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Starting kids young

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 
OK, who agrees that starting kids young is the key to them being amazing kick ass skiers?

Is there any other way?
post #2 of 36
I agree. Started mine when she was three.
post #3 of 36
had him on snow at 18 mo. They don't really get teh muscle strength till 4-6, but to get them out there and used to the climate and skis is key.
post #4 of 36
My wife and I have three married daughters. We started them skiing, in the house first, from 18 - 24 months depending on their age during ski season. Two of them are ski instructors as is one of my son-in-laws, the third daugter chooses not to instruct. They started three of my grandsons skiing from 18 -24 months depending on their age during ski season. Number four grandson will start at a similar time (he's only six months old). I should add that my wife is a former racer and I'm an instructor.

We don't grow too old to play, we grow old because we stop playing - Herman "Jackrabbit" Johanson
post #5 of 36
OTOH, I've started early and 35 years later I'm not yet 100% amazing and kick ass...
post #6 of 36
I'm in the same boat as Philippe. But I'm sure I'm a lot better than I'd been had I started as an adult.

And my kids -- who haven't just gotten started early, but at least over the past two years, often as well -- will probably pass me soon. Two of mine just turned seven, and they already have over 100 days on snow -- more than I had until I was roughly twice their age. They rock.
post #7 of 36
I don't think starting them at a real early age is essential but it does not hurt. The biggest advantage I see is that the earlier you start the earlier you get to share the passion as a family.

My kids did not get a taste of skiing until they are almost 4 (just once or twice) and they don't really ski regularly until they are almost 5. They are now as comfortable on snow as anyone their age. May I add they don't come from generations (not even one) of good skiers either.
post #8 of 36
I think it depends on how you nurture thier skiing during tose early years. My daughter started at 2 and IMHO is on her way to being a kick-ass skier after two seasons of 50+ days (skis bumps and won NASTAR platinum her first time in a race course). On the other hand I teach a lot of kids who started at that age and had parents who gave them crap equipment and over -terrained them. The best skiers I've had the pleasure of teaching started at age 8 and within a year surpassed thier peers who had 5 or 6 seasons under thier belts.
post #9 of 36
Thread Starter 
"young" I guess is an open-ended term. I agree pretty much with all the posts here though.

Mine both started at 2.
post #10 of 36
Starting young (under age 10) is certainly an advantage, but starting a little later and getting tons of slopetime (and instruction) will equalize or surpass an early starter who doesn't ski as often. I think several on this site can testify to this.
post #11 of 36
Is there any other way?


Any activity that involves balance and agility, body awareness and speed will all help when transitioning to snow.

These could be:
Trampoline use
Water skiing/ Wake boarding
Go Cart racing
Roller Blading
Nordic Skiing
etc., etc., etc.
post #12 of 36
http://forums.epicski.com/attachment...d=118417068 3

I believe that sarting kids out young is a good idea. If nothing else, it gets them used to having fun in the cold. I started my youngest daughter out when she was 18 months old. She didn't have a whole lot of muscle control when she first started, but by the end of the season, she was holding a nice wedge and could turn in both directions pretty well. She didn't know her left from her right at that age, so I had a Snoopy sticker on one ski, and Woodstock on the other. When I wanted her to turn I yell out for her to press on Snoopy or Woodstock, depending on which way I wanted her to turn.

The link above is a picture of her. I couldn't figure out how to just have the picture in my post.:
post #13 of 36
Starting young helps, even if they don't ski a lot and become kick-ass skiers.
My son skied once when he was very young (3 maybe?) and then not again for 2 years -- but when he did start, he went in with the attitude "Oh yeah, I've done this before, no big deal."

He's been reasonably competent fro a number of years, but didn't really start to get good till last season, when he started racing (high school team).

Although he was skiing (single) black mogul runs in Utah 2 years ago, so maybe my grading system is too Epicski-ish.
post #14 of 36
Originally Posted by Snowmiser View Post
Sorry - link doesnt work for me - says invalid attachment.
post #15 of 36
Sorry mdf. It's just a picture of my little girl skiing when she was 18 months. I can't seem to just put the photo on the post for some reason.
post #16 of 36
Originally Posted by Snowmiser View Post
I can't seem to just put the photo on the post for some reason.
My understanding is that to add an image you have to be a epic supporter. Or, you can "attach" an URL of an existing page.
post #17 of 36
My wife took my son out (while I was skiin) when he was 18mos....I took him about 7 more times this season....On his second birthday we skied down a dirt hill....I have video and will post it when I learn how....

Last night----he asked me to pull his skis out of the attic...I did. He put them on and said...."me ski in mud" Where he got mud,, I dont know...but I love it. 2 yrs 3 weeks old!!!!!
post #18 of 36
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by I:)Skiing View Post
My wife took my son out (while I was skiin) when he was 18mos....I took him about 7 more times this season....On his second birthday we skied down a dirt hill....I have video and will post it when I learn how....

Last night----he asked me to pull his skis out of the attic...I did. He put them on and said...."me ski in mud" Where he got mud,, I dont know...but I love it. 2 yrs 3 weeks old!!!!!
Cool! Another dirt skier enters the fold!

You can put the vids up on Youtube, thats what I do.
post #19 of 36
post #20 of 36
I think before 4 doesn't really matter for eventual skiing skills. Although building up the desire to ski before 4 helps. That being said mine did start before 4 but mostly in a get acquainted way (skis in house, skis in yard, a little sliding) - the true learning at real skiing was 4 and older.

Time on the snow makes a huge difference -- think about the 10 year old who started at 6 but skis 50 days a year (250 days experience) compared to someone starting at 3 and skiing until 10 years old for 10 days a year (80 days). Plus I bet the 3 year old wasn't actually getting a lot out of the early days compared to the 6 year old and when you only get a few days a year there is more wasted time getting back where you were last year. The day in day out skiers tend to surpass the 1-2 week a year skiers regardless of age they started (especially if they race or are in another sort of consistant ski program).

Skiing a lot is the best way to get good -- for adults too. I know many adults that contrary to the myth are very good skiers even though they learned as adults. Some are very athletic -- but others are not necessarily athletically gifted. However, all the great adult learners I know ski a lot of days (50 plus days a year).

Remember it is not a race -- first doesn't mean best later... but sitting in the house and not getting started doesn't get you their either -- but bad memories of Daddy making you ski and you hating it don't help. It is a balancing act. Make sure it is FUN.

Always Skiing
post #21 of 36
Both my Boys started well before the age of 4. They grew up with skiing as part of their life. I'd leave them in ski school all day while I patrolled. Actually it was cheaper than paying a babysitter and they got quality instruction. When they went to school, they still skied some evenings and always on the weekends. I dare say they averaged 4 days a week skiing during the Winters here and at least two trips out west besides. It's a true story when I tell you they both could ski anything the Colorado Resorts could offer by the age of 7. I'm a firm believer in starting them as young as possible. ski schools will tell you they'll take them as long as they're potty trained and can get their equipment on and off by themselves. You can practice that in your living room at home. 9not the potty training though)
post #22 of 36
The best part of starting them young is they don't remember it. In my kids minds they have always skiied. They don't recall the early falls, chairlift "mishaps" and occasional tears. Unfortunately they also don't remember that I used to be better than they are!!!
post #23 of 36
18-month-olds look cute on skis ...:

... but their attention span is very-very short.
post #24 of 36
Thread Starter 
Is that your son? Awesome!

Here's mine:

post #25 of 36
I agreed starting early is good. I was on skis at 3. My oldest daughter was on skis at 2 and the our youngest will be on ski this year at 2.

Racermon is on to something. Getting them out sliding on snow and having fun turns them into skiers. They will have always viewed themselves as skier.

So far it was worked out pretty well with our oldest.

At 2

At 3

At 4

Plus it teaches them the joy of new gear(At 3):
post #26 of 36
I think getting them on snow is a big part, but you must also give them the time to learn, and the right equipment.

I started skiing in 1st grade, with rental equipment the first few years. Then my parents bought me some used skis at a pawn shop, I was sking something in the 160 range when I was in the 3rd grade! I'm lucky I didn't hurt myself, let alone learn anything. I moved up to newer used equipment in highschool, 203cm Salomons in 2000 :.

The big improvements really came the year that I was an instructor. I saw the most improvement ever in my technique, 6 days a week will do that to you.
post #27 of 36
There's what may be an apocryphal report done by the USST that shows that the key is getting them started by the age of...10 years. I haven't seen the report itself, but in terms of neurological development windows it makes sense. There's no topspin in skiing, or riding; no need to bend the ball. There's huge emphasis in this country on starting everything early and being in the top "percentile" in everything. Strangely, per capita we don't produce very many good skiers, golfers, soccer players, or for that matter runners. Read: start your kid at 18 months if it brings you as parents joy and it doesn't give your kid frostbite or turn kiddo off from skiing forever. Don't think it makes a good skier. Start them by 10 years of age if you want them to make the Olympics or, more likely, find out that "if you're hurt you're dirt."
post #28 of 36

Ski Parties

Mommy says that we are going to have one ski party a week until the season comes. We walk our skis all over the house and play whatever games we can think of. The girls love it and it serves the most important purpose I can think of; having fun as a family.

2 yrs. in the front, 3 yrs in back of her. (I won't tell you wifey or my ages)

Both of my daughters have grown up at the mountain - at least five days a week. My oldest has been on skis ever season since she was born (April baby "skied" in March before her 1st B-day). She is now 3 and thinks she is a skier. My youngest has never been on snow more than 5 minutes. She just did not like it. Fine with me. Now she wants to have her skis on around the house, so maybe this season will go better.

Here is my oldest at 11 mos., obviously more of a photo op than anything.

Enjoy every minute with 'em. If they are into what you are into, great. If not, get into what they are into. Make it about relationships, not sports - and have fun!

P.S. For those taking toddlers out, plan on REALLY short outings. Twenty minutes may even be too long. As soon as there is a sign that they are not enjoying ANY part of the experience, take them inside, warm them up and smile. Better to leave the snow with good memories than to wait until they are uncomfortable and leave on a bad note.
post #29 of 36
Start 'em early and the next thing you know, they're grown up.
post #30 of 36
Scene: Dining room table tonight.

Temp: Its 56 F now and we are not turning on the heat due to oil prices. Its about 65 in the house.

My son says....Daddy I am cold---as he sits eating dinner in his elmo underware and no shirt.

Reply.....you should get used to being cold....we are going to be cold when we go skiing.

Response: OH...I'm Cold....we going skiing. Not mommy, just Daddy and me. And if I get cold I can wear a coat...and pants.

Prepare them young.
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