On the face of it, it seems the most ridiculous suggestion going. The thought of taking toddlers to a treacherous mountain, skis in hands, seems utterly irresponsible.
Of course, for those of you who have been on a skiing holiday, you’ll know the truth. In short, the kids love it – and quite often they become much better than the grown-ups themselves.
While children do seem to pick skiing up a little easier, there’s still a process to follow. Through today’s article, we will look at some tips and tricks to abide by if you are thinking of taking your little ones to the slopes for the first time.
Skis or snowboards?
Is your child more of a skier or snowboarder? It’s always best to get them to do what they enjoy most. We often see children snowboarding for the first time, only to get the hang of it rather quickly. However, then they get on skis and it’s a whole different ball game.
If you’ve got a child who is a little older, you could try a little bit of both. This may mean that it takes a little longer for them to master skiing, but they will have a little more fun in the process.
Get them fitted
There are two ways that you can go about this. First, you should always get your children fitted with the right winter clothing. While they are young, it is best to get them the softest gear you can find (in other words, opt for real snow wear, not a raincoat).
In terms of the skis or snowboards, leave this to the hire shop. You might have great aspirations that this is going to become an annual expedition, but before you start buying expensive equipment, get them fitted by the pros. It will take them a little while to get used to the tight boots, but that’s where the experts come in.
Get them started
The best way for your children to learn is to get them started on the bunny slope. The slope itself is not too steep, so they are less likely to get scared. They are also going to get used to the way skiing works, which will make it easier for them to make their way down the rest of the mountain.
Now, we should add a slight caveat here. Conditions do matter, and we would suggest you get up to date snow forecasts from Piste Pro before you go. The last thing you want is their first time to be in icy conditions – they need powdered snow to get used to the slopes and truly enjoy them.
If they fall over or take a tumble, don’t be too negative about it. Instead, provide encouragement and tell them how well they did for their first time out on the slopes. This will give your children confidence in themselves and encourage them to have another go at it again.
While your own support will be worth its weight in gold, we really can’t highlight how important proper instruction is. Unless you happen to be a seasoned skier yourself, children will pick things up much more quickly from instructors. Group lessons will run every morning and while it might seem daunting (mainly for the parents!) to see them zig-zagging down a mountain in unison, this is the best way for them to get the hang of things and ultimately, fall in love with skiing.