Surely it’s the dream job? It’s just powder skiing, champagne après ski, hot tub frolics with chalet staff and the occasional bit of teaching really good skiers / riders to go faster isn’t it?
Well, not exactly, but I guess there might be occasional opportunities to do all those things (they seem to mostly have passed me by though).
Regardless, teaching skiing is a great job and, if you really want to do it (as a few years of fun or as a serious career) here are a few thoughts as to how you go about getting there.
First up get yourself qualified.
If you know where you want to work and you speak the local language, it’s worth checking out the qualification pathway for that country. Otherwise, choose an association that speaks your language. Most associations have a series of levels that one must work through to become ‘fully’ qualified. It might not be necessary to complete all the levels to teach where / what you want to teach.
Find your first job?
Once you get your qualification, it’s time to look for your first teaching job. This is the tough bit. It’s a hard job market to crack. Here at Summit, we get approximately 200 applications every year and generally employ only a handful of new instructors each winter. I guess other schools also have a hard time to choose which instructors will work out best for them.
What qualifications do you need?
Check out how far you need to go before getting a surprise once you embark on the instructor journey. Here at Summit, we employ mainly BASI (the British Association of Snowsports Instructors) qualified instructors although we also have Swiss, American, Australian, Austrian and NZ qualified instructors. For us skiing at an ISIA standard and a couple of seasons teaching experience as our minimum requirements for new applications.
Who qualifies snowsports instructors?
Every skiing nation has their own instructor’s association. Which one you choose to train with depends on languages you speak, where you’d like to work in the future as well as where you are from.
How can you stand out from the crowd? Well, here are a few do’s and don’t’s
If you’re asked for a photograph as part of your application
If you’re asked for an interview
So there you have it…
All these “don’ts” might sound a bit ridiculous but they are all things that we’ve experienced here at Summit.
If you’re thinking of starting down the road to being a ski instructor, we thoroughly recommend it and look forward to your application (with a smiley photo of course).