Snowboard Coaching in Tignes, Val D’Isére and Sainte Foy

When you first learned to snowboard, you probably got some lessons. Then, over time, you naturally developed your skills and abilities. But there is only so far you can take your riding without some help. If you’ve realised that training yourself will make more difference than new equipment, then we can help whatever your preferred style, terrain or focus.

Freestyle Snowboard Coaching

Every advert, magazine and video features Freestyle Snowboarding. Don’t misinterpret this representation of freestyle at its highest level. It’s about expressing yourself through your riding, finding your own style. If we only ever made turns where would our inspiration to continue to ride come from? Nollie backside 180, switch up to pole tap, slash the bank then cloudburst the slow sign to finish. We have a tried and tested skills development program that will turn the park into your playground, not a battlefield.

Park Development Programmes

These programs are designed for more experienced freestylers to competitive riders. Specific to your goals, these coaching programs hit you from a different angle than before. Technical focus will concentrate on the micro-movements and skills needed for complete control of your board and body. Understand and create a better core. Learn to structure training sessions dependent on the skills you are working on. Realize the right and wrong times to push yourself to beyond your previous limits. Hammering the same trick over and over might not always be the best approach – build the skills required by identifying the weaker components that need more practice, isolating, then developing in a less direct manner.

These programs emphasis the need to take more control of your own development, to be able to self learn and develop your skills without always needing a coach, peer,video or picture to deliver instant feedback.Learn to develop intrinsically.

Free-Riding Off-Piste and Back Country

Freeriding is the timeless heartbeat of snowboarding – the combination of peace and excitement when riding untouched snow. The thing is, there’s more riders, which means less fresh tracks. To get the best freeriding experience you need to understand how the snowpack is formed and all the elements which affect it – temperatures, wind, sun. Add to this a knowledge of all the rideable terrain in the area, and you’ll get the best riding experience for the conditions available.

Off-Piste versus Back Country

The main difference between off-piste and backcountry is the accessibility. Off-piste is generally to the side of, next to or round the back of a groomed run. Easily accessible – sometimes visible, sometimes hidden. Any area that is not a marked piste becomes avalanche territory therefore can be dangerous to ride. Off-piste is unfortunately less respected due to a general naivety amongst many snowsport enthusiasts. After fresh snowfall, the rewards are high but because of the proximity to the main slopes it can be short-lived and tracked out extremely fast.

Back country Freeriding allows you more freedom, riding in isolation – pure serenity. To gain access you must be prepared to forsake the luxuries of lifts and get hiking. This can be walk ins, walk outs ranging from 15 minutes  to several hours depending on the route of the tour. This results in an ability to find fresh, untracked powder days after snowfall.

Precautions

With the freedom to roam throughout the back country comes more dangers. It can be a hostile environment, a powerful unforgiving area which is not patrolled. Safety is always at the forefront of any expedition no matter how big or small. To manage the risk, strong technical riding abilities are required, together with good fitness levels, mental strength, correct safety equipment, knowledge of the area and the ability to say no and turn back if conditions do not look right. As long as these risks are managed effectively you’ll have the biggest stoke every turn – it is real hedonism. It is almost impossible to explain – it must be experienced.

5 Day Back Country Courses

To be able to freeride you must adapt your technical riding – particularly in line with the different snowtypes that you encounter. Leaning-back will simply do nothing more than make you lose balance and control of the board. We will take you through the journey of technical discovery. Next, you must understand the tactics required to ride different snow types – the speed needed, the correct line and turn shape for the pitch you’re attacking. We will work with your mental approach to certain situations helping you develop trust and confidence when most needed. We will teach you to better understand the safety aspects and snow types. Finally we will take you to the areas of the mountain you have only dreamt about. McNair snowsports offers you the best freeriding experience.

The 5 day Off-piste B/C course is designed for riders with some off-piste experience and a good sense of adventure. It is important that you learn to take the good with the bad. Often, the access in/out of certain pitches is not the best snow to ride on, or a high, long traverse is necessary. These skills are paramount if you wish to ride in the backcountry. There will also be one day on splitboards to give you some experience of snowboard touring.

Rider Progression and Development

Building skills so they are ever present in your riding takes time. You could go for a quick fix, the one-off private, and it might make you feel good for a short period of time – but ultimately it won’t last as well as a snowboard coaching programme. Whether it’s personal or professional, over the course of a holiday, a season, or even longer, we love working with people who are committed to being an even better rider.

The Tech

There is a strong balance in snowboarding between 4 major factors and you need to have a good understanding of how these factors interrelate with each other to be able to perform with fluency, ease and style. How the snow and terrain connect to give us the strong riding platform we crave for will ultimately influence how our body and board can react to create our individuality. The higher awareness you have of the board, the acute pressure points along the edges, the ability to manipulate the flex patterns, will give you a much stronger feel. Finally, your body is the driving force therefore must be stacked, free, coordinated and agile to be able to stay balanced, direct the board and perform.

The Reason

Forget the fashion, forget because your mates do it or you think it sounds cool to say “I’m a snowboarder. The reason we ride is the feeling we get. The “stoked” you get from shredding. It’s never-ending, no matter the conditions, the time of year, whether you’re on snow, drymat or indoors. If you love snowboarding you just don’t care, you’ll find something to get stoked on. There is always a line to be had or a feature to play on. The longer you do it, the better it gets. This is our gift to you – come and enjoy.

Learn Something New

You can also have fun on two planks: Alpine Skiing, Ski Touring or Telemark

Feel like broadening your horizons, opening your mind and developing a new skill? Ultimately it will only enhance your snowboarding and many of the skills you already have will cross-over directly to the new discipline – you just need to know how to tap into them and think out of the box.