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  • Why pick Alpine Academy as my instructor training provider?
    Alpine Academy’s number one aim is to be the best instructor training provider in the Southern Hemisphere. Our team has a wealth of experience in delivering instructor training programs. Their expertise will ensure you are best prepared for your ski instructor exams. You can relax, everything is taken care of for you once you touch down in Queenstown. This level of organisation means you can focus solely on learning, getting better at skiing and having a good time. Whether you are training for your Level 1, Level 2 or Level 3 we pride ourselves on delivering a high-quality program, exceeding all trainees expectations. We are forever striving to be better, so are flexible in tweaking our programs to suit your every need. Trust us, you will not regret joining us on your journey in becoming a better skier and teacher.
  • Who makes up the Alpine Academy team?
    The two founders of Alpine Academy are Emily Pocock and Murray Whyte. Two good friends, who decided it was time to combine their expertise and start a business together. Both Emily and Murray are fully qualified ski instructors (BASI Level 4 ISTDs) and BASI Trainers /Examiners. Emily is also a NZSIA Examiner. Emily and Murray have a wider team that occasionally join the team for ad hoc training. These trainers are hand picked to ensure their high standards of training are always met. We are so proud of our team of trainers and are excited for you to experience top of the line coaching.
  • How old should I be to come on the course?
    The minimum age to embark on a BASI course is 16 years old. At Alpine Academy we would prefer trainees to be 18+. We are however happy to discuss the option for 16-17 year olds joining us on the Level 1 & 2 program, students are considered on a case by case basis.
  • Do I need medical/travel insurance?
    Yes 100%, medical/travel insurance is vital to join an Alpine Academy course. We ask that you send us your cover before the course starts. We are happy to advise you on companies that have good winter sports cover included or that include it as an additional option.
  • What should I bring for my ski season?
    Whether you are coming on our 4-week course or season long program, we know there is a lot to remember. Once you sign up to any of our courses we will send you an extensive packing list to make sure nothing is forgotten. This checklist covers ski equipment, ski clothing, personal clothing, footwear, toiletries, medicines, electronics etc.
  • How much money do I need to bring on my course?
    Most of your main costs are included in our programs e.g. training, lift pass, transport, accommodation etc. We believe approximately $250 per week should cover your costs e.g. food, a few drinks and your standard daily living needs. If you choose to go out for dinner regularly and join in on some of Queenstown's activities (bungee jumping, sky diving etc.) then we suggest you bring a bit more spending money along. There’s lots of adventure to be had in Queenstown.
  • What would my usual week of training look like?
    At Alpine Academy for the Level 1 & 2 program a standard week would be ski training 4 days per week from 9am to 3.30pm (with a small lunch break). Then on the weekends, you will be completing your shadowing hours. Exams will slot into the program on week 3 (Level 1) and week 8 (Level 2). Off-snow, we will have 1-2 sessions per week including video analysis, fitness training, ski tuning, socials etc. A full detailed program will be sent to you once you have signed up to the course. For the Level 3 Work and Train program you will be working in the busy periods (19th June to 16th July), available to work on weekends throughout the season and an option to work after the training block finishes from 1st September. During a typical training week (7-week block), we will be training on snow 4 days per week from 9am to 3.30pm (with a small lunch break). We will also be running some evening sessions including video analysis, fitness training, career guidance and socials etc.
  • What ski equipment do I need for the course?
    For all our Alpine Academy courses we recommend a piste orientated ski. We do not recommend race skis or all mountain skis. Race skis tend to be a little too narrow underfoot and overly stiff and all mountain skis are often too wide and not ideal for high performance skiing. In your BASI Level 1 Exam short turns, long turns and slower demonstrations will be assessed. At BASI Level 2 and 3, you will also be required to ski on variable snow, steeps and bumps. The skis we recommend for your exam should be roughly around the following specifications, where you sit on the range is slightly dependent on your height, build and ski experience: Radius: approx. 13m to 16m Width underfoot: 70 - 80 mm Binding din: 4 to 12 Size: from 155cm to 180cm in length We like to think of ourselves as ski equipment gurus so if you have any questions or you are unsure please ask us before you purchase your equipment. There is more info on skis, boots, poles, helmets, goggles, ski clothing etc. in our detailed welcome pack that you will receive once booking onto any of our courses.
  • What do my employment prospects look like after the course?
    At Alpine Academy we are always here to help you to develop in your Snowsports career. Our team has worked in ski resorts across New Zealand, Australia, France, Switzerland, Italy, UK, Japan, Canada and America to name a few. We therefore have plenty of experience, knowledge and contacts to help you secure a job after the course. The more qualified you are, the more likely you are to secure a job. We advise you to get your Level 2 to increase your chances to secure future employment. We are working closely with NZSki, if you are on any of our programs, we will help you to secure a ski instructor job in Queenstown for the following winter season. Working rights are also something to consider, unfortunately we cannot and for UK passport holders since Brexit, we are here to explain how you can secure working holiday visas, young professional visas, work permits and how to get sponsored. We are committed to supporting you in securing employment wherever you want in future Southern and Northern Hemisphere seasons.
  • What skills will I gain from the course?
    Where to begin, with Alpine Academy you will not only become a better skier but also a better ski teacher. If you feel like your skiing has plateaued do not worry, we will help you to unlock the door to the next level. Our training is geared towards supporting everyone to realise their potential and levelling up. Our team has an abundance of Snowsports experience, we endeavour to pass on our knowledge and tips/tricks for teaching whether it is a kids group, beginner private or technical workshop. Not only will you increase your skills on the mountain, we believe you will develop your skills off the mountain too. We witness our students becoming more independent, better communicators, motivated, hardworking and determined to succeed. We are proud that our training promotes people to become better versions of themselves.
  • How can I contact you if I can’t find the answers to my questions on your website?
    At Alpine Academy, we are always here to help. Day or night we are happy to answer your questions, no question is a silly question. Please feel free to email us, call us or use the contact form on our website. We will try to get back to you as soon as possible with the information you are looking for.
  • What happens if I do not pass my ski instructor exam?
    We understand it takes some people longer to reach the level than others. If you do not pass your Level 1 or Level 2 we are happy to support you to arrange a resit for whenever you are ready. We will discuss resit options with you and the additional costs involved.
  • What is the minimum skiing level to join your instructor training courses?
    This is a question we get A LOT. We have therefore dedicated a section of our website to outlining the prerequisites we require. Briefly summarised; for our Level 1 & 2 course we expect skiers to be able to ski the whole mountain confidently and competently. It is important you are able to link parallel turns from green to black slopes. Please read our prerequisites to find out more. We are also happy to talk to you directly about your prior ski experience. For our Level 3 Work and Train Course the prerequisites are more straightforward. You need to hold your BASI Level 2 certification or equivalent in order to be considered by Alpine Academy and for employment at NZSki.
  • What do you look for in your candidates for your courses?
    At Alpine Academy we are looking for passionate and motivated people, who are up for any challenge. We have 3 golden rules when it comes to ski training: Positive attitude Hard work Always try your best This is what we expect from both our trainees and our experienced trainers. It is essential to come to training with this mentality to ensure you make the most out of everyday on and off-snow.
  • How do I apply for the course?
    Applying for any of our courses is super easy. You can submit an application form online or you can call/email us. We will then send you the step by step application process. For our Level 3 Work and Train Program you will in time have to submit an official application for NZSki to review. We have a specific Alpine Academy link for this. This link involves answering some questions and submitting a CV. We are happy to support you on this. Once this initial screening is complete, NZSki will send you a video link to complete within 5 days. We have the inside scoop and already know the questions, so please relax. We can help you to prepare for these interview questions before the interview is scheduled.
  • When is the last application date?
    For our 4-week Level 1, 5-week Level 2 and 10-week Level 1 & 2 the deadline is 15th May. We will have a waiting/cancellation list so please feel free to apply after this date. For our Level 3 Work and Train Program, the deadline is 30th April (this deadline has been set by NZSki recruitment). We advise you apply sooner rather than later, there are a limited number of jobs available. Again, we will have a waiting/cancellation list so please feel free to apply after this date.
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