Join Jill – My Skiing Experience
Often when I would be in Xscape at Braehead I used to sit and watch people skiing and wish I could try it. I always wanted to try it, but wasn’t too sure how I would ski, and I imagined that I would’ve stayed in my wheelchair and someone would ski at the back of me.
I found out through a friend that there is an organization which helps disabled people to ski and has all of the equipment. The organization is called Disability Snow Sports, and they have a few ski schools for disabled people throughout the UK. They also do skiing holidays for disabled people.
I have been skiing for about 4 years now and it is a fantastic thing to do. I use a sit ski called a mountain man biski, which looks like a toboggan with a single ski in front of it. For my first few lessons the instructor was controlling the ski themselves and I just needed to look left and right. We go really fast which I love. I always remember the very first time that I did it – I think I wasn’t supposed to go right to the top of the hill, but being me I went to the top. The feeling of skiing down that hill is an amazing feeling to feel.
After I got more experience skiing, I was introduced to the outriggers – these are two wee skis which attach on to the main ski. This allows me to control the ski myself by looking left and right. The instructor still skied with me, but a bit further behind. The first few times that I tried controlling the ski myself, I always used to lose control halfway down the hill, but at my last lesson I managed to ski down the hill myself without losing the control of the ski.
Skiing is a great thing to do and it is freedom to me because most of the time I’m in a wheelchair and can’t control where I want to be moved, but when I am skiing and using outriggers I feel that I am in control of myself.
Also, all of the instructors at Disability Snow Sport are really nice and friendly. If you want to find more about Disability Snow Sports visit: www.disabilitysnowsport.org.uk