Look at this way: Olympic skiers and world-class racers have to be among the finest skiers on any slopes, at any place, at any time. Do they need, in
effect, lessons? Well, they always work with a coach. Or, to put it another way, they never stop taking lessons.

To maintain, or improve, our own skills, neither you nor I are so damn good we don’t need an occasional lesson.

Our policy, until they were almost teenagers, was to enroll Hilary and Rebecca in a ski school anytime we were on a weeklong play-the-moun - tain holiday - even when their skill level reached from high intermediate to low expert.

Grouped only with other strong skiers, they found the classes genuinely challenging, and were always picking up helpful hints on technique, whether for bouncing down the bumps on a black run or carving turns on powder. Since young skiers of these skill levels rarely continue to go to ski school, the girls’ classes were inevitably small; this, of course, gave the instructors the opportunity to fine-tune the weaknesses of each skier. And another plus: The girls quickly developed new friends with whom they’d prefer to ski than with their rather old-fogy parents.

When they reached their teens we shifted our focus onto lessons, offering them, instead, an occasional couple hours’ skiing with a private instructor if they wanted it. They never let us save a penny by turning the offer down.

After only a few years of skiing these two redheads could keep up with anything Gail or I could handle. And by the time they were 12: - as I recounted - I heard the saddest words on the mountain.

More about Skiing:
Apres-ski boots: These are an important adjunct on a ski trip. The best are those that slip on quickly and are both warm and tolerably lightweight. Laceup boots are a foolish no-no
For very cold and windy days, everyone appreciates an inner polypro felt or down vest, or wool sweater, worn over the turtleneck.
No parent needs to be reminded that youngsters must be warmly bundled against cold, wind, and snow. On the other hand, kids don’t have to be so swaddled in piles of winter clothi
Because of these concerns, helmet manufacturers are now designing thinner helmets that more closely approximate the size of the head. My opinion: Buy them, especially if your child
Whatever you buy for a child today will be too small next year. There are several ways to reduce the credit card cramps that come from buying everything new each season: If your ch
Renting Unless you have the good fortune to possess a fortune, there’s no need to spend a fortune on skis, boots, and bindings for those fast-growing children, especially for tot

Disabled Competitions

Ski competitions for both standing and sitting skiers are held throughout the country and in Europe. Both Aspen Highlands and Mount Hood Meadows ski resorts…

Mountain Manners

in Kids
However, the fact that they did spend time in various ski schools did not eliminate what I feel keenly is the responsibility of all parents of kids on the…

Nonskiing Necessities

in Kids
Apres-ski boots: These are an important adjunct on a ski trip. The best are those that slip on quickly and are both warm and tolerably lightweight. Laceup…


The ancient grandfather of alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, is alive, healthy, and more popular than at any time in his 4,000-year history. True, no longer…

Whistler/Blackcomb - Part 1

Put two great ski mountains side by side, each with more than 5,000 feet of vertical - the most in North America - and you’ve got the first hint of what it’s…

Who Pays the Piper?

If a skier runs into serious difficulty skiing beyond an area’s boundaries, someone will be along to help him. In the United States, this task usually falls to…