Over 90% of GAP qualified ski instructors have taught skiing since their course

25th February 2019

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Despite the hedonistic and privileged image GAP years often attract, a recent report from instructor training company, Ski le Gap, found the vast majority of skiers on instructor courses used their qualifications to further their career, with over 40% of them using their own savings to fund it.

It also found that 82% of previous GAP ski course respondents managed to persuade non-skiers to take up the sport, with all of them stating that they still ski today, with half of them travelling on a yearly basis.

And although many of the qualified ski instructors (99% of respondents successfully passed their exams) taught friends and family, 45% went onto work as professional ski instructors, even if it was for one season only.

But perhaps the most interesting conclusion for the survey is the positive life-changing skills that a ski instructor course helped them with in their professional life, with respondents stating how they improved their confidence and communication skills during the course. Some of the jobs that GAP students’ respondents went onto included: Broadcasting roles, teaching, medical (doctor), scientist, surgeon, sales roles and Royal Marines Commando.

Charlotte Dawson, Director of Ski le Gap said: “This survey proves what we already know but it’s great to see hard evidence to suggest that a ski instructor course as part of some time out doesn’t only help those looking to further their career in snowsports, but also helps develop their skill set and lives beyond the slopes. The friendships made during a Ski le Gap course form such an important network for one’s future. Although this is harder to measure, hearing that past gapper Sarah Hargitay recently held a 20-year reunion for Gappers of Class ’96 only highlights this”.

One respondent described how their experience had helped them get a job both on and off the slopes, and said: “I did two seasons in the Alps after Ski Le Gap and worked with a high-end tour operator who also ran ski incentives for companies. As a result of this, I got a job back in London working for a brand experience agency”.

Another respondent said of their overall experience: “It was a surreal, amazing, fantastic gap year opportunity to spend a season in Mont Tremblant with 200 other 18/19 year olds whilst training hard. I have a group of fantastic friends from my Ski le Gap time and my experience is something I’ll always treasure”.

Another perhaps unsurprising finding is that 61% of respondents identified themselves as moderate or heavy drinkers – well it’s good to know that all the après ski training has paid off too!