UK Snowsport Alpine Development Coach ( Level 4) - CANCELLED

UKSS Level 4 Development Coach


The Level 4 Award allows the coach to operate, within the coaches’ protocol, on artificial ski slopes and in the mountain environment and is authorised to operate worldwide working with skiers ranging from complete novice, to skiers who are able to show continuously linked parallel turning and seeking further specialization. In particular, a Level 4 Coach is likely to make a significant contribution to the development of new coaches.

The level 4 coach may not operate as a ski instructor nor ply for hire as a ski instructor outside of the UK. The level 4 coach may work with beginner skiers in the UK at/within their club or organisation but outside of the UK the coach may only work with skiers able to control their speed and direction of travel in a variety of conditions. Novice skiers should be taught by local instructors who are appropriately qualified.

Level 4 represents the final step towards the international recognition offered with the IVSI international licence.

A Level 4 Coach has breadth and depth of underpinning knowledge, synthesised from a variety of information sources. You should be able to think creatively, developing new ideas and concepts to take the sport and your skiers forward. Your high skill level, experience and knowledge should allow you to make a significant contribution to the growth and development of skiers and clubs/organizations and you will be able to plan and organise coaching programmes over an extended period, making adjustments in response to circumstances.

The Level 4 Course is mostly about coaching rather than personal skiing performance.

To be an effective coach in the mountain environment and be an ambassador for the scheme, Level 4 coaches need to be strong, versatile skiers and demonstrate a significant level of skill within the skiing and coaching roles listed specifically for the assessment. Participants will be required to explore the fundamentals of sound alpine skiing, to show versatility in a variety of tasks and to enable fellow participants to practice their use of coaching tools.

Entry requirements

In order to attend a level 4 training course candidates must hold a Level 3 Coach award which has been undertaken in a mountain environment. Holders of a Level 3 award delivered at an artificial ski centre must apply to the awarding body for accreditation of prior learning.

Level 4 Training Course

This is a training and assessment course delivered at a mountain-based ski resort by an appointed tutor.

It lasts for a minimum of 40 hours delivered in units.

The course covers the fundamentals of coaching and working with expert skiers and those seeking to work towards a role within coaching in a mountain environment. The course also prepares the candidates for further learning and workplace training.

By the end of this course participants should be able to:

Expalin the differences between instructing and coaching

Analyse and profile skier performance

Practice goal setting as part of long-term planning and modify sessions in response to events

Explain skill and its impact on coaching

Explain the elements of biomechanically sound skiing

Provide and optimise feedback

Plan video sessions for optimal use

Develop ideas for their ongoing coaching and coaching portfolio

Profile their own performance against the outcome standards to create a personal action plan

Present core snowsports concepts to peers off-slope

Working towards accreditation


At the end of the course candidates will agree an action plan which will assist in their personal and professional development. In addition to working on any points identified in their action plan candidates will be required to:

Be registered with the UK Coaching scheme

Hold a current first aid certificate

Hold a current DBS check

Complete a UK Snowsports mountain safety distance learning pack

Complete a coaching portfolio in accordance with the portfolio guidelines

Level 4 Accreditation

The course combines training and appraisal of participants’ performance. Tutors will provide feedback during the course to help participants draft a personal action plan. Participants will agree a final action plan with their tutor on the last day of the course. It is not possible to complete all units of this award during the course, thus the possible results given to candidates will be:

All alpine units completed satisfactorily. Award will be issued on successful completion of coaching portfolio.

Not yet completed personal skiing units to a satisfactory standard. Award will be issued on successful completion of coaching portfolio and completion of personal skiing units.

Not yet completed coaching units to a satisfactory standard. Award will be issued on successful completion of coaching portfolio and completion of coaching units.

Neither personal skiing nor coaching units completed to a satisfactory standard Award will be issued on successful completion of coaching portfolio and completion of personal skiing and coaching units.

If a candidate does not yet meet the outcome standard for alpine-based units the tutor will discuss appropriate methods for re assessment with them. This might involve further training and reassessment in a mountain environment.

Skiing Level 4

Level 4 coaches must be able to ski all areas of ski resorts open to the public demonstrating appropriate posture, consistent balance and control of speed and direction of travel. Demonstrations must display an understandable picture of the technical elements of skiing suitable for all recreational skiers; from novice to expert. The Level 4 Coach is expected to be a strong, powerful skier.

The Level 4 Coach will be able to perform the following in a range of mountain conditions:

Consistently link turns with sustained rhythm

Show skiing at a variety of speeds and tempos including high intensity steering

Maintain consistent speed by controlling the shape of a turn

Maintain a balanced, appropriate posture throughout a series of turns

Demonstrate an appropriate blend of the fundamental elements of skiing [pressure control, steering, edge control and balancing]

Ski a variety of turn sizes and shapes in a series of turns while maintaining speed control

Remain balanced and in appropriate posture whilst performing common tasks and demonstrations

Illustrate visual cues to effective skiing in demonstrations and tasks common to expert skiers

Show strong, powerful, dynamic skiing with an ability to sustain support against their outside ski before it crosses the fall line

Respond to signals from the examiners and react as appropriate

Coaching Level 4

Level 4 coaches will demonstrate a wide range of understanding, from a variety of sources. They will have sufficient experience and skill necessary to be an effective coach for skiers ranging in ability from novice to expert and to develop coaches furthering their snowsports education. The level 4 Coach should expect to work with skiers who are working towards developing their abilities as coaches. A level 4 coach is able to synthesise knowledge from a variety of sources, develop it further and apply it to their coaching. A Level 4 Coach can think creatively, developing new ideas and concepts, taking the sport and their skiers forwards.

Assessment will include the coaching peers at their own level of skiing performance and through discussion and questioning from the assessor.

The Level 4 coach is able to show the following whilst working with advanced and expert

skiers and aspirant coaches in a mountain environment:

Underpinning Knowledge


Professional knowledge requirements for Level 4 coaches reflect an in depth understanding of specific terms and concepts from a wide variety of sources, and an ability to use these concepts in sessions and situations for all levels of skier. A Level 4 Coach will think creatively, responding to the needs of their skiers and modifying not only the session at hand but also those future sessions they have planned.



Define and explain skiing and coaching terminology

Identify equipment needs for all skiers

Advise skiers on how their equipment choices might influence their performance

Identify equipment safety issues

Understand the ski way code and demonstrate risk management

Movement Analysis

Recognise general movement patterns amongst all levels of skier

Identify desired outcomes in all types of skiing situation

Discuss posture, appropriate movements and balancing

Identify effective movements and skill development for advanced and expert skiers

Understand the fundamental skiing movements of pressure control, edge control, steering and balancing

Coach to develop appropriate blends of these movements in advanced and expert skiers

Select tasks appropriate to the needs of their skiers

As a result of their observations plan a series of sessions designed to develop their skiers in relation to short, medium- and long-term goals

Session Delivery

Demonstrate an ability to develop a relationship of trust between coach and students

Identify learning styles and preferences and discuss examples of how to use them in a lesson

Handle a group based on group energy levels, conditions, safety and lesson content.

Understand how to create an appropriate learning environment and discuss how to incorporate this knowledge into sessions that will maximise opportunities for safety, enjoyment and further learning

Identify the components of good skiing

Discuss opportunities to create an appropriate learning environment for skiers at different stages of development

Be self-critical and modify their sessions based on the needs of their skiers

Be able to self-review the effectiveness of their sessions.

Skiing Tasks - Level 4

Ploughing, plough steering, plough parallel and parallel turns are mandatory tasks in a Level 4 skiing assessment. In all aspects of skiing the candidate will show appropriate movements in motion and sound posture. This assessment will take place in a mountain environment and in a variety of conditions.

Candidates are reminded that in order to complete the Level 4 Coach award they must be able to show that they are a strong, technically sound skier, able to descend any and all areas of mountain ski resorts open to the general public showing:

Sound posture

A closed back angle

Symmetry of arcs and movements

When parallel skiing an ability to obtain/sustain support against their outside ski before it is steered and travels through the fall line.

A sensitivity to forces acting on their body whilst in motion

An ability to balance both internal and external forces acting on their body whilst in motion

An ability to blend rotary, edge control and pressure control movements appropriately and sensitively.

An appropriate range of movements in relation to the task being performed

An ability to balance carving and skidding movements

Ploughing and Plough steering –the candidate shall demonstrate a of linked, steered plough turns. The candidate will show

Sound, balanced posture and body alignment (and therefore the absence of inappropriate upper body movements).

Appropriate size and shape of plough, which should be consistent through the series of turns. Speed should be controlled through turn shape rather than the size of the plough. Movements in motion will be are smooth and appropriate.

Plough Parallel – the candidate will show a smooth development of plough steering to parallel steering. The skis will match as a result of a progressive increase in speed of travel and tempo of turning, causing the outside ski to support the skier progressively earlier in each arc.

Parallel Turning - the candidate shall demonstrate a series of rhythmical, continuously linked parallel turns with appropriate use of poles. The examiners will require the candidates to illustrate versatile skiing and to illustrate parallel skiing at a variety of speeds and turn sizes/amplitudes for short to long radius. Candidates are expected to show sensitivity to the forces acting on them, to show good posture and to make motion appropriate to the task at hand.

The following tasks are examples of additional exercises that the examiner may request Level 4 candidates to perform to demonstrate versatility and adaptability.

From a steep descent skid to a halt

A free run

Parallel skiing around markers/mini rapid gates

Short swings

Skating around arcs

Ski in variable snow conditions



This years hosts are the fantastic Hotel Marguareis in Artesina, surrounded by the stunning scenery of the Maritime Alps, at an altitude of 1400 Marguare is the hotel is located directly on the slopes of Mondolè ski, a true winter sports paradise, which, with its 130 km of slopes. With the hotel ideally located slope side allows us to make the most of time on the hill. Of course after a busy day you should always treat yourself so why not unwind in the Turkish bath.

Things you will need to know:

Departure date… Saturday 21st March 2020

Return date… Saturday 28th March 2020

Cost: £1150 – includes course fee and

  • Return flights from London Gatwick
  • Return overseas transfers
  • 7 nights half board accommodation based upon twin bedded rooms
  • 6 days lift pass
  • 6 day ski, boot, pole & helmet hire


Insurance… £25 per person

Single room supplement… £140 (subject to availability)

Ski carriage (instead of hire)… £45 per person

Manchester flight supplement… £50 per person

Flight times:


Route… Manchester to Milan Malpensa

Outbound times… 09:00 – 12:10

Inbound times… 07:00 – 08:20


Route… Gatwick to Milan Malpensa

Outbound times… 09:00 – 12:00

Inbound times… 07:25 – 08:25

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