We'd like to say a massive Congratulations to our course participants in Revelstoke. After weeks of training and carving up Revelstoke mountain the gang have now sat and completed their CASI/CSIA Level 1 Instructor courses and are now qualified snowsports instructors!
We caught up with one of our new snowboard instructors, George Osborn, to get the low-down on what it feels like to achieve such a milestone in teaching on the mountain...
How did you feel when you passed your CASI Level 1 exam?
Surprised. Hopullly the riding part of the exam on the first day felt so difficult, it was the nerves I guess. I was scared I had failed right there. After that I took some pressure off myself and it turned out I did fine!
What was your snowsports experience before Snow Rehab?
I had done 2 weeks in Finland and about 4-5 hours at Snowdome. Besides that I also enjoyed a few weekends in France. I really liked it when I first tried it; i was 8 and had a go at Milton Keynes with my Aunt and Uncle.
What made you decide to complete an instructor course?
I had finished my A-levels and I didn't really fancy University just yet. I might later - I'm not sure. I just wanted to spend some time doing something I enjoyed.
What do you think of Revelstoke compared to places you've boarded/skied before?
Revelstoke is so much better - the Alps were good but most other places are basically hills; this is a massive mountain with so much to do and virtually no lift queues. There's so much variety.
Can you describe an average day training for your Level 1 qualification?
We warm up at the top of the mountain, we do warm up runs (blues and blacks), then the instructor picks an element that needs work and we'll do one-at-a-time feedback on that element. Afterwards, we focus on improving that element of our riding for the rest of the day and grab lunch at some point too.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome in training?
Having the confidence to really go for it on difficult terrain - getting turns in was hard.
What has been your favourite part of the course so far?
Definitely my first time riding 'meet the neighbours' (on piste AND trees) because it was something new and fun - and really scary.
Has the level 1 exam affected whether or not you want to be an instructor?
If anything I want to do it more than I did before because it's given me so much confidence and has been lots of fun.
How has studying for your level one qualification improved your riding?
My riding has improved literally in every way. I can handle much harder terrain and just go for it. Knowing the technical side means you can do so much more.
What are you going to do next?
I want to do my level 2 exam and then I'd like to instruct in New Zealand over the summer. Then, for the next season, it's a toss up between Japan or Revelstoke again.
Do you have any advice for people thinking of doing their level one?
Make sure it's what you really want to do - it's a big commitment. You should have an understanding of basic snowboarding. Most importantly, don't be hesitant - throw yourself into new things because it's SO good when you do!
Become a snowboard instructor with us in Canada next season and make the mountains your office! Click here to #StartYourAdventure!
Written by Catherine Moore