OK, “surviving” might be a bit strong, but keeping warm on the slopes in the middle of winter can be a challenge. As well as the main clothing like jackets and trousers, there are other things that can make a big difference for people who struggle to stay warm:
Extremities get cold first. It is what the body does to protect itself from cold. So, if your hands or feet get cold, it might not be down to the gloves or boots, but because you haven’t got enough layers on. Wear good thermals, and if your hands and feet are still cold, wear another jumper.
Helmet and Hat
Helmets can expose the neck to cold mountain air. Neck warmers, thin balaclavas or multipurpose tubes keep you toasty warm. Like scarves, but better.
Get your feet out
Particularly for skiers: if your feet have been cold and numb for more than an hour, you need to warm them up. Get inside, take off the boots and get the feet warm again. This will allow you to ski again afterwards, rather than developing serious cold injuries.
Dry your boots
Damp or wet boots are bad news. You need to dry your boots overnight, so if the hotel or apartment doesn’t have specific boot heaters, you need to make your own arrangements. Portable boot dryers work really well and are easier than balancing boots on radiators.
Giles Lewis is an ambassador for Dynastar skis and Lange boots. He is a ski Instructor with the development centre, who operate in val d’isere Tignes and the Three Valleys, France. He is a trainer and examiner of Instructors for BASI and a member of the British Demo team.
You want to go skiing, but your partner is not so keen – “what else is there to do on a ski holiday apart from ski?” they keep saying.
Well once you are out there on the slopes, ripping it up here are a few ideas from our friends at Ski Bonjour.
Not a Keen Skier? Here’s What Else You Can Do on a Skiing Holiday…
So you’ve somehow found yourself being roped into a skiing holiday with family or friends, despite the fact that your idea of an active holiday is one that involves more than a minute’s walk to the bar. First things first, don’t panic! Whether you’re a ski connoisseur or ‘can’t-oisseur’, we’ve got your back.
If you’re about to jet off very soon, we’ve put together a few things you can add to your to-do list to ensure you don’t find yourself feeling too bored when everyone else is hitting the piste.
Of course, you could join them; there’s nothing wrong with starting out on a small slope after all. But if you can’t think of anything worse than the prospect of a tumble in the snow, go for one of the following options instead…
Check Out Your Resort’s Spa
Love to kick back and relax? You might just be in luck if you go skiing then, with many of the resorts having a spa on site. In the chalets themselves, you might find everything from hydro-massage baths fed with thermal water, or even a Jacuzzi or hot tub outside.
The resort spas will no doubt offer everything from facials to mud wraps, and even Turkish baths. And what could be better than the chance to enjoy a soothing massage when your skin’s feeling cold and tingly following a day facing the elements?
Make the Most of a Quiet Chalet – If you’re someone who’s constantly dashing around, you’ll probably appreciate the chance to kick off your shoes and relax. And if you’re joining family or friends on a skiing holiday, the good news is there will most likely be out on the slopes for the majority of the day. With that in mind, treat the break like you would a relaxing beach holiday; start the day with a lie in and grab a good book or two to get stuck into. Later, take a hot bath while watching a film via your in-bathroom TV – many ski resorts have them, so make sure you check the brochure or website to check before you go!
Try a Husky Ride – You might not like the sound of hitting the ski slopes but that doesn’t always mean that, as a non-skier, you won’t enjoy other snow-based activities. So why not let man’s best friend show you around in the snow and experience dog sledding? Husky rides are one of the most traditional ski break pastimes and nothing beats the chance to enjoy the scenery without having to hobble around in the ice and snow.
Thrill Seeker? Give Paragliding a Go – If snow’s a no-no for you, try soaring above the mountains – tandem or solo – with a spot of paragliding. It’s fast becoming a must-try non-ski activity in a host of skiing resorts and it’s one of the best ways to make the most of the gorgeously wintry surroundings
Join the Others for Après-Ski Socialising – Have you spent the day on your own, mug of coffee in hand and roaring fire lit? By the time the others make their way back to the chalet you’ll be crying out for some company, we bet, so think about taking advantage of the party atmosphere many ski resorts offer. There are plenty of things to do and places to go after a day’s spent on the slopes, so feast on some of the area’s delicious foods and order a local beer to wash it down with. It’s right about now that you’ll realise exactly why your friends and family were right to persuade you to join them for the break!
Ski Bonjour www.skibonjour.com
OUTSTANDING AFFORDABLE CATERED CHALETS
VAL D’ISÈRE • TIGNES LES BRÉVIÈRES • TIGNES LE LAC
This Summer sees a lot of work going on around the 3 Valleys with 3 new lifts going in.
In Mottaret the old fixed chairs of Arolles & Table Verte are removed along with the Combes 4-man chair. A new Combes 6-seater routed to the right of where it is now and with a mid-station exit to a new floodlit green run is being constructed. A new beginners area with a short Arolles drag lift are also being built.
Over in the Belleville Valley the occasional bottleneck of St Martin 2 is to be relieved with an upgrade to a 6 seater hi-speed detachable hooded chair with the old 4-man being moved to replace the old Bettex 2-man chair to now give access to the bottom of the Gros Tougne piste for direct access in to Les Menuires.
Watch La Société des 3 Vallées video animating some of the new upgrades
Are you Skiing in Courchevel, La Tania, Meribel, Motteret, St.Martin or Les Menuires?
Why not try a Private Development with TDCski in the 3 valleys this winter ?
There’s no better way to hone old and new skills than to take a 3 hour private development lesson with one of our BASI 4 coaches.
We can tailor each lesson specifically to your requirements and concentrate on your strengths and weaknesses to produce a better performance all over the mountain.
Lessons start at 9am or 1pm and are available at just 250€ for 1-4 people.
We can meet you in Courchevel, La Tania, Meribel, Motteret, St.Martin or Les Menuires.
To book contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call +33 6 85 88 05 91
As our thoughts start to turn to winter, we find ourselves, starting to think more about the excitement of the oncoming season. We find ourselves getting skis and boots out of the locker, even though we know that it is another two months until we get to play on them.
Computers are busy with preparations and talk of new snow, and our minds start running wild with thoughts of seasons past. Memories of the best powder days, of the finest blue bird days, of the friends, of the laughter, of the fun all start to coming to the fore of the mind.
With all these thoughts and emotions flying around, here at TDCski we have found ourselves starting to tell each others stories.
“Do you remember that time when…”, “What about when we…”, “The thing I loved that day the most was…” the stories go on.
If we’re having these thoughts then we bet you are too.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could get everyone to share their stories?
So we thought it might be fun if we run a little competition – the winner gets a free TDCski Val d’Isere 3hr Private Lesson (€230-€280), or a free place on a 5 day Early Season Clinic (€300).
Win a Free Private Lesson or 5 day Early Season Clinic
To win this prize all you need to do is to post a photo and a story, or an heartfelt recollection, of what it is that you love about skiing the most on our Facebook Page – www.facebook.com/tdcski
A great photo, well written words, an overall passion for skiing.
The competition will be open until Val d’Isere’s opening day 28th Nov 2015.
Photos and stories will be reviewed by a select TDCski panel.
The Panel is looking for/judging based on – a great photo, well written words, an overall passion for skiing.
Winner will be announced on Val d’Isere opening day – 28th Nov.
We love skiing, we know you do too, so share those stories.
We love skiing, we know you do to, so share those stories with us and win some fantastic ski coaching.
We all say that we love skiing, and we have a passion for the sport, and have a passion for teaching people to take part in the sport. But what does that really mean?
We decided that we needed to ask a few of the TDCski coaches to see what they said.
What the Coaches said…do you agree?
Here is a summary of some very common reason about why we love skiing…
Being Outdoors – There is for sure a definite feeling of freedom in the mountains. When you are skiing, that perfect day with the ridiculously blue sky, the white snow, the fresh air. Nothing can beat it. Being outside was a big factor for all the coaches.
But we realise that it is not always a perfect day. Skiing allows us to get out there even when the weather is challenging, and then at the end of the challenge there is the feeling that you have done something to “deserve your lunch.”
Exhilaration – release the child inside. At the end of the day we are all sliding down a hill on two planks. The worlds trouble are forgotten and for that fleeting second or two (which lasts for minutes and hours) we are released. We are flying, we are going fast but with control, we are all big kids again. Love it!
You can alway get better – no matter what level you are. Each individual can set the level of their own challenge, there is always something to work on. Every turn is different. It is as if we are always searching for the “perfect turn” but we know we will never find it, it is the searching that is fun. Your personal goal might be technical, it might be in the mind, it might be a physical thing, but everyone can have their own little goal, and achieving that goal is a lot of fun.
It is an individual sport done in a group! – Whatever your own personal objectives are when skiing you can be working on your own things, enjoying it your way, while everyone else does their thing, and then every now and again we all get back together and ride a chairlift, or stop for a hot chocolate or lunch. The group element of skiing (apart from just safety) gives every day a purpose, but the pleasure of skiing comes from the individual.
Skiing has to be one of the few sports that all the family can do together, where each member of the family might be doing their best – what other sport do you find dad doing his very best to keep up with his 8 year old daughter?
Apart from the above reasons to Love Skiing, the TDC coaches had a few more “unusual” reasons to love it…
“I like being able to come home and wear my thermal underwear around the house for hours at the end of the day.”
“On a beach I once got asked by a stranger “are you a ski instructor?” – I replied “yes, but how did you know?” The stranger said “because you are wear ridiculous looking sunglasses, and you have a Match Stick Tan – a red head on top of a skinny white body!”
“I am yet to see a hollywood movie that doesn’t make skiing look really cheesey. I don’t think filmmakers can capture what it is that makes skiing so much fun.”
We would love to share our passion for skiing this season.
We hope we can.
Improve your skiing and enjoy the mountains more than ever before
We all know that feeling – the mountains, the snow, the freedom!
When it all comes together there is no better feeling – we love it!
Improve your skiing and that love and enjoyment just keeps growing.
Below are 5 simple things that you can do in order to maximise your improvements, and therefore maximise your fun and enjoyment of the mountains.
TDCski coaches look at 5 ways that you can improve your skiing
Over the years the TDCski coaches have seen lots of people who under their guidance have taken their skiing from basic, to advanced, to expert.
How was this achieved?
The ways to improve are not complicated, it can be a simple ongoing task.
Here are 5 rules to follow.
1) Have a Goal
Having a goal doesn’t need to be an overly complicated or technical thing.
Your goal could be as simple as you want to ski relaxed, or you want to ski without worrying what is round the next corner.
Alternatively you could have a more specific goal. You might want to be able to ski a certain challenging run or you want to be able to “ski the bumps”.
Whatever it is, having a goal means that you will be able to move towards it.
In every ski lesson that we will ever take out, at some point at the beginning of your lesson whether you realise it is happening or not, the coach/instructor will negotiate a goal for that lesson with you. This will give you a target and as you move forward towards that target it is enjoyable. Achieving the little milestones will give you a satisfaction – a sense of achievement – it makes it fun!
2) Have a Focus
One of the greatest things about skiing is that it allows you to NOT focus on the regular days to day things that we all have to deal with in daily life.
If however you DO have a simple focus about your skiing, then it will allow you to keep your mind on the job at hand – enjoying yourself and getting that wonderful feeling of mountains, snow and freedom!
If you focus on absolutely nothing then it is very easy for the job at hand to go wayward.
Keeping a simple focus will allow you to monitor and measure what you are doing and if the job at hand is going wayward, you can adjust, change or even stop and start again.
A skiing focus does not have to be complicated; it can be as simple as making rhythmical turns or focusing on balancing on the outside ski.
Setting a focus is the pathway to achieving your goal. You need a more specific focus to achieve your wider goal. – see above!
3) Understand that Focus
It is a really good thing to understand WHY you are focusing on something, don’t just take someones word for it. Take ownership of what you are doing and try to understand the reasoning behind what you are focusing on.
Skiing is a blend of different skills so as you are skiing around the mountain there will be many times when you need to adjust the blend of what you are doing in order to adapt to a different situation – it might get steeper, or bumpy, or there is fresh snow.
If you understand WHY you are doing something and understand what skill it is that you are practicing/developing then you will be able to take that skill with you into any different situation.
4) It’s Not Just all about Technique
It is a really common misconception that getting better is just about what you are doing technically. There is more to improving your performance than just doing “x” with your little toe, or doing “y” with your hands.
Quite often you might take what we call a Tactical approach – where it the best place to turn, should I turn quickly, what line should I take? A good tactical approach to any given situation allows you to maximise the technical skills that you have at that time.
Skiing like any sport has its up and downs. Some days you feel really confident and some days….not so much. It is times like this that maybe we have to take a Psychological approach. Work out what it is that is not working today – is it in the mind? Maybe the weather has changed or there are lots of people around. The actual movements required to ski are the same – but it is how our mind is viewing it.
Being able to understand these things and tap into them will give you far greater success when you get down to the job of sliding down a hill and enjoying yourself.
5) Challenge Yourself
“Challenge” – this word I think means different things to different people, but whatever way you look at it, challenging yourself is a very enjoyable, rewarding thing to do and it will allow you to realise your best.
To some it means that you take on something that is harder than normal. Then you dig deep, you focus and you overcome, you rise up and take on the challenge.
To others this idea of increasing the level of difficulty is in itself very off putting. If this is how you feel, then your “challenge” is to keep the task the same, keep skiing on the same run, keep skiing at the same speed, but make sure that you set a challenge that means you do have to be more accurate, more precise with what you are doing. e.g. do all of your turns balancing on the outside ski early, don’t only do half and then start thinking about what’s for lunch.
Whichever way you look at the idea of “challenging yourself”, by giving yourself little challenges you will set yourself on a path for improvement that will be lasting, enjoyable and it will be fun!
These are some of the principles that TDCski use to develop skiers to their full potential.
We invite you to achieve that feeling with TDCski this winter.
We’ve teamed up with the fantastic VIP SKI again this winter. VIP SKI are offering an amazing package that includes a 5 day TDCski Early Season Coaching Clinic and a week of accommodation in VIP SKI’s wonderful Aspen Lodge chalet, with the usual VIP SKI service and catering.
Early Season Clinics only €280 for 5 half days. You can book just the Clinic and organise your own accommodation, or you can take up the amazing deal from VIP SKI.
A TDCski 5 day clinic in the full winter season costs 375€ per person. Early Season Clinics are available at a reduced cost of €280 pp, but book the accommodation package with VIP SKI and effectively pay just €150 per person for the ski clinic!
VIP SKI Prices from £599 per person for 7 nights catered chalet accommodation and 5 days ski clinic (3 hours per day)
Get a head start on your ski development and enjoy a pre-Christmas trip to the French Alps. Enjoy the famous TDCski coaches in their ability to improve your skiing whilst delivering a fun and inspiring course. Rather than pre-planned lessons and drills, TDCski’s approach is based around coaching you on your style as an individual, allowing you to really make a breakthrough in confidence and ability.
The snow conditions have been consistently impressive at this time of year and with access to two glaciers (Val d’Isere and Tignes) snow is assured.
Never again will you see a package this good…
Week commencing 30 Nov
Exclusive package price = £599pp Saving up to £225 (price excludes travel)
Week commencing 7 Dec
Exclusive package price = £649pp Saving up to £225 (excludes travel)
Week commencing 14 Dec
Exclusive package price = £1079pp Saving up to £225 (includes Gatwick flight & transfers)
Package price includes 7 nights accommodation as described and TDCski Coaching Monday to Friday, 3hrs per day. Price on 30 Nov & 7 Dec does not include flight or transfer (this can be arranged for a supplement). For limited period only single supplement is an additional £100. (applies to 30 Nov and 7 Dec only)