Ski 'instructoring' czyli uczenie jazdy na nartach... w Japonii


Teaching a few kids skiing for a few days and taking them out for little ventures around an unknown city and ski resort is not as traumatic or impossible to succeed as it sounds like. Or sounded like. It was all I panicked inwardly about one week before 'The Adventure'. I've had some experience of taking care of kids, also finding my way around an unknown Japanese speaking environment and of course, skiing.
But put that all together, and add a few pairs of the kid's parents and senior instructor's hawkish eyes... Well, I did mention some inward panicking, right?
Turns out it was not so traumatic. Turns out I really liked the rush. Rush of having 5 consecutive batches of kids in 21 days and the ambition of making them love skiing and me (of course). And I was undoubtedly fueled by all the positive vibes my trainees were passing off, making me really like this job.

Let me give you a somewhat clearer picture of what I was doing in the country of ever-changing weather and snow condition.
For 21 days I had been residing with my sweet, sweet 11 year old brother (who was seriously getting on my nerves) in room 705 - which was in a horrific state. Sorry Mom, you're not getting any pictures.

Room 705 is in the simple yet quite big Prince Hotel in 雫石; read: Shizuku-ishi. 雫石 is in the northern part of Japan's main island. Internet exists only in the lobby, and you could've seen me there every night banging my head on the table and staring at the computer screen which shows that a short, simple video of my bro and I singing Bohemian Rhapsody on the chairlift takes 707 minutes to upload.

It's a ski-in ski-out resort, meaning it's a 20 meter walk to the closest chairlift. There is also a semi-open-air onsen (hot spring). Purpose of it is to relax your sore muscles after a day of shredding. Surprisingly, I was not really sore with all the picking up, climbing, pushing and lifting I did throughout the day. Although I did acquire a fair amount of bruises... some through the domestic abuse my bro inflicts onto me, and some are caused by vengeful bathroom doors. The ski slopes themselves are pretty fun to roll down from, but green - beginner slopes take up a small amount of the mountain.

My lovely students have the tendency of kicking off their skiis and dropping their poles during chairlift rides. And through that I realized how important is the knowledge of 'itchy Nissan' - numbers in Japanese. Not only useful when telling the chairlift operators where had the piece of unfortunate equipment fell, also in passing shoe size, table numbers, counting people, etc.

All in all, I think - I know, that I learned a lot and hopefully taught a lot ;)

For me, experiences of this kind are very useful and important, especially if I want to do more of 'instructoring' when I 'grow up'. I had a wonderful time.


  1. Sounds amazing. What a great way to have a ski vacation and gain some life experience. :)

  2. Itchy Nissan... :D OMG :D Muszę się tym koniecznie pochwalić znajomym Japończykom :D Ciekawe czy będą zachwyceni?