5 Ways to Ski Better... what the experts say

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Berni Haider, C-Trainer & Staatlicher Skilehrer.

This must be the easiest way to improve! Everyone knows how it feels when the piste is hard and icy and you can’t grip the snow. You feel certain that you’re standing on your outside ski but it’s just not happening.

It might be because your equipment is letting you down. My tip is to get your skis serviced at a sports shop and keep them sharp with a diamond file.

Skiing on sharp skis will help you grip the snow and reward the correct movements that you’re probably already making. Typically a ski shop will tune your skis with 88 degrees, this is perfect for recreational skiing. If you want to let out your ‘inner racer’ then ask for 87 degrees and hold on for the ride.

Mona Marko, Staatliche Skilehrerin

Variety is the spice of life! It’s all too easy to ski your favorite run, on your favorite skis, doing your favorite turn shape. It’s time to mix it up. As any coach will tell you, variety in training is key to learning new skills and testing your ability.

My tip is to practice skiing in different snow conditions and on a variety of terrain types. The piste is good, but the bumps are great for finding your middle position and leaving your comfort zone. GS turns are fun, but have you tried them in powder? The more slush, crud and icy you can ski the better. The body will learn to become adaptable making you a more rounded and stronger skier… that means no more downloading to avoid the moguls at the end of the day!

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Mario Hanausek, C-Trainer & Staatlicher Skilehrer

Feel good! It’s often said that good skiers have a great ‘feel’ for the snow. Developing feel in skiing takes time, but the good news is it’s totally possible to teach your body how to do this.

For me this starts before I put my boots on in the morning. I use a simple coordination based warm up to activate my muscles and senses, heightening my body’s awareness. Once I’m on the snow, I like to make the first run with unbuckled boots at a slow pace to help find my middle position. It’s important to recognize that we are all different and therefore, every athlete will develop his or her own warm up routine to create ‘feel’.

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 Markus Hlebaina, Staatlicher Skilehrer and Skiführer

It’s all about the boots! When coaching the first thing I always check are my students boots. They are often way too big, meaning their feet slide around inside the shell, making effective skiing movements much harder.

The key is to find a boot that works with the shape of your foot and is appropriate for your level of skiing. Using a specially moulded foot-bed inside the boot helps to support your feet in all the right places.

For an instructor, a boot with a stiffness of 110-130 is normally appropriate. Too stiff and the ankles can’t move, too soft and it’s hard to pressure the skis. Ask an experienced instructor to recommend a good Boot Fitter because they are hard to find and you’re going to be spending all season in your boots!

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Sarah Gamsjaeger, Staatliche Skilehrerin

I’m going to be cheeky and give two small tips. The first one sounds so obvious but it’s to take a refresher lesson. Focus on the one key aspect that needs the most work and use it to build your confidence. Make sure that the lesson includes video because seeing yourself on the screen is a powerful learning tool. Don’t forget to ask for a copy of the video at the end!

The second tip is about improving your decision making whilst skiing. Many skiers speed down the middle of the piste hitting every bump or patch of ice. Try looking further ahead so that you have more time to process the terrain and ski closer to the edge of the piste. Most people are too scared to ski near the edge of the piste where the snow is often perfect. This can mean fresh lines on a powder day, or the last of the corduroy in the sunshine. To achieve this you’ll need to practice your short turns!

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5 Things you didn't know about doing a season

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  1. You’ll make friends that will last a life time. Let’s be honest, there are people who come & people who go from our lives. But when it comes to the friends you make on your first snow season, they just seem to be ‘keepers’. Everyone who’s done a season knows who I’m talking about…

  2. Your skiing/snowboarding improves beyond belief. Arriving as a recreational rider means you’ve probably been on a few winter holidays before. Spending so much time on snow means your skills become tuned-in and that once ‘icy black run’ now seems like a walk in the park.

  3. You’ll say Pizza more than you’d ever imagine. In America its the ‘Wedge’, in Canada its the ‘Plough/Plow’, in Austria its the ‘Pflug’, but everyone just says Pizza. Children make up the largest number of clients in any ski school and with so many different languages being spoken you can count on ‘Pizza’ to save the day. If your kids master the ‘Pizza’ expect ‘Pommes’ to be your next fav word!!

  4. Powder skiing/boarding is harder than it looks. The POW may seem like fun but it actually takes some getting used to. Luckily, with all the time on-piste to perfect your technique the “White Room” soon becomes your favourite place to shred. It’s important to use the correct equipment and only ski where its safe. We recommend taking a guide to show you all the best spots!

  5. You can’t unsee a poor skier or boarder. Once you become trained as an instructor you will understand what makes a good rider. This also means you’ll notice all your old habits in other skiers and boarders. You can be sure that your friends and family will ask for your opinion and if you want to remain on their Christmas Card List you’ll have to be selective with your feedback

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What a Winter - Thanks for the memories

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Seasons come and seasons go but 2018/2019 was epic. It was a season of records….

  • Highest number of Level 1 (Anwärter) exam passes

  • Highest number of Level 2 (Landeslehrer) exam passes

  • Highest snow snowfall in a decade

  • Greatest number of guests in the ski school

Our first ski day of the season was 17th October 2018 and we skied every day until the lifts closed on May 1st 2019….. which just happened to be a fresh powder day!!

We’d like to say a big thank you to all of those that trained with the e3 Ski Academy this year and wish them all the best in the future…. We look forward to skiing with you next winter.

Anwärter course starting October 22nd 2018

Our most popular course the 6 week Anwärter begins soon and we only have a few spaces left.

Here's what the last participants had to say...

"Had a great season and can't wait to come and do some more training and become a better skier" (Christie Brown)

 "Thanks to e3 Ski Academy for a great season. Learnt lots from Ben and all the coaches and look foward to more training next season" (Jack Cross, 19)

"I had 3 days of excellent training with Ben before my Landes 2 exam. Ben is a great trainer and you'll certainly learn new things from him, and be inspired by his passion for the sport" (Matt Robinson, 22)

e3 Academy's Josh Bennet tops Landeslehrer exam!

Former e3 Academy graduate and now Rookie trainer Josh Bennet topped the Landeslehrer course on Kitzsteinhorn. We caught up with Josh and asked him to give us the low-down on what the exam was like and how he prepared for it...

e3: So Josh, how does it feel, Course Best and now Rookie Trainer?

Josh: Honestly, it feels great. I'm still kind of getting used to it.

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e3: How was the actually exam day and what did you get tested on?

Josh: Good, I mean as good as exam day can be. I'd trained really hard so I felt confident in my ability. There we two parts to the on-snow exam, demonstration skiing where we show that we can ski with the correct technique for our guests, and freeskiing where you get to show the examiners what you can really do.

e3: At what's you favourite?

Josh: Easy..... Freeskiing. I love the power and and jumping off things [big smile!]

e3: What's the next step?

Josh: Enjoy the summer and then power on to the next level. It's called the Staatlicher exam and its intense. It's recognised as one of the hardest ski exams in the world.

e3: Well we wish you all the best with the upcoming training and hope to see you on the slopes!

Josh: Definitely...... See you out there!