes attracting school age children into the sport. With six artificial slopes dotted around Wales there are good opportunities for schools to get involved with regular snowsport programmes developing skills from novice through to expert skiing and snowboarding. Artificial Slopes in Wales PATHWAY & DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES FOR SCHOOLS There’s a number of ways that school children in Wales can continue their development in snowsport, improving skills and working toward significant goals. Join a club - Each of the artificial slopes

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in Wales has a club that meets on a weekly basis. Train as an instructor - Instructor training courses offer a great way to put something back into the sport as well as gaining some important qualifications. Schools Ski Competitions - Snowsport Cymru Wales runs a series of schools skiing competitions each year. Starting off with regional events, you can ski either as a team representing your school or as an individual competitor. The regional events give participants an experience of competitive skiing and prepare children for the national championships. The Welsh Schools Championships are held each year in early Autumn and have seen increasing numbers of participants year on year. The national champs are open to all school children from schools in Wales and have a Primary and Secondary

Schools competition. Winning secondary schools teams go forward to the British Schools Championships, usually held the end of November each year. Schools ski competition information Choose Snowsports as one of your GSCE PE sports options (see page 36) - If you are a keen skier or snowboarder you can choose snowsports for one of your individual sports options. Part of the assessment is based upon video evidence of participation in a competitive event (see the schools ski Calendar for details of how to do this) and coaching is available through clubs or centres as well as organisations such as the NSSA toward raising your level of performance.

THE NSSA ARE PROUDLY AFFILIATED AND SUPPORTED BY SNOWSPORT ENGLAND AND WORK CLOSELY TOGETHER ON SCHOOLS AND YOUTH INITIATIVES EACH YEAR 30 Days of Snowsport: 30 days of snowsport takes place every October and kicks start the winter season in style. Clubs and slopes offer sessions all over the country for anybody and everybody, from those looking to take their first steps on the slopes to those wanting to learn new skills and challenge themselves. Many use the opportunity to

brush up their skills ahead of their winter ski holiday and this is our curtain raiser ahead of the new season where we shout about everything and everyone!

Snowsport England are the national governing body for snowsport in England, recognised and directly grant aided by Sport England – we have responsibility for fostering and promoting the interests of English skiers and all aspects of their sport in England and overseas. Our vision is “Inspiring participation in snowsport at every level”- from those that are just starting out in the sport and want to find out more to those who are looking to progress further and get competitive. We have a number of initiatives & campaigns to get more people into the sport for the first time or to further their involvement. They include: Go Ski Go Board: Go Ski Go Board is an initiative established by Snowsport England to encourage young people to

get into snowsports. It is the hub for all snowsports opportunities and a great place to start your research or find up and coming competitions to challenge yourself – head to to find out more information or use the club and activity finder to sign up to your local sessions. National Schools Snowsport Week: National Schools Snowsport Week is all about giving young people the opportunity to try snowsports. Clubs and slopes all over the country offer free or discounted taster sessions for schools during the week. Thanks to our sponsors Halsbury Ski for supporting the initiative which helps young people to make new friends, learn new skills and improve their physical and mental health and wellbeing. Visit for more information.

If you would like to get your club involved in any of the campaigns you can find our details on Alongside the change in Mission, Vision + Values, Snowsport England decided it was time to bring our brand into the modern era. We are extremely proud to launch our new branding and logo; we think it represents our fast moving + modern sport well and alongside this re-brand, we have a new website! Following on from feedback on our previous website, it was time to make a change and take a big step forward. Our new website is much more user friendly, much more attractive and provides you with all the information you need to get involved in snowsport. Go and check it out at

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NSSA Schools Snowsports Event Calendar



30TH - Race one in The NSSA National Series - BISS National Indoor Championships The Snow Centre - Hemel Hempstead

3RD - 7TH - British Schools Alpine Open Championships 2020


15TH - 22ND - NSSA Squad Training Camp and Open Training Camp Pila, Italy

14TH - Race two in The NSSA National Series - National Schools Outdoor Open Championships – Swadlincote, UK

MARCH 2020

19TH - 26TH - NSSA Glacier Training Camp - Tignes, France

8TH - 13TH - IAPS Ski Championships Passo Tonale, Italy

26TH - 29TH - NSSA Open Landgraaf Camp – The Netherlands

16TH - 17TH - Interschools Challenge Pila, Italy

26TH - NOV 2 - NSSA Glacier Training Camp – Tignes, France

APRIL 2020


9TH - NSSA squad orientation day - Hemel Hempstead -

DECEMBER 2019 12TH - 18TH - ISSC - Les Deux Alpes, France -

JANUARY 2020 25TH - 28TH - British Schoolgirls Races Flaine, France - 26TH - 29TH - British Schoolboys Races - Wengen, Switzerland

4TH - 10TH - International Open Schools Championships - Wagrain, Austria

MAY 2020 18TH - Race four in The NSSA National Series - British Schools Indoor Open Championships Chill Factore, Manchester, UK

MAY - OCTOBER VARIOUS DATES Bespoke and open Schools Training at Landgraaf, The Netherlands

JULY - AUGUST VARIOUS DATES Bespoke and open Schools Training and Selection Days, both indoor and outdoor

10TH - 17TH - NSSA Open Training Camp - Pila, Italy 27TH - Race three in The NSSA National Series - ISA National Indoor Open Championships The Snow Centre - Hemel Hempstead

Training for all of the above and additional training will be run by NSSA training partner Impulse Schools contact either or if you have any questions or require more information.

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Join today contact 020 8410 2015 or visit remember to quote IMPULSEFAMILY to redeem your discount and join our club