Ability Levels for Whistler Ski School

One of the most important parts of ensuring your lesson or camp meets your expectations and provides a safe and enjoyable learning environment, is selecting your correct ability level. This table will help you find the right level for you and your family.

Ski Ability Chart

Symbol Level Description
1 – First Time Skier Never Skied Before. Or is not yet able to stop with confidence on a gentle slope.
2 – Novice Learning to turn in control on gentle slopes. Usually rides magic carpet lifts. May progress to chairlifts and other easy green runs.
3 – Comfortable Novice Can link strong snowplow turns or wide stance parallel on green runs. Occasionally skis a blue run, but cautiously. Has experience riding chairlifts (while skiing).
4 – Intermediate Able to ski parallel turns with pole plant. Can ski most blue runs, more advanced blues remain a challenge. Would like to explore more varied terrain.
5 – Advanced Able to ski strong parallel turns with a pole plant on all blue runs and easy black runs. Learning, short turns, off piste, moguls, powder and more difficult terrain.*
6 – Expert Enjoy the challenge of skiing in control in all conditions and terrain and want to refine these skills.*

* Terrain features/parks may be used in any lessons. The rating system for the terrain parks is different from the Ski and Snowboard ability chart.

Snowboard Ability Chart

Symbol Level Description
1 – First Time Snowboarder Never snowboarded before, or requires hand assistance to stop safely.
2 – Novice Able to stop safely, mobile on toe-side and heel side edges. (Pendulum/falling leaf skills). Using magic carpets and may progress to chairlift.
3 – Comfortable Novice Can complete heel side and toe side turns on gentle green terrain. Learning to link turns. Using magic carpets and chairs in the learning area.
4 – Intermediate Can link turns and control speed on green runs outside of the learning area. Learning to turn with confidence on all green runs and easier blue runs. Can use all chairlifts.
5 – Advanced Can link turns on blue runs. Learning short turns, carving, off-piste terrain and powder. Can do basic freestyle and is interested in learning to ride Terrain Park.*
6 – Expert Can snowboard in control on black runs and comfortable riding in the terrain park. Learning steeps, trees, drops, off piste, and improving freestyle skills in Terrain Park.*

* Terrain features/parks may be used in any lessons. The rating system for the terrain park is different from the Ski and Snowboard Ability chart.