Learn How to Ski

Beginner Skiing Lessons

Although the concept of skiing has been around for 4000-5000 years, modern day equipment arose in Norway by Sondre Norheim from Morgedal in Telemark. The first set of bindings invented was made from “birch” which allowed skiers to not have to worry about losing their skis. Norheim, at the age of forty-three, became the winner of the first Norwegian national ski competition in Christiana, modern day Oslo. Even though many of the inventions were actually built before his time, he continued to be considered as the pioneer of skiing and was an inspiration for generations beyond his time. Since then, there continues to be new technologies to help improve the equipment and make competition times faster.

Akukura-Kanko Ski ResortAboveBelowTours invites you to visit a fantastic resort called Akukura-Kanko at Myoko-Kogen, Japan. This location is ideal for beginner to intermediate levels. For all those first-timers, Akukura offers gentle slopes, spacious runs, and experienced instructors. For intermediate riders who want to improve, you can take lessons to elevate your skills. Or just freeride and enjoy the 1,000 plus meters of vertical drop. Not to mention a gorgeous view of Lake Nojiri and the surrounding area.

Myoko Snowsports SchoolMyoko International Snowsports School is located at the base of the High-Speed Champion Chair-lift. They offer lessons for all skiing and snowboarding levels. You have the option to take morning, afternoon, or all day lessons.  They will give you sound advice on improving your technique or brushing up on your skills. Lessons are taught in English and Japanese. They also offer rentals, a kid’s center, and photography packages.

Tom teachingYour instructor will progress according to the class’s abilities. You will follow a step-by-step progression with a series of exercises designed for you to concentrate on each individual skill. Using these exercises and the instructor’s suggestions along the way, it is possible for anyone to learn how to ski no matter their previous experience.  There is one thing everyone must remember. It is impossible to learn how to do something in one day; therefore, we highly recommend learning for a minimum of 3-6 days.

JackMost importantly, the snow is sensational. Siberian winds bring cooler temperatures, which creates superb snow conditions that are fresh and light, perfect for making smooth, round turns. Myoko receives up to 14 meters of snowfall annually with no less than a 400cm base. With great snow and a diverse mountain, this almost guarantees you’ll have a marvelous time.

As you progress, here are the different styles you can try. Each style uses a different ski so usually it’s best to use rentals if you want to try a different style. Choose one or all that appeal to you.


Cassandra teaching1.     Alpine Skiing – This is the regular skiing, as you know it. You try descending down a mountain slope with as much control as possible by continually turning from left to right to slow down. Skilled skiers often challenge themselves by descending down moguls, which are bumps formed when skiers make short radius turns between them.


Tom Langtry2.     Freestyle – This is where the skier will jump using man-made terrain such as tabletop jumps, half-pipes, rails, boxes, trees and whatever other feature imaginable to perform tricks on.


Cross Country Skiing3.     Cross-Country Skiing – This style also uses skis, which are only attached to the bindings at the toes. Skiers propel themselves using longer poles and longer, thinner skis. The terrain is generally fairly flat. This style is an extremely demanding aerobic exercise.


Telemark Skiing4.     Telemark Skiing – This is a term used when the skier performs telemark turns. It is a cross between downhill skis and cross-country skis. In this technique, the skis are only attached to the bindings at the toes. The skis are staggered and not quite parallel and 50-60% of the body weight is distributed on the outside ski.


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