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Helena Artmann has a bachelor degree in Communications with a vast experience in PR and the online world. Before moving to Canada in 2005, Helena published a variety of articles in Brazilian magazines and websites, mostly about travel, adventure, outdoor, gear, environment and her favourite activities, mountaineer and hot air ballooning. This is her website: http://artmanncommunications.com

3 Lessons I Learned on the Ladies Ski Program

A black run at Lake Louise, AB

A black run at Lake Louise

My nine-week course is over. We had the best condition for the three-week extension and I skied harder and non-stop during this time. I had a different instructor, Toby, and just another participant, Lisa. We were both in a similar level, even if I had the feeling that I was way behind. We had three days of powder, black runs and moguls. I started as a blue-groomed skier and ended as a black-moguls skier. This is a jump! (No pun intended.)

These last nine weeks were phenomenal. Not because I got to ski in good conditions, but because of the time I dedicated to my growth in a challenging sport. Ski is not natural when you start late in life but it is tons of fun. As my mom once said: ‘It must be good, as I never heard anyone saying it is not!’

  1. It is never too late – Starting to ski when I was 41 years old to follow my 4 year-old son down the hill was daunting, to say the least. For a couple of years, I thought I would never be able to improve or go over more technical terrain. This course proved me wrong. I am contemplating double blacks for sometime soon…
  1. Technical equipment helps but technique is more important – I bought my first new equipment this season and I noticed the difference it made, but I was just able to notice it because I was making an effort to improve my technique with lessons and practice.
  1. Change your point of view – As a mountaineer, I was ‘trained’ to look up the mountain and my whole body position was facing the mountain and, somehow, attached to it. When skiing, you have to face down the mountain and your body position is detached to the mountain. You have to look down, make your arm and pole reach down and go for it, committing to the turn. It is scary and something that I still can’t feel comfortable in doing, but that’s the secret to better turns and better control.

I’ve been now enjoying skiing with my son and the fact that I can ski black runs opened up the hill to options I didn’t have. The ski is more intense, challenging and very tiring and I can feel my legs working hard to keep me on my feet.

Which activity you learned late in life that challenged you?

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