Ski School Prep

Ski School Prep

Ski school is a beneficial activity for both parents and kids. Many parents leave teaching new activities to someone removed from the situation as, kids can be more receptive to a new face and approach. Good news for parents: they can have a few hours on the slopes and leave the patience-testing task to the professionals. For kids, participating in ski school is an exciting event, with other kids there to help navigate.

For some children, ski school may be the first time they’re experiencing the elements of winter- or maybe their first outdoor adventure. This means that they have limited knowledge on the basics that some kids already know. If this is their first time skiing, maybe it’s yours too which could limit the amount of information you can pass along. (By the way- We’re always happy to have new outdoor sports enthusiasts!)

So, here are a few quick tips to share with your kids to help you, and them, feel more confident going to ski school.

A Good Attitude

The most important way to prep your kid for ski school involves sitting down and telling them what to expect. The first day of school is more than likely going to be spent on the ground, getting used to the gear, and being frustrated. But don’t quit! Telling your child this information will prepare them and allow them to cope when they realize that skiing takes practice. Plan on having a cup of hot chocolate for lunch on their first day to warm them back up.

Apparel

little girl skiing

If they’re not too psyched about winter apparel, let them personalize it! Luna added a tutu and wings for some flair on the mountain. Photo Courtesy: Leah and Jackson Petito

It’s understandable that some families live in warm climates, only ski once a year, and don’t want to spend money on the proper winter apparel. But, it’s so worth it. Ski jackets and pants are designed exactly for cold climate activities. Dawning jeans and a hoodie may result in some funny looks and could really compromise your child’s comfort for the day. Jeans have no insulation or water protecting characteristics. Even if it’s a nice day on the slopes, if they’re learning how to ski, there’s a big chance they’ll be spending a lot of time on the ground in the snow. This results in wet pants. Jeans are neither comfortable nor warm when wet. Jeans also don’t allow much room for movement, which is crucial when skiing or boarding. It’s important to wear appropriate, moisture-wicking layers to avoid the sweat cooling factor. Don’t let intimidating prices deter you from suiting the kids up in the right gear. We have great options for top brands at affordable prices.

Boots

Ski boots are not comfortable. It’s just a fact. To properly protect and insulate the foot from the elements of skiing, the boots need to be stiff and awkward. Before ski school, try explaining to your kids that their boots aren’t going to be very comfortable. If there is actual pain or numbness, then try for a different size, but keep in mind that if the boot is too big, the foot could get cold and blisters could form. Snowboard boots are a bit more comfortable but could still be awkward to walk in due to the stiffness and height. It may take a little time to get used to but the good news is, they’re harder to walk in than ski or board in. There could be some troubles and complaints walking to the base area, but you can assure them it’ll get better once they’re on the slopes.

Goggles & Helmets

Goggles are the preferred way to protect eyes while skiing or snowboarding. And yes, everyone should wear some form of eye protection. This not only protects from the sun but defends against cold wind and snow that rushes onto your face. Goggles are sealed and insulated to help with this, while sunglasses are not. Goggles also have more surface area of coverage to protect against the sun.

boy wearing helmet and googlesGoggles should be worn with the strap around the helmet. It is a growing style now for teenagers to wear their goggles inside of the helmet but unless you have a helmet designed for this, it can be uncomfortable which is why we recommend leaving the strap outside the helmet. It’s also been noted, that on occasion, someone who has no experience with outdoor sports may wear their goggles upside down. Make sure the divot on one side is facing down, to go around your nose. It’s best to have a helmet that has a clip to hold the goggles in place. We all know how good at losing things kids can be. For help on finding the right helmet, check out How to Find the Right Helmet. Most schools require a helmet and many offer helmets to rent.

Sunscreen

It’s so important to make sure everyone’s skin is doused with sun protection at the beginning of the day. Just because it’s cold, doesn’t mean the sun won’t get you. Make sure to cover their faces as well as the areas that some people tend to forget, like the neck and wrists. Chapstick with UV protection is also a good idea. This will help not only with sun protection but also the cold, dry air.

Fun!

The most important thing we can share is to have fun! This is intended to be an enjoyable experience. If anything, it will provide some great stories. Don’t let the kids have all the fun. There are great adult ski lesson packages for various levels. An added bonus? Ask the instructor their favorite places to eat for dinner. Their knowledge goes beyond just the ski area, and they’re always eager to help. Now, go have some fun!

family ski day

Do you have a good story of learning to ski or teaching your kids to ski? Share in the comments below!

Bailey

Bailey was born and raised in a small Colorado mountain town called Crested Butte. This is where her love for the outdoors started. She has now found herself in Denver, CO where the mountains aren't too far away. When she's not hiking, camping or skiing in the mountains she enjoys volunteering, going to sporting events (Go Broncos and Avs!) and making friends with any animal she comes across.

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    […] the Right Helmet and How to Size for Kid’s Winter Apparel. And be sure to check out some tips for Ski School Prep before you […]

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