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Becoming an Instructor

As the certifying body for snowboard instructors in Canada, CASI exists to inspire and facilitate snowboarders on their journey to become a Level 1 Instructor, and progress to higher levels of certification through a respected and globally-recognized program.


We’ve compiled a list of popular questions that we’ve been asked over the years from people who want to become snowboard instructors and become more familiar with our organization.

How do I become a snowboard instructor in Canada?

To become a recognized snowboard instructor in Canada, candidates must complete the CASI level 1 instructor course offered at multiple resorts across the country and internationally, all season long. View the course calendar.

How much does a snowboard instructor make?

The rate of pay for snowboard instructors generally varies based on resort location, level of certification and years of experience. Additional certification levels and years of experience will translate to higher hourly wages and sometimes, salaried, full-time positions.

How can I be a good snowboarding instructor?

Good snowboard instructors are the ones who spend time teaching beginners on a regular basis. They help build the foundational skills of communication, risk management, engagement, and leadership. Being a member of a snow school that offers weekly lesson programming throughout the winter is the best way to hone your skills and gain experience teaching snowboarders of different ability levels and ages. Most respected snow schools offer free sessions/mentoring to their instructors to improve on both riding and teaching skills.

When can I start teaching snowboarding?

You must be at least 15 years of age to enroll in the CASI level 1 course. However, many snow schools offer apprenticeship or instructor training programs whereby young teens have the opportunity to shadow and assist experienced snowboard instructors. These opportunities are a great way to refine teaching and riding skills in order to prepare for the certification course.

How many snowboarders are there in Canada?

There are roughly 500,000+ recreational snowboarders in Canada. Of those, approximately 7,500 are active CASI members and instructors. CASI has certified over 75,000 snowboard instructors since our inception in 1994.

How many CASI Level 4’s are there in Canada?

Level 4 is the highest level of certification within the CASI certification system. It takes years of commitment and dedication to the sport and a high level of determination to achieve this status. There are currently 105 Level 4 snowboard instructors in Canada.

Does CASI Level 1 expire?

To remain a current CASI instructor at any level, an annual on-line training/update course must be completed in addition to paying membership dues yearly. CASI also offers free on-snow professional development sessions to active members each year.

What is a Level 3 snowboard instructor?
  • The CASI Level 1 Instructor is an introductory level instructor with beginner teaching methods, understanding of basic snowboard technique, and has the ability to plan and deliver effective lessons to teach beginner snowboarders up to the Novice Turn level.
  • The CASI Level 2 Instructor is able to teach novice to intermediate snowboarders and has approximately 45 hours of teaching snowboarding in a snow school setting prior to level 2 certification. They possess a skills-based teaching approach for intermediate snowboarding, as well as an understanding of CASI technique and methodology.
  • The CASI Level 3 Instructor is an advanced snowboarder who is also a certified Park 1 Instructor. They have an interest in teaching advanced students and begin to train other instructors. The Level 3 instructor is able to develop a skills-based and situational teaching approach for high-level snowboarding.
  • CASI Level 4 Instructors display the highest level of teaching and riding proficiencies in line with CASI’s techniques and methodologies. They enjoy many opportunities within the industry, including training and professional development, course evaluating, professional advancement, and international representation. Level 4 instructors play a key role in determining training, technical, and policy standards for all of CASI’s programs.
Can snowboarding be a job?

Many snowboarders enjoy teaching snowboarding recreationally on weekends as a compliment to their full time jobs, enjoying the perks of being associated with a resort/snow school and the community of riders around them. Others make snowboarding a full time profession, teaching in the industry as highly qualified instructors, often taking leadership roles at resorts across the country in year round employment. Some choose to chase year-round winter by teaching in the northern hemisphere winter for half of the year, and in the southern hemisphere during the off-season.

What is the difference between a snowboard instructor & a snowboard coach?

CASI trains and certifies snowboard instructors, who typically will be working at resorts. Resort-run snow schools offer programs for all ability levels and interests.

CASI-certified instructors will work with clients from beginner to expert levels, and in all-mountain environments from groomed, to off-piste, and freestyle terrain. CASI certifications are also a great foundation for a career in the snow sports industry – instructor training programs, backcountry / mechanized guiding, freeride camps, and much more.

CASI certifications are also a great starting point for snowboard coaches. Instructors may work with Stage 1-2 athletes, who are learning fundamental movements and how to control a snowboard, and who may eventually progress on to competitive programs.

In order to become a qualified snowboard instructor, the CASI Level 1 Course offered by the Canadian Association of Snowboard Instructors (CASI) is the first step. CASI offers four levels of instructor certification, as well as two freestyle / park instructor certification courses.

The Canada Snowboard Coaching Program trains and certifies snowboard coaches. Snowboard coaches mainly work in the competitive realm. Snowboard Clubs, Provincial & Territorial Teams and our National Team rely on snowboard coaches to help snowboarders learn new skills, enter competitive programs, compete at the highest level, and reach their athletic potential.

Coaches work with Stage 3-7 athletes on snowboard-specific skills, training for success in competitive snowboard disciplines, and developing the experience and confidence needed to win at progressively higher levels.

To become a licensed coach, you will begin by taking an introductory coaching course. This course is delivered in partnership between the Canada Snowboard Coaching Program and the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP). The course is then followed by a short checklist of action items to complete.

If developing snowboard athletes in competitive programs sounds like the right fit for you, visit the Canada Snowboard Coaching Program page.

Are there any partnerships to help snowboard instructors become coaches, and vice versa?

Individuals who have completed the Canada Snowboard Coaching Program’s Competition Introduction Advanced (CIA) Course will be able to jump immediately into CASI’s Level 2 instructor certification program. Equally, instructors who have completed CASI Level 2 Instructor certification will now be able to bypass Canada Snowboard’s introductory coaching course and proceed directly to the Competition Introduction Advanced Course when beginning their training as a Coach. Both parties will receive a 20% discount on their registration fees.

What is the CASI Level 2 course?

The CASI Level 2 Instructor certification is for any snowboarder that has an interest in teaching more experienced snowboarders. The goal of the Level 2 course is to develop a skills-based teaching approach for intermediate snowboarding, as well as an understanding of CASI technique and methodology, and the role of snowboard teaching within the industry. It combines practical snowboard teaching methods, technical understanding and development, as well as development of guest interaction and technical analysis skills.

Candidates will receive coaching on their riding and teaching skills, with the goal of reaching the Level 2 standard in both areas. They will also receive suggestions and strategies for long-term development. The successful candidate is certified to teach snowboarders up to the intermediate level (skills and terrain).

What are the prerequisites for CSCP coaches to skip to the CASI Level 2?
  • Completion of the NCCP Comp Intro and Comp Intro Advanced modules:
    • Making Ethical Decisions (including online evaluation post module to be complete in the Locker)
    • Planning a Practice
    • Teaching and Learning
    • Sport Nutrition (eLearning modules in the Locker)
    • Design a Basic Sport Program
    • Basic Mental Skills
    • Performance Planning
  • Completion of the CASI Level 2 online prep workshop modules (available following registration in the Level 2 course).
What are the prerequisites for CASI Level 2 instructors to skip to the CIA?
  1. Submission of the Comp Intro portfolio
  2. Completion of the CASI Park Instructor 1 course:
    • Mandatory for CIA style
    • Highly recommended for CIA speed
  3. CIA Style minimum technical standards:
    • Small jumps: all four 360’s
    • Medium jumps: all four 180’s
    • Large and XL jumps: comfortable going off both
    • Rails: Can get sideways, regular, and switch through the S-L features. Comfortable with hitting a large feature.

Want more information on the Comp Intro Advanced?