/ Ski school recommendations in Tignes

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climbingpixie - on 16 Dec 2012
I'm off for my first ever skiing trip at the start of February. I've done my basic lessons at Snozone at Castleford (so I can control my speed-ish, link snowplough turns and stop) but will be looking to do morning ski school while I'm on my holiday to get the most out of my trip (and hopefully build good foundations for future skiing holidays - assuming I don't hate it). Having done some research online there seems to be loads of different options for ski school so I wondered whether anyone on here had had any experience with the different companies and, if so, whether anyone had any recommendations? Or is it just the case that they're all be ok and it really depends on the individual instructor.

The ski schools I've found are Ultimate Snowsports, British Alpine Ski School, Snoworks, Evolution and New Generation. I would need lessons to be in english as my french is not up to much beyond ordering food and telling someone I have lost my suitcase.

Thanks!
kevin stephens - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie: New Generation are very good
kathrync - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to kevin stephens:
> (In reply to climbingpixie) New Generation are very good

Seconded

telemarker - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

I had off piste guiding with a French instructor from ESF. His English was excellent, if you only speak English they will supply an English speaking instructor.
blurty - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

Bass are good, ask for Pippo
climbingpixie - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to kevin stephens & kathrync:

Cheers for the responses. What level were you guys at when you used New Generation?
climbingpixie - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to telemarker:

Ooh, ESF are loads cheaper than the other ones I've looked at so far so good to get a recommendation. I would be doing group lessons rather than private - do you think I'd still be able to get an english speaking instructor?
PontiusPirate on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

Just remembered that a couple of mates of mine went there quite early on in their ski-ing careers, so I'll see who they used for lessons (if any!) and if they'd recommend them.

My own experience of lessons (in general) was that the quality of the learning experience did rather depend on who you got and the ability of the rest of the group, but we were usually with Ecole du Ski Francais (EsF). I've got a good book I could lend you, but it'll only make sense if you're ski-ing parallel turns - I can't imagine that'll be too far off though... :-)

PP.
telemarker - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

I am pretty sure you would. My mum and her friend have always used them when we go on family holidays. Fire them an email, they were pretty quick to reply. I went with them in Jan for my trip due to the price and would use them again.
PontiusPirate on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to PontiusPirate:

Oh, and areas popular with Brits will *always* have EsF instructors who can speak English - though the quality of that English will vary... :-S

Alternatively, take my mate Noel, he *is* a qualified ski instructor!

PP.
Anonymous on 16 Dec 2012 - 152.203.11.109.rev.sfr.net
In reply to climbingpixie:

In my experience of putting 3 children through ski school in Tigne over many years, evolution are the better option if the choice is between them & ESF. The reason being, the classes are smaller & English will definetly be spoken.
Frank4short - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

As others have said here my mates had a pretty good experience with ESF. However as Pontius Pilote said generally speaking the experience most learners have is very much based around the quality of the group they end up in and the quality of the instructor they get. These are usually things beyond your control e.g. there's nothing you can do about the group and sometimes even if you've got a recommendation for an instructor that someone else has had a good experience with they may be scheduled to teach a different class on the week you're there.

So whilst recommendations are helpful to a point they're not the be all and end all. Generally speaking in my experience of up to 20 different mates, who've been through the ski school process, over the years it's rare to have really bad experiences in ski school and when this does happen it's more often than not as a result of getting a bad group, or a number of annoying whiny gits in a group, that brings out the worst in the instructor as opposed to just getting a straight up bad instructor.
kevin stephens - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:
Having a quick look at your profile re climbing I think you may get rather frustrated in a group lesson. You are likely to be a lot fitter and aggressive (in skiing terms), better awareness of your limbs and balance etc compared to the average holiday ski group. Rather than a week of half day lessons I would recommend three 1 or 2 hour 1:1 lessons instead of a week of half days. Start off wiht a couple of hours finding your feet before your first lesson then between each lesson practice etc. This way I think you will have more fun and progress a great deal more than with a group lesson.

As others have said ESF can be a bit of a lucky dip but a 1:1 session would be a lot more interactive than in a group with the ESF's learn by rote, follow the snake method.

The UK instructors usually (not always)seem to be better at teaching than ESF. I particualry rate Newe Generation
AndyB123 - on 16 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie: I used ESF in Tignes last year, and have nothing but good things to say about the experience. I went with my 14yo son who progressed from beginner to parallel skiing red runs with me towards the end of the week. I was in a more advanced group, and the instructor gave me the confidence to try things that I didn't think I was capable of.
The instructors all spoke excellent english and went out of their way to make it all an enjoyable experience.
Enjoy Tignes, the skiing is fantastic!!!
aligibb - on 17 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

There is a brit who works for the ESF in Tignes who is good - Louis Nolan but if you are in group lessons it would be pot luck whether you got him.

Otherwise I would say Evo2 for group lessons as they have smaller classes whcih is the key and def worth paying a bit more for. If you go down the private route theres a few people who are good - I/m just checking contact details for them. Ali
aligibb - on 17 Dec 2012
In reply to aligibb:
for private lessons...

tdc Tignes - +33 (0)6 03 31 43 21, tignes@tdcski.com
Slarti B on 18 Dec 2012
In reply to Anonymous:
> (In reply to climbingpixie)
>
> In my experience of putting 3 children through ski school in Tigne over many years, evolution are the better option if the choice is between them & ESF. The reason being, the classes are smaller & English will definetly be spoken.

Seconded. We have been going to Tignes for 25 years and my 3 kids also went through Evolution 2 for same reasons. Although they have got better you still see ESF groups of 12 or more. Evolution 2 have a maximum of 8 people and all instructors speak English. They do all levels and will group ages so if you are an adult beginner you don't get stuck with a load of kids. Don't know about the more recent schools mentioned here.

On a general point, if you are going at a busy time make sure you book; and give the different schools a ring to discuss.
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kathrync - on 18 Dec 2012
In reply to climbingpixie:

I was already relatively advanced when I used New Generation. I was skiing most blacks on the pistes and looking for help with more difficult terrain. I booked onto a small group session, but it was early season and I was the only customer so I ended up with 1:1 tuition. That was 1 three hour session and despite the difficult conditions that year the guy had me going from terrified of moguls to going down Grand Couloir and enjoying myself.

One of the friends I was with that year did New Gen group beginner lessons and only had good to say about them as well.

I did 3 or 4 years of group lessons before that, mostly with ESF or the Italian equivalent. Absolutely no problems with them and they got me to where I am now, but the group sizes were bigger and if you aren't either at the head of the group or the bottom you don't get much individual attention. Also, although English was universally spoken some of the instructors did struggle with more technical explanations. If I were to go back to beginner lessons again, I would definitely look at alternatives.

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