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Is there such a thing as a bad ski school ?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
On my visit to Tignes last week (sigh) i booked a 2 hour lesson with evolution2. There is of course a number of schools you can use, but friends have reported a number of times of the rather dodgy instructors and practices of ESF e.g. non english speaking instructors Shocked and class sizes that wouldnt go amiss in UK primary schools.

So we went with evolution. 2 o'clock our instructor was due to arrive by at 2-30 still no sign of him and the 'shop' was closed for lunch. by chance an Evo instructor walked by and we asked them to radio in an attempt to find our missing guide. Rather pi55ed off a half hearted attempt was made to find the instructor. After 5 seconds of trying we were once again alone.

So, taking my life into my hands, we tried the ESF school next door. To my surprise they had someone available at short notice. Sebastian, for twas his name, was a top lad, and i can say hand on heart, my skiing improved immensley. Maybe not so much in technique (how do you improve on perfection rolling eyes , rather he gave me a big boost in my confidence.

There is a point to this ramble, the ski school is secondary to the instructor, and if you can, you should ask for a named individual. difficult I know if you are in a weeks ski school.

Mods - maybe we could have a hall of fame if it doesnt break data protection rules.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I agree (not about Mods), no bad ski schools, just bad instructors. I passed one last week taking a learner group (Granny, Grandad and Grandson) down a red run in a whiteout. They were poo-poo scared and walking down the run.

Why he took them up, I have no idea. Turned out he was a part time instructor, but I bet he put them off for life.

The only plus point was that it was about 3.30pm so the patrol would have picked them up at 5.30 so the wouldn't have to walk all the way.
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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?
I'm surprised...I had a lesson with Evo2 in Tignes last year and couldn't fault them. On time, great instructor, great lesson! Just goes to show....
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The truth is that the school is only as good as the instructor with whom you have contact. My better 'alf had a difficult time this year. She could not get her confidence and on one occassion was asked to go to the bottom of the run by gondola and wait for the rest of the class. Fortunately, I've been skiing a few years, so we formed our own two person splinter group. She said that she had much more confidence with me as I was prepared to go at her pace, and she didn't feel as though she was holding anybody up except me. Her confidence was nearly destroyed by an instructor to the extent that she insists upon skiing with me only in March. I've warned her that she'll pick up my many and varied faults, but she refuses to go to Ski School based upon that one experience.
The week may be a bit pedestrian for me though. Crying or Very sad
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Oooh I so agree....my hubbie has spent hours waiting on the slopes for me, he's reaping the rewards now as I can now ski just as fast as him and we have great holidays blasting the mountains together. Patience is a virtue!

One bit of advice, we invested in a couple of walkie talkies which we took up the mountain....when building confidence these let the stronger skier get out of sight without the weaker one panicking about being left behind cos you can always keep in touch. Boosted my confidence no end as I stopped worrying about falling and being left alone on the piste! They're just a pain in the neck now as I don't really need the security blanket anymore so if you're thinking about it invest in cheaper ones that you won't worry about not using in the future.
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We thought about taking our mobiles onto the mountain in January for that reason - but it just seemed wrong. For me, a mobile phone means that my office can get in touch with me, as they often do when I'm away. I leave it in my room and check the voicemail every night, but I'm sure as hell not interrupting a good days skiing to speak to my clients when they can get me for 48 weeks a year.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Its a nightmare in groups if abilities are significantly different, because the slowest arrives at the group - who have all been resting and then they set off again - so the person struggling has no rest at all. Best to use the money for private lessons at your own pace.
Trust me - 3x 1hr private lessons are as good as 5 1/2 days in a group and cost about the same, because they are completely focused on your abilities.
Can tell the instructor what you want to achieve and they can help you with that. I wanted to learn how to do steep icy slopes this year, and if possible do the Aigulle Rouge run in Les Arcs. Result - I can now ski blacks and the Aigulle Rouge was a doddle...
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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!
Peter B wrote:
For me, a mobile phone means that my office can get in touch with me, as they often do when I'm away.


I only answer my phone when I know who is calling... although I generally leave the mobile off when on the slopes as I think they are anti social.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Agree with you there MM - private lessons are the way forward if you have a good instructor. However, if the instructor is dire (or doesn't turn up!) then they're probably no better.

Fortunately, I've tended to find private instructors are pretty clued up and of high quality...
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
1st attempt at staying upright on the white stuff: small group (only about 20 of us Evil or Very Mad ) of completely varying abilities. Total beginners through to those coming back to the beginners group for a 2nd week recap… ended up pulling out after day 2, when they shot off down a blue. I still couldn’t turn right. Embarassed
2nd week: decided on a few private lessons – although I felt that I improved, he still wasn’t quite able to analyse enough and thereby give me the confidence I needed to get too far past the nursery slopes.
3rd week: group lessons – back to basics – yes, I did the dreaded beginners recap rolling eyes , but we were all split into groups of ability and the Instructor helped my confidence immensely. Just starting to get to grips with carving Very Happy when we had to leave. Sad
No good schools, just bad or great Instructors
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
homphomp, if you don't need the walkie-talkies any more, we could come to some arrangement? We're thnking of some as we tend to split into groups and it wold be nice to radiou each other at the end of the day with the name of the bar we're currently patronising Smile
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Use yer mobiles? Confused
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Althoug I have a mobile I doubt it would work in Canada - it's pay as you go, too, and I don;t fancy paying £3 a minute to call someone who may ony be 100 yards away when that call is going to be routed via england Shock)
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I tried using my mobile once, but found I couldn't get the edges sharp enough to carve a turn, and I got more abuse for skiing on it than I do on my skiboards. Laughing
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Orange PAYG doesn't work in Canada.

European PMR (Personal Mobile Radio) walkie talkies use different frequencies from the N. American FRS (Family Radio Service) walkie talkies. It's illegal to use European ones in N. America & vice versa.

Even in Europe, there are plenty of places in the mountains where mobile phone reception doesn't work. Radios are better in this case, and no call charges.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
And no polyphonic ring tones to disturb the peace.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Pete H wrote:
It's illegal to use European ones in N. America & vice versa.


ONly if you get caught Smile
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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?
So if there are no bad ski schools and only good/bad instructors, can anyone recommend a specific instructor in Alpe d'Huez for some off-piste instruction? If the instructor is good looking (and male!) all the better! Wink
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Hi Linda - look in the Instruction/Technique section - I recommend Masterclass!
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I recomend masterclass as well , had a week with stuart having private lessons and have regained my very knocked confidence and improved out of sight . Cant recomend them highly enough
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Hello Linda!
If you can wait to next season, I should qualified, and I meet your other requirements! Mr. Green
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Masterclass in Alpe D'Huez cant't be beaten. Cool
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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!
Masterclass in Alpe D'Huez cant't be beaten. Cool
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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.
Masterclass in Alpe D'Huez cant't be beaten. Cool
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Crikey
triplepostinitus
First case I've ever seen!!!!!!
Hope it's not contagious.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
nbt wrote:
homphomp, if you don't need the walkie-talkies any more, we could come to some arrangement? We're thnking of some as we tend to split into groups and it wold be nice to radiou each other at the end of the day with the name of the bar we're currently patronising Smile


We still go with a mixed ability group once a year, and they're good for that....so still in use just for that one trip...sorry!
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
nbt, if they're 100 yards away - shout Wink

Even at that price, it's a fair few minutes use before you cover the cost of buying a walkie talkie.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
The suggestion that I liked the most was to buy a "pay as you go" SIM card from the country that you're going to, and get your friends to do likewise. (remeber to swap numbers!) That way, no-one from home can get hold of you, and calls are far cheaper coz you're on a local network Smile
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Bit of a thread hijack obviously Embarassed , Elizabeth B, excuse my ignorance, but I presume you just chuck in the new cards 'n away you go. Is that all there is to it?
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
marc, In theory, yes. However, some phones are blocked, which means they only work with cards from their own network. (try putting a friends SIM in your phone, from a different network, and see if it works). You can normally find a market stall somewhere that will unblock your phone for about a tenner.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Not abad idea, but with the mountain biking and a couple of ski trips a year, they'd son pay for themselves

plus gadgets are always cool Smile
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Ahmen to that, shiney kit syndrome bites hard. NehNeh
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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?
marc, the other thing to check (if you're going to North America) - is your phone tri-band? e.g. Nokia 6310i.
If not, it won't work on any network out there.
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Cheers WTFH, I think I'm OK according to the Nokia site.

BTW, was that "The" Martin Bell who sponsered you?
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Yeah, he's a drinking buddy.
(oh, and not the newsreader/MP)
He's a decent bloke (compared to his brother, who is so far up his own ar$e, he's installing double glazing in his stomach so he can see out)
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You'll need to Register first of course.
Quick tip - invest in a couple of the cheapest pay-as-you-go mobile phones. Cheaper than a decent pair of walkie-talkies with much better reception and you're able to contact any emergency services you like without the damned office knowing how to reach you. Of course, telling the boss you'll break his capella with a lump hammer if he tries to contact you while on the slopes is also a good office phone call preventer Twisted Evil
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Mobiles are so much fun when you know that the person you're calling is sitting in the next gondola with a bunch of strangers and his mobile is underneath a dozen layers of clothing, plus of course he's got gloves on as well. You also have the upper hand knowing that as he only picked the phone up the day before you set off he hasn't yet worked out how to set the ringtones up, someone else in the group however knows how to and have pickaed a particularly nice one for him.
After a couple of bars he realises the polyphonic rendition of Edelweiss is actually coming from his pocket and there's no hope of getting to the phone as the gondola is just about to arrive at the top.
Not that I know anyone who did this of course. Mr. Green
Later in the week 'why do birds suddenly appear' were heard by a group on a lesson as the aforementioned victim was skiing by them, causing several fits of the giggles and one fall. Very Happy
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