Hi my name is Chase Patterson and I first heard about Skiplex when I heard there might be a dry-slope built in Basingstoke. I’d always wanted to try snowboarding, and had had one or two lessons on a dry slope, but it was so far away that it just wasn’t practical to get to. Having a slope so close meant I had no excuse anymore, so I booked my first lesson at the beginning of last year.
Skiplex has a loads of benefits. You don’t waste your time trying (and in my case failing) to learn how to use the lifts – you can get straight into the fun bit – the boarding itself. I love that you’re not staring down a massive hill – it’s much less intimidating than a full slope, and since confidence has always been my biggest issue, that was a huge help. I also love how easy it is to stop and start – if I needed to ask a question, or was unsure of anything, the slope just stops – much more reassuring than having to get all the way to the bottom of a big slope. The flexibility of the slope – especially being able to change speed and incline – meant I could start out easy and build up at my own pace.
I’ve gone from not being able to board at all to being able to link my turns confidently (most of the time!) I’ve been able to change the incline, and link my turns when it’s steeper. I’ve also tried a little bit of ‘switch’ position, but that’s still very new to me. I’ve enjoyed it so much I’ve even started skiing as well.
My favourite thing about skiplex is the staff. I have various disabilities and health problems that make learning this kind of thing really difficult for me. It often takes me longer to learn stuff, and I can find physical activities difficult, but the staff have been amazing. They’re so relaxed and encouraging. They know when to push you out of your comfort zone, and when to make it a bit easier to build your confidence. I’ve tried a lot of activities in the past where the instructors not understanding my problems, or not allowing for them has meant I just gave up, but Skiplex is the first place that’s managed to get me to really commit to a sport. I’ve been going over a year now, and still love it.
I’ve already recommended Skiplex to everyone I know, and some strangers too hehe. I think it’s the best way to learn, and I can’t wait to get out on the snow and put everything I’ve learned into practice.