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Thread: When are you considered an Expert Skier?

  1. #1
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    It is impossible to know everything. But when can you be considered an expert skier? I don't consider myself an expert, even though I can ski trails marked with the double diamond. I consider myself to be an advance skier, but far from an expert. When I think of an expert skier I think about the people who ski down rock faces with many feet of powder. If these people are true expert skiers than experts are few. But I think being an expert involves a lot more than that. But is seems eveyone calls themselves one. This year this 13 year old girl who had only been skiing 3 times in her life was talking about how she made it down Damnation, a double diamond and the steepest hill in the midwest, which I have spent the last 5 years working up the courage to just get down it once. :roll: Now if you want to get technical since she skied an expert trail without killing herself some might call her and expert. (Only by people who know nothing about skiing I hope.) But she is really far from it. So when are you an expert?? Let's discuss it.

    <span style="font-family:Book Antiqua">since 2008</span></span>

  2. #2
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    It is impossible to know everything. But when can you be considered an expert skier? I don&#39;t consider myself an expert, even though I can ski trails marked with the double diamond. I consider myself to be an advance skier, but far from an expert. When I think of an expert skier I think about the people who ski down rock faces with many feet of powder. If these people are true expert skiers than experts are few. But I think being an expert involves a lot more than that. But is seems eveyone calls themselves one. This year this 13 year old girl who had only been skiing 3 times in her life was talking about how she made it down Damnation, a double diamond and the steepest hill in the midwest, which I have spent the last 5 years working up the courage to just get down it once. :roll: Now if you want to get technical since she skied an expert trail without killing herself some might call her and expert. (Only by people who know nothing about skiing I hope.) But she is really far from it. So when are you an expert?? Let&#39;s discuss it.[/b]

    Here is the quick and dirty response:

    Anyone better than you is an expert (just ask them!!)

    Anyone worse than you is a rookie/novice!!!!

    It&#39;s all really very simple!!!

    :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:
    If you win, but in so doing, lose the respect of your competitors, you've not won anything at all - Paul Elvestrom - 4 time Danish Olympic gold medalist in Sailing

  3. #3
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    Here is the quick and dirty response:

    Anyone better than you is an expert (just ask them!!)

    Ayone worse than you is a rookie/novice!!!!

    It&#39;s all really very simple!!!

    :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:[/b]
    Very true. :lol: When I see someone worse then me skiing or someone worse than me runs me over in the lift line because they can&#39;t stop I usually put my nose in the air and mutter, "Beginner". I am also the same way with skiers who are "fair weather". In one of my classes there is this one girl who used to race in high school. Now she rarely skis and complains when it is cold. She was actually happy when it reached 80 degrees last week in the middle or March! Talk about supporting global warming even though you are a skier. :-x I may not be an expert, but I am a Die Hard. When everyone else like her wishes it was warmer I am outside enjoying the cold.

    Then I see the people who are better and I gasp, "Man, I wish I could ski like that guy." And you are right, usually I consider those people experts.
    <span style="font-family:Book Antiqua">since 2008</span></span>

  4. #4
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    It is impossible to know everything. But when can you be considered an expert skier? I don&#39;t consider myself an expert, even though I can ski trails marked with the double diamond. I consider myself to be an advance skier, but far from an expert. When I think of an expert skier I think about the people who ski down rock faces with many feet of powder. If these people are true expert skiers than experts are few. But I think being an expert involves a lot more than that. But is seems eveyone calls themselves one. This year this 13 year old girl who had only been skiing 3 times in her life was talking about how she made it down Damnation, a double diamond and the steepest hill in the midwest, which I have spent the last 5 years working up the courage to just get down it once. :roll: Now if you want to get technical since she skied an expert trail without killing herself some might call her and expert. (Only by people who know nothing about skiing I hope.) But she is really far from it. So when are you an expert?? Let&#39;s discuss it.[/b]



    I consider expert skiers to be those who can comfortably ski any trail, anywhere, anytime in any conditions. Including steeps, trees, chutes, crud, powder, ice, gates, groomers, bumps, and off-piste at speed without hesitation. This definition allows for a far fewer number of skiers than those who consider themselves to be "expert skiers".

    Some others (PSIA Level III and above) would also include the ability to ski half pipes, terrain parks, rails etc., although I draw my line at jibbing. Never could understand why someone would take a perfectly good pair of skis over a steel rail.

    There are a large number of PSIA Level I and some Level II certified ski instructors in Colorado alone who do not fit this definition. (BTW, this doesn&#39;t mean they aren&#39;t good or great ski instructors). There&#39;re also a pretty good percentage of good ski racers who are not comfortable in all of the above conditions. So, "expert" is a highly relative term. In other words, "expert" - relative to who?

    There is always someone who is faster, stronger, in better shape and in better condition until you get to Aksel, Benni, Bode, Niki, Marlies and Julia and they were fighting it out until the last run of the last race this year. Want to see a real expert? Check out Chris Davenport&#39;s website and his successful quest to climb and ski (no helicopters) all of the 54 "fourteeners" in Colorado from the summit in a single calendar year.

    Just skiing and surviving a "double black diamond trail" does not qualify one as an expert skier. We&#39;re all striving to get better all the time. Keep it up Alpine Fox!

    JMHO

    Don Hodder

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    I consider expert skiers to be those who can comfortably ski any trail, anywhere, anytime in any conditions. Including steeps, trees, chutes, crud, powder, ice, gates, groomers, bumps, and off-piste at speed without hesitation. This definition allows for a far fewer number of skiers than those who consider themselves to be "expert skiers".[/b]
    I consider expert skiers to be those who can comfortably ski any trail, anywhere, anytime in any conditions at a variety of speeds and using a variety of turns shapes and sizes. Including steeps, trees, chutes, crud, powder, ice, gates, groomers, bumps, and off-piste at speed without hesitation.
    Stupidity should be painful!

    Real ripper chix hang out here:
    The Ski Diva

  6. #6
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    I consider expert skiers to be those who can comfortably ski any trail, anywhere, anytime in any conditions at a variety of speeds and using a variety of turns shapes and sizes. Including steeps, trees, chutes, crud, powder, ice, gates, groomers, bumps, and off-piste at speed without hesitation. [/b]

    Good point Volklgirl! An absolute necessity for any expert to have the ability to vary turn shapes, sizes and speeds and be able to change rhythym at will.

  7. #7
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    I consider expert skiers to be those who can comfortably ski any trail, anywhere, anytime in any conditions at a variety of speeds and using a variety of turns shapes and sizes. Including steeps, trees, chutes, crud, powder, ice, gates, groomers, bumps, and off-piste at speed without hesitation. [/b]
    ding ding ding... the correct answer!

    Of course, if you can throw a switch rodeo nine with a mute to octo grab over a 60 foot table and, do all the above. You will get a paid spot in the movies!
    Sign in at www.paskiandride.com for info on Pennsylvania Ski Areas

  8. #8
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    When I see someone worse then me skiing or someone worse than me runs me over in the lift line because they can&#39;t stop I usually put my nose in the air and mutter, "Beginner".[/b]
    If you were RUSH, you would just sue :mrgreen:

    Personally, I think "expert" is a state of mind. If you feel like an expert then you are one. It has a lot to do with the people you are with at the time: When I was standing next to Phil Mahre at Nationals, I felt like beginer. When I am with my buddies that I can outski, I feel like an expert. What ever level you are at, expert or not, don&#39;t ever stop pushing yourself to get better.

    Great question.
    - Allen

    You are a unique person, just like everybody else! - Warren Miller

  9. #9
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    ^ No I don&#39;t sue. But I do glare and maybe give a stern word or two. :mrgreen:

    I think you are all right about how a expert should be able to ski anything anywhere with confidence. I don&#39;t think I know any experts then. I used to think of my high school ski club adviser as an expert for he was good, but he wouldn&#39;t fit this category for when he was talked into tree skiing out west he said it really scared him and he really felt like a beginner compared to the guy who talked him into it. I don&#39;t blame him I guess, even though I am amazed by people who do it, skiing a mogul field with a tree rooted on every other mogul doesn&#39;t really sound fun. But maybe some day I will change my mind. Two years ago I never thought I would start racing for honestly it looked scary...now I am addicted, and investing more and more time and money in the stuff needed to do it. :lol:

    Al you have a point too. Sometimes it is very good to ski with someone who is better than you. It is a challenge to keep up with them, and it can really improve your skills. It is also good to ski with someone bellow you as well for it boosts your confidence and since you are a lot of times the teacher in that situation you have to think in depth about how you do things so you can explain it to them. (My respect for instructors increased greatly after I gave one of my beginner friends a lesson. Teaching gets quite exhausting.)
    <span style="font-family:Book Antiqua">since 2008</span></span>

  10. #10
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    great question alpine fox and the discussion is a great one...i agree that an expert should be able to ski any snow of any depth with comfort, varying turn shapes, sizes, etc. i would guess that most self proclaimed experts are advanced skiers by a psia definition since the &#39;levels&#39; assigned will not advance you to the highest levels without bumps, off-piste, etc. hard to become expert in powder for some of us east-coasters and mid-atlantic skiers !!! i think it is reasonable, if asked the question regarding what level you are, to put in an asterisk *, such as "i ski like an expert on all groomers, but i&#39;m more like an advanced/intermediate in bumps and powder" or "i&#39;m a black diamond skier except when in the company of the great phil mahre at which time i am one big green circle"...

    regarding tree skiing as mogul runs with trunks on the tops of them, that is exactly how i felt when my kids used to drag me into them on the wrong days to be in there...skied out, slick mogul runs with big trees all through them...scared me, i sat back on my skis, i hated it...over the years, when i refused to get in them when they were icy, and was lucky enough to hit utah during spring break when there were multiple real powder days (2006 and just last week, 2007...yum), being in the trees first is actually a delicious experience...it&#39;s quiet (no scritch scritch scritch against skied off ice), it&#39;s pretty, it&#39;s soft, for the moguls don&#39;t exist when the powder fills them in :>) i was lucky enough to do several runs through fresh snow in trees at brighton last weekend with just me and my two teenaged daughters in there...it felt like our own private mountain playground...a mini-epic, if you will

    try it on greens first, for nobody ever skis the trees between greens or lesser blues...you will need some pitch to keep going in the trees so the powder doesn&#39;t slow you to a walk, but if you try trees in fresh snow on low angled slopes, you WILL get hooked and you WILL seek out the tree stands nobody else goes to and you just may eventually move closer to the &#39;expert&#39; badge...hee hee

    many terrain park &#39;experts&#39; can&#39;t ski an entire hill and sometimes i think kids who grow up doing nothing but racing are missing out on a wonderful free ski background...

    sometimes, i think one is an expert even if you can&#39;t ski it all beautifully, but you ski MOST of it beautifully yet if you get in over your head, you know how to get down safely, i.e. sideslip or jump turn or hop a cornice...

    and if we are expert skiers at one time, do we revert to beginners as we age and decide that bumps and trees aren&#39;t for us any more, but groomers are where it&#39;s at? does one lose one&#39;s expert status as one allows one&#39;s skiing to stop beating up one&#39;s body so much?

    s.t.l.


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