ski lessons 2 year olds

Old Oct 10th, 2006, 05:09 AM
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Mont Tremblant offers babysitting and (apparently) lessons. The lessons description lists a category called "babies" (!!!). I have no idea what age that would be. I also have no idea why anyone would want to take a 2 year old skiing.
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Old Oct 10th, 2006, 05:10 AM
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What you are really asking, in my opinion, is where do they have babysitting for my 2 year old while I ski. Most large areas do. They will take them out to play in the snow, bring them back for snack, coloring, a nap, etc.
Be realistic about what a 2 year old can do. Let him/her have a good time--and you do too. It isn't the last time you'll go, I assume.
I have to admit that since they have the magic carpets, ski lessons can begin a lot sooner.
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Old Oct 10th, 2006, 06:17 AM
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Vail had a similar program to what Killington describes about 7 years ago. I don't think they do it anymore but it was called micro mice. The 2 year olds were in daycare but for an hour during the day an instructor would take out 2 of the kids at a time. They wore plastic clip on skis. They "walked and slid" around in their skis, rode the magic carpet and generally played in the snow. My now 9 year old did this program. He was convinced at the time that he was indeed skiing like mom, dad, and big brother. He had a good time. As long as you don't expect your 2 year old to learn actually to ski and just hope he has fun, everyone will be satisfied.
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Old Oct 12th, 2006, 10:05 AM
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Smuggler's Notch,VT has excellent programs for kids from babies to teens.
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Old Dec 26th, 2006, 10:05 AM
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I am surprised at how many folks here are unsupportive of a 2 year old ski program. My 5 year old has been doing day long lessons since she was 3 (this is her 3rd year) and she loves it. Our 2 1/2 year old is itching to get on skis and we're looking for a program for her as well (found this thread through a google search).

Generally I think you have to know your kid. If they are athletic and interested then why not try. I actually had a lengthy conversation with a children's ski instructor from Alta, UT who explained that the teaching methods they use these days are quite different from 10 years ago and that a small child skiing between a parents legs is just not safe. If the adult falls you have 150+ lbs + momentum falling on top of a toddler. Not good. New teaching methods have the instructor down hill from the child using their skis to guide them (instructor skis backwards).

I thought Ascutney, VT had a 2 1/2 year old program but I don't see it on their website. We're looking for a VT place to give our toddler her first taste before we head out west in March - she'll be 2 yrs 9 months by then.

In general 3 years old is the starting age. Full day lessons are great in some places - terrible in others. Snowbird, UT was not a great experience for our then 4 year old - they shared a space with all ages (mixing with 8-11 year olds) which we didn't think was appropriate.

So questions to ask before you book.
- how many kids are in the group
- where do they eat lunch, what are the breaks like
- how does using the rest room work
- what age groups do the pre-schoolers mix with
- how many instructors take care of the group
- will the same instructors be there over multiple days (this is disappointingly usually a no)

Thanks for the info on Killington - we're going to check that out.
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Old Dec 26th, 2006, 10:17 AM
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This column gives a lot of links and options for taking a 2-3 year old skiing.

Good luck and have fun!
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Old Dec 26th, 2006, 12:27 PM
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There is no doubt that these programs are available. I think it is questionable whether they are more lessons than babysitting however. I replied a while back. We put our grands in "ski school". The ski some, they come in and color, they nap, they snack. The parents can ski--the kids can pick up what they want. The people that work with them are cute kids--our daughter was once one of them at Winter Park.
Since the advent of the Magic Carpet ski lifts, it has improved greatly for getting the kids to the top of the "bump" to ski down.
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Old Dec 29th, 2006, 10:31 AM
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We were in a ski resort in France a few yrs ago and were discussing the time to start ski lessons with some of the instructors there. We were told that they do not start lessons until age 5 (and Europeans know their skiing) because of undue stress of undeveloped knee joints. 2 yr olds are not just psychologically not ready but physically as well.
Let 2 yr old (and 3s for that matter) play in the snow and throw snowballs.
They have a lifetime of formal instruction ahead
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Old Dec 29th, 2006, 10:49 AM
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We took my son last year (he was 2.5) for skiing lessons. Naturally, he was anxious, and all he wanted to do was "play" but we did not force anything and waited until he warmed up to the idea (making sure both mommy and daddy were within his sight all the time). When he wanted to be held, we held him, when he wanted to try on the skis we let him--as much as the child's maturity, physical and cognitive development is important so is a parent's patience and compassion.

He got the dynamics quicker than we thought (quicker than I did years ago). We only did it a few times because of the drive (we live in California and the closest skiing place from us is an 1.5 hours away).

But at that age, he learned and had fun. But the same thing happened when he is taking swimming lessons--there are bad days when he refuses to do anything, and good days when he looked forward to it.

I think most reputable places will emphasize that not all kids will take to the lesson well and will give allowances to the fact that kids that young have short attention spans. We had one hour lessons, and about half of that was spent playing.

We're actually going to get some lessons again this season--he is 3.5.
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