Skiing for blind & partially sighted people

When most people think of skiing, they think of taking a ski lift up a mountain and then gliding down at great speed. Most skiing that blind and partially sighted people do however, is cross country or Nordic skiing. This is immense fun, and great exercise in the outdoors.

Cross country skiing involves skiing in ready prepared tracks or grooves in the snow. You are likely to have small slopes to contend with, but nothing like downhill or alpine skiing.

Blind and partially sighted people ski with a guide who will assist in the way that best meets the skier’s needs and preferences. If you’re a beginner, the guide will show you how to ski, and if you’re a seasoned skier, they will give you tips to improve your technique. So, even if you’ve never handled a ski before, you shouldn’t feel afraid to give it a go.

Another crucial function of the guide is to ski close to the blind or partially sighted skier to give them information about any slopes coming up; to help them stay safely in the tracks; and, some would say most importantly, to tell them when the next drinks station is coming up!

Metro will consider subsidy requests for members to attend various skiing events. Examples are given below, but these aren't exhaustive.


•Ridderweek is held in March or April in Beitostolen Norway. In 2014 it will run from 30 March to 6 April.

•You have the opportunity to participate in a 5 KM race for women or a 10 KM race for men; a biathlon (a 6 KM ski coupled with sonic rifle shooting); and the 20 KM Ridderrennet race.

•You can read Metro member's accounts of the 2013 and 2011 Ridderweeks by accessing the ‘articles’ link on this page.

Ski For Light

• SFL is held in January or February in a US location. In 2014 it will take place in Anchorage Alaska from Sunday 23 February to Sunday 2 March.
• 25% of attendees are first time skiers, and on the final day, you have the chance to participate in a 5 KM rally and a 10 KM race.

• For more information click here to go to the SFL site.

Want to know more?

For more information about skiing for blind and partially sighted people and Metro’s involvement, contact Mike Brace at:
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