Adaptive skiing is a unique experience for each individual. The following information is intended to give you a broad understanding of the adaptive disciplines we instruct and some of the equipment that is used in each of them. There are many adaptations and variations within each discipline.
Two Track (2T):
Skier who can stand and maintain balance while in motion often use standard skis, although adaptive equipment (tethers, spacers, tip retention devices, etc.) may be used to aid in the learning of muscle movements.
Utilizes a bucket style seat with two skis underneath it. The bi-ski is designed for those who use a wheelchair or have difficulty walking even when assisted by crutches, canes or walkers. A bi-ski can be skied independently like a mono-ski using the same type of handheld outriggers or can be skied with the assistance of an instructor using fixed outriggers and tethers (reins attached to the back of the bi-ski). Skiers turn by either moving their head and shoulders or by using handheld outriggers. A bi-ski can be a choice for a new sit-down skier before moving onto the mono-ski, depending on the shared goals of the skier and instructor.
Utilizes a bucket style seat with a single ski underneath it. Skier uses handheld outriggers for balance, usually made easier with strong arms, core strength and trunk balance. Unlike the bi ski, the mono ski can only be skied independently.
Another form of four-track skiing for those with more severe balance issues. Separate skis are are mounted to a metal frame making it something like a walker with skis. The stand-up skier uses their own boots and skis with the metal frame as support. The Snow Slider is also tethered (reins attached to metal frame) by a trained instructor.
Three Track/Four Track:
Three track skiers have one leg and two arms. Three trackers use a full size ski and outriggers giving them three points of contact on the snow. Four track skiers have two legs and arms, natural or prosthetics who is capable of standing independently with the aid of outriggers, giving the skier four points of contact with the snow.
Most adaptive snowboard lessons employ a standard snowboard set up using progressions taught by the American Association of Snowboard Instructors.
Bamboo Pole/Rider bar:
If a snowboarder is in need of extra assistance, bamboo poles, ski poles and the adaptive snowboard with a handrail otherwise known as a Rider Bar may also be used.
Classic Nordic Skiing: Nordic skiing is a fun alternative to typical downhill skiing. Nordic skiing is typically performed on flatter terrain using narrow skis with boots that can be raised off the ski at the heel when striding. There are two main types: classic and skate skiing.
Nordic Sit Skiing: Nordic skiing is a fun alternative to typical downhill skiing. OAS has two sit down nordic skis available for use on nordic lessons or nordic programming.
Cross Discipline Adaptations
Visual Impairment (VI):
Participants make turns with the assistance of a specifically trained guide. Guides may ski behind skier calling instructions, on the side of the participant or in front downhill of but facing towards the student. Assistive Devices such as a radio system or a bell can be used depending on the preference and needs of the students.
D/deaf and Hard of Hearing:
OAS currently has one instructor who is Deaf and fluent in ASL but also articulate in spoken language. Participants can receive instructions in ASL or spoken language, use personal hearing assistive devices to help minimize background noise if desired and work directly with an instructor who has the shared understanding of deaf/hh needs.