You take your children so they can learn to ski or snowboard and it can be a fun, family affair. Mind though, skiing with a family and skiing with a professionally trained instructor might be two entirely different things. Here are a few of our top tips for skiing with children outside of their lessons.
Before you leave your chalet, it’s always best to:
- Ensure the children have their ski boots on the correct feet – simple you might think, but easily done wrong.
- Secure the child’s helmet correctly.
- Apply sun cream (all members of the party) – it might not feel like it at times, but the sun is incredibly fierce in the mountains.
- Check that the child is wearing appropriate clothing to the weather conditions. Layering is the best form of body heat control.
- Double check that the child has taken on enough water, and has spare with them if necessary. You could always carry their water in your backpack.
Insert a piece of paper into the child’s skiing attire with your contact details in the event you become separated on the mountain.
Choose your route carefully: children might not have as much confidence as you think they do- by choosing the correct terrain for them, they can develop at their own pace and become more and more confident whilst skiing, thus becoming more competent in their chosen discipline of skiing or snowboarding.
When boarding a chairlift, you might think it safer to have your children in the middle of the chairlift. In fact, this is not so. Ensure you place your child on the outside of the chairlift – that way the lifties are able to help the child onto and off of the lifts allowing you to focus on mounting/dismounting the lifts smoothly and avoiding potential collisions.
As you ski down the mountain, don’t hold your child between your legs – this doesn’t help them develop. Instead, holding the sharp end of the pole in your own hands, have the child ski next to you and hold onto the pole. This encourages them to learn their own balance and strengthen their muscles instead of relying on your body being behind them to hold them up.
Ski instructors at New Generation Ski & Snowboard School have noticed that, especially with younger ones, children often tend to lean backwards a little, due to them lacking muscles to hold their weight over their feet. Don’t worry! This is, frequently, simply skeletal bracing to help them. Encourage them to lean forwards (push the pole forwards and down if using the technique above) so that they know the technique, but it is something that they will grow out of.
We hope this short guide to skiing with children helps you. For information about ski lessons for your children with Esprit Ski’s partner ski schools. Please visit our informative children’s ski lessons pages.
Have you got any top tips for skiing with children? If so, share them in the comments below!