POTM FEBRUARY: GEORGIA WINDROSS
21|22 February Pro of the Month : Georgia Windross
Our Pro of the Month column celebrates the remarkable individuals within The Pro Collective. Enjoy inspirational stories shared by your fellow mountain professionals and see how Faction Skis allow them to thrive on the front lines. To be featured as a Pro of the Month, fill out the form linked here.
Our February Pro of the Month is Georgia Windross, ski instructor based in Verbier, Switzerland. Georgia shares her love for all things outdoors and how skiing has allowed her to lead a life she loves.
WHAT'S YOUR JOB ON THE MOUNTAIN? AND WHAT DOES YOUR JOB ENTAIL?
I'm a ski instructor for Warren Smith ski academy. This means I get to share my passion for skiing with clients from all over the world. I teach all levels of skiers from kids right through to technical sessions with advanced skiers.
HOW DID YOU GET INTO THIS PROFESSION?
I went on my first ski season aged 17 to try something new and fell in love with the mountains. I decided to qualify as an instructor and now on my 10th season, I love the life I have created more than ever.
WHAT ARE THE ASPECTS OF YOUR JOB THAT MAKE YOU FEEL PROUD TO WORK IN THIS ROLE, AND IN THIS INDUSTRY?
I enjoy building relationships with people from all walks of life and sharing my passion with them. I love teaching people, seeing them progress and build confidence to overcome nerves and fears. I love working in the snowsports industry because of the people I have met, the shared values and passions we all have and for the opportunities it has given me.
DO YOU HAVE ONE OR TWO SHORT STORIES TO DEMONSTRATE HAPPY OR NOTEWORTHY MOMENTS ON THE JOB?
When I was away race training in Les Deux Alps, I met husband and wife duo Alice and James Luetchford. James is a severely sight impaired (classified B2) alpine racer who is training to qualify for the Paralympics. He's guided by his wife, with whom he's been racing with since they got married. They came for a visit to Verbier and Alice had to work some of the days, so as a joke we decided I would guide James. Little did I know they were not joking… so James and I went up the mountain and learnt on the job. Basically, you ski wearing whatever color the skier can vaguely see; for James that is yellow. Although he has tunnel vision, he can see a pin prick of colour which he locks onto. From there, with mic’d up helmets, I learnt the basic commands and as we got more confident he taught me more. It all has to be kept very simple so that turn by turn you can get feedback from the visually impaired skier behind you and change your line or speed depending on them. This gave me a massive sense of how fortunate I am, how hard work pays off, and how much you can achieve if you put your mind to something.
I taught for the Warren Smith Ski Academy (WSSA) this pre-season in Cervinia, Italy which was the first time I have worked at this time of year. I felt super happy knowing I was helping to set skiers up for their winter, exploring a new ski area and to be totally honest, earning some money skiing in November!
WHAT DO YOU SKI ON AT WORK & "AT PLAY"?
The Agent 2.0x! It's a really versatile ski and great to explore the mountain.
WHAT KIND OF SKIING DO YOU DO IN YOUR FREE TIME?
I am currently exploring Verbier’s legendary off-piste terrain whenever I am not teaching. This is an area I want to develop my knowledge of, so that I can work in this aspect of skiing in the future.
WHAT DO YOU DO FOR WORK DURING THE OFF-SEASON?
I have worked as a raft guide in North Wales and most recently managed a bar, restaurant and events centre.
LASTLY, WHAT SUMMER SPORTS ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT?
I love wild swimming, rock climbing and hiking and can’t wait to spend a summer here in Verbier exploring the mountains!
Have your own story to share with The Pro Collective? Apply to be featured as our next Pro of the Month!