Last season I ended the winter on a high note, passing the first module of my BASI Level 3 ISIA qualification.  A year on and I’m 4 modules in, having just ended this winter passing my Second Discipline module.

The Second Discipline is to make you a more rounded ski instructor I guess, showing that you are adaptable and that you don’t only just teach skiing.  The problem that now have is that for my second discipline, I chose Telemark skiing and I think I’m in love with it.  I genuinely think I may have found something that I can work on for years to come and I know what I’ll be doing on my days off next season.

For those of you who don’t know what Telemark skiing is, have a look at the above picture.  Where a regular ski boot attaches to the ski at the front and rear of the boot, the Telemark ski is only attached at the front.  This leads to a way of skiing that is completely different to regular Alpine skiing.

It’s difficult to describe the sensation but the balance points, the way in which you use the skis, the possible different ways of skiing – in fact everything – is different.  It’s also as cool as it looks – the rhythm  of the turns are completely different to Alpine skiing and it feels really free.  Those that saw us in Les Gets on Friday last week would have had a real visual treat as 11 Telemarkers of varying ability and style were tearing around the pistes.

The end of the season is fast approaching with Morgins shutting on the 15 April and end of season parties in full effect.  We’ve had all of the live music on the pistes parties in the Portes du Soleil, Retro ski day in Chatel and the annual beer race in the Lior D’Or dutch bar.  I didn’t go to the beer race as I had to work the next day and I didn’t want to get roped in but I heard it was messy.  They usually have a hose on hand to wash the vomit down the street….

The end of the ski season means also it’s time to replace or retire a load of equipment.  The season is hard on skis that are constantly being skied over by kids, boots that are flexed into submission by bend the knees demos and poles bent through too much leaning on.  Sadly, I’m retiring my Head teaching skis this year which have served me well for two and a half seasons and looking to replace them with new teaching skis, race boots, telemark boots and bindings and googles.

We’ve got a school group here this week for what looks to be the final weeks serious work of the season and it’s supposed to rain all this week.  Teaching skiing in the rain is the ultimate misery but we are all a bit demob happy after a bumper season so everyone is making the best of it.