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Tips for intermediates over 40 planning to ski until 70+

contesstant

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#41
This discussion reminds me that it's time to take a women's ski clinic at Mammoth this season. There's one in late February that I have marked on my calendar, as I cannot make the January one. Anyone want to join me? I'll start a separate thread as the time gets closer.
Y

Yes! Oh that would be awesome!! Not sure if I can swing it but I'll try!!!
 

VickiK

Angel Diva
#42
This discussion reminds me that it's time to take a women's ski clinic at Mammoth this season. There's one in late February that I have marked on my calendar, as I cannot make the January one. Anyone want to join me? I'll start a separate thread as the time gets closer.
This sounds perfect.
 

contesstant

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#43
I am dying to go to it, but it's midweek and I'd have to figure out childcare for 4 days. Not easy! I really REALLY want to do a clinic, though. I am right on the cusp of jumping to another level in my skiing and I know some good instruction for a few days could push me over that hump!
 

SkiNana

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#44
The only ski clinic I have ever taken was a Jeannie Thoren "Ski Like a Girl" clinic. I would like to say it was an unmitigated success but it wasn't - not at all. I don't know whether she knew some of the participants from previous clinics or just made snap judgements, but, to put it bluntly, she played favorites. There were some of us who might just as well have sent in our money and stayed at home! It kind of soured me on women's clinics though I know that's unfair.
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#45
The 3-day NASTC clinic that was set up for the Diva Week West a few years ago was great. We ended up with three groups based on ability. Only worked with the instructors in the mornings. That left the afternoon to practice or take it easy. For me, it was a very good experience. Definitely took my skiing to the next level. Of course, we were extremely lucky and got two days in fresh powder, with the second day being quite deep.

Working with the high level NASTC instructors gave me an appreciation of difference between a Level 3 instructor or someone with decades of experience vs. a less qualified instructor. Now I'm more likely to look for a Level 3 instructor for a private lesson when I go out west. Before I wasn't convinced it was worth the extra money over a group lesson.
 
#46
The only ski clinic I have ever taken was a Jeannie Thoren "Ski Like a Girl" clinic. I would like to say it was an unmitigated success but it wasn't - not at all. I don't know whether she knew some of the participants from previous clinics or just made snap judgements, but, to put it bluntly, she played favorites. There were some of us who might just as well have sent in our money and stayed at home! It kind of soured me on women's clinics though I know that's unfair.
That would speak of as staying away from that particular clinic but not all women's clinic.
 

SkiNana

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#47
Clearly. and I'm aware of that. It's a case of "Once burned, twice cautious.", I believe.
 

bounceswoosh

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#48
By the way, Breck sent out an email to its lesson pass holders. We have access to several holder-only clinics. One of them is a 60+ day where instructors will all be 50+. It seems a little odd to me because I ski with so many seniors who out ski me in every way, but I guess I forget that they are not the only skiers on the mountain. By definition, the seniors I ski with all the time are the ones comfortable skiing in a heterogeneous group. Maybe I'll ask some of them if they'll consider it. It's worth getting the word out; dh and I are both pass holders, but I got the email and he didn't.
 

Pequenita

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#49
The only ski clinic I have ever taken was a Jeannie Thoren "Ski Like a Girl" clinic. I would like to say it was an unmitigated success but it wasn't - not at all. I don't know whether she knew some of the participants from previous clinics or just made snap judgements, but, to put it bluntly, she played favorites. There were some of us who might just as well have sent in our money and stayed at home! It kind of soured me on women's clinics though I know that's unfair.
I think these things (well, almost all group things) really depend on the trainer/coach, personalities in the group, and the trainer/coach's ability to manage those personalities. I don't think it's a male/female thing. Many of us can teach stuff, but it's a gifted trainer/coach who can manage group dynamics. It's too bad that your experience had the favorites thing going on – women are cliquey enough to begin with (sorry gals, we sometimes are)! :smile:
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#50
Has anyone done a clinic for over 50? Might try the one at Massanutten when we go for a long weekend at the end of Jan. $30 for 2-hours is certainly a great deal. I've watched the PSIA Level 3 instructor who teaches the clinic do instructor training.
 

CdnStix

Certified Ski Diva
#51
This is such an amazing thread with fantastic thoughts, suggestions and encouragement!! Like many others who have posted, I have now hit that "40" milestone and after taking a break from skiing for 12 years when I was broke through university and starting my career, I wanted to get back into it about 8 years ago. After a good first couple of years the past several have been hindered by various injuries (broken/sprained ankles climbing, fractured/displaced foot bones mountain biking, knee injuries running, torn hip labrum skiing). Learning the hard way I have now realized that a) I don't heal as quickly as I used to, and b) it is a fine balance between making a smart decision and pushing it a little too far.
It is so easy to get caught up in the "just one more run" mentality because the snow conditions are so incredible you just don't want to stop, or feeling the need to keep up to others you are skiing with. At the end of the day, I believe (now) it is always better to be able to ski again the next day, and the next, and the next. Don't get me wrong - I will fully admit that I have a competitive nature where I keep pushing myself and somehow always end up in speed competitions with my husband during every season (crazy!!!) but the difference for me now is how hard I push myself will vary depending on how I am feeling on any given day. On the days I'm feeling "off" I slow things down and practice the great ski technic advice I get my 67 year old neighbour that we usually ski with!! That may mean taking a different run from everyone else so I can practice what he's shown me on terrain I am comfortable on and meeting them at the chair instead of following them down something I'm not comfortable on that day. On the days I feel strong I put all that practice from my "off" days into play and WOW does it feel good! Regardless of what kind of day it is, the smile on my face from being outside in such a stunning, breathtaking place with wonderful friends is all the reward I need. That what keeps me feeling young and on the hill as much as I can be.
There is a guy that is a legend at my local hill (Sunshine Village). He is affectionately called "Trapper Jerry". He turned 95 last year and is still skiing. Talk about inspiring. Up until his 90th birthday his birthday tradition was to ski Sunshine's Delirium Dive, a double black/controlled access area (avi gear required)!!! Here is a link to an article on him from his 90th birthday if anyone is interested:
http://www.canada.com/reginaleaderp...=abf18ce8-1e3d-4007-9c76-cb2e68b161b1&k=95418
 
#52
This is such an amazing thread with fantastic thoughts, suggestions and encouragement!! Like many others who have posted, I have now hit that "40" milestone . . .

There is a guy that is a legend at my local hill (Sunshine Village). He is affectionately called "Trapper Jerry". He turned 95 last year and is still skiing. Talk about inspiring. Up until his 90th birthday his birthday tradition was to ski Sunshine's Delirium Dive, a double black/controlled access area (avi gear required)!!! Here is a link to an article on him from his 90th birthday if anyone is interested:
http://www.canada.com/reginaleaderp...=abf18ce8-1e3d-4007-9c76-cb2e68b161b1&k=95418
Welcome! Always happy to see more Divas from outside the U.S.

Seems like there are plenty of skiers in the 90+ club for inspiration. Thanks the story.
 

va_deb

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#53
Great advice here! I started skiing in my mid 40s and wish I had known a few things (some build on others' points; some are new).

1. Invest in boots ASAP, preferably via a trained boot fitter. Boots are more important than skis. My 'a ha' moment on this came via a forum where a man explained it this way: "You date your skis, but you marry your boots." Your boot size may be smaller than the Mondo conversion guidelines. Expect the process to take about an hour if you're with a good fitter.

2. Don't rush to buy brand new skis. If you have good boots you can try different demo skis or lease skis for a whole season to get a sense of where you are as a skier. You might also consider getting some at a ski swap or at a place that takes consigned skis.

3. Invest in quality time on the mountain, ideally mid week when it's less crowded and when you might get lucky with a group lesson that becomes private (or semi-private). If crowds aren't your thing avoid busy Saturdays and especially holiday weekends. You'll get more runs in, and you'll be more relaxed being able to learn or re-learn without the crowds. And you'll save money, too. Take lessons as often as you can instead of chasing the perfect ski. if you can spring for a trip at the end of the season you'll often find great travel and package deals, less crowds, and discounted lessons. (We had great luck in Tahoe last April, btw.)

4. Start slow, if logistics allow. Get the 4-hour lift ticket instead of the 8-hour one if you're just starting out or easing back into it. 4 hours is a long time for rusty ski legs!

5. Make day trips or quick overnights your mainstay when you're just starting back. Especially East Coast ladies, stay flexible as often as possible so you can go where conditions are best at the time. You'll have much better experiences on a decent groomed trail than on icy hard packs or crud or slush.

6. Try to find a ski buddy at your level or just above you. Ask other divas about local ski clubs, and check Meetup.com too. Don't be shy about asking friends, and friends of friends, if they know anyone who is thinking about getting back into skiing or wants to give it a try. You also might be able to find people in a group class you click with, or ask the ski school if they'd be willing to pass your contact info to other solo female skiers taking lessons the day you're there.

7. Before you head down the mountain, take a monent to drink in everything all around you. Take a deep breath and dont be shy about flashing a smile when you push off. You're there to have fun and you don't have to prove anything to anyone, right? And trust your gut. If you're not feeling well or conditions are not as good as you hoped, it's fine to cut things short and try again on a different day when things will be more likely to fire on all cylinders.

Above all, enjoy the ride! That's what it's all about, especially at this stage of our lives. We've earned it, right? :-)
 
#54
Great advice here! I started skiing in my mid 40s and wish I had known a few things (some build on others' points; some are new).

. . .

4. Start slow, if logistics allow. Get the 4-hour lift ticket instead of the 8-hour one if you're just starting out or easing back into it. 4 hours is a long time for rusty ski legs!

5. Make day trips or quick overnights your mainstay when you're just starting back. Especially East Coast ladies, stay flexible as often as possible so you can go where conditions are best at the time. You'll have much better experiences on a decent groomed trail than on icy hard packs or crud or slush.

. . .

Above all, enjoy the ride! That's what it's all about, especially at this stage of our lives. We've earned it, right? :-)
Great thinking!

For those who can spend a night, if the place has night skiing that opens up possibilities. For instance, what we've done at Mnut on holiday weekends is get out early for first chair, ski until 11:00 or 11:30, go have a long lunch break, and go back after 3:00. By then many people are leaving. We can ski into the lights for several hours without waiting in long lift lines. Even easier at Mnut because most people are not advanced skiers so tend to leave early even if they have an 8-hour lift ticket. So lines on the upper mountain aren't that long any way.

At Mnut, if buy multi-day lift tickets then night skiing is free on all days. I would think other small places offer something similar.

If flying to SLC when the Quickstart free ski lift is an open for Park City, the fact that PCMR has lights on a few intermediate runs means it's easier to get in several hours of warm up on day of arrival.

For those going to a destination resort during holidays, can always ask Divas for advice about parking, where to eat, and how to avoid the longer lift lines.
 

retromaven

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#55
I'm the *youngest* woman at 49 in my ski posse/weekly ski clinic, at least at the level our group skis at and our instructor is 69 and you'd never know it. I think ALL of us want to think we will be on the slopes until we are 80+. I have a lot of medical problems but it is mind over matter and the tips skisailor, maineskilady and all the rest of the divas gave already is spot on! I am told (haha, so much for that) I ski better now than I ever did, but I don't have the same desire to take on a 90 degree hill, ski in pouring rain or a sheet of ice or do champion mogul runs...I do it to enjoy getting outside, challenging myself to some degree and to enjoy the fresh air, scenery and company. I never feel badly saying "no"...waiting for a group of boarders to go by so I can ski MY line or going in when I feel tired or fatigued and taking a break until I'm feeling good to go again. Back in my youth I'd race to the bottom, take on anything, even if scared to death and ski from open to close with nary a break...but honestly, as much as I loved it then, I love it more now, as I feel like it's totally on MY TERMS now and I do appreciate the before-during and after much more...like fine wine, my skiing and my enjoyment of it has really blossomed.

Enjoy life over 40 on skis...there is plenty more of us and there is a ton to enjoy about it!
 
#56
A lot of great encouraging thoughts in this thread; it's a pleasure to read.

Unfortunately, I will not be at Mammoth for the Women's clinic at the end of February. If anyone takes it, please post a full report. I believe there's another one in March.
 

HeidiInTheAlps

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#57
I always forget I'm 40+ when I'm skiing...

I had some issues in my 2nd pregnancy which resulted in astronomical weight gain...which I've only managed to drop in the last 14 months.

BUT.

I wanted my girls to learn how to ski, as it was a source of great enjoyment for me as a kid, so size 22-24 and all, with my Columbia Bugaboo size 2x jacket, I got out, in rented equipment, and enjoyed myself thoroughly. For me, I skied a lot as a child/teenager, and I had a lot of lessons, so my technique was fairly solid - compared to say, my condition. So, even though I was in no physical condition to be on the mountain, because my technique was strong, I could manage. Stamina was severely lacking, but I could still ski the advanced intermediate runs without falling...Falling was a problem, being that large, getting up was an utter nightmare!

This became a game changer for me...and finally with surgical assistance, I've lost 121 pounds in the last 14-15 months. Now, obviously this is a good thing, and I don't have regrets, but still I am honest in saying I was holding myself back a bit with the joy / pleasure from getting myself 'back'....UNTIL last Christmas. After getting myself new boots, new ski's, and finding my balance again...because that's was all different too, for the first time since having lost all the weight, did I experience an exhilaration and joy from within, that I was actually rather expecting from such a weight loss.

I have myself scheduled for 21 ski days this year, but were there a meet up in March somewhere, I would consider going, as I do feel that skiing is my 'medium' of inspiration to a different life of me.

I'd be very curious to have someone film my skiing, I have no idea what I look like...and a clinic seems like a good idea to me. I don't have a lot of self talk in my head when I ski, it's mostly just lean forward in my boots, and bearing in my mind at all time, that my body is going to follow my shoulders, so should I panic and turn my shoulders, I'm likely to end up pear shaped between the trees.:faint:

I'm no where to being close to my top game in skiing...but having read this thread, I now see a possibility, that whilst I may not have the stamina to ski the number of 'top game' runs, it is totally possible to ski with the style, technique from before. The pleasure? Well, that's already mine :smile:
 

SkiBam

Angel Diva
#58
Wow. That's a lot of weight to lose so for sure would change balance, etc. You have my total admiration. Re filming yourself, it's pretty easy to do if you ski with anyone else and carry a camera or smart phone. I agree it's a great way to learn and have been wanting to do some video this season (but it's never been warm enough to take the gloves off!). As for meeting up in March, too bad you're so far away as some Divas are meeting in Utah/Big Sky at the end of March.
 

HeidiInTheAlps

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#59
Wow. That's a lot of weight to lose so for sure would change balance, etc. You have my total admiration. Re filming yourself, it's pretty easy to do if you ski with anyone else and carry a camera or smart phone. I agree it's a great way to learn and have been wanting to do some video this season (but it's never been warm enough to take the gloves off!). As for meeting up in March, too bad you're so far away as some Divas are meeting in Utah/Big Sky at the end of March.
Distance isn't the issue, Easter is the issue... spending free time on the internet trying to figure out if I can swing a 4-day ski weekend....Can't afford to fly, should have booked earlier for that, which leaves driving...considering a deal with DH, that he drives through the night out there, and sleeps while we ski, and I drive through the night on the way home, and I sleep while he works... The problem is, he already thinks I'm crazy :help:
 

jennym

Certified Ski Diva
#60
My tip is for the 40+ year old who wants to start skiing. As Warren Miller said, "If you don't do it this year, you'll be one year older when you do."

1. I think that having a Ski Buddy is essential. Find someone who skis at your level (or just a little higher) and has a passion to ski. Go as often as possible, whether at the local hill or a destination resort.

2. Life is too short to be around unhappy people. If your group is always critical of the conditions or lift lines or other people, find a new group of positive people.

3. Take lessons, but remember that if you are having fun, you are doing it right.

4. More Woo Hoo moments and less Self-Criticism. Allow yourself to ski the hill without that little voice in your head telling you to plant your pole, bend your knees, get forward, or don’t skid your turns. Give yourself permission to have fun and ski.

5. Every now and then, stop, turn around, and look at what you skied. “OMG, look what I just skied down!” Congratulate yourself on your accomplishments. You deserve it.
I love the Wooo HOOO comment! This is so true. I find myself whoop'n n holler'n with abandon since I don't know anyone around me! And, again, I agree! Take the time to give yourself a WAY TO GO!! It still thrills me to look up and say, HEY! I came down that mountain!
I did not start skiing until I was 38, I'm about to turn 45. I have not skied every season but I did buy my own boots early. I did not ski last season and plan to head to Utah at the end of February.
I always remind myself to take my time. Get up, warm up with some gentle yoga to get my blood moving and muscles warmed up, eat some oatmeal, pack my camelback and take my first few runs nice and easy.
I also challenge myself. When I'm feeling the flow then I go for it! I push through my fears and talk myself into more challenging runs and cheer myself on!
We ARE Divas!
 

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