Are group lessons effective for advanced skiers?

Discussion in 'Ski School' started by Chris V., Jan 8, 2019.

  1. markojp

    markojp mtn rep for the gear on my feet Industry Insider Instructor

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    FWIW, Steph, the woman taking the hiking group in the video is an L3.
     
  2. James

    James Skiing the powder Instructor

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    I found the vid oddly mezmerizing. We skied a lot of those spots especially the day with @TPJ. Had I known that guy stuck a GoPro mount in his mouth, I probably would have had to take a shower or drink...fish sauce just to cleanse.
     
  3. mister moose

    mister moose Instigator Skier

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    I think in the short term this is very true. At some point new input is valuable.

    Yes. Half of this is overly high expectations of the student, and half is the willingness to practice every day, not just go ski and reinforce the previous ingrained way of skiing.

    If this is supposed to be a lesson, I saw very little instruction and a lot of being over terrained. (Like most I skipped through it) Tumbling in calf deep powder. Stemmed turns. Mega skidding.
    Bracing away from the slope. Whereas if this is supposed to be a thrill a minute, leave your tongue dragging on the snow type wild ride, then mission accomplished. But this thread is about lessons.​

    Tens of thousands of $$ represents hundreds of hours of instruction. That sounds high for most folks.

    Consider the annual budget of passes, tickets, lodge food, hotels, restaurants, bars, flights, gas. For the 15-20 day per year IKON or EPIC type skier, it probably adds up to a range of $3,000 to $8,000. A few lessons isn't that big a percentage of that cost. Week long packages that include a morning lesson are very reasonable. I've been on 5 day lift lesson lodging & dinner trips to Jay Peak where the tag line was "Cheaper than staying home!" Couple that with several lessons at your home mountain and you should see improvement.

    Keep in mind that as Mike King says, changing your skiing will take time. My own experience is that some light bulbs go off right away, some takes months or years to bake in. Some advice seems to be in conflict with my anatomy. Some seems gimmicky or unnecessary. Sometimes one instructor plants a seed, and someone else on a different day makes it sprout. It's a process. One thing is for sure, if you don't pursue it ardently, the process doesn't occur.
     
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  4. mdf

    mdf entering the Big Couloir Skier

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    Steep and Deep is an odd duck in the world of lessons. The primary market is guys who think they are better than they really are. They go easy on the technical instruction and focus on terrain-based tactics. That said, they do sneak in some instruction, and will do more if you ask.

    My first S&D was transformative for me -- our instructor gently, over the course of the first two days, convinced us that we really sucked. Then she started to rebuild our skiing the rest of the camp. This was the first place I heard about initiating a turn by tipping the ski. She did this while also introducing us to double black terrain we had never been in before. After I got home i started completely rebuilding my skiing.

    My second S&D was a bit "meh" on technique, but I learned a lot about terrain handling and line choice, and a little about the different ways to ski bumps.

    My last S&D our instructor was technically superb, but he mostly did instruction in small bytes on the run-outs. We did do some interesting drills like pivot slips in 5 inches of powder.

    ,
     
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  5. 4ster

    4ster Now with more photos! Instructor

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    Yes, the typical half day or 2 hour group lesson allows time to identify & address areas for improvement & then some. Instilling new, proper movement patterns in an already advanced zone skier can take weeks, months or even years. The group lesson can be a great first step & well worth it if you come with a desire to learn & an open mind.

    I 2nd this^.
    I spent a few days at Jackson last season & was fortunate to hook up with @TPJ my first day. We spent most of the day skiing steep bumps in and out of the trees, places I would have never sought, found or enjoyed on my own. The ability to just put it on auto pilot and follow him made my day! In fact, some of those spots in the video look very familiar.

    @TPJ leading me to the next zone...
    ACD813F9-D9C8-4EEF-8428-67F5451C9811.jpeg
     

    Attached Files:

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  6. TheArchitect

    TheArchitect Working on my technique all the time Skier

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    An all-day advanced group lesson at JH is only $185?! I'm definitely going that route. I'm skiing Weds-Fri so I'm hoping the group will be small. Thanks for making me check on that!
     
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  7. LiquidFeet

    LiquidFeet Out on the slopes Instructor

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  8. KingGrump

    KingGrump Most Interesting Man In The World Team Gathermeister

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    A good face plant with that will make your dentist a very happy man/women. :cool:
     
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  9. Coach13

    Coach13 Out on the slopes Skier

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    Can you imagine falling with that thing in your mouth? The scratch in your throat may turn out to be your chin.
     
  10. MAB

    MAB Booting up Skier

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    I was able to get away from work yesterday and take an expert lesson at JH (I am nowhere near an expert). They broke up groups based on ability and didn't seem to care if the groups had five people in them or not (the max per group), so I had three people in my group. It was really a great lesson, and I got a lot out of it. We drilled, did video analysis, and kept the terrain mostly manageable but pushed ourselves once in a while. Like all lessons, I am sure it is instructor dependent, but felt like it was a good value.
     
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  11. Josh Matta

    Josh Matta Making fresh tracks Instructor

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    mount mount for a go pro?

    Seriously if I ever see someone with one of those, I am never skiing with them.
     
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  12. Coach13

    Coach13 Out on the slopes Skier

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    I can’t imagine trying to ski with one of those in my mouth. Talk about a distraction.
     
  13. Erik Timmerman

    Erik Timmerman Making fresh tracks Instructor

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    It must be for surfing.
     
  14. François Pugh

    François Pugh Out on the slopes Skier

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    or for quadriplegics.
     
  15. tromano

    tromano Goin' the way they're pointed... Skier

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    I watched the video and felt that dude's pain. Send me back to the beginner area to work on garlands plz.

    Learning tactics for over terraing your self, no thank you.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  16. Erik Timmerman

    Erik Timmerman Making fresh tracks Instructor

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    Maybe someone could go back to teach garlands too.
     
  17. tromano

    tromano Goin' the way they're pointed... Skier

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    Your right. It was pretty brutal.
     
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2019
  18. CalG

    CalG Out on the slopes Skier

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    It is revealing that you describe yourself as "now where near an expert" and benefited greatly from an 'expert lesson".
    Perhaps that says something to the target audience for "expert lessons".

    But the topic is regarding advanced skiers.

    Do you regard yourself as an advanced skier?

    I suppose, beginning, intermediate, advanced, expert. Is there a "professional" classification? If so, where is it placed?

    Of course there is also "ski God/ Godess", but there is such gender bias there, as to be difficult to classify ;-)
     
  19. MAB

    MAB Booting up Skier

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    I consider myself advanced but not expert. Relative to the general population of skiers who are on the hill on vacation, it might be fair to call me an expert, but when compared to the people I chased around learning to ski, I feel like an intermediate. Oddly enough, I jokingly asked at one point why they label the group I was in expert when we are clearly not experts. I am not sure it says as much about the target audience of expert lessons as it does about when people stop taking lessons in their progression as skiers, along with people's tendency to overrate their ability. JH's description of an expert skier sounds to me more like what I consider an advanced skier, which is something along the lines of can ski all groomed black terrain and are experienced off-piste. In my experience with lessons', this is not unique to JH.

    Regardless, I think I got a lot out of the lesson as an advanced skier because the instructor was very good at his job and not because it was a lesson directed at experts. But I agree it is both interesting and revealing that a non-expert would get so much out of a so-called expert lesson.
     
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  20. Old boot

    Old boot Getting on the lift Skier

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    OK maybe I just didn't see it but I read most of the thread and was kind of surprised no one said
    "In a group lesson with higher level skiers you get to watch how the others move" An instructor can point out what others are or aren't doing as part of the lesson and how it relates to the outcome on the hill. The visual of a smooth skier and one that muscles around is always better understood with a good trained eye.
    Don't take things personally when you have something explained and if you don't "get it" right away eventually you might.
    Just hope you get a skier and not a talker as an instructor.
     
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