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Club Med Ski lessons / touring - questions

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi,

Does anyone know how exactly the club med ski lessons work? We're very comfortable on red runs and will do a black if we have to, booked club med val d'isere in January and just wonder how it works.. specifically....

1) How do they grade you into groups?
2) Do they move you between groups? I want to stay with my husband (we are the same level so should be ok but just want to make sure we're not separated)
3) Are they really lessons at that level, or just guiding? Heard lots of mixed reviews.
4) Are the lessons every morning AND every afternoon or do you join a morning OR afternoon session?
5) Are you expected to join the whole week or can you go off and do a day on your own and rejoin?

Thanks in advance to anyone who's experienced club med.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
On arrival, go to the ski school desk (usually close to reception but just ask) and you’ll see a chart with “grading bands “ - complete beginner; skied 1 or 2 weeks before and confident on blues; confident parralel skier on most slopes et., (not the exact wording, but you get the gist!) and get yourselves allocated into the appropriate grouping. There IS tuition for those who want it, but the intensity and attention would, I suggest, depend on how many in the group. The lessons are a.m. and pm, on 6 days and whether you attend both may depend on sizes of groups et., but they’ll tell you more when you check in with desk. You can choose to just join in on the first day, to get some guiding around the ski area (very helpful if you’ve not been there before) and then do your own thing. As for doing that and then joining in again later in the week, I’m not sure, as I haven’t done it! We have done the ‘first day, then on our own’ and found it suited us.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Great, thank you. That's helpful.
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
From my experience, people dip in and out - just let your instructor know whether or not you’ll be along after lunch or the next day or whatever. It was fairly relaxed when I did it, but I guess that will depend on the instructor.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
1) You sound about the same level as us so it is Clubmed level 3A or 3B
2) they will take you for test run on the first day to decide if you are 3A or 3B . If at this point they separate you, you can always just insist to stay together ( last year this happened with my husband and l but he just insisted on staying with my group - the stronger one and did well
4) 5) it is totally up to you. We did most mornings and afternoons and loved it
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Great thank you
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Check the levels and choose whichever seems most appropriate. There are often a few groups of the same level and they are sorted out by a short ski run to assess. Sometimes it can be more simple “all the English speakers in this group”.
Other than one occasion where the ski instructor was clearly suffering with burn out I have had a great time.
I have always self assessed as 3A. I have had 1 week of fairly intense carving lessons, a week of purely off piste and a variety in between.
I had one week where I was the only English person in a French group where I was made very welcome, but the majority are mixed nationalities with English as the lingua Franca (?oxymoron?).
Mrs Captain P always goes group 4, and always been made very welcome once they get past her age and gender and realise she can ski appropriately. We are huge ClubMed fans and wish we had started earlier.
Ps they use ESF in French resorts and (bar the one occasion) I have found them professional and approachable.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
A friend here (Les 2 Alpes not Val D'Isere but must be similar) is an ESF Instructor but works exclusively on Club Med lessons. He is one of the ESFs most experienced guys here and takes many of Club Meds higher level courses, a high proportion off piste. He is french but his English is excellent and his Italian pretty good too. You'll get a high level of instruction.
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Ps normally if people want to ski together they insist on the stronger one dropping down. The only ill feeling I have come across is when someone insists on “skiing up”. I don’t think it was Bella2015 and her husband...
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@Captain Primrose, my husband actually ended up being one of the fastest in the group...he was just a bit rusty on day 1 so they try to drop him down a level.. so he was definitely not the one holding the group up on steep blacks...
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
The incident I was thinking of the lady was a Russian jeweller now resident in New York and her husband was well beyond “rusty”! I was just glad not to be the poorest skier in the group.
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