Lesson Levels Explained

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Diamond Peak offers a variety of learn to ski and snowboard programs, packages, and clinics for beginners, intermediate, and advanced skiers and riders. Our professional instructors, low student-to-instructor ratios, gentle slopes designed for progression, and friendly environment make Diamond Peak the ideal place to learn how to ski or snowboard and Tahoe's best value. When booking a lesson in advance, it's important to understand the different levels of instruction we offer in order to enroll in the correct lesson program for you or your child. 

Please review the different lesson levels below, each of which includes a short video preview of what you will learn in that lesson level. If you feel like your skills fall in between two levels, it's important to choose the lower-level lesson program - our instructors can always teach you relevant skills on terrain you can ski/ride easily, but they will not be able to provide proper instruction on terrain that is above your ability level.

Group Lesson Levels (ages 5+)

Our Ski & Ride Center and Child Ski Center group lesson programs are divided into our Sierra Sliders program (ages 5-6)Sierra Scout program (ages 7-12) and Adult Lesson program (ages 13+). We divide our group lesson programs into these age ranges based on research into how students learn best within a group setting. Friends or siblings who wish to learn together but span these age categories should enroll in a Friends & Family Private lesson available for ages 7 and up. Regardless of which program you fall into, the descriptions of Lesson Levels below should give you a better understanding of what you will learn and what you need to know to get the most out of that lesson.

Beginner Levels

Beginner Level 1 = Lesson will be taught in the Ski & Ride Center lesson area, the School Yard beginner run and School House chairlift. For ages 5-6, the lesson will in the Child Ski Center learning area and use Pete's Powerline surface lift. 

  • Ski: Participant has never skied before, is learning how to stop in a wedge, or needs a reminder of how to make a controlled wedge stop. 
  • Snowboard: Participant has never snowboarded before, is learning how to stop, or needs a reminder on how to stop. 

Beginner Level 2 = Lesson will be taught on the School Yard beginner run and School House chairlift.

  • Ski: Participant can straight run, wedge and stop on easy green terrain. They are developing turns and wedge stops on easy green terrain.
  • Snowboard: Participant can put board on and take off board. Can straight glide and stop on easy green terrain. They are developing speed control and directional changes.

Beginner Level 3 = Lesson will be taught on Lodgepole run and Lodgepole chairlift.

  • Ski: Participant can stop and turn on green terrain. They are developing speed control through turn shape on all green terrain and may be starting to ski easy blue terrain.
  • Snowboard: Participant can control speed and direction on both edges. They are developing linked turns on green terrain and may be starting to snowboard easy blue terrain.

Intermediate Levels

Level 4 = Participant can control their speed through turn shape on all green terrain. They are developing a variety of turn sizes and shapes on easy blue terrain. Lesson will be taught on various green and blue runs accessed by Lodgepole, Lakeview or Red Fox chairlifts.

Level 5 = Participant can do a variety of turn sizes and shapes to control speed on easy blue terrain. They are developing parallel turns on blue terrain. Lesson will be taught on various green and blue runs accessed by Lodgepole, Lakeview or Red Fox chairlifts.

Level 6 = Participant can do basic parallel turns on blue terrain. They are developing pole plants and may be starting to ski variable conditions and easy black terrain. Lesson will be taught on various green and blue runs accessed by Lodgepole, Lakeview or Red Fox chairlifts.

Advanced Levels

Level 7 = Participant can control their speed through turn shape while parallel with a pole plant on all blue and easy black terrain. They are developing skiing and carving on variable black terrain. Lesson will be taught using all areas of Diamond Peak including Lakeview and Crystal Express chairlifts.
Level 8 = Participant can ski on variable black terrain with a variety of turn sizes and shapes. They are developing skills in bumps, steeps and chutes. Lesson will be taught using all areas of Diamond Peak including Lakeview and Crystal Express chairlifts.
Level 9 = Participant can ski in all terrain and conditions with a variety of turn sizes and shapes. They are developing strategies and tactics for skiing the whole mountain in a variety of conditions. Lesson will be taught using all areas of Diamond Peak including Lakeview and Crystal Express chairlifts.

Visit the Ski & Ride Center page for pricing and more information about lessons for ages 7+. 


Child Ski Center (ages 4-6) Group Lessons

Our Child Ski Center group lesson programs feature a maximum 5-to-1 student-to-instructor ratio and meet in the dedicated Child Ski Center location. Kids ages 4 to 6 learn differently than older children, which is why we have developed a dedicated Child Ski Center program for them. Please review the descriptions of Lesson Levels below to determine which lesson to enroll your child in. If you feel like your child's skills fall in between two levels, it's important to choose the lower-level lesson program - our instructors can always teach your child relevant skills on terrain they can ski easily, but they will not be able to take your child on terrain that is above their ability level and your lesson will be cancelled. 

Know Before You Go video

Please review our COVID-19 health and safety guidelines in this 2-minute video.

CSC First-Time Beginner Group Lessons (ages 4-6: Ski Only)

This is the lesson program if your child has never skied before or needs a refresher on the basics. They will learn about ski equipment, how to walk around on the snow, how to ride our magic carpet lift, and how to glide and stop. Lesson program will take place in our dedicated Child Ski Center learning area and one parent must remain present in the learning area during the lesson. For the 2020-21 season, this is the only Child Ski Center group lesson program we will offer. All higher-level kids must be enrolled in a Slide-With-Me parent & child private lesson due to chairlift safety rules.

CSC Slide-With-Me Parent & Child Private Lessons (ages 3-6: Ski or Snowboard)

All children ages 3-6 who have progressed beyond the Child Ski Center learning area, and those looking for more personalized instruction, should be enrolled in a Slide-With-Me parent & child private lesson. These private lessons are offered by the hour and focus on developing the child’s skills and giving tips to the parent on how to help their child to progress outside of the lesson. The parent must be able to ski or ride above the ability of their child and be comfortable loading and unloading the chairlift with their child.

First-time private lessons will be out on the snow in the Child Ski Center learning area with a dedicated surface lift. Parents do not need to be able to ski or snowboard if their child is in a first-time lesson but must remain in the parent viewing area throughout the lesson to attend to the child's personal needs.

Visit the Child Ski Center page for pricing and more information about lessons for ages 3-6.