International Education Event for Snowsports Instruction Highlighted the Value of Gender Inclusion
LAKEWOOD, Colo. (April. 6, 2023) – Thirty-seven instructors from the Professional Ski Instructors of America and American Association of Snowboard Instructors (PSIA-AASI) traveled to Levi, Finland Sunday, March 26 through Friday, March 31 for Interski. Held every four years, this international event brought together 1,500 attendees, including top instructors from more than 30 countries, to share teaching techniques to help make learning to ski or snowboard easier and more fun for anyone who takes a lesson. PSIA Alpine Team member Ann Schorling presented a keynote address titled “Increasing Gender Equity in Snowsports Instruction.”
“Each team member nailed their workshops, lectures, and performance runs,” said PSIA-AASI National Team Head Coach Jeb Boyd. “The event was capped by Ann Schorling’s keynote presentation followed by a standing ovation.”
[Editor’s note: Watch these videos to learn about workshops and performance runs: alpine and telemark]
Schorling presented on how to increase gender equity in snowsports instruction at a local level. Her presentation shared the research she conducted in partnership with Big Sky Resort in Montana and offered suggestions on how to help improve gender equity among instructors and in leadership positions in the snowsports industry.
According to Schorling, worldwide women account for less than 40 percent of all skier visits, and that number has changed little in the past 20 years. Also, the percentage of snowsports instructors identifying as women is lower than 40 percent.
“For the people who consider gender bias a problem, I want them to know we can talk about it, and we can work together to create tools to address it for the benefit of everyone,” said Schorling. “Gender inclusivity is part of the guest experience, and this is a valuable time to be talking about this issue.”
“Interski highlighted instructors’ passion for creating enjoyable, effective, and meaningful guest experiences,” said PSIA-AASI Chief Executive Officer Peggy Hiller. “To improve the guest experience, instructors from across the globe are focusing on making our industry stronger by addressing equity and inclusion issues. Ann Shorling was a shining star on this topic with her highly successful Interski keynote address.”
The event also included skiing and snowboarding demonstrations and workshops focused on improving the guest experience in order to attract new participants to snowsports, and help turn returning guests into lifelong enthusiasts.
“I’m overwhelmed with pride in what our team delivered,” said PSIA-AASI Director of Education Dave Schuiling. “The event has helped us raise the bar as we set our sights on the next learning adventure.”
To connect with Jeb Boyd, Ann Schorling, Peggy Hiller, or Dave Schuiling, contact Katrina Brinkerhoff at 720.963.4825 or .
The Professional Ski Instructors of America and American Association of Snowboard Instructors (PSIA-AASI) is a nonprofit education association – and close-knit community – of more than 33,000 snowsports professionals dedicated to creating life-changing experiences for others through snowsports instruction. PSIA-AASI members give people the gift of freedom, health, and the ability to enjoy sports that will reward them for life. Members of PSIA-AASI are busy creating the future of skiing and snowboarding – the association is there to help make that job easier, providing the platform and support to ensure their success. Learn more at thesnowpros.org or via PSIA-AASI’s Facebook, TikTok, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube pages.