Riverside secondary grade 10 student and ski racer Alyssa Emery returned from a two week training trip to Austria at the beginning of October. Emery is an avid ski racer who trains out of Whistler and has been skiing since the age of two. She started racing at the age of eleven, which is rather late for a ski racer as most ski racers start at the age of six.

Her recent trip to Austria was an almost two week training trip, with ten days spent on snow and two rest days throughout the trip. On their last day, the ski group was supposed to watch a world cup race, but as it was cancelled, they visited Munich instead.

“A lot of these trips are so we can get some more training in, get our ski legs back and get stronger. They help us learn new skills… The camp is essentially to develop skills and learn to talk to people and build relationships… It is also really important to get a lot of training in over the summer so you don’t lose anything when you get back into the ski season,” said Emery.

Emery said that they had a full schedule during the trip. “Our days were very packed. A ski day would be we would get up at 5:45 for warm up at six…After warm up we had breakfast…We trained from nine until noon, have lunch and then train again until two…After that we would have dryland training…Then we would have homework time, dinner and a team meeting to discuss the next day’s plans. We would normally go to bed at around nine,” said Emery.  

In addition to her trip to Austria, Emery also trained at Sun Peaks near Kamloops for a week, returning on November 26. As the ski season is now in full swing, Emery has a full few months ahead of her. “I start regular training on December 1 and I’ll be training four days a week until the first race which is in Sun Peaks in January,” said Emery.  

Emery is in the Epic program at Riverside, which she says is a great way to gain more time to complete her homework or train, depending on her schedule that week. Emery said that balancing schoolwork and skiing can be difficult, but the key is simply being organised. “The Epic program has helped me a lot, but it is all about organisation really, and knowing where everything is,” said Emery.

In addition to her regular ski training out of Whistler, Emery also works with a personal trainer three times a week, as well as going for runs and bike rides in her spare time.

Photos courtesy of Alyssa Emery.