Evening Times

Ski whizz, it’s real fun being on the piste in Colarado

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I took a more sedate route with Women’s Edge, a ski group run by women for women, offering courses for intermedia­te and advanced female skiers.

Instructor­s said that while the credit crunch was affecting other teaching groups and guides in Aspen, Women’s Edge bookings were as strong as ever – 80% are return clients.

Barbara ‘Barb’ Hurwitz, 60, an instructor for more than 20 years who has taught women for 10 – and has a new titanium knee to prove it – has her own theories.

“It began as a group to cater for women who were fearful. Intermedia­tes were frustrated skiing with their husbands because they were dragged to places they shouldn’t be. They were taken to slopes too challengin­g for them or were put into a competitiv­e atmosphere.

“Yet women are better learners because they are willing to listen.” I was liking Barb already. The ages of Women’s Edge clientele range from early 20s to 70s, although I didn’t meet anyone under 40. Lipstick was applied, designer ski-wear donned and true sisterhood prevailed.

One was the only person in her family who skied, and wanted to build her confidence; another was single and didn’t want to ski alone. A third felt her husband could not teach her as well as another woman.

Most felt female instructor­s had a better understand­ing of their mindsets and knew how to motivate them to improve.

UNLIKE mixed classes in Europe, so big that you just end up picking up bad habits, Women’s Edge groups are limited to five pupils. If there is more demand, they get more instructor­s.

There was an instant rapport between the women over lunch, with conversati­on ranging from runs, men and ski-wear to cake-baking and high altitude cooking).

Some women end up better skiers than their partners, but Aspen is a great place to perfect your technique.

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