Nordic Ski Instructor

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Instructor 1 Course outline

Appendices: [ Instructor 1 course outline | Instructor 2 course outline | Instructor 3 course outline | APSI Nordic rules and regulations | equipment size charts | snow structure | waxing tips ]

Function of an Instructor 1

  • to support fully-qualified Instructors in the conduct of ski programs.

  • to test for the Ski Australia SkiXC bronze award level.

  • if s/he wishes to teach Nordic skiing, will continue to develop her/his teaching and skiing ability and obtain his/her Instructor 3 qualification.


  • attend a one-day Instructor 1 skills test (Assessment Day) of skiing ability only, at a location and date advertised in the APSI Nordic program.

  • applicants who show sufficient skiing skills on this Assessment Day test to by-pass the Skills Training component of the course, may apply to attend the instruction skills component (Instructor 1 course) in either the current winter, or in the following two winters. Those determined to have insufficient skiing skills will be made to attend the two-day Instructor 1 Skills Clinic and to be re-assessed on the final afternoon. However, all applicants are encouraged to attend this component, as a method of ensuring that skiing skills are at the required standard.

  • applicants must be at least eighteen years of age at the commencement of the course for which they apply.

Entry ski skills test

  • a stronger emphasis is given in Instructor 1 courses to instruction methodologies, therefore applicants will be required to have passed their skills component at an Assessment Day.

  • techniques to be tested will include six of the following: diagonal striding, uphill diagonal striding, side-stepping, double-poling, herringbone climbing, star turning, kick turning, tacking turning, direct descent and tuck, downhill traverse, snowplough glide and brake, and turning, bumps and dips, telemark running, and step turning

Instruction skills course content (three days on-snow)

  • the course will cover teaching progressions of the above skills, with emphasis on: good demonstrations of the skill being taught, good class management, group management and dynamics, self-preparation and professionalism, trip planning for day tours, games and fun activities, teaching children and other special-needs groups, knowledge of equipment and clothing, and providing constructive feedback when teaching.

  • in addition there will be an introduction to the Instructor 2 entry skiing techniques.


  • continuous feedback on teaching and skiing skills will be provided during the course.

  • an open-book assignment will be completed prior to the course.

  • all testing will be performed by a minimum of two APSI Nordic examiners.

  • a marking scale rated one to five will be used (with comments as appropriate).

  • teaching assessment will be with a class of four to six volunteers.

  • teaching skills will be assessed during a 40- to 90-minute period, including one flat, and one slope technique (both lessons are to be drawn from a hat the day before).

  • only teaching skills will be assessed, however weak skiing skills (or a weak understanding of them) may affect the final outcome of a poor overall lesson.


  • assessment of teaching skills will be on an Assessment Day following the Instructor 1 course. Candidates have the option of being assessed up to two seasons later if they desire.

Instructor 3 course entry recommendations

  • the skiing skills required for entry into the Instructor 2 course will be taught during this course and the examiners will advise whether or not candidates are recommended for entry into the Instructor 2 course, on provision of the candidate completing the other requirements of the Instructor 1 level.

  • this advice is not a pass/fail assessment for the Instructor 1 course, but rather advice on the candidate's readiness to proceed to the next APSI Nordic level.


  • if a candidate is unsuccessful in any component of the course s/he may apply to re-submit for re-testing at a location and date advertised in the APSI Nordic program.

  • the re-test must be completed within two seasons following the season in which the course is attempted.

Instruction development

  • to complete the requirements of the course, candidates must complete two days of instruction with currently-qualified instructors in a team-teaching role within the season following the course.

  • course members must work with two different APSI Nordic instructors and it is expected that the instructors will provide constructive feedback to the candidate.

  • the APSI Nordic Committee requires instructors to notify the committee that a course member has assisted them so that when a candidate successfully completes other course requirements and assessments a certificate and badge can be awarded.

Staffing of the course

  • the course will be directed by an Instructor 3 where possible, but an Instructor 2 may direct if required.

  • assisting staff will hold the Instructor 2 qualification or higher.

  • a staffing ratio of one to eight or better will be maintained.

  • the recommended maximum course size is twenty-four candidates.


  • applications will be accepted in order of receipt of payment of full course fees.

  • applicants in excess of twenty-four will be advised of an alternative course or placed on a waiting list for the current course, in case of cancellations.

Appendices: [ Instructor 1 course outline | Instructor 2 course outline | Instructor 3 course outline | APSI Nordic rules and regulations | equipment size charts | snow structure | waxing tips ]

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[ Contents | Preface | Organisation | Teaching | Techniques | Equipment | Resources | Appendices | Glossary | Index ]