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The evenings are starting to draw in heralding the new school year. What did you do over the holidays and what would you like to do the next time school’s out? Most people are familiar with traditional summer pursuits of picnics in the countryside or ice-cream treats on the beach, but have you considered taking the kids to try skiing or snowboarding? Well we did when I took my 10-year old daughter Freya, along with my friend Nikki and her children George, aged 14 and Elene, aged 12 to Tamworth Snowdome in mid-August. We drove four hours from the north east of England to Tamworth courtesy of our purchased Living Social vouchers which entitled us to discounted slope time and lessons. We arrived Saturday lunchtime ready for Elene’s afternoon Level One ski lesson. And whilst Elene was learning to snowplough, I took Freya and George for some recreational ski time. We stayed overnight at a Premier Inn before heading back to Tamworth for a Level One snowboard lesson for all three kids. So what did they think of their weekend away spent in the cold after a long drive? Elene tells all……

Elene and Freya

Elene and Freya

Why did you want to try a skiing and snowboarding lesson Elene? They’re not sports that are extremely popular like football, so I thought it would be nice to try something different. I have never tried sports like them and I’m always up for giving things a go that I’ve never tried.

Why did you opt for a real snow slope rather than a dry slope? I was feeling quite optimistic that I would like the lessons and therefore would hopefully go on to do a skiing or snowboarding holiday. This would be helpful because if I ever did go on a holiday like that it would not be different to how I learnt. It would make my transition easier.

What could you do by the end of your skiing lesson? I had learnt how to slow myself down, control my speed and go faster. I had also learnt simpler things like how to put on skis.

What could you do by the end of your snowboarding lesson? I had learnt how to ride on my heel edge and toe edge. This was the only thing I learnt in my lesson because you had to get your balance just right.

Here is the killer question: did you prefer skiing or snowboarding? I don’t really have a favourite. I like them both and I think now I’ve tried both I can fully appreciate how different they are. Before doing both sports I thought they were quite similar but they’re not as similar as I thought. I like snowboarding as I have more control over the snowboard and stopping is easier, but I like skiing as I could get going more quickly.

You travelled a long way for your lessons – was it worth it? Yes, because it was really fun and the journey didn’t feel too long. When I look back I won’t remember the journey, just the exciting things we did.

Have you got any tips for other wannabe mini-shredders or skiers who would like to give it a go?I have only just started myself so no real tips. All I would say give it a go and try it!

The North East Crew

The North East Crew

A huge thank you to Nikki and her family for sharing slope time and thanks, in particular, to Elene for her thoughts and views as a snowsports newbie. An exclusive mummysnowboarder t-shirt is yours! All the kids passed their Level One with flying colours and I was pleasantly surprised to hear their views about snowboarding. I thought Freya would prefer skiing, as she’s very proficient riding small jumps and going off-piste when abroad, but she absolutely loved snowboarding. If you are looking for something a bit different a weekend away will not break the bank – the whole weekend cost £250 for two of us including petrol, accommodation, lessons and food. This could be done cheaper without an overnight stay but it really felt like we had a mini-break and time away from the usual activities of the summer holidays. I even sneaked some slope time in myself – thanks to Ash, Andy and Snowboard Coach. In Elene’s words, “Give it a go and try it”, and you may be pleasantly surprised.