It's Time to Face Your Fears!


So today is #faceyourfears day, a day where we must all give a little thought to overcoming a few of the scary challenges which hold us back. Up on the slopes, there’s a whole range of tough challenges to face, and brave skiers and boarders will soon be heading out to the Alps to push themselves that little bit further.

With that in mind, here’s a little encouragement to #faceyourfears. Push yourself out of your comfort zone a little over winter 2016/17 and who knows... You could soon find yourself breaking down barriers you never knew you could. They say fortune favours the brave, so it’s time to seize the day!

Get a handle on that fear of heights

We’re starting big here. Fear of heights holds many people back, but heights are a huge feature of any ski holiday. For a start, you’re on the slopes around 1,500 metres above sea level, surrounded on all sides by soaring peaks.

To #faceyourfears, take a deep breath, relax and allow that chairlift to sweep you effortlessly up the slopes. You can start small and build your confidence on the Folliets du Golf chairlift in Morzine, then perhaps go big on one of the infamous ‘scare chairs’ in Val d’Isere or Alpe d’Huez. One of the longest and highest gondolas in the world links Whistler with Blackcombe, in Canada. It’s a high ride, and the valley views are breathtaking.

Deep breaths... Don't look down!
Image courtesy of Luke McEvoy on Flickr, under a Creative Commons license.

Challenge yourself on steeper slopes

Learning to ski and snowboard takes time and effort, but don’t let steep gradient hold you back – embrace it. Once you’ve mastered the basics and learnt to turn on those gentle green runs in the nursery area, push yourself onto the blue then red slopes. Here, the steeper gradient will push you on and you’ll soon be flying down the slopes.  

The key to tackling steeper terrain is to control your speed. Once you’ve mastered the breaks, go ahead and ride those steeper runs. You’ll soon see that the gradient actually helps in your turns, and you’ll be seeking out the steep and deep in no time.

Embrace your need for speed

Don’t hold back, have faith in your skills on the snow! You’ve taken the lessons and nailed the nursery runs, so now’s the time to cut loose a little. Limber up, relax your legs and flat-line to the finish — the buzz is worth it. Face your fear of speed and embrace the schuss!

Catch that air-time

If the thought of hitting the park fills you with dread, have no fear — you’re not alone. Plenty of skiers and boarders with months or even years of hill-time under their belt (i.e. me) are still scared of the park.

Sure, there are kickers the size of a house and half-pipes larger than a double-decker bus, but who says you have to start big? Hit the learner bumps and get used to leaving terra-firma — you’ll soon find you get used to the air-time and you’ll likely soon start to enjoy it. After that, the park is your playground. Sure there’ll be bumps and stacks along the way, but that’s par for the course. No pain no gain.

So with winter 2016/17 round the corner, #faceyourfears and step up to the challenge. Don’t let fear hold you back and you’ll enjoy the pistes, parks and powder all the more.

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