Finland: The future of the Snowsports industry and Snowsports education.

This indoor lecture started with a run down of the local grassroots snowsports education program. An add-on to the local high school curriculum aimed towards providing students with knowledge, tools and certifications to prepare the for work experience inside and outside of the snow industry. They started the lecture off with a survey that we all did to give us a baseline idea of what this was going to be about. We will provide the link at the end of this summary.

They then ran us through some inactive and collaborative workshops that helped form discussion points that they then used as feedback to help improve their programming.

Key take always:

  • Snowsports as a professional career path isn’t seen as a valid way to create a living.
  • Environmental concerns in terms of sustainability
  • Large part of the market is based on consumerism
  • The industry helps build life long communication skills that are translatable
  • Early integration of our youth into the environment will help build a more solid sustainable base
  • Learn to live like an athlete
  • Snowsports industry can help build and develop a love for nature and our environment when youth is introduced at a young age. Eg: going to places with no cell reception being “unplugged”

Here are some of the thought provoking slides that where presented.

Here is the survey please feel free to fill it out with your own thoughts, they will be collecting data until the end of April.

James Hyland, Adam Gardner

USA Assessing Technical Understanding through self evaluation

The US system tries to set students up to continue learning through self guidance and assessment rather than always having the need for an instructor to be there to tell them if they are doing it or not. Leaving the progression in the hands of the students by setting out goals they can go off to practice on their own and have a good idea how to achieve their own personal goals.

One of the simple tactics that was used was a follow the leader and copy exercise using Ollie’s. Some examples of the hidden details that came out were how to explore the difference between varying heights and how the follower needed to technically adjust their movements to match the leader. Just by trying to copy the exact height and moments, it was apparent that a lot of the technical details were discovered through trial rather than explanations.

The next part of the session highlighted another interesting tool that was used as a way to gauge a candidates knowledge base on exams at all levels. The premise was to create exercise based scenarios and get the students talking about some of the details that needed to happen to become successful or not. The goal wasn’t that the exercise needed to be completed perfectly, but talked out by the candidates to gauge their technical understanding by the course conductor. The chosen tasks were not relevant to any course standards but mainly designed to get the group talking technically. Jumping downhill on the toe edge, carving while nose pressing were some examples of some of the tasks used to spark conversations to gauge the technical understanding while having some safe contained fun.

Thanks team USA

Adam Gardner

Hello neighbours!

While most of the rest of the crew were killing it in the Casi indoor workshop, a couple of us ducked out to see whats new with our CADS counterparts. Ironically the indoor got moved to a room higher up in a different building that wasn’t super wheelchair accessible, but a determined badass sit ski athlethe still found his way up the the seminar.

About 18 years ago I got a little bit involved with some CADS programs at Silver Star mountain back home, but since then I haven’t

really had much interaction with this side of the industry mainly due to the lack of snowboarding emphasis. This is really starting to change thanks to Michelle Schaefer!

With a overall moto of fun, respect, inclusion.

Most discussions were based around a few mental health issues, the autism spectrum and well as anxiety disorders.

Very interesting to hear about problem solving pathways that they have created to help turn challenging situations back into fun.

Ski resorts are full of triggers for anxious and autistic people so they have put together a 6 step checklist to diffuse situations:



Assist self regulation



Plan (Give choices)

Followed up by some post care debriefing:




Involve parents/caregivers

The shocking part is most of us working instructors deal with these situations on a daily basis without even realizing it.

I know the first thing alot of instructors think about when they hear adaptive snowsports they think sit skiis and obvious disablities. Mental health is on the rise in most countries so, I encourage any instructors to look into what these guys are doing and get involved.


Canadian on snow workshops continued

It was Canada’s day to share some knowledge about our system and techniques. We primarily focused on teaching structures and tools to put information together in a simple way using our SAFE model.

Giving clear examples about how this helps streamline learning for beginners as well as advanced short turns and freestyle.

Encouraging instructors from around the world to pick ideas from their own countries technical models and use our structure to help simply the presentation of them. How diplomatic right?

The sessions were very well received and similarities were discussed. From what I heard people were very stoked on how simple, but precise we put ideas together and into action to get results!


Welcome to interski/shred

Well its been 2 good days in Bulgaria so far. A fun day of training and meeting up with some old familiar faces, as well as meeting some new ones.

Today was the opening ceremony runs to be spotlighted on the demo pitch with a giant crowd below as well as being televised live on TV.

The wait to drop in was pretty long, but not as long the 3 years that I’ve known that I was coming over here. Theres been no other event in my life that I’ve known 3 years in advance that was happening, but this didn’t seem to add too much stress after all this build up as I found myself trying to control the stoke level more than nerves! I was proud to be the first Canadian to drop in (aside from the flag boys) with a crew of skiers and snowboarders following behind.

I didn’t know what to expect as this is my first interski experience, but its definetly a cool vibe between all the nations and disiplines over here. Everyone is so passionate about what they do, but whats surprised me so far, is how stoked people are on what the other nations are doing.

Here’s a great example, Not once back home I’ve ever had a hardcore ski racer type roll over and strike up a conversation with me about how excited the are to see some snowboarding, this happened to me multiple times over the last 2 days. I’m mind blown blown by the level of stoke and interaction between nations and disiplines!

The upcoming week has a good vibe to it and I’m stoked to spend some more time with some of the new folks I’ve met from around the world and chat about shredding! Stay tuned for more updates!