Snowboard Instructor Systems - CASI, APSI, AASI, NZSIA & more

Avatar
Thepowpow - 26 January 2016 02:56 PM

Super thread revive here.

Are you still instructing at whis this season? I’m keen to see if I have the riding skillz to pass level 1 CASI.

Hey @Thepowpow,

I’d be happy to spend a couple of hours with you in Whistler to run you through some of the level 1 standards. I would also encourage you to familiarise yourself with the lessons in this thread, as it it basically everything you will need to understand, demonstrate, and teach for CASI level 1.

With CASI level 1, I would say the more challenging component is the teaching. I have no doubt your riding is at the level 1 standard, the challenge will be to understand, break down, and demonstrate the standards. As I said, happy to spend a couple of hours with you in Whistler when I get back on the snow.

 

Awesome, thanks for the replies guys. I’v been strapping in switch and riding the chair past 2 weekends like so, and doing a few laps switch. 180s, butters and rolls into and out of switch as well to boost confidence in switch and edge control. Still feels super weird though (not sure how it looks from someone watching).

Also I injured myself on the weekend going super sendy, but I digress… So I was on the base 2 carpet today (no lifting/shoveling required), and there was a school group and I was just listening to the way they taught (although some kids hardly gave af so it was kind of hard for the instructor), helped a little bit I suppose but I could definitely tell what the kids were doing wrong (why they were falling etc.) and even helped a few who came off the carpet and were struggling with the unload and skating to where they had to go, they listened to me and after a bit they were all unloading a lot better and skating a lot better too.

As for helping me out with some things on days off I’d be super keen, anything helps, even tips on here.

Thanks guiiise.

 
Avatar

Nice man,
I started out by working as a lifty myself.
And getting bored working t-bars was when I first started to figure out why people fell off them and how to correct it (lord knows you have plenty of spare time lol).

So I think what you’re doing is great. Keep doing it!

You’re building your ability to analyse peoples movements and give them ways to improve. And that is a big part of what we do as instructors.

The main thing that I like though is that you started doing this on your own. A desire to really want to help people improve is something I wish all candidates had. People sometimes forget that it’s an Instructor course and only care about their riding.

 

I’v noticed none of the instructors tell the kids (not sure if its beginners in general or just children) that when then are going toe edge to tilt their hips forwards. Is this in an attempt not to overly complicate the turns at an early stage and only teaching them to tilt the front knee in slightly with the rolling forwards of the shoulder/pointing and looking to where they want to turn?

Or does the forward hip tilt come into play when they can link somewhat okay ‘s’ turns?

 
Avatar

Hard for me to say without seeing the lesson myself.

We do really simplify kids lessons to avoid making them boring.
Also depending on the age of the kid, little guys don’t have the muscle development to use their ankles the way we do, so we tend to get them to find the balance point by stacking their skeleton over the edge rather than worrying about bending their lower joints the exact same amount as an adult. Because that actually won’t work for them.

Lessons have to be adapted to suit the abilities of the student always.

In saying that though, I can’t remember the last time I did a beginner lesson and didn’t teach someone to stack their hips over the edge they are using and keep their back upright. If you can do that, you won’t be fighting against your own body weight all the way down the hill.

Possibly a different system of teaching (foreign instructor) or possibly just a lazy instructor.
The other thing is you can tell a kid to do something, but that doesn’t mean they’ll do it until you force them to do it 20 times. That’s just kids. They need lots of the right repetition rather than explanation.
I just teach their body directly rather than teaching their minds sometimes.

 
rider26 - 02 February 2016 07:00 AM
Thepowpow - 26 January 2016 02:56 PM

Super thread revive here.

Are you still instructing at whis this season? I’m keen to see if I have the riding skillz to pass level 1 CASI.

Hey @Thepowpow,

I’d be happy to spend a couple of hours with you in Whistler to run you through some of the level 1 standards. I would also encourage you to familiarise yourself with the lessons in this thread, as it it basically everything you will need to understand, demonstrate, and teach for CASI level 1.

With CASI level 1, I would say the more challenging component is the teaching. I have no doubt your riding is at the level 1 standard, the challenge will be to understand, break down, and demonstrate the standards. As I said, happy to spend a couple of hours with you in Whistler when I get back on the snow.

@rider26 Jez time to evaluate if i can pass my level 2 smile I’ll shout ya beers.

 
Avatar

@furorsekka, alright man, let’s do it. When are your days off?

 
Avatar

Hey guys, I’ve booked myself in for the Level One APSI Instructor course this year, and I’m looking at doing the Avalanche Safety Training Level 1 (Avalanche Canada course). Does anyone have much experience with the recent APSI courses?  Also, how well is viewed the APSI qualification internationally? Apparently the AST Level 1 course is helpful for overseas employment.

 
Avatar

Hey @Wizey,

APSI Level 1 is generally considered equivalent to AASI and CASI Level 2, so it’s definitely a good cert to hold. It’s been a while since I’ve had any exposure to the APSI system, but I remember you’d have to work there all season as an instructor before attempting the level 1 course. @Andy Aitken, is that still the case?

 
Avatar

Actually no, definitely not the case any more because the system has changed (or the names have).

APSI previously had 4 levels: Entry level, Level 1, Level 2, Level 3.
Now they have 4 levels but they changed the names to match other systems. So now Entry Level is called level 1, the old level 1 is called level 2, and so on.

So APSI now has Level 1,2,3,4
CASI has Level 1,2,3,4
AASI has Level 1,2,3, Trainer Cert
NZSIA has 1,2,3, Trainer Cert

So all the systems are similar now (with small differences in teaching and riding of course).

As for the AST1, you don’t need it for any real reason as an instructor. If you were a Back Country Guide then absolutely.
However, it’s totally worth just doing it for yourself and some snow schools will give you a slight pay bump for it.

Hope that’s helpful smile

 
Avatar

Ah, good to know. Thanks for clearing that up, Andy.

The AST1 is great to have if you have any interest in going into the backcountry. I genuinely enjoyed the course. And the per hour pay rise Andy mentioned doesn’t hurt either. When I was teaching at Whistler Blackcomb it was a 40c/hour pay rise. Pays itself off over the course of the season.

 
Avatar

Thanks for all the info guys!

My plan is to get my AASI level 1’s and AST1 this season with a view to get an instructing job in Aus next season.

In the meantime, save for an overseas Northern hemi trip again haha! And possibly try and get a few weeks work too.

@rider26, how did you like your time teaching at WB?

 
Avatar

Hey @Wizey, I really enjoyed my time instructing at Whistler Blackcomb. It’s a great place to work and it’s one of the best jobs you can have (in my opinion). My wife still teaches and she loves it as well. @Andy Aitken is still an active instructor at WB. Andy, how do you enjoy working as an instructor at WB?

 
Avatar
rider26 - 01 June 2016 12:15 PM

Hey @Wizey, I really enjoyed my time instructing at Whistler Blackcomb. It’s a great place to work and it’s one of the best jobs you can have (in my opinion). My wife still teaches and she loves it as well. @Andy Aitken is still an active instructor at WB. Andy, how do you enjoy working as an instructor at WB?

Love it!

It’s easily the best job I’ve ever had as far as enjoying your day to day life and the reward that you get from helping people progress is almost as good as progressing yourself.
Of course all people are different and some people try it and aren’t that stoked by it. But I think if you have a love of sharing what you know with others and generally helping people, then you’re going to have an awesome season.

Whether that becomes just a fun seasonal job for a year or two or actually turns into a career is up to you. But I think either way, it’s worth doing.

 
Avatar

Well said, mate. I definitely agree with you there.

If you have a love for snowboarding and an interest in teaching others, it’s going to be a rewarding experience.

One of the biggest advantages about teaching is you get to be on your snowboard every day. You might not be ripping as hard as you would on a day off, but it’s all technique-focussed, which means you’re progressing your own skills through repetition. You also get to know the mountain really well and it definitely helps observing the continuous daily changes to the piste. It means when you get a day off, you know every little bump and cranny on the mountain, and your body is ready to rip! You’re also able to join morning sessions and training sessions, which will aide your progression even further.