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CSIA levels 1 and 2 - advice needed!

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

 

Hi all,
 
I could do with a bit of advice. I’m planning to do CSIA levels 1 and 2 next season (probably in Banff).
 
All the companies that offer package deals from the UK charge around £7,000-£7,500 for an 11 week course. This seems a bit long and a bit expensive, especially as I’ve noticed that the two CSIA courses are actually only 3-4 days each.
 
Anyone that’s done them (or similar courses): Do they teach you everything you need to know during the course, or do you need lots of extra lessons in order to prepare for them?
 
About me: I’m a confident skier – 29 years old now and have been skiing since 11. Lots of lessons when I was young but none recently. The CSIA instructors may well have a few technical pointers for me, but I’m confident that I ski at the required standard for both qualifications. However, I’ve never been involved with any kind of teaching/lesson planning.
 
Any advice much appreciated!
 
Also – if anyone has tips for cheap accommodation (or lift pass deals) in Banff, I’d love to hear them!
 
Cheers
 
JL
post #2 of 7

You can get some info from CSIA Alberta on the Level 1 courses:

 

http://www.snowproab.com/skipro/levelone_reg.htm

 

Also, the course dates are on this page.

 

http://www.snowproab.com/skipro/levelone_dates.htm

 

The Level 2 courses are adminstered through CSIA and you can get the schedule by searching on their site.

 

http://www.snowpro.com/csia/e/schedule.html

 

The "gap year" courses sponsored by UK companies are a great way for a skier to get feedback on a daily basis for an extended period of time (11 weeks sounds pretty good!) with video feedback, etc. as some offer. 

 

I did my Level 1 in Whistler and it was a great challenge, especially when demonstrating skills at the beginner level. It was great that before the course, I did an afternoon lesson with a Level 3 Instructor who gave me a few tips on the CSIA model. 

 

Do the prep with the downloadable PDF reading materials, it will help a lot.

 

http://www.snowpro.com/csia/e/resources-online-workshops.html

 

During the course, you are continuously evaluated, and get great feedback from the Course Conductors.

 

Best of luck!

post #3 of 7

The level 1 is a great course for any intermediate skier.

 

One of our members pointed me to this site before I took my level 1: http://www.snowproab.com/skipro/course_materials.htm

 

It gives you a demo of how well potential candidates ski at each of the instructor levels.

 

I found the most challenging part of the course was mastering the drills sufficiently to be able to apply them. It's one thing to ski well - it's another matter to perform the drills properly! 

 

Here are some tips: 

 

  • Listen to the feedback the instructor gives to each of the candidates. If Lisa seems to do a lot of "shoulder steering", your eye will be more likely attuned to that when you have her in your practice teach. 
  • When you do your practice teach, make sure you only use drills you're good at. If Tina has problems getting her weight over the outside ski, and you drill lifting the inside foot throughout the turns and fall, it won't look great! (You may want to substitute the "tap the inside ski" if you're better at that, for example.)
  • Ski behind the instructor regularly, but don't be a hog. (I found that really rude in the course...)
  • Try not to get offended if the instructor says you're at the initiation stage on some skills during day 1 or 2.  I supposedly had a few initiation-level skills; they were acquisition-level by day 4.
  • If possible, consider taking an assessment by a CSIA examiner prior to the course. If you're already a strong parallel skier on intermediate runs, you could probably do the level 1 right away and save yourself time and money. (If you have no major issues, such as banking turns or rotating shoulders to turn, and if you show adaptability to what the instructors demand, you'll probably pass.)

 

Best of luck!

post #4 of 7

The CSIA courses teach you all you need to know.  Hence for the teaching portions, L1 especially no prior work is required.  L2 however, it will definatly help if you have some real world experience, if you dont the GAP programs can help.

 

The real value of the GAP programs thou is getting your skiing ready.  Most candidates that enter the GAP programs do not ski at the L1 standard at the start.  But most make it by the end.  No matter what your current level, the GAP programs will make your skiing better....however, if your goal is simply to get the L1 and L2, and you have reliable, objective evidence to suggest you will pass your skiing portions without outside help then the GAP programs are by no means necessary.

 

However, I will point out, when you consider that the GAP fee includes accomadation/lessons/lift pass somtimes food, somtimes flights, somtimes a ski suit, somtimes discount ski gear...they are not bad value, compared to what you would pay on your own.  There is a reason they are so popular.

post #5 of 7

Another option is to do the CSIA level 1 yourself.... then join a shorter CSIA level 2 training course. Most Level 1 exams are designed as clinic's and based over 4 days.... good skiers should achieve the level over the 4 days. But like Skidude said the level 2 you will need good training through a course or over a couple of years through a ski school.

 

 

If you do decide to choose a Ski Instructor training course, look into Non Stop Ski in Canada.

It really comes down to the trainers that makes the course and the use of your time - successful, My experience is they have great trainers and are the best in Canada.

Take it from me, as I run the Rookie Academy(Ski and Snowboard instructor training) based in America and New Zealand - Non Stop Ski would be the company I'd chose in Canada.

 

 

post #6 of 7

The CSIA L1 course is 4 days, with no formal prerequisites.  You should be a reasonable intermediate parallel skier.

 

The CSIA L2 course is 5 days, and requires CSIA L1.  Skiing expectations are a lot higher than L1.  Not necessarily high performance, but a good range and good demonstrations are expected.

 

Don't forget there's the teaching part of the course as well, so going into the CSIA L2 with only L1 and no teaching experience isn't the best idea. 

 

 

post #7 of 7

Iv just got back from an 11 week instructor course, 95%ish of the people that sat level 2 passed. The level of skiing required is not high you just have to demonstrate it well in the CSIA way. If you sit the 11 weeks you should pass no problem, the main thing is to listen to what the instructor is saying and do it. The teaching really isnt that hard either as long as you dont do anything stupid and you learn enough through the course. I would agree though sit the Level 1 course by yourself and then get a shorter level 2 course as the level 1 is really simple and youll know enough from the 1 to set you going for the two. But either way youll enjoy the experience.  Good Luck.

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