Do you suffer from fear and anxiety while skiing ? Or maybe you know someone, who does? The thought of falling and not being able to control the speed is scaring. The stepness of the slope is terrifyring or something else? Especially the “unknown” of what’s going to happen & “loss of control” while skiing creates anxiety in some people’s mind. Read the post below if you want inspiration for what can be done to minimize fear & anxiety when skiing – and what to do and consider to achieve a better and funnier skiing experience.
By Anne-Louise S. Jørgensen. Professional ski instructor & off-piste SkiGuide in St. Anton am Arlberg, Austria. MSc. Sport psychology (cand. scient)
Fear & anxiety is human
You are not alone. From my many years teaching experience, there are a lot of people, who automatically gets anxious, when they go skiing for the first time. Also those who goes several times each year. Had breaks, weeks or years of no skiing. There are also those, who has developed anxiety due to bad experiences & accidents on skis. They all need to feel comfortable with skiing and build up their skiing confidence again. That’s totally normal.
The skiing confidence is essential
The coolest thing is, if a person achieves the feeling of self-confidence, “Yes I can do it”. I can ski down here. I can actually control my self on skis. I can ski! The feeling of anxiety will then automatically be reduced. The person gets the courage to do more… And then it usually comes naturally that you want to and feel ready for other slopes… But the most important thing is NOT TO FAST. It’s always good to get a little out of your comfort zone, but in moderation. Your comfort zone can get pushed a bit as your confidence grows. If a person is given too many challenges in relation to skills, anxiety occurs. The person also lose confidence and gets into a bad circle! Then the ski motivation also gets decreased.
Overcoming fear & anxiety while skiing can take time – depends on the person.
HOW to build this skiing confidence?
SKI lessons with an experienced instructor
I would always suggest private lessons with an instructor for a better skiing experience. Find a ski school with an experienced instructor or book an independant one, if you know one. The skiing technique will get improved during skiing & exercises.The experienced instructor can normally combine a person’s physical and psychological skill level quite well. Here I mean, the instructor will not only look at the sequence of exercises in relation to the skiing development, but also to look at the person you are dealing with. And find the person’t optimal comfort zone. An experienced instructor, can see strait away in a person’s body language, when a person suffer from too much fear while skiing. And beside teaching, the ski client can receive tips and tools on how to get down the dirrerent slopes in the ski resort. And there are of course much more a ski instructor can offer. Further more the ski instructor will help you develop to the better ski version of your self.
Skiing on your own – some advices for less fear & anxiety on the ski slopes
Experiences of success give confidence
Practise on easy terrain, where you feel confident. When it’s start getting boring, speed up on the same run. When it’s too boring for you, then you’re ready for next level. Another slope.
Be patient. Less is more. Enough is enough. Be satisfied with what you already done.
Be honest about your skiing level, when skiing with friends. It’s important you don’t feel or get pushed, otherwise your fear will grow even bigger!
Supportive ski fellows is the key. What is a good, supportive skiing buddy? Read my blogpost about it next week!
Especially February month is busy. School holiday period as well. All Ski-schools in St. Anton am Arlberg – The whole Arlberg region – are getting very busy. It can be difficult to get a certain private ski instructor or off-piste guide, if you don’t book in advance. I just want to inform you…
There are several ski schools in St.Anton.Of course you can just show up in one of the bigger schools’ office in town and book for the day – private or group lessons. They will probably always have some (holiday) instructors available. It can also happens, if you are too late with the booking, that they are “sold out” for the day.
You can also book an independent ski instructor or a ski guide online – (like me) through their own webpage. Often they are fully booked weeks before february.
BOOK YOUR FAVORITE INSTRUCTOR
Just have in mind that it can be more difficult to get the instructor you want in high season, if you don’t book in time: Who speaks your language or an experienced/ higher qualified instructor etc., because they are simply fully booked (peak week is from 10 th of february 2024 etc).
Also good to know is that the group lessons in the big ski schools for kids and adults can be quite crowded in Tirol, Austria (max. 12 people).
But when people first get the experience, that it’s difficult to get the instructor they want. Or they went in a too big group the year before, they learn – next time – to book long time in advance or to book private lessions.
Life with a pre booked ski instructor / ski guide gives less stress.
On a holiday it’s important not having stress, but pleasure, togetherness, joy, fun and eat and do things that makes you happy 🙂
I hope it was good information or a great reminder.
SKI Vacation for non skiers. Many have family members, who doesn’t want to ski or are not able to ski because of a reason. I have listened 10 things to do in and near St. Anton am Arlberg – for non skiers.
1. Tobogganing – Here in St. Anton you don’t even need to walk up. You can take the Nasserein gondola up to Gampen. Up there, there is a long, beautiful toboggan road way and down to town. Get more specifik information by clicking here .
2. Walking / Wandering outside in nature Being outside and getting some fresh air is always good for you. Around St. Anton am Arlberg there are many marked wander routes around the snow covered mountains. Many options. Beautiful experience.
If you are only onto small walks, I can highly recommend a walk though the beautiful mountain town St. Anton am Arlberg & maybe have a look in all the shops & a coffee break in between.
A walk in & around Pettneu am Arlberg. I recommend you to visit this little amazing mountain village. It’s situated around 7 km outside St. Anton am Arlberg. You can walk, take the car, taxi or the ski bus out here. Pettneu has a really beautiful walking road up in the mountains. You can take a break at “The Almfrieden hut” and get some food (e.g soup or Kaiserschmarrn) or drink a hot chocolate and walk down again or take the skis or a sledge down…
St. Christoph, Zürs, Lech am Arlberg or Stuben or Sonnenkopf am Arlberg is also worth visiting.
3. Playtime in the snow
When there is snow, there are a lot of options… Not everything has to cost money – & playing in the snow is for free. You can do it alone or with your family – build snowmen – make snow angels or iglos – snowball games and other snow activities.
4. Taking Pictures
Of the landscape or yourself. Or maybe you meet a person, who wants to help making a photo of you in the beautiful surroundings. Photos are always great memories from your holiday.
5. Coffee – cakes – eating
Many nice places to go. Of course I have my favorites, but ask me private in a message, what I recommend or follow me at instagram in winter and look at my stories 🙂 @freeridegirlcom .
6. Arlberg Wellness Centre
In the middle of town, you will find Arlberg WellCom . Here it is possible to do fitness training, yoga, sauna & swimming or get a great massage.I often go there for a swim – Say hello, if we suddenly meet 🙂
7. Aprés Ski
There are actually many people, who just come to St.Anton because of the great Aprés Ski situated on the mountain. They sleep long, heading for après ski and party the whole night long…
The most crowded /popular places start with the après ski music around 15.30/16.00 o’clock: The Mooserwirt, Crazy Kanguruh & Taps.
Otherwise it’s a bit more quiet après ski down in town. I can recommend Underground on the Piste & Anton Bar situated next to Galzig Bahn in 2 different directions… In center of town there are also Aprés Ski places, but I never get so far, so that’s why I can’t recommend them right now 🙂 If I have forgotten some important places, let me know.
8. Train trip to Innsbruck
Do you miss the “Big City” feeling already after some days in the mountains? Well.. Then you can take a train trip to Innsbruck. Innsbruck not like very big, Big, city, but it’s the capital of Tirol (my opinion), and beautiful architecture combined with older buildings. At Christmas time it’s very nice. I think all cities and towns are in Austria.
But also just the train trip from St.Anton am Arlberg through the mountains to Innsbruck is an experience it self. There are directly trains from St. Anton train-station to Innsbruck.
9. Arl.Rock Sport-park & Resto-bar
Great activity place situated next to the train station: Climbing & bouldering. Tennis courts, squash court. Bowling. Newest activity is the trampolines. Also there is a sport bar & thai restaurant inside the building. The food from the Thai restaurant taste amazing. I recommend.
10. RELAX AT YOUR HOTEL
Maybe you should just give your self some time to relax & be nice to your self. Sleep long. Have sex with your partner or masturbate. Eat a long breakfast, enjoy your coffee. Read a book or the newspaper magazine you love to read. USE YOUR WIFI. Do all things in slow motion. Get a massage. Go into the wellness & sauna area if possible. One day fully relaxing can be good for you.
No skiing on a ski holiday can also be a great holiday!!
Sure I have forgotten something above. The Arlberg Area have so many things to offer. It will take too much of my time to write down. If something very important is not in the text, then let me know 🙂