Safety first kids ;)

Ambition ava-launch their new mountain safety program!

As you may or may not have heard about through our various posts on social media this week, have started a new educational program at Ambition Racing based around 'mountain safety'. With most of our work coming on the pistes through training and racing courses, it is always good to refresh the knowledge of the wider environment out there! Not only that, as training providers we (all coaches) have a duty to lead our groups as safely as possible at all times. How many 'race coaches' out there take their group off piste on a regular basis? The answer is many. How many have had the right training to do so? I wouldn't like to assume but i imagine only a small handful - the reason perhaps being that going through BASI is an expensive process and passing off-piste courses such as the EMS at Level 4 is not always easy for ex-racers / young coaches!

Under the guidance and training of Andy Nelson from Infinity Mountain Guides, we managed to run 3x days of age specific mountain safety workshops on the Kitzsteinhorn Glacier. These sessions consisted of snow pack assessments, group management, off piste technique, transceiver searching (group searches and individual) and plenty more. Andy was brilliant with every age group and made the sessions informative and educational whilst at the same time a lot of fun - without losing the U12's with details of the molecular structure of snow crystals! And once the training was complete, Andy managed to get a day of observing us in action, ripping up the courses as us racers do ;)

We managed to take so much from the course including (but not limited to) the following;

  • New found enjoyment of off piste skiing and the possibilities outside of piste skiing / racing.

  • Ambition athletes carrying (and more importantly knowing how to use) transceivers, probes and shovels.

  • Knowledge of the causes of avalanches - skier and non-skier triggers.

  • Basic plan of action for if an avalanche occurs.

  • Knowledge of how to avoid avalanches in the first place (know the red flags!)

  • Etiquette for skiing off of marked terrain - where to stop, how to stop, what gaps to leave - terrain traps and more!

  • Last but not least, we had fun and made the transceiver searches competitive!

In summary, we had a absolut blast doing this and will be doing more of it in the future! The athletes loved it and we are all a little more competent heading off of the marked trails than before!

Stay safe this season everyone :)