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Advice On Getting A Child's Ski Mojo Back

Madroch

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So- heres the deal, my daughter, now 11- loved skiing from age 6 on-- last year early season she was hit by a ski racer doing mach 20- nothing serious, suffered a mild concussion- but it really just scared the crap out of her (and me). I was never happier to hear her crying than right after she was hit-- at least I knew she was concious- it was a frightening collision. She skied the rest of the season after taking a week off, and even did Nastar (there was a time where all she wanted to do was race) -- but her heart is not really in- it she was slower than the year before and much less eager. She skis with me, but instead of 8-4, shes a couple of hours. She skis slower, takes more breaks, and just seems more drained after a couple of hours than before. She says she's fine-- but I can see in her eyes and body language otherwise. I talked to her after the incident a couple of times to try and ease some of her anxieties-- wondering what else I can do to get my 8-4 girl back?

or-- heaven forbid- is the right thing to do just let her continue as is and even stop if she is no longer into it...
 

Nick

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I don't really have any sage advice as my son is just 4 months old, but from what I would gather it sounds like you are doing the right things ... supporting her, not "forcing" her to a full day on the mountain, etc.

I guess you have to just be upbeat about it. Was it specifically that accident that spooked her? Maybe the best thing to do is encourage awareness to help prevent things like that from happening again. Definitely not saying it was your daughter's fault at all; but maybe she would feel more secure if she spent some additional time becoming "aware" of surroundings so she doesn't feel like she might get blindsided out of nowhere.

I would also think the most you can do is continue to make it "fun" so it's enjoyable to go skiing. In my mind i picture 10 /11 year old girls starting to do the teenager thing ... "I'm too cool to ski with my parents ", I took my 10 year old niece skiing at Wachusett last year for the first time and I swear she liked it inside but wouldn't admit it to anyone, just got the generic "It was OK, I guess" response.
 

Puck it

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The worst thing to do is force her. If wants to go, great. If she only wants a couple hours so be it. If nothing then leave her home. Forcing it, she will just end up hating it.

Feel sorry though.
 

Masskier

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That is certainly a traumatic experience for any 10-11 year old. I'm just curious are you skiing the same resort where the accident happen? or are you skiing on weekends at other crowed resorts? She may be associated her accident with the resort where it happened or gets uncomfortable skiing in crowds. If so then you could make a big deal about trying a new place that is children friendly, less crowded and safer. Just my 2 cents
 

4aprice

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The worst thing to do is force her. If wants to go, great. If she only wants a couple hours so be it. If nothing then leave her home. Forcing it, she will just end up hating it.

Feel sorry though.

Bingo. My daughter fell out of love with skiing for a while (not due to circumstances like yours). We made other arrangements and kept on skiing. She came back to it and now is more gung ho then ever.

Alex

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SKIQUATTRO

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if you visit the same mountain get her in a season long program with the same kids/instructors week in and week out...we did that last year at Pico (racing program, but laid back) and my kids couldnt wait to get there Friday night and didnt want to leave on Sunday...all they wanted to do was ski
 

Madroch

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Thanks for all the thoughts. nick- we do awareness all the time-- due to the many parks around the small mountain we ski-- and we did it again several times after-- just to help her feel more in control of things around her. will keep at it though.

Massskier-- happaned at our local small hill-- was early season, limited terrain and mobbed though... she refused to come (I didn not push it at all) on the other jaunts to different mountains my son and I took last spring-- we'll keep trying and hit some less busy times.

to all who said don't force it-- that is sadly what my gut tells me is the right thing...

SkiQuattro-- she has been in season long programs every year-- last year as well-- this year she declined and I supported her on it (as opposed to pusing it). Oh well

My plan is to just invite her every time we go, and leave it as an open option... she did sign up for the school ski bus-- and is looking forward to that..

So sad to see her not enjoy as much something she loved...

Edit: But- she did insist on renewing her pass-- I asked if she was interested enough to warrent a pass-- and she did say oh yes... so hope springs eternal.
 

HowieT2

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I got enough trouble trying to figure out my own 12 year old girl, having nothing to do with the skiing. sorry if I cant be of assistance, but they are like from a different planet.
 

JimG.

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Don't force her to do anything...the fact that she still goes implies she still wants to ski.

She may be fearful and she has good reason.

It may be a pre-teen thing. My 2 oldest boys drank the soccer Koolaid and stopped skiing for years. My oldest is in college now and after being recruited to play soccer decided that his engineering curriculum is a big load and decided to not play (good thing he went D3 and got all his scholarship money for his grades!). He joined the ski club after not skiing for about 6 years. He still calls and thanks me for teaching him.

My 16 year old is still consumed by soccer and track and plays and runs year round, but one day he will get back to skiing too. He already admits it.

My point is, make it about her, try to uncover what her fear is, and if she needs a break, that's OK too.
 

Madroch

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As an aside- the same thing happaned to my sister when she was about 14-- hit by an out of controller at Mt. Snow and broke her arm (my sister was in a ski school line going down the hill at a time when Mt Snow had two trails from the summit open over christmas vacation week- each trail was literally wall to wall people)-- she went from avid skier to occassional-- and has never been the same..... I guess that is in the back of my mind as well.
 

JimG.

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As an aside- the same thing happaned to my sister when she was about 14-- hit by an out of controller at Mt. Snow and broke her arm (my sister was in a ski school line going down the hill at a time when Mt Snow had two trails from the summit open over christmas vacation week- each trail was literally wall to wall people)-- she went from avid skier to occassional-- and has never been the same..... I guess that is in the back of my mind as well.

One of the reasons my oldest David stopped skiing was because he broke his arm skiing in a seasonal program with a coach who felt it was a good idea to take the kids into the halfpipe during the second day of the program. This tells us 2 things:

1) David did return to skiing even with that bad experience.
2) Don't think a skiing program will automatically render your kids safe.
 

SKIQUATTRO

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nothing will keep kids or us 100% safe when skiing, its a inherently dangerous sport, my 6yr old broke her collar bone in Feb while just free skiing, however she cant wait to get back on skis and get back with her friends and coaches from last year. Girls especially love the social aspect of skiing and when they can enjoy it with their peers, all the better.....
 

MadMadWorld

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If you have more than one child try and make it just a trip between you and her. She will appreciately the alone time and may feel less scared and frustrated if she doesn't feel like she has to keep up with other siblings. The chairlift is one of the most underrated places for heart to hearts with your kids. I had plenty of them with my dad and have had a few with my son.

If that doesn't work, letting them play hookie from school to go skiing always seems to be a good incentive!
 
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MommaBear

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Having taken a couple of good falls on scratchy snow the season before, I found myself trying to get my mojo back last season. The female brain never shuts off and remembers everything. Any time I hit, or heard, a patch of scratchy snow, my body would involuntarily tense up. It made skiing mentally exhausting last season, so I couldn't go opening to last chair last year like I had done previously. Keep that in mind for her. And then, there is the age thing. I have a now 12 yo son that lost the desire to ski 2 seasons ago. Insisted he wanted the pass, but then made very little use of it. My husband coaxed him back with a new pair of twin tips. But like your daughter, his heart didn't seem to be in it. Last year, the tide turned a bit and he seemed to be more interested again (still not the gung ho skier of previous). We'll have to see what this season brings. But as someone mentioned, having friends along is huge at that age. We are excited that he is now old enough for the school ski club and hope he'll find friends that also like to ski that we can bring along this year.
 

JimG.

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But as someone mentioned, having friends along is huge at that age. We are excited that he is now old enough for the school ski club and hope he'll find friends that also like to ski that we can bring along this year.

This is huge at this age. Also part of the reason my 2 oldest stopped, they had their soccer friends and that was more important; also a big reason my oldest started skiing again in college, he met new friends who enjoy snowsports.
 

Paul_M

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Brutal stories....mild concussion and broken arm. Sounds like the ski bus might save the day, though. Sometimes these young girls put their social lives in front of their actual preferences for activities. My 14 yo daughter slowly ended all her activities except dance, the only sport she really likes is skiing.
 
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