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Skiing lessons for novice? [going to Japan from Singapore]

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hi all,

 

I'm super excited to go skiing next week and try my new boots! I have done alpine skiing twice earlier (2007: green to blue to red slopes in three days, and 2015 March: one day on green/blue). Self-learned, so have never taken skiing lessons, and I am sure my technique is not that good I seem to pull it through by courage/trial.

 

This year, I am going for 8 days in skiing (2+3+3 days in three cities), and feel like it might be the best time to lessons.

 

Questions:

1. Should I take lessons? Beginner FAQ recommends, but I am not really a beginner... so what level should I tell the instructor if I go for lessons?

2. Group or private lessons? Pros and Cons.

3. Should I take lessons on day 1 or get myself comfortable and take lessons on day 2/3?

4. Anyone you recommend in Nozawa Onsen or Niseko?

 

PS: my apologies if this thread doesn't belong in the beginner section.

 

Moderator note: moved to International Zone

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post #2 of 11

I definitely suggest taking lessons since its a great way to learn a new ski resort and we could all use a lesson no matter what our skill is.  I think a group lesson would be fine.  Normally they will assess your ability then group you with similarly skilled skiers.  No need to request a specific skill level lesson.  I'd recommend taking a lesson on day one so you can maximize what you've learned in your lesson.

post #3 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by heman View Post
 

Hi all,

 

I'm super excited to go skiing next week and try my new boots! I have done alpine skiing twice earlier (2007: green to blue to red slopes in three days, and 2015 March: one day on green/blue). Self-learned, so have never taken skiing lessons, and I am sure my technique is not that good I seem to pull it through by courage/trial.

 

This year, I am going for 8 days in skiing (2+3+3 days in three cities), and feel like it might be the best time to lessons.

 

Questions:

1. Should I take lessons? Beginner FAQ recommends, but I am not really a beginner... so what level should I tell the instructor if I go for lessons?

2. Group or private lessons? Pros and Cons.

3. Should I take lessons on day 1 or get myself comfortable and take lessons on day 2/3?

4. Anyone you recommend in Nozawa Onsen or Niseko?

 

PS: my apologies if this thread doesn't belong in the beginner section.

 

Moderator note: moved to International Zone


Normally the Beginner Zone would be a reasonable place to ask for advice.  But since the OP is going to Japan, let's see if International Zone is better.

 

Paging @jimintokyo , @markojp who are instructors and have experience in Japan.

 

After a long day of travel involving flying, I prefer to ski for a day before having a lesson.  If a place is not very busy, usually midweek, then a group lesson can work out well for an intermediate, at least in North America.  Doing a couple 2-3 hour lessons a day or two apart can be better than a full day lesson.

post #4 of 11

NOT an instructor, just to be clear.

I don't have any particular recommendations but there will be plenty of English-speaking instructors (mostly Aussies/Kiwis) in Niseko, and Hakuba if that's also on your itinerary. Not sure in Nozawa, but I expect the ski school there can hook you up with someone who speaks enough for a lesson. 

Obviously it's too late, but I would've suggested for a relative beginner going to just one resort, or at most two, on an 8-day trip. You're going to be spending a lot of time & energy just on travel. Hope you enjoy the trip and the skiing.

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimintokyo View Post
 

NOT an instructor, just to be clear.

I don't have any particular recommendations but there will be plenty of English-speaking instructors (mostly Aussies/Kiwis) in Niseko, and Hakuba if that's also on your itinerary. Not sure in Nozawa, but I expect the ski school there can hook you up with someone who speaks enough for a lesson. 

Obviously it's too late, but I would've suggested for a relative beginner going to just one resort, or at most two, on an 8-day trip. You're going to be spending a lot of time & energy just on travel. Hope you enjoy the trip and the skiing.

Thanks Jim, and Marznc. Marznc - hi again!

 

Jim - that is spread over four weeks, and includes Norway. Thankfully not 8 consecutive days!

 

The ski resort website says they've group lessons, and early bird 1 hour private lesson that appear to be almost same price as group lesson for two hours. That will be on my 2nd day there, so I think that will be cool given Marznc's point about travel and comfort...

post #6 of 11
Given that you do not have alot of mileage, I suggest several longer lessons. Not sure if there are group lessons longer than 2 hours but if there are, I think that would be helpful.

You are in a great position to learn good habits. Skiing with an instructor allows you to practice with a person who can observe and make suggestions contemporaneously.

Good luck!
post #7 of 11

that is spread over four weeks, and includes Norway. 

 

Glad to hear it! I was thinking that's an awfully tight schedule.  

post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimintokyo View Post
 

NOT an instructor, just to be clear.

I don't have any particular recommendations but there will be plenty of English-speaking instructors (mostly Aussies/Kiwis) in Niseko, and Hakuba if that's also on your itinerary. Not sure in Nozawa, but I expect the ski school there can hook you up with someone who speaks enough for a lesson. 

Obviously it's too late, but I would've suggested for a relative beginner going to just one resort, or at most two, on an 8-day trip. You're going to be spending a lot of time & energy just on travel. Hope you enjoy the trip and the skiing.


Sorry, I confused you with @Jim. who is an instructor.  In any case, you give good advice for folks going to ski in Japan.

post #9 of 11

Hey Heman, 

 

I work in Niseko, when will you be there? I also have some friends that work in Nosawa if you would like a private lesson recommendation there.

 

Re. timing of lessons, with short trips and only a little previous experience I would say just start with a lesson on the first morning as you will progress a lot faster with some guidance.  

 

Group lessons - Pros - cheaper, social aspect, can learn as a group, good to have peers to relate to. Cons - can be tricky to find a homogenous group, little time focused on you, will move at the pace of the slowest student

Private Lessons Pros, targeted specifically at your needs, typically higher qualified/more experienced instructors, Cons, more expensive, less social

 

I only teach private lessons so I am little biased towards those, but a group lesson can be good too, especially if you get yourself in the right level in a small group. 

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hey Jim,

 

Thanks. Can I PM you?

post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by heman View Post
 

Hey Jim,

 

Thanks. Can I PM you?

Of course, feel free.

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