What makes a great ski instructor? The ability to ski extremely well, of course, but that's only the beginning. Just as important are a thorough understanding of the sport's mechanics, knowing how the human body (as well as the human psyche) works, and the ability to demonstrate and communicate. The greatest ski teachers are expert mind and body-language readers. They instinctively recognize how each student learns best and adapt a teaching style to meet it. The best instructors always get results: leaving their students smiling, knowing they have improved.
Picking SKI's Top 100 Ski Instructors of North America is no easy task. America is renowned for producing excellent instructors, and the American Teaching System (ATS)-with its student-centered and technically based philosophy-is among the most innovative in the world. To generate this list, we started by surveying 150-plus resorts, which garnered 250 candidates out of a pool of 30,000-plus instructors. With expert advice from top instruction veterans, SKI selected a list of 100 instructors, including those who specialize in teaching children. Making it into the Top 100 requires more than a great personality or talent for teaching. Popularity with guests counts, but so do credentials. Achieving Level 3 PSIA certification-the highest-involves rigorous exams and years of preparation and study. Achieving Examiner status also helps. Many of the Top 100 enjoy splendid regional, national, even international reputations. All are deeply respected, not only by their resort management, but also by their peers.
We hope your favorite instructor made the list. If you don't have a favorite ski pro, our Top 100 list is the perfect place to find one. Book in advance: Many of these instructors have clients who schedule lessons a full season ahead. For a complete list of Top 100 Ski Instructor Nominees, go to www.skimag.com and type in keyword "Top 100 Instructors."