As you start planning your family’s ski and snowboard vacation, you should think about how you’ll spend your days on the mountain. It’s tempting to try to save money by teaching your kids how to ski or snowboard, but I’m here to tell you why you shouldn’t do that. In this article, I’ll share 10 reasons kids should take ski lessons.
The Top 10 Reasons Kids Should Take Ski Lessons
While I love spending time with my kids, hitting the slopes with them isn’t the best idea for either of us. They have more fun when they’re with kids their own age, and I don’t feel like I wasted the day stuck on the bunny slopes. Here are the top 10 reasons kids should take ski lessons to learn how to ski or snowboard on their next trip.
Lift tickets, rentals, and lunch are included
At many ski resorts, your child’s lift ticket and equipment rentals are included in the price of the lessons. It’s easier to budget for your trip when you have an all-in price for your child’s activity for the day.
Full-day lessons also include lunch (and sometimes a snack) in the price as well. When you factor in the price of a lift ticket, equipment rental, and lunch, you’re spending almost as much as it costs for lessons anyway.
Drop a few extra bucks to book the lesson. You’ll thank me later!
Read: Learn how to snowboard at Mammoth Mountain
Get professional lessons
A professional instructor knows how to teach your children how to learn how to snowboard or ski. They’ve been trained in expert strategies that will help your children learn quickly. Most instructors have received certification from the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA) on the best ways to teach based on each child’s skill level. Plus, they have access to special areas on the mountain that the average guest does not.
It was amazing to watch how quickly my daughter learned how to ski during our visits to Stratton, Blue Mountain, and Mont Tremblant in January 2020. With just one or two lessons at each resort, she went from barely able to stand and move to shredding down the bunny slope while carving her way in between cones.
It was incredible! And I know that there’s no way I could have taught her so well in such a short period of time.
They’ll make new friends
Learning is always better when you have friends learning by your side. They can laugh and giggle together in ways that just aren’t the same with an adult. Sure, the friendships that they make may not last forever, but they could be best friends for the day.
It gives you an opportunity to go on the mountain by yourself
I love my kids, but I also love being able to hit the slopes by myself and tackle more advanced terrain. If I’m with my kids on the mountain, it’s a long day of bunny slopes and (maybe) riding the lift to ride a couple of Green runs. Until they get older, stronger, and faster, the more difficult runs are off-limits.
However, when they are in snowboard lessons, you have several hours all to yourself. You can hit the Blue and Black Diamonds without fear of your child getting hurt or your spouse being mad because you took them on too tough of a run.
Read: How to ski for free with your airline boarding pass
You may be a good skier but not be a good teacher
No matter how good you are at skiing or snowboarding, most of us aren’t professionals. We don’t have all the skills or patience of an instructor. And we certainly have some bad habits. Plus, when our children are doing something wrong, we don’t know how to correct their form before they turn into bad habits.
You know where your kids will be all-day
When you’re on the mountain with your kid, it can be easy to get separated. This is especially true if you have multiple kids. Maybe you’re going too fast, they take a wrong turn, or get lost in the sea of other skiers and snowboarders on a busy day.
With ski lessons, you know that a responsible adult is watching your kid in a controlled environment. You drop them off in the morning, then pick them up when the lessons are done. Some resorts even have childcare to watch them when the lessons are finished.
Your kids aren’t allowed to leave until you check them out. That kind of peace of mind is very reassuring while traveling as a family. And it’s even more critical when you’re the only parent on the trip!
Read: Best credit cards with free checked bags (aka ski or snowboard bag)
Not familiar with the mountain terrain
When you’re visiting a new resort, you aren’t familiar with the ski runs. Even if you’re a world-class skier or snowboarder, the day is more challenging when you don’t know what the terrain is like. Magnify that by 1000 if you’re trying to learn a new mountain while simultaneously trying to teach your child how to snowboard.
Snowboard lessons for your kids allow you to focus on getting yourself acclimated to a new mountain while they learn the skills to become better at skiing and snowboarding.
Learn the basics
Building a solid foundation of the basics is key to success in everything that we do. Whether it’s snowboarding, driving a car, or cooking a meal, the basics of that skill are very important.
Learning from a ski or snowboard instructor will ensure that your kids learn the basics. As they progress in mastery of the skills, they’ll move up to more advanced groups to learn even more skills.
I started snowboarding in college and never took a lesson. I have fun on the mountain, but I know that my form isn’t the best. I’m a little too cautious and uncertain with my turns, when I pick up speed, or if I (inadvertently) hit a jump. If I had taken lessons, I’m sure that I would be much more skilled and confident on the mountain. On one of these visits to the mountain, I need to book lessons for myself too.
Costs about the same as daycare
When comparing the cost of ski or snowboard lessons against the cost of daycare, they’re about the same at most resorts. So, if you’re going to spend the money anyway, you might as well book snowboard lessons for your child. This will help them build skills and gain confidence while getting ready to join you on the slopes one day.
Read: How to save money on your ski vacation
You won’t get frustrated when they don’t listen
If all of these other reasons haven’t convinced you to book snowboard lessons for your child, consider this. Children can be frustrating. We love them with all of our hearts, but sometimes they have a mental block about learning when we’re teaching them.
They don’t listen as much or won’t take it as seriously if we’re teaching them versus a ski instructor. Have you ever noticed how a baseball coach, piano teacher, or school teacher can get through to them when you’ve been saying the same things over and over again? It’s absolutely frustrating!
You’re on the mountain to have a great family vacation. The last thing you want is for both of you to get upset on the mountain and have it ruin the rest of the trip (or at least the rest of the day).
The Bald Thoughts
Whenever we book a ski or snowboard vacation, we ensure that the budget includes lessons for the kids. We’ve had amazing trips to Mammoth, Stratton, Mont Tremblant, Blue Mountain, and more with our IKON Passes. This allows the kids to learn from professional ski instructors while giving us time alone to ride more difficult terrain and explore more of the mountain. I love my kids, but I wouldn’t love spending all day on the bunny slopes when gorgeous terrain is calling my name.
Have you ever booked ski or snowboard lessons for your kids? What were your reasons kids should take ski lessons and was it money well-spent? Share your thoughts in the comments below.