Season about to kick off

Gi with L1 group in Zermatt
Gi with L1 group in Zermatt

It has been a bit of a road trip around Europe for Gi recently. Firstly ten days in Hintertux attending and delivering to the BASI conference, followed by a few days running a selection of new trainers for BASI.

Coming back to the Tarentaise and both Tignes and Val d’isere make Zermatt look pretty bare for snow cover. We have had some warm weather here but we had 25cm of snow last night and Val d’Isere will be opening this weekend as planned. Tignes is already open and there is good skiing to be had on the pistes.

The picture is my group on the L1 in Zermatt. The mountain in the background interests me because it reminds me of the Belvarde a bit, or at least a pale imitation.

See you out here.


Brilliant snow conditions in Val d’Isere and Tignes

Thanks to YSE for this great photo
Looking at the Solaise 12th Nov 2009

Things are looking great for the start of the season.

Thanks to YSE for this great photo looking at the Solaise 11th Nov 2009.

Looking good…

And thanks to John for the text as well – “This is extraordinary! It snowed again yesterday, hit -10? overnight, and the snow cannons were running this morning. Apart from the fact that there are still orange needles on the larches, it could be January. This is how winters used to be before global warming, Gordon Brown and the decline of religion”

Check out the Webcams –

tdc coach Ben Langridge on the dry slopes

tdc coaching on the dendex
tdc coaching on the dendex

First turns of the season..… on Dendex.

I’m whiling away the rest of the autumn with a bit of coaching at the local dry ski slope.

I haven’t skied on the ‘mat’ for probably 5 years now – and I’d honestly forgotten how much fun it is.
I even managed to squeeze out 2 sets of 50 old school short swings in 100 meters!
Don’t ask me to carve though – I left all my kit in Val – so I’m donning some old rear entry hire boots and some health and safety conscious – you won’t cut your fingers on these edges – hire skis.

I’ve been asked to coach some slalom racing which is always a pleasure, starting with Portsmouth Uni who are training for the British Universities Champs – I took some photos of them through the gates which are now posted on the tdc photo gallery
Unfortunately since we were skiing under the floodlights and the guys were so fast – I struggled to get really clear shots but some of them are ok, even when blurred however – you can still pick out good and bad technique, hopefully the team will find them useful.

Portsmouth Uni get some tdc coaching
Portsmouth Uni get some tdc coaching

I also set a slalom course for a Southern Region race – which had to start on a big 35 degree ramp. I was worried the kids would pick up too much speed so I set 4 big ‘Tomba turns’ at the top, unfortunately it was a touch too tight so I had to whittle it down to make it more manageable.
It was interesting for me to see that the kids were super comfortable and fast edge to edge – when the gates were more or less straight! But only a few could handle the bigger turns at the top which showed they didn’t have enough leg rotation. Often when ‘mat skiers’ get onto the snow they find it hard to maintain a constant speed because they’re not used to finishing their turns, the dry slopes being so much slower means that leg rotation is less important.

Anyway I hope I get the chance to work with these kids again, I’ve been scheming some drills and exercises just in case. In the meantime I’m getting ready for the winter – although I’m not looking forward to having to force on a pair of front entry boots – I can’t wait to get back on the snow, gonna try to beat 100 old school short swings on the ‘Village’! Enough rambling – I’m heading into Christchurch for a coffee… my round today then boys!

Cheers – Ben Langridge
tdc coach –

Tignes in October

Fraser on the Tignes Glacier Oct 2009

Well, global warming is certainly having an effect on the glacier in Tignes, it looks very different to when I first trained up there 10 years ago. However, it is still there and people are still skiing on it and using it for their training. Last week I skied every day with Fraser who is training for his BASI Level 3 exam and despite limited access to the lower runs we enjoyed some great skiing.

The sun shone for most of the week and we rounded things off by skiing in fresh snow on Friday, only a dusting but enough to soften everything up, very nice. What better way to spend a week in October than sliding around in the sunshine. See you on the slopes soon.

Cheers Paul.

First turns on snow

The BASI course finished on Friday, so that makes 10 new race coaches ready to get out there and change the world for the better. Really nice group actually, well done to them.

Saturday saw the first ever indoor session run under the banner of the development centre, or tdc. The participants were the Ski club of Manchester, a keen and talented bunch. Most of the slope was being used by kids club or had enormous kickers built on it, but the bit we still had left was good firm snow and i managed to catch up with them enough times to try a few drills and make a few changes. Until Rushup Edge has a decent base of snow again we will be back in the Chillfactore for some more on snow soon.

See some short turns

Season starts for Gi

Not possible in a snowdome
Not possible in a snowdome

The winter starts for me tomorrow. I am running a course that trains race coaches at the Chillfactore in Manchester,  indoors at the snowdome. I will be running a course that qualifies successful candidates to coach children ski racing.

On Saturday I am running a series private group sessions with the Ski Club of Manchester, so that they can have their ski legs ready for the first snowfalls in Europe, This is just the beginning. How exciting.

TDC kick off our early season clinincs in Val d’isere We also run our own BASI prep courses and can arrange private sessions anywhere, it seems!

tdc early season clinics

Once again in December 2009 tdc will be running the very sucessful and popular early season clinics.

tdc‘s early season ski clinics are a great way to get yourself up and running for the season.

tdc early season clinic - Fri 12th Dec 2008

Val d’Isere and Tignes early season snow has been amazing the last few years, and this is the perfect opportunity for keen skiers of all levels to take a week out at low peak time and get the best tuition, in a fun and friendly enviroment.
The early season clinics have been very popular and are at discounted prices.

Get the best ski improvement courses early in the season, improve your ski technique so that the rest of the season you are at your best.

For December 2009 the early season clinics in Val d’Isere and Tignes are;

Mon Nov 30th – Fri Dec 4th 2009
Mon Dec 7th – Fri Dec 11th 2009

The early season clinics are 5 half days – Monday – Friday 9am – 12noon or 1pm -4pm
Cost – 250€ – 280 €

If you are looking to improve your skiing technique, in a fun, friendly and challanging way then tdc‘s early season clinics are ideal

The early season ski improvement clinics run at the same levels as our normal coaching clinics

discovery – discover your talent, ski with confidence …for strong blue run skiers…

development – develop your performance, feel your skiing flow …for strong red run skiers…

development Plus – take on steeper and varied slopes …for strong red run /ok black run skiers

challenges – take on new goals, challenge yourself …for strong black run skiers…

At 250€ – 280€ for 5 days of high quality coaching these clinics are very popular and excellent value.

Email us now to book your place, for you and your friends.

or call +33 6 15 55 31 56 or book online