As instructors, part of our job is to set a safe example and promote safety among our guests. While not required, we strongly encourage the use of helmets for all staff, and you are encouraged to recommend their use to your guests. Helmets are required equipment in all children’s lessons. Part of your lessons should also be devoted to covering the seven points of the skier responsibility code, which can be found on any trail map, and teaching SMART Style if conducting a freestyle lesson. The following videos from the NSAA contain information about these codes:
In addition to the responsibility code, safety also includes choosing the appropriate terrain for your lessons. While we may like to ski or ride the bumps, it’s not a good place to take a beginner. Be aware of changing conditions which may result in icy or slushy patches, hidden obstacles, and limited visibility. As a general rule of thumb, when teaching a new skill, keep the terrain one step lower than what your student is capable of, and only move up in terrain after they have successfully demonstrated what you are teaching on the easier terrain.
Safety also includes basic physical fitness and using proper techniques to avoid injury. This ranges from taking a few minutes to warmup before harder runs. After all, no one wants to tear their ACL or suffer another season-ending injury. While we can’t control our guests levels of fitness, we can take a moment to stretch briefly with the class and warmup before jumping into harder runs. Doing this may seem pointless or silly, but your guests are much more likely to have a good time and come back for more lessons.
We also have daily safety information at lineup covering a wide variety of topics. You can find details in the locker room if you want additional information. In addition, if you see or experience something that seems unsafe to you, please notify one of the supervisors immediately so that they can work on correcting it. You may be the first one to notice it, and by reporting it you could prevent one of your coworkers or a guest from becoming injured.
And be sure to continue to use the “Near Miss Reporting” so we can continue to make the resort safer for everyone.