We all have a hobby or sport that we can’t get enough of; something that frees us and challenges us to push ourselves to become better. For me, this has ALWAYS been snowboarding.
Roughly 15 years ago my brother and I were signed up for our first ski lesson at Ski Roundtop. Nervous and anxiously dreaming of becoming one of the cool kids on the snowboards, I took our parents advice and started with skiing. A quick (and when I say quick I don’t think we even lasted the whole lesson) beginner lesson and a few hours on skis I was ready to challenge myself to something different. And after a few months of convincing… ‘BAM’ there is was, I woke up on Christmas morning to my first snowboard (yes, it was plastic and from the local sporting goods store) but it was a step in the right direction, none the less. We went to the local sledding hills that winter where I was determined to learn and a few short years later I had my own real Ride Solstice snowboard with brand new Thirty Two brand boots and bindings. I was in love!
I would tag along on snowboard trips with my brother and his friends but would never take a lesson. I was too impatient to listen to what anyone wanted to say so I fell down and got back up time and time again. I was a determined young girl on a snowboard; nothing was going to stop me from becoming better than the boys. Once I got my license I would spend several evenings a week and most weekends at the local resorts practicing until I got it down pat, or so I thought. And here we are, 14 years later where nothing can come in between my snowboard and I. This freeing and character driven sport has taken me to places I never thought possible. No matter how bad my day and how awful my week, there is something so freeing about sliding my feet into my new high back Burton Star Struck boots.
I now spend my weekends traveling to new resorts and meeting new people who are also so impacted by this lifestyle. But despite my hunger for travel on the weekends I decided to stay somewhat local this year to take on a new adventure, teaching. I was determined to teach people what has made me the person I am. I signed up for Ski Roundtop’s Instructional Training Course (ITC) back in September and attended the informational meeting in November. This led into 2 well organized full days of training on the snow broken into groups to learn just what it was that I thought I knew everything about.
Well it turns out teaching has opened this entire new chapter in my life. I’ve learned to forget everything I thought I knew about snowboarding to start back at the beginning. I’ve built on my own skill set with personal training sessions and clinics that are offered to all instructors; and I’ve gained a whole new set of skills that come from the teaching aspect. Now every other Saturday morning I get to wake up before the sun and drive north to instruct the next generation of riders. In a day’s work I get to throw around high fives and smiles like it’s my job (no pun intended) and spend hours on the snow with fellow instructors who have become more like family. I get so much fulfillment every time I hear “Ms. Laura, I got it!” or “Ms. Laura you’re funny!”. Although any teacher can vouch this isn’t always the case, I would never turn anyone away from such an experience. So take a risk, put yourself out there, meet new people and take the necessary steps to teach what you love! I promise you won’t regret it!
Some call it a job, I call it a journey.
“Human mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.