“I don’t ride park” used to be my mantra, but after spending the weekend at the Oakley Progression Sessions, my mantra has changed. This weekend I found myself gaining confidence in the park while surrounded by women of all ages, supporting each other to progress their skiing and riding skills in the park. Led by a team of badass Oakley coaches we hit the slopes on Saturday, after a brief session of yoga and stretching, in our custom Oakley Flight Deck goggles and made our way to our private park in Forest Trail.
It wasn’t long until we were sitting in front of a jump and were talking about how send it. I was nervous, but as I watched the other women I was with stand up, one by one, and hit the jump I became determined. If they could do it, so could I. And I did. Encouraged by my coach and my teammates, I realized that I was gaining confidence and actually enjoying the park- something that I never thought would happen. Towards the end of the day, I even learned how to do an indie grab and took a lap through the halfpipe. I went home that day glowing with excitement.
The next morning was stormy but I found that same mentality that I had the day before- if the other women could face the cold and wind, so could I. After another session of morning yoga and coffee, we hit the hill with giggles, selfies, and excitement to progress our new found park skills. We spent the day in the Wonderland Playground, which had perfectly sized jumps and jibs for us to work on. The coaches set up different stations through the park, and we worked on riding rails, spinning off jumps, and board sliding boxes. Our coaches talked us through and demonstrated each trick, showing us how to approach the feature, move our bodies, and how to land. I was nervous, but once again, watching the other women do it and learning from each other as well as our coaches gave me the confidence to try it for myself. Before I knew what was happening, I was spinning 180’s, giving high fives, and cheering other women on as they progressed themselves. I even worked up the nerve to board slide a box, something that I’ve always been too scared to try.
The weekend ended with a board tuning tutorial, dry land training, an award session, and a post-camp euphoria that came from learning new things, supporting each other in our progress, and meeting a rad group of women who all love to hit the slopes. My new mantra: “I’m learning how to ride park.”