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Ski Instructors And Women’s Hearts

1. February 2018

A ski instructor has only to bat his eyelashes and women throw themselves at his feet. True? Or at least at some point in the past? Let’s look at the myth of the ski instructor…

Ski instructors have got it made

Fine, I’ll admit it. Ski instructors do have something about them. It happens when a ski instructor in uniform stands on his skis with slightly bent knees and casually lets the poles trail after them while they display their perfect turns in front of you. Their toothpaste ‘Barbie Ken’ smiles encourage you to make two or three descents while you are preoccupied with stopping your ski pants from falling down around your ankles. I won’t even start with the problems that come when you try to use the draglift. But naturally you pull yourself together and laugh grimly while a temper tantrum is growing inside you. And then, what does he do, this unashamedly good-looking tanned god on skis? He holds a Gummibär under your nose. As motivation.

A Gummibär? In one of the classic films, that would be the moment where you have a blackout. I was only 12 and in Saalbach-Hinterglemm on a ski camp. My ski instructor was called Franzl and I was as convinced as the other 13 colleagues in the group that I would someday marry him.

Whether it is Franzl, Toni, Sepp or even Jean-Pierre – the magnetic attraction of ski instructors works with ‘real women’. Even with those of an advanced age.

Was everything better in the past?

At least everything was a little easier. That’s the opinion of a few Leutasch ski instructors that I meet at the regular’s table in the evening. They are around 80 years of age and regularly reminisce about days gone by. “Can you remember that Dutch group of girls, the blondes that all looked like models?” Karl asks his friend across the table. Hubert nods his head, laughs mischievously and drinks a beer to the memory. A long sup. Then he shakes his head. Wow. That must have been some memory, I think quietly.

The five slowly relax and thaw out. After all they are gentlemen of the old school and don’t like to talk too much about their stories and the clichés. But they are all in agreement: “You know straight away if a woman in your class is interested in you. Either in the past or nowadays.” It’s just that things were a lot easier back then. When you met up after a day instructing, there was always one who had felt out ‘if there was something there’, Franz explains as we wait attentively for the rest of the story. “And often it was the case,” he reveals and confirms our argument that ski instructors don’t have to do much to conquer female hearts.

Ski instruction isn’t like it used to be

When I tell Kurt “Truk” Brendle from the Alpin Power Ski School in Seefeld about the tales of his older colleagues, he is almost a little bit envious. “I can tell you one thing,” is his quick retort. “It’s not like it used to be.”

But why, I ask him? “In those days it was really easy for ski instructors to pick up the ladies,” he explains. “But things have really changed these days.” Of course, a bit of flirting and some gentle chat up lines are part of the ‘job’ of a ski instructor. “It’s almost expected from our profession.” When the ladies react – and that reaction is reciprocated – then ‘bingo’. “But many of us are already happy and in a relationship. And we know which bed to sleep in.” Is that the reason then?

Any woman’s heart could be won by a ski instructor – in those days.

Back to the loyal five at the ski instructors’ table in Leutasch. They are still chuckling about the old days. “Do you know,” Kurt tells me “it didn’t matter whether they were young or old. They were young things through to ‘older models’ – and they all wanted to give us their hearts.” Sweet, I think. The old school and their ‘hearts’. Exactly. Although, if we are being honest, it wasn’t really hearts that we were talking about. It was the honeyed words of a tanned man who knew how to deal with the situation.

These days it is all different, according to Kurt Brendle. “Many of the young instructors don’t have the gift of the gab that we, and above all those who came before us, had.” When being a ski instructor is restricted to learning the skills, techniques with chat-up lines can go missing.
“If a ski instructor wants, then he automatically has an advantage just because of his profession. But there are still these idiots who go out in their uniforms, think they are the big ‘I am’ and then go home on their own. It’s not the jacket that counts, but what’s underneath it” explains Kurt.  And he is sure about one thing: “The classic image of the ski instructor will die out sooner or later.” And with those words leaves us with something to think about.

The result of our blog research is:
As it always is and has been, it depends on the man.

Photos: Heinz Holzknecht

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