Stay tuned for 2017-18 dates and prices
September : Fall dryland training begins
Mid-November: Winter program begins
November: Alpine info meeting, 6-8pm, Bozeman Public Library.
December: Alpine info meeting, 6-8pm, Bozeman, Public Library
April: end of season with spring series
3-Days/week USSA: $1,700
5-Days/week USSA: $2,700
5-Days/week FIS: $3,980
The U16-U21 Competitive (Comp) Team Program is for athletes who have made a definite commitment to the sport. In addition to growing the love of ski racing, the goals of the Comp team are as far reaching as the athlete’s imagination. Skill development, “best use practices” of our training facilities, and quality coaching ensure athletes the opportunity to develop their craft. Skiing on this level requires good time management skills to balance academics and athletics.
Since there is a wide age range on the Comp Team, view the Long-Term Athlete Development Plans (LTAD) to learn more. Athletes in these age groups will require some personalization to their plans based on individual strengths, weaknesses, learning style, and goals.
Sept - Nov: Dryland practices provide physical training starting to help prevent injuries and to build conditioning. (And it also provides for lots of outdoor fun with your team!)
Nov - April: On snow training, which begins as soon as resorts are open
Comp 3-Day USSA- Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday in winter
Comp 5-Day USSA- Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday in winter
Comp 5 Day FIS- Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday in winter
Competition is in the Northern Div/USSA U16-U21 Series. The FIS athletes also compete in the Western Region FIS. How much you travel and/or race is up to you and is best discussed with your coach.
As a member of the Comp Team, you're part of BSF's Junior programs. This means you're eligible to apply for need- and merit- based scholarships. Learn more HERE.
We know—purchasing equipment is daunting and often expensive. BSF is here to help you through the process and find the best gear for your athlete. There are lots of resources. Please contact us with any questions.
Since skiing is not an inexpensive sport to participate in, we make every effort to help parents and athletes secure gear in a variety of ways. BSF coaches will be available at all swaps to help answer questions.
Most athletes will need free skis, Giant Slalom (GS), and Slalom (SL) skis. Downhill and Super G skis may be recommended for speed events, if applicable.
At this age and skiing level, more and more factors come into play when choosing equipment. Height, weight, and ability/skill are key ingredients in making equipment decisions. You should check with your coaches for ski length recommendations and adherence to FIS and USSA rules.
The introduction of skis with more side cut has been a major breakthrough and can take a year off an athlete’s learning curve so we strongly recommend that you buy a newer side-cut ski. There are some rule changes regarding side-cut and lengths for the “older” skiers racing at high-level competitions. Your coaches will be well informed of any changes and help athletes accordingly.
An important note on fat skis: Over the past few years, FAT skis have become very popular. While this is innovative technology and a fun component to skiing, it can be counterproductive to racing fundamentals and technique. We encourage Alpine athletes to use FAT skis for powder days or very occasional free skiing. Research has proven that the use of FAT skis requires very different technique than what is used to ski traditional “race” skis. No training on FAT skis or using FAT skis as free skis in between race runs on race days. It is much better to have an older pair of race skis as trainers and inspections skis.
Some people say that the three most important things when it comes to ski equipment are boots, boots and boots.
A proper fit is key because boots are your connection to the snow. A proper fitting boot gives you feedback, lets you know what your skis are doing, and helps the athlete determine what they want their skis to do. A sloppy fitting boot equates to sloppy or less precise skiing and can encourage bad skiing technique. Steer away from rear-entry boots as they can cause children (and adults) to lean back too far. Adult boot construction is typically very different than junior boot construction. Adult boots are generally stiffer and taller. Junior boots are great for skiing/racing development and athletes should utilize junior boots sizing as long as is appropriate. They have many of the features of adult boots but have a softer flex to facilitate better body position and movement when skiing.
A quick way to find the proper boot size is by “shell fitting.” Take the liner out of the boot. Put the child's (socked) foot into the shell. Have them move their toes forward till they hit the front of the boot. Toes should touch without scrunching! Have them bend their knee forward. You should be able to fit a finger between their heel and the back of the shell. One finger is a “race fit.”It may be tempting to go a bit larger for growth but keep in mind that boots are the link between the pilot and the snow.
Helmets are required. The USSA now requires that U14 and older athletes have helmets that meet the new FIS standards for GS, SG and DH. It should be a helmet that covers the head and ears. (More info available here.)
An approved helmet will have this sticker.
Helmets should fit snug and provide good visibility. Be sure your goggles fit in them. Make sure the back of the helmet is not rubbing on your neck or the front of the helmet is not pushing your goggles over your nose.
Head, arm, hand, shoulder, back, teeth (mouthguard), and shin protection recommended, based on event.
GS-standard length, SL-pole guards for blocking and protection. SL pole may be slightly shorter.
To size poles, turn the pole upside down and grab it under the basket. Your elbow should be bent to or just past 90 degrees. Take into consideration binding and boot height. Grips should have straps. In sizing poles, longer is better (they can be cut if too long). They are great for getting out of a start and will remind you to keep your hands up.
Select clothing that will meet your child’s need for health, safety, comfort, and function. Layering is a good way to ensure proper warmth. Layers can be added or removed as outside and body temperatures fluctuate. Gloves, helmets, and goggles deserve special consideration, as the extremities get cold very fast. On cold days, neck warmers are a great way to keep drafts out and protect the face from frostbite. An extra pair of goggles on powder days is a smart idea. Racers are not allowed to run gates without helmets and goggles! Team coats are available: your coach will be in touch about orders.
Given the terrain and requirements for certain areas at Bridger Bowl, rescue beacon and confidence in its use is recommended.
Please make yourself familiar with our policies, the BSF Athlete & Parent Handbook, and other important information on the Resources Page.
When you register for the program, you will be added to an email list. Your coaches will communicate weekly details to you through email, as well as any last-minute changes. (It’s important that you do not unsubscribe to BSF emails, as this is our main mode of communication in the winter.) If for some reason, you are not receiving emails from us, let us know!
Races: Parent/volunteer assistance with races is needed and is a fun place for parents to learn about ski racing. No experience necessary. Look for info in emails.
Other chances: BSF is a traditional nonprofit, relying on donations and fundraisers to cover approximately 50% of our operating costs. Volunteers donate thousands of hours each year. We couldn’t do it without you! We’re always looking for volunteers to help with our fundraisers, serve on committees, or help at Nordic, Alpine, and Freestyle/Freeskiing competitions.
There’s a bigger picture to what BSF teaches skiers, when and why. BSF’s programs are consistent with the USSA Long-Term Athlete Development (LTAD) Systems.
What does that mean? We’re not focused on short-term success—and the hazards (and burnout) that often come with it. Instead, we follow LTAD plans that are individualized and based on science to make sure your child can maximize their long-term potential as a skier (should they wish to do so) and their enjoyment in the sport. We take into account a child’s development physiologically, cognitively and socially, as well as their experience skiing.
This makes it easy for your child to progress through our programs—from Youth Ski League, the Development Teams, to the competitive teams, and even on to skiing as an adult Masters athlete.
(View the entire LTAD for all skiing disciplines HERE.)
The BSF Alpine LTAD follows the guidelines of the USSA LTAD.
This plan addresses:
Skiers in this phase are starting to grow into their new bodies after the growth spurt, with the benefit of increased stamina. Strength gains can be quite rapid in this phase, and skiers can be expected to generate more power through their turns throughout the course. The anaerobic system starts to become developed, allowing skiers to ski with greater intensity from start to finish. This will be a general guideline with some individual planning necessary in some cases.
U16-U18's have often had 6-11 years in the sport. Many will ski 4-5 days/week logging 100+ days a season. At least 15% Free skiing. Competition season often goes Nov-April. Potential for post-season regional racing. U16's can expect 18-20 race starts a season (max of 25). U18's can max at 45 if they are at a regional/international level).
At this age athletes should begin to specialize in their sport, note athletes are encouraged to play one complementary sport to support their skiing skills .
With increased physical development, 2-3 "in-season" conditioning/recovery sessions becomes more important. With training schedules and studies, these conditioning sessions can be difficult to schedule. The athlete will often need to find some personal time that works best for fitness maintenance. Coaches will give recommendations of workouts that can be performed individually. Playing complimentary sports (Ice Hockey in the winter) when possible, is helpful. Increased aerobic conditioning and balance/agility/coordination is key. Resistance training will help develop strength. Older athletes should be utilizing Olympic lifts for power.
Technical and Tactical Emphasis
Refinement and event specific stage for technique and tactics. Integrate the increased strength, power and body size to achieve a more optimal line. Incorporate jumps, terrain, traverse and long turns into training. Advanced tactics for difficult situations (a-rhythmical course sets, difficult conditions and terrain).
Performance Psychology Emphasis
Commitment. Develop and refine race day plan. Develop mental rehearsal routines. Refine goal setting process- what to focus on, what works on race day, develop “ athletic plan” to approach training sessions and life. Document through journaling. Parents continue to support the commitment of the athlete in the sport.
Appropriate level and number of race starts ranging from local to national and international competition. Expect a ratio of 1:4 (race:training).
Skiers in this phase are moving into mastery of all aspects of the sport. Some will begin to specialize toward certain disciplines, though a well-rounded training approach is still encouraged. Course setting should test and challenge all the skills the skiers possess. Course setting will mirror that on the NorAm, Europa Cup, and World Cup levels.
Minimum 10 years in the sport. Skiing 4-5 days/week, logging 130-150 days a season with a max of 55 starts (based on # of disciplines). At least 10% Free skiing. Competition season goes Nov-April.
4-5 "in-season" conditioning/recovery sessions per week. Eccentric strength, power & explosive. Aerobic training, especially efficiency and recovery work. Core strength. Produce force in skiing specific positions.
Technical and Tactical Emphasis
Mastery or innovation stage. Event-specific technical and tactical mastery. Optimizes line for ability level and conditions in race situations. Apply equipment innovations.
Equipment Selection and Preparation
Adhere to USSA and FIS rules for all equipment selection. Equipment testing including skis, boots, plates, bindings and poles is recommended to maximize performance.
Skis - race and training skis for all disciplines. Professional support or consultation is recommended for preparation.
Boots - Discipline-specific boots. May be necessary to maximize performance.
Protection - Head, arm, hand, shoulder, back, teeth (mouthguard), and shin protection recommended, based on event.
Poles - GS-standard length, SL-pole guards for blocking and protection. SL pole may be slightly shorter. Custom sizing and contouring for individuals.
Performance Psychology Emphasis
Refine performance psychology skills: Imagery, goal achievement, performance planning, attention and focus, self regulatory talk and confidence. Identify optimal performance state. Dealing with competition, risk, failure and fear. Parents continue to support the commitment of the athlete in the sport.
Regional FIS series FIS U, NorAm and European FIS races. Olympics, World Cup, World Ski Champs, World Jr. Champs, European Cup.