#SkiChat Q&A with Breck Ski and Ride School’s Kelly Coffey

Breckenridge Ski And Ride School Instructors

Kelly Coffey, one of our intrepid instructors at the Breckenridge Ski and Ride School took a break from the slopes to answer a few questions on twitter about learning to ski and snowboard.

@SkiChat: Today’s chat is going to be awesome because we have special guest,@kellyrcoffey! He’s a ski instructor at Breckenridge. Welcome!

@breckenridgemtn@SkiChat We’re here and ready for the awesome @kellyrcoffey !#SkiChat

@SkiChat: Alright let’s get started! @kellyrcoffey will be answering questions throughout! Feel free to throw him a few of your own. #skichat

@KellyRCoffey@SkiChat Thanks for having me. I’m excited to talk about new skiers and snowboarders and getting them hooked on the sport 

@SkiChat: Q1: How old were you when you learned to ski/snowboard?

@KellyRCoffey: A1: My parents had me on skis when I was 3. I remember my dad holding me between his legs as we both skied down the slope.

@SkiChat: Q2: Who taught you to ski and/or snowboard?

@KellyRCoffey@SkiChat A2: My parents put me in ski school from the beginning@KeystoneMtn. I cried a lot because I wanted to ski with them.

@SkiChat: Q3: What are the advantages to attending ski/snowboard school vs. a private lesson?

@KellyRCoffey: A3: Class lesson is great for the social aspect. Private is more custom made: it’s only your goals and pace that drive the day.

@SkiChat: Q4: What piece of advice did you receive as a beginner that has stuck with you?

@KellyRCoffey: A4: “Use your turns to control your speed, not the pizza wedge.” Once I figured that out I progressed dramatically

@SkiChat: Q5: Which type of mountain is best for learning to ski/snowboard: large resort or smaller ski area?

@KellyRCoffey: A5: I’m biased toward the large resorts: @breckenridgemtn,@KeystoneMtn@vailmtn. Top grooming, lifts, hot chocolate breaks.

@SkiChat: Q6: Did you have any embarrassing moments while learning to ski/snowboard?=

@KellyRCoffey: A6: Sliding face-first down steep face of Last Hoot @KeystoneMtn. Crying/screaming. Mom picked me up at bottom. Hot chocolate break.

@KellyRCoffey: A6: Also face-planting directly under the busy lift while in uniform my first year as an instructor.

@SkiChat: This one is for all of your skiers who have tried boarding and vice versa… Q7: Which is easier to learn: Ski or snowboard?

@KellyRCoffey: Different learning curves: Day 1-3 skiing is easier. After linking turns through mid-level: snowboarding is easier. Advanced: equal

@SkiChat: We’ve got two more we HAVE to get in so here we go, Q8: How do you continue to learn new techniques or tricks?

@KellyRCoffey: I go out with other pros and get feedback on my turns. Always something to work on. Always a new trick in the park to learn.

@SkiChat: Alright last question, coming right up! You should have some good tips for us, @kellyrcoffey!

@SkiChat: Q9: What tips do you have for safely getting off the chairlift with a beginner? 

@KellyRCoffey: Q9: Tell them “At the yellow line, stand up, get forward, and go straight.” Easy instructions. And you give them plenty of room.

Thanks to Kelly for taking the time to share his love of learning to ski, and to @SkiChat for hosting this twitter Q&A!