« Adaptive skiing is one of the most incredible sides to our sport. Those who take part in it are full of pure determination and never give up. »
ES Adaptive ski school is a non-profit organization, linked to European Snowsport –a company based in Verbier, Zermatt, Nendaz, St Moritz and Chamonix. This link has developed from the growing interest of existing ES instructors in adaptive techniques as well as for providing greater access for skiing to all individuals.
- English speaking, fully ‐qualified BASI (British Association of Ski Instructors) Adaptive Ski Instructors.
• Bespoke one‐2‐one ski tuition and guiding at excellent value including equipment hire (costs are covered, but no profit made)
• Advice regarding the booking of your holiday and practicalities of access in the resort for those with ambulatory
Difficulties – e.g. knowledge of how easy or difficult access is to hotels restaurants, ski lifts, transport facilities and leisure facilities.
- Detailed local knowledge of the mountains to ensure our clients gain the most from their time in resort. Our instructors can advise on mountain restaurants with suitable access and appropriate toilet facilities. They can choose the most appropriate terrain or variety of abilities and for practicing new skills, whilst ensuring that you enjoy the full ES adaptive experience and ski as much of the area as possible.
Here are some great pieces of feedback from adaptive skiers that have skied with us over the years.
- “After a couple of operations on my back, my calf muscles were very weak and I thought that my skiing days were over. However thanks to ES I took up adaptive skiing and I am now back up the mountain and skiing down to the bottom without too many falls. (My instructor) has helped me enormously for the last few years and she is a great teacher, enthusiastic, challenging and, for a Scot, a surprising sense of humour! Without her I would never have made the progress that I have made.”
- « I am a C5 quad and although I was an avid skier before my accident this is only the second time I’ve used an adaptive ski. I cannot recommend ES enough. From the moment I arrived at the resort until the time I left I felt extremely well taken care of and in very safe hands. As most wheelchair travellers know there is always a bit of apprehension before embarking on a new adventure, however I can honestly say that this was the smoothest, glitch-free holiday I’ve ever had. »
- “My name is Dr Mark Barnard and I’ve had MS for over 30 years. I’m currently wheelchair bound but live independently. Before my legs became too weak I skied at least once a year and being on top of a mountain in the snow was my favourite place to be.
So given the opportunity to adaptive ski in Verbier by the great charity Ski4All was both elating and very very scary.
Year 1 was learning the ropes (or tethers) in difficult snow conditions. Year 2 I met my new instructor. Her Scottish drawl was intoxicatingly reassuring as we talked about my competence and goals-to ski tether free. My main concern, for me and her, was how a young slip of a girl was going to control a lump of a guy like myself. I needn’t have worried. Her abilities shone through and by the end of the week I was skiing black runs confidently. Only illness prevented me going tether free on the last day.
Importantly she easily integrated with my group of family and friends but was not afraid to abuse me when she shouted “left”and I turned right! …5 star rating for giving me back my ability to do my favourite hobby!”
- « I have skied and coped with my disability in a certain way for 35 years but (my instructor) has really changed my whole attitude in just 3 lessons. He was able to pin-point where I was going wrong and made me understand why I did it that way and what effect that had on the rest of my body and balance. I really look like a different skier now. I’m definitely going to start next season with a few more lessons. »
Check out the ES Adaptive page to find out more here.
If you or someone you know would be interested in giving adaptive skiing a go, get in touch with the European Snowsport office here and book your lesson with one of our great ES adaptive instructors this winter.