How many ski lessons do I need?
When learning to ski or snowboard for the first time, everyone will learn at a different pace, and there is no definitive answer as to how many lessons you’ll need before you’re tearing up the snow.
Other factors that will come into play will be your personal fitness level. If you’re fit, with a background in skating or sport that requires balance, you’re likely to learn a little quicker. If your name isn’t Sporty Spice or David Beckham, it might take a little longer – and that is totally ok!
Whether you’re new to winter sports or have been on planks for years, the number of ski or snowboarding lessons you take can depend on a few factors such as;
- how much time you have
- what level you’re aiming for
- your fitness and agility level and,
- how much you’d like to spend.
When hitting the slopes for the very first time, or the first time in a long time, you’ve got three options; brave it on your own, get taught by friends or invest in ski or snowboarding instruction.
How many ski lessons does it take to learn to ski?
It’s your first time venturing onto the mountains, lucky you! Maybe you’ve been seduced by the stunning landscape, it’s a family tradition you’ve never encountered, or your mates have sold it to you purely based on the apres lifestyle.
Filled with a combination of excitement and nerves, how, you wonder, do you gracefully glide down the slopes without ending up like Bridget Jones?
If you’re wondering how long it takes to learn to ski; as a beginner skier or snowboarder, it’s a good idea to take at least one of the following:
- one week of group lessons, or
- three, two hour private lessons
This will ensure that you can you’ve got the foundations of good ski techniques and confidently start to descend the ski slopes on your own.
While kids learning to ski have a shorter distance to fall, and appear to be built like bouncy balls, adults can learn to ski too! With the right amount of professional tuition, some motivation and a little patience, you’ll quickly master green runs and be cruising the blues in no time!
French schools often run morning and afternoon lessons starting on a Sunday or Monday through to Friday. Austrian and German schools are normally a little more flexible on what day of the week you would like to start your lessons.
Additionally, taking instruction as a first time skier is highly recommended as you will also be taught the skier’s code of conduct and how to safely navigate around the mountain.
As a beginner, the options between group lessons and private lessons will depend on your personal preference and budget. Below is a rough guide to the cost of the varying options:
- group lessons; 3 hours per day for 5 days = €200 – €300 (15 hours)
- private lessons; 2 hours per day, over three days = €450 – €550 (6 hours)
Can’t decide? Check out our helpful guide on the differences between group and private lessons.
How difficult is it to get off the ‘intermediate plateau’?
Can you comfortably get yourself down a blue slope? However, red slopes can be a little daunting and you want to progress. Maybe you really want to dial your parallel turns and start carving like a pro, or maybe you’ve had some time off and want to brush up on your techniques?
Many ski schools across Europe will offer group refresher courses for those who have some experience skiing. In France, they’re typically group lessons that will run for a couple of hours per day, over three days.
Alternatively, one or two private lessons will give you far more one-on-one time and is the fastest way of learning. Half or full-day courses, your private instructor will tailor the lesson to suit your needs and pace. Plus, there is far more flexibility with times and meeting points.
Those looking for a refresher, SkiBro independent instructors will recommend a three hour lesson at the beginning of your holiday. Here, you can learn new tips and tricks to continually work on throughout the week.
Can advanced skiers benefit from ski lessons?
Are you good skier? An experienced mountaineer? You’re better than your friends and family and don’t see the benefit in lessons? Think again!
No matter how good a skier you are, expert tuition from a fully qualified ski or snowboard instructor will go a long way. Besides, why stop learning?! Private lessons for those who have lots of experience are amazing for many reasons including:
- highlighting bad habits
- building confidence
- learning new techniques such as carving, freestyle and off piste
- exploring new parts of the ski area including off-piste terrain
If you’re not up for a technical challenge (or don’t like being told what to do), enjoy the fresh, fluffy powder by taking a ski or snowboard guide out for the day. Your off piste instructor or guide will show you the best freeriding spots for an epic day out to remember (and brag about at the pub).
So, how many ski or snowboard lessons do you need?
This is totally up to you!
Even if someone can teach you how to ski or snowboard, it will take time and practise to get the hang of it. For some, simply overcoming some mental barriers is the hardest part. If this is you, don’t feel like you’re on your own! It’s frequent and perfectly normal to feel no matter what ability level you are at.
The SkiBro team can’t recommend lessons enough – no matter your level. We are all of varying abilities from beginner to expert and will always jump at the opportunity to take an instructor out. Their knowledge is truly invaluable and you’ll always learn something new. Check out our website developer, Peter, and incredible his experience here.
Choosing between group and private lessons will be a personal preference and will depend on your budget. While group lessons are a brilliant, cost effective way to learn a new sport and meet like minded people, private lessons are by far a faster way of learning. While a little more expensive, your rate of progression is predicted to be three times as fast (thankfully this doesn’t always correlate with your speed).
A single ski lesson will only be the starting point and we encourage anyone to take professional lessons if you get the chance. Expert ski instructors that can be booked via SkiBro have years of training. They’re not only great skiers or snowboarders themselves, but they know how to teach all levels and ages. You won’t regret it!
The most important thing is not the number of lessons you take, but the time and effort you spend practicing to feel safe and confident. Take as many or as few lessons as you need and enjoy the journey!
Thinking about booking your next (or first!) ski or snowboarding instructor? At SkiBro, we have something for everyone to help you achieve your dreams! Browse the local instructors at your next destination here.
Still not sure if you want to book in ski lessons? Consult the SkiBro flowchart of truth to find out!