Team Summer Adventures: Ben Potts

Catch up with PSIA-AASI National Team members as they share their summer adventures and how it keeps them on their game for winter. Here’s how PSIA Alpine Team member Ben Potts spent his summer.

What’s been your go-to summer activity or big summer adventure?

Skiing has been my main summer adventure. I took on a new job coaching with Woodward Copper, Colorado, at their on snow summer camps. Copper’s park crew does an incredible job building a terrain park on top of a massive pile of snow that lasts all summer. Aside from skiing, working at camp also gave me the opportunity to spend time rollerblading and skateboarding. I’ve gotten comfortable on the pump track and mini ramps but still have much to learn in the larger pools.

Why was this on your to-do list?

Every spring I always find myself wanting to ski more, and Woodward Copper is the perfect outlet for that. Summer skiing is a truly surreal experience. Every time you get on the lift and look at the bright green grass that surrounds the snowfield it’s a good reminder that summer skiing is something special. Woodward Copper also has an awesome staff and it’s been fun working with old friends and making new ones.

What did you learn?

One thing that stands out from coaching this summer is making sure athletes feel emotionally supported. Attempting new tricks is an exciting but also stressful environment. Sometimes I knew an athlete was physically ready to try a trick, but I needed to step back and ask myself what we needed to do to help them feel ready. The answer would vary from just cruising a couple more laps, talking through how they feel, getting the right music in their headphones, or even just letting them know, “I believe in you! You got this!” The moment when the fear and uncertainty transitions into hype and excitement has become one of my favorite things about coaching.

How does this keep you physically and mentally engaged in the offseason?

One of the great things about camp has been coaching a wide variety of tricks. I love it when an athlete wants a trick to look a certain way and we can dig into the details of how to get that outcome. I’ve also spent considerable time working with regional committees and national task forces over the summer.

On the physical side, I’ve gotten in a good amount of skiing both at Copper and hiking up to high alpine snow in Colorado. I also joined some of the Woodward Copper staff on their rec soccer team, Go Glaciers! Between skiing, soccer, bIading, and a little mountain biking, I’ve found I have some glaring opportunities to improve my fitness before the next ski season starts. I’m confident after a few weeks of gym time and manual labor I’ll be ready to put the boots back on for winter 2022-2023