One of the questions I get asked the most is how and when to start a young child skiing. The answer requires some parental intuition. Does your child enjoy playing outside in the snow? How do your child respond to people he or she doesn’t know? At Whiteface, where I teach, children must be four years old to participate in a group lesson environment like our Play and Ski program. Younger kids learn best one-on-one.
The choice between using a ski instructor for private lessons and teaching your child yourself depends on several factors. How comfortable are you skiing in a wedge with your child? Children learn by watching. Young kids may not be comfortable with anyone other than a parent, so that may limit your options. Trying to teach a young child to ski while snowboarding simply doesn’t work. Be honest with yourself about your patience, temperament, and experience to pull it off.