March 11, 2013

Kids: Chasing The Cousins

Kids: Chasing The Cousins

I think my son was four when we first skied with his cousins. At that time, he was very cautious on snow, preferring to follow me at all times rather than lead the way. He kept his speed slow—very slow, slow enough that he often stopped on flat sections, meaning I’d have to backtrack up the hill to get him moving again (more…)

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February 15, 2013

Kids: Get Help When You Need It

Kids: Get Help When You Need It

At some point in your quest to turn your kids into skiers, no matter how much you love to do everything yourself, chances are you’ll find yourself stuck or running out of steam or just fantasizing about going off on your own to make some adult-sized turns. In other words, you’ll reach the point, whether you realize it or not, where you need some help (more…)

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December 29, 2012

Of Mountains and Molehills

Of Mountains and Molehills

For those of you who have snow in your own backyard, I’m very jealous. Here on vacation in Northern Arizona, I’ve been enjoying the pleasures of cross country skiing, which currently entails no more hassle than me putting on warm clothes and stepping outside—fabulous. Naturally, my kids see me dressing up in my snow pants, and they start running for their ski clothes, and before you know it we’re all outside (more…)

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December 5, 2012

First Steps: Kids on Snow

First Steps: Kids on Snow

In my teach your kids to ski series from last season, we talked a lot about the process of getting your kids familiar with and interested in skiing, from the philosophical (promoting ski culture) to the practical (gearing up and dry land training). While I can’t stress enough the benefits of these off-the-hill preparations, at some point, obviously, you’re going to want to put your kids on snow (more…)

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April 12, 2012

Finding Appropriate Terrain

Finding Appropriate Terrain

I would like to relate a little story about ski terrain and my hometown mountain, the Arizona Snowbowl. I was skiing there with my son, who had recently progressed to skiing off a leash, making turns and stopping all on his own, and he wanted to ski a run called Ridge to celebrate his new-found freedom. Most of the Snowbowl’s runs are intermediate, and easy intermediate at that (more…)

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March 21, 2012

Skiing With Kids: Dry Land Training

Skiing With Kids: Dry Land Training

One of the things that occurs to me about skiing with kids is that it’s tough. It’s tough in so many ways and on so many levels I wouldn’t know where to begin to talk about it (and I wouldn’t want to scare you off), but thankfully there are ways to turn your kids into great skiers which don’t actually involve skiing, and I’m going to group all of them into my not-to-be-overlooked category called Dry Land Training (more…)

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February 29, 2012

Embracing the Edgie-Wedgie

Embracing the Edgie-Wedgie

Whenever I find myself riding up a chairlift with a ski instructor, the first thing I do is ask what age range they teach. And if they say ‘kids’, I get a bit of a glint in my eye and I start asking a whole bunch of questions. That’s how I learned about the Edgie-Wedgie, a simple and inexpensive device that I’ve really come to see as essential when working with small children (more…)

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February 24, 2012

The Liabilities of the Leash

The Liabilities of the Leash

Forgive me for sounding dramatic, but the use of a leash turns out to be something of a two-edged sword. When it comes to teaching your kids to ski, it’s worth taking a moment to contemplate the good and the bad of the leash so that you can use it to best effect (if you choose) while avoiding the worst of its pitfalls. Should you use a leash? As with most things involving children, the answer is: it depends (more…)

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February 19, 2012

Everyone Has Fun, No One Gets Hurt

Everyone Has Fun, No One Gets Hurt

‘Everyone has fun; no one gets hurt’ has become my motto when I’m skiing with my kids. As a mission statement it is simple, concise, and appropriately catchy, but before you nod your head in agreement and then move on to something more interesting, let me first take a moment to try to convince you that this little mantra is perhaps more nuanced than it first appears (more…)

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February 6, 2012

Skiing With Kids: Safety

Skiing With Kids: Safety

Here’s how it goes down: I’m riding an aging fixed-grip triple chair, holding my two-year-old daughter in my lap. My five-year old son sits beside us, asking if his ski tips are angled correctly—we’re preparing to unload. I’ve thought about this situation for a while; can I handle it safely? And my thought has been no. Trying to deal with both of them on my own sounds too initimidating—especially without safety bars (more…)

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