All Terrain Ski - Q&A With Barry Roberts

Article by Adrian Berry
Friday 17th December 2004

So what's All Terrain Ski about?

All Terrain Ski is a new concept in instructional-guided ski holidays based in Chamonix which encompasses not only 6 days of intensive tuition on and off piste, but also an introduction to mountain skills and avalanche safety to enable the adventurous skier to ski untracked snow and ski the "back-country", "offpiste", whatever you want to call it - away from groomed runs - with style, control and confidence. Crucially, an All Terrain Ski programme is underpinned by the latest thinking in sports psychology, including Reversal Theory, a radical motivational model.

The Haute Route

What's the pschological angle all about?

Sports psychology is used in so many other sports disciplines and there's tons of literature out there but it doesn't seem to be applied to skiing, outside of the racing discipline, as if somehow that makes it too serious and takes the fun out of it! I've been an "educator" all my life and there are many ways in which people learn which we aim to exploit. Also, we want to attract upper-intermediate level skiers that really want to excel but somehow feel they have been left behind or that skiing like a goddess (or god) is beyond them! We'll use Reversal Theory to explore people's deepest and richest motivational drivers that will unlock, unleash and harness their potential to ski the whole mountain better than they ever dreamed of.

Left : Barry Roberts. Right : Luc Bellon

So who are you guys?

All Terrain Ski is hosted by Barry Roberts, a passionate skier, ex-Canadian ski patroller and athlete sponsored by The North Face, who climbed Everest in May '04.

Luc Bellon a noted French mountain guide and qualified ski instructor is the technical director of All Terrain Ski. He has a fabuously relaxed, professional style.

Mont Blanc

What's different about this approach?

Our motto is "ski, eat and sleep", with no kids or ski muppets holding everyone back! All Terrain Ski offers a pure self indulgent opportunity for the upper intermediate skier (and above) who dreams of skiing the whole mountain in any snow conditions. We will have fun and a few beers but this isn't a typical ski holiday. We are athletes, who will treat our clients like athletes in our "Olympic village" type setting. So the week, on and off the snow, is geared towards intensive coaching and both physical and mental development within a powerfully supportive team environment. We'll also have a number of special evening mini-seminars on ski tuning and other topics.

We notice there's a page on the website "Notes 4 Woman". Can you explain that?

A few female friends who are very keen off piste skiers recommended we clarify that this isn't a radical skiing or steep skiing macho ski clinic! They thought women would be put off joining in if it was a testosterone fuelled event!! It isn't. This is about skiing well, in control and in all conditions. That in itself is a pretty adventurous remit.

Who, where, when and how much?

All Terrain Ski's target market is the upper intermediate parallel skier and above, as defined on our website. This is a strictly exclusive opportunity limited to 8 skiers per week. Two All Terrain Ski weeks are offered - 3-10 April and 10-17 April '05. The cost per week is 995, including Geneva airport transfers, full board in a luxury chalet, use of technical equipment and lift passes (basically everything but beer money and excluding flights and insurance). Sorry, no snowboarders!

How do people book?

Please visit our website to see if you meet the skiing criteria and then email us for a booking form. We'll talk to every applicant BEFORE taking their deposit to ensure the programme is right for them.

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