One of the awesome things about being on the AASI National Team is the projects we get to work on that impact the whole industry.
Earlier this spring, teammate Amy Gan and I met up with Burton’s Global Experience Manager Shaun Cattanach at Eldora Mountain Resort for one of those projects, a video to promote learn to snowboard programs for young kids to show at the National Ski Areas Association’s National Convention.
Not only was it a fun project to create and film, it carried an important message to ski area managers from across the country. I’m really happy with how the video turned out and love its message about improvements to children’s snowboard education through advancements in equipment, terrain, and teaching.
When we brainstormed the return of Rider Rally at Team Training last fall, all we really knew was that we wanted to revive this core event and bring together riders from across our organization.
The idea was one that the snowboard team rallied around, and so we spent the last 6 months planning on teleconferences and over beers at other events, talking to resorts and hitting the jackpot with Arapahoe Basin Ski Area, asking sponsors for whatever they had left in their swag drawers, promoting Rider Rally at every resort we visited, designing graphics and creating messaging, building the community on Facebook, and working with PSIA-AASI staff to help organize registration.
And then 60 snowboarders from all over the world showed up at Arapahoe Basin! This is the final group photo, taken at about 3:30 on Friday. Still 50 strong and many of the riders in this group went on to bounce and jump at Woodward Copper for the next 3 hours.
Last week George Thomas and I connected for the first episode of our new weekly series as part of PSIA-AASI Rocky Mountain “First Chair” Podcast . The podcast is a new project focused on Skiing, Riding, Certifications, Professional Development, and Mountain Lifestyle. Last week’s podcast was focused on defensive skiing and riding during spring break, check it out!
I am honored to be selected as a member of the 2016 PSIA-AASI Snowboard Team and to represent AASI for the next four years alongside an incredible team of inspirational educators and athletes.
In the fall of 2004 I moved to Steamboat Springs, planning to spend a winter there between college and “real life.” That all changed because of a conversation at Mahogany Ridge where Scott Anfang convinced me to teach snowboarding for “a season.”
I’m passionate about our organization and the power of the Teams to inspire, influence, and change lives because it happened to me. Standing at the front of the room last night with my new teammates, I couldn’t help but be excited about the incredible opportunity we all have to create that same life change for the next generation of educators.
While I credit Scott with starting me down this path, the saying “It takes a village” has never been more true. In that first season in Steamboat I had a few outstanding trainers who inspired me to make snowboard instruction a career instead of just a job. Through the years that list has expanded dramatically, and I owe so many thanks to the many, many people who’ve I’ve had the opportunity to train with and learn from.
So, to everyone who trained me and trained with me, to all of the amazing people who helped make this a career, to the guests who made teaching snowboarding so fun, to my peers who have been an endless source of encouragement, and to my friends and family who put up with me always talking about snowboarding: Thank You!
“The most important gift that you receive by taking action in the direction of your dreams is not attaining your dreams, it’s you growing stronger and becoming a stronger version of yourself through the challenges, through the resistance, and because it’s hard.” Elliot Hulse
I’m beyond excited to receive an invite to the next step of the 2016 PSIA-AASI National Team selections, and I’m stoked to head to Breckenridge in April with 60 of the most passionate ski and snowboard instructors and trainers in the world! Thank you to my friends, family, colleagues, and mentors who’ve helped and supported me in this crazy, awesome career. It’s been a wild 12 years, and it just keeps getting better!