What its like to be a snowboard instructor?!
The day in the life of a snowboard instructor….
So many people ask me, what’s it actually like teaching all day? Do you enjoy it? Why did you want to teach snowboarding?
Well there are many different answers to these kinds of questions and it all depends on who you are and what you value as to what the answer will be. I can only talk for myself in saying that there are many things we do in life as you grow older that you may not want to do or you don’t agree with, Crappy jobs for example that you end up having to do because of financial commitments. For me snowboarding is and will always be a fun thing to do, it’s the reason I started doing it and it’s the reason I have chosen it to be what I focus my time on. I am all about having fun and really living in the moment and enjoying something for what it is.
Sure there are days when it is testing to be an instructor, Imagine a day when all your friends have the day off and there’s fresh snow and you get given a beginner snowboard lesson. You have two options, one is to be grumpy and moody because you can’t do what you what you would like to. Or, you can be positive shrug it off and say oh well I will get my day one day and it will that much sweeter, teach a great lesson to someone who really wants to enjoy a little snippet of what you get to do everyday.
Lets be honest here most if not all of us who have jobs have days where you don’t want to be there, you have bad days and you have good days that’s life! The thing is with teaching snowboarding it is what you make it, I personally love my job because I have a way to snowboard 100 days a year and get paid to do so. The whole do a week a season wasn’t for me I needed more than that and I’m not quite good enough to do triple corks so I teach!
Everyday I wake up I check the weather forecast, see if we had snow leave the seaside to go snowboarding!! Yes on Vancouver Island we have the ocean right next to the mountains so sometimes its check the surf forecast!!
30 minutes later I’m up the mountain getting my gear on and luckily the instructors at Mount Washington get the privilege of first run, which means that before any of the public load we get the whole mountain to ourselves to warm up and get ready for the day.
Then we get given our lessons for the day, it could either be a full day or a half-day lesson, so off you go to give the passion that we all have for the sport skiing or snowboarding. One thing I really concentrate on when I teach is the fact that you have to realize that a beginner will literally listen to every word you say. You have a great responsibility to give someone something that you take for granted when you can snowboard and as long as you can pass on the passion and have fun with it that who a great instructor is. Someone who is passionate about what they do and have fun doing it especially when teaching snowboarding because this is what will get people learning and stoked to do the sport we love.
Written By Tom Arnold
Snowboard Coach for Section 8 Snow sport Institute
Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada