October was a real family event
as signed off parents & siblings joined their Juniors on the slope.
As October was the focus for Junior Club & their programme of events is so varied anyway,
our Junior Club Leaders decided to involve family & friends on the Saturday sessions.
Parents joined the children for a ‘Combi Course’, a mixture between racing, freestyle & ski cross.
For the ‘Technical’ session, Instructors gave advise to everyone skiing to improve their ability on the slope.
We also had Lee, our Maintenance Manager & Snowboard Instructor head down to the slope
to ensure our boarding parents didn’t miss out!
Now time to see how the parents fared with poles & timing equipment on the slope.
2 identical courses, 1 of which was timed, a chance to have a go a progression racing
& see which Junior Club group they would be placed in…..
Due to event’s, there were only 3 weeks for Junior Club, back to usual sessions for November 🙂
JUNIOR CLUB – How Does it Work?
When can I join?
Once your children have been through beginners, continuation & supervised,
they will be advised by the Instructor when they are ready to join Junior Club & need to be assessed
– this takes place on the last Saturday of each month….more about this later!
Junior Club consists of four groups, running at four separate times from 9am to 2pm on a Saturday.
The age range within each group can be from 5 years to up to 18 years (the day before their 18th birthday),
this gives the boys who do not have ladies club to go on to a chance to still ski at the club
through Masters if they have not gone onto freestyle or racing clubs.
Eagles, which is the top group, the most experienced group of skiers – 9am to 10.15am.
In this group they progress their skiing to an extremely high level.
A lot of the skiers from Eagles progress to the race team, compete at a competitive level in freestyle
or go on to become instructors/coaches.
When an Eagle approaches 14 they can apply to become a Junior Leader and work more with the Junior Club team.
Hawks 10.15am to 11.30am – these skiers are mostly progressing towards parallel.
They pretty much do everything that Eagles do but it is all about their technique and working their skis to get parallel.
We start to let them try things out without so much help from us.
Kestrels 11.30am to 12.45pm – this group is about gaining more and more confidence in their skiing
and being pushed out of the comfort zones on a weekly basis.
They learn more about how to use their skis in all the different aspects of skiing.
Things start to get a little more serious with Kestrels but they still have lots of fun.
Kadets 12.45pm to 2pm – Kadets being the first group in Junior Club are mainly just out of lessons
so their sessions are about mileage and experiencing more about the world of skiing through the timetable we set.
We are a little more hands on with this group in order for them to achieve their goals.
Eagles, Hawks and Kestrels, they progress to these groups via the progression races
and achieving the times set for these races.
Eagles have to pass a parallel assessment after achieving the progression race time to ski with Eagles.
ASSESSMENT FOR JUNIOR CLUB – not to be confused with the progression!
To be a member of Junior Club we hold an assessment monthly.
At this assessment we ask the skiers to do various tasks so we can monitor their skiing ability
and their ability to understand the tasks we ask them to do.
If they are successful at the assessment we place them in to one of two groups, either Kestrels and Kadets.
To progress from here on they have to attend progression races.
If they are unsuccessful, they return to supervised until they feel they are ready to try again.
The successful candidates’ names are passed to reception to update the computer records.
On the day
They come to reception to pay for the session, 4.30 to 5.30 on the last Saturday of each month
(unless for some reason we have to rearrange it), we give them all bibs on the slope and take their names and email address.
At the end of the assessment we tell them which group they are in and give them an information booklet and a certificate,
which they can keep but they have to bring it to reception for the office to change their status on the computer.
Children from Adult Supervised or private lessons can also attend the assessment if they wish to attend Junior Club,
but all taking part in the assessment must be signed off to ski open practice.
WE DO NOT HOLD ASSESSMENTS AT THE END OF JULY, AUGUST OR DECEMBER.
If we cannot make an assessment one month we will arrange another date and inform the office and the supervised instructors.
These are held at least once a term.
These are done so the children already in Junior Club can progress up through the groups by means of timed races.
The time for the progression race is not known until the day of the race,
it is worked out by timing one of our seeded racers who skis the course that morning
and then the progressions are worked out by the computer against their seed points.
(If you want to know more about seed points you will need to ask a race coach).
The successful progressing skiers have to get that time or faster in order to progress,
they may even progress up two groups or three!
All the skiers have a chance to win medals also on the day, we have boys and girls categories and also a racer category.
We endeavor to announce the progressions and hand out the medals at the end of each session,
unless circumstances make it impossible!
The names of those that progress are emailed through to reception for the computer to be updated.
If they are lucky enough to progress through to Eagles, they will have to attend Hawks
until they have completed and passed a parallel assessment,
this is done by the Instructors that take Eagles when the timetable and space on the slope allows.
At every race, whether a progression or not, there is a chance for the skiers to achieve a standard award.
The times for these are also worked out on the day of the race and they are shown on the race sheets
at the end of each race for those to see if they have achieved one.
There are 3 awards, they are similar to the level one or two badges achieved during the beginner and continuation course,
we have a gold, silver and bronze standard.
The silver and bronze are available to buy from reception.
The gold is presented by the head of Junior Club free of charge the following week, as they are very rare and hard to achieve.
Signing up for the progression.
A list for the progression is put out by a Junior Club Instructor on the desk in reception a few weeks prior to a race is held,
this list is for Junior Club members to enter their names.
There will be a list for each group to enter on to.
We set a closing date for these lists so that they can be entered on to the race hut computer by a Junior Club Instructor.
On the day if they are not on the list and have not been allocated a bib they cannot take part
(there is no alternative for them either, they will have to miss the session).
They are emailed a lot prior to the closing date so there should be no reason for them not entering
or knowing about it prior to this date.
(There are one or two that do not read their emails or deny receiving them, they can still not enter!)
It is up to the instructors discretion on the day, and the numbers taking part,
if we do allow them on as sometimes numbers are too high.
We will let you know the morning of that race what the decision will be and why.
A timetable is set for each term, each group does the same timetable we just adapt for their ability.
We do put on the timetable that it is subject to change and that we may not be able to inform of changes in time,
either by the website or email, it can all depend on weather and/or circumstances.
Junior Leaders are Eagles that have reached the age of 14 years and have shown interest in helping out the Instructors.
They have to apply to Marian (or the Instructor in charge of the Junior Leaders at the time).
They are assessed on their skiing and also have an interview.
They then have a 10 week trial, this gives us a chance to see how they work,
mix with the children and gel with us and also if they like the role.
During this 10 weeks they still have to pay for their Eagles session as normal but once fully fledged
they get their Eagles session free but still have to register with reception and sign the folder, they have their own page.
The Instructor in charge of them will inform the office as and when they have been accepted as fully fledged Leaders
as sometimes it takes longer than the 10 weeks for them to understand their role and their training,
all the instructors at Junior Club also have to agree to accept them and also the other Junior Leaders,
as they are the ones that will work alongside them.
Once they have passed their trial and you have been informed they get their Eagles session for free
but they still have to check in with you for insurance purposes.