Originally Posted by TheRusty
My view of the certification process is that it is a road map. It shows you how to get there, but you have to read the map and you have to do the driving. We have a guy at our resort that couldn't do railroad tracks. I beat the crap out of him with every trick I knew and he still couldn't do them. I asked examiners and D teamers for help and he still couldn't do them. Nobody could magically make this guy stop turning his feet and do railroad tracks. For him, there was no pathway. The road map that said tip the feet vs turn the feet wasn't working. But he can do them now and he is now a level 2. He did not blame his sucky trainers. He did not find a magic epiphany. He believed he could do it and just kept working at it until he did it (still with a lot of help). As trainers we should have been able to do a better job with him. I've got one trainer at my resort that I always ski like crap when I'm with him. He should be able to do a better job with me. But I also should be able to ski better in front of him. It's not that I can't fix that problem. I've just chosen to focus my energies elsewhere. It may be time for SMJ to find his path outside of PSIA. I don't care whether me coming down on his head helps to push him there or helps to push him onto a more productive pathway within PSIA. I am trying to push him by pushing a button that I've seen from personal interaction with him. My Mom once told me that I'd never be a good teacher. She wasn't wrong. She knew exactly what she was doing.
I teach in my day job. Here's my take on teaching's role in PSIA certification process, taken from years of teaching art to high school students, college students, and senior citizens. It applies to anyone helping an instructor move up the certification ladder, including PSIA D-teamers doing special clinics, examiners teaching clinics, trainers at the local hill doing group sessions, and anyone doing personal coaching with that instructor.
--Teachers who know their technical stuff inside and out are necessary to help instructors move up the certification ladder. Otherwise what they teach may be garbled.
--Teachers need to be able to "read" the personality of the instructor/student and communicate what comes next in a way that connects with the person they are teaching.
--Group instruction is not adequate. Individual feedback, customized by the teacher for that specific instructor, is absolutely necessary. Such instruction can happen in a group clinic.
--Teachers need to act as if they believe in that instructor's potential, no matter how slow the instructor is in making positive change. Suspension of disbelief may be called for.
--The instructor/student needs to seek out a teacher/trainer who is willing and able to do these things. This may take a long search.
--The instructor/student needs to accept negative criticism from that teacher and work with it to get things changed. A willingness to be humiliated is important.
--The instructor/student needs to keep at it with due diligence and deliberate practice outside of the clinics, no matter how long it takes. Belief in self, no matter the amount of setbacks, is necessary.