This program is designed to continue to improve basic skiing fundamentals through free skiing, drills, and gate training. Prior racing experience is not required to participate with this group, but strong skiing skills are. While there is a substantial amount of free skiing, this is a race-oriented program. Equipment needs for this age group include a helmet (not with soft ears), SL gate protection, and correctly sized SL and GS race skis; back protection is encouraged. Typically, properly sized SL skis are approximately to the tip of the athlete’s nose, and GS skis are usually at or just above the athlete’s hair line. Most ski shops that sell race equipment can help with equipment sizing guidelines. The Vermont Alpine Racing Association (VARA) schedules a series of approximately five GS and/or SL races around Northern Vermont for U12 athletes. VARA and USSA licenses are required to participate in these races.
The U12 program meets Saturdays and Sundays beginning early December through late March, including training during the Christmas and February school vacation weeks, and on Friday afternoons from January to late-March (60 days on snow!). U12 athletes are also invited to participate in training on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons through our tutorial program (up to 90 days on snow!).