Tell me about Canyons

Canyons LogoFrom the once yearly fire festival (you have to check this out!) to the vast quantities of snow. If you are looking at a very authentic Japanese experience this is the best option for you. 

When you get here you may end up staying longer than you intended! There is a huge amount of snowfall each season and fewer people to snake your fresh lines! There is also a great crew of instructors from around the world so you will make a load of new friends and have an epic time, even staying on to work the summer season.

EA’s Ski and Snowboard Instructor Internships with Canyons Snowsports School start with training and an exam based at Kagura Resort. Trainers are English speakers predominantly certified through the NZSIA. Kagura is one of the earliest ski resorts to open in Japan as it is high in elevation and has snow-making. Canyons Snowsports School have agreements to provide ski and snowboard lessons for many of the resorts in the local area

Facts about Canyons

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Nozawa Onsen is of course, famous for it's onsens!

In town there are a total of 13 public hot-spring baths known as “Sotoyu” which are a common asset of the village

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Great vertical offered at Gala Yuzawa

Gala Yuzawa offers skiing from 1,181m down to 358m

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The entire Minikami, Nozawa Onsen and Gala Yuzawa area is famous!

The area itself is famous for its incredible natural scenery, hot springs and traditional Japanese Culture, as well as epic snow!!

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This area is a mecca for those travelling to Japan

On the list, and a must-see is the Takaragawa Onsen (hot spring), voted the No.1 hot spring in Japan by international travelers

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The original 'Snow Country' of Japan

The region usually receives heavy and consistent snowfall each winter and this entire area lays claim to being the original 'Snow Country' of Japan.

Becoming a ski or snowboard instructor at Canyons

We offer our ski & snowboard instructor internship program at Canyons. Our team can help you decide whether this program aligns with your season goals and skills - but for now, check out some of the inclusions and benefits!

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SKI INTERNSHIP


INTERNSHIP INCLUSIONS:

  • Accommodation during training
  • Guaranteed job offer
  • Full season lift pass 
  • Level 1 training
  • Level 1 exam costs
  • Association membership
  • Mountain transfers
  • Future job opportunities with our network of 30+ resort partners around the globe 
  • Program managers at each location
  • Training webinars 
  • Special deals on flights and insurance

STARTING AT

$7975

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SNOWBOARD INTERNSHIP


INTERNSHIP INCLUSIONS:

  • Accommodation during training
  • Guaranteed job offer
  • Full season lift pass 
  • Level 1 training
  • Level 1 exam costs
  • Association membership
  • Mountain transfers
  • Future job opportunities with our network of 30+ resort partners around the globe 
  • Program managers at each location
  • Training webinars 
  • Special deals on flights and insurance

STARTING AT

$9975

Living & working at Nozawa Onsen and working for the Canyons Snowsports School 


Our Canyons program is unique as the training and exam for the program are based at Kagura Resort. However, as Canyons Snowsports School have instructing agreements with many resorts in the local area, our interns find themselves working at locations such as Gala Yuzawa, Nozawa Onsen Resort and also Minikami.

After the level 1 exam, you will either head to Gala Yuzawa or Nozawa Onsen resort so below you will be able to find information on both resort towns and Canyons ski school itself. 

Canyons ski school

Canyons is a leading snow school in Japan. Canyons Ski and Snowboard School operate out of two great locations at Gala Yuzawa and Nozawa Onsen. 

The price of food and drink in this area of Japan is very reasonable. As an example, a good Japanese style meal of meat, rice and vegetables (to keep mum happy) in a local restaurant will cost around 800 Yen – which is $9 USD. Depending on your employing resort you may also have access to discounted or free food. You will also get all the benefits of being an employee such as staff parties, discounted gear, and many other opportunities.

Once successfully through your initial training and level 1 examination, you will start work for your employing ski school. You will teach lessons in English because there are a lot of foreigners who live and ski in Japan who want to learn skiing or snowboarding in English. Lessons are usually in 2-hour blocks and your pay rates as a first-year instructor for Canyons Snowsports School will be approximately 1,000-1,300 JPY per hour. 

Resort profile: Nozawa Onsen 

Our interns live in Nozawa Onsen, a village in Nagano built in the image of an Austrian mountain town. It's twinned with St Anton, is famous for it's natural, free onsens (hot pools) and the annual fire festival (think Japanese locals literally fighting each other with fire). The resort experiences massive snowfalls and has some of the best terrain for free-riding in Japan.

Nozawa is popular with Australian holidaymakers and has a lot of bars and restaurants for after work; the town has a real resort town feel once the winter gets into full swing.

Resort profile: Gala Yuzawa

Yuzawa is a mountain town in the Niigata prefecture of central Japan famous for huge snowfalls, hot springs and sake. Rather than there being one big resort, Yuzawa sits in a valley with about ten smaller resorts close by. Interns work for a ski school that mainly runs lessons at Gala Yuzawa, the only ski area in the world with it's own bullet train station, with the opportunity to teach and ski at some of the other resorts in the area

The town itself retains a strong Japanese character, so nightlife is a departure from the bars and clubs you might be used to, one night you might be doing karaoke, the next dancing in a half-pipe at a bar with skatepark inside it. The snowsports school here works closely with the resort and there is a lot of opportunities to meet Japanese people, learn the language and experience the culture; this is your opportunity to go full Japan.

(Note: Staff accommodation consists of self-contained four or six person apartments ten minutes' walk from Gala. Each apartment has it's own bathroom and kitchen, although most staff take advantage of a meal plan which is available through Gala. There is a supermarket and hardware store within a short walk from the accommodation and the town has a chemist and a convenience store amongst other things.)

 

What about accommodation?

During the training and examination period, you will live at the Canyons Ski School Lodge in Minikami. This will be set up so you can shift straight in and feel at home. There is ski/snowboard storage, kitchen and bathroom facilities, a communal living area, pool table, TV room and sleeping in shared dorms. As the kitchen is small there is a compulsory breakfast and dinner meal plan with a subsidized cost for Interns. There is also a small damage deposit payable on arrival in case of damage.  

Canyons accommodation

Some of the interns, post-training will transfer to Nozawa Onsen to join the Canyons Ski School crew there. The interns there stay in staff accommodation, living in shared rooms in a building about 20 minutes walk from the resort although commuting on skis or snowboard will shorten the journey considerably. Kitchen and bathrooms are communal and vehicles are available to travel to shops which are in the larger town of Iiyama.

Tanbo accommodation

 

Certification overview

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Our Ski and Snowboard Instructor Course in Queenstown, New Zealand allows you to obtain a globally recognised qualification with the NZSIA (New Zealand Ski Instructors Alliance) or SBINZ (Snowboard Instruction New Zealand). The NZSIA and the SBINZ are well-established, educational bodies that are internationally renowned for producing professional, knowledgeable instructors, with the capabilities to teach and ride at very high standards. They are both internationally recognised as a well-established, professional provider and has a reputation for high-quality and knowledge. This means that NZSIA and SBINZ instructors are able to competently perform and teach on snow in many cultures and conditions. This qualification can truly take you anywhere.

 

Level 2 Training

Although not an Internship Plus program, there are opportunities for those on the ski side to work towards and complete the Level 2 exam during the season. This is a separate add on including just training and the exam, organised directly by the team at Canyons. This package makes the most of the quieter, low season weeks in January when work levels are less and is run by Canyons at a near cost price to help interns who are keen to push their professional development. This involves roughly 12-16 training days in January, with an exam at the start of February, and can also include a rent reduction during the period. Approximate cost is $1750-$2250USD depending on the exact inclusions/numbers.

 

EA SKI AND SNOWBOARD PROGRAM MANAGER


EA Ski & Snowboard want you to have the best season possible at Canyons. This means that we have Rich on the ground, who is easily contacted and there to offer advice and support at all times. Not only is he familiar with Canyons itself, but he is also an ex-EA intern who now works for the ski school and will be a familiar face to make your gap year and first winter season that much easier.

Hear from our program manager, Rich about EA's instructor internship at Canyons and where it can take you.

 

Disclaimer: The above information should be used as a guide and is subject to change 

Reviews from EA Alumni

WHERE CAN YOU GO IN JAPAN?

Click the resort names or dots to learn more about each resort

MAP Japan
Niseko Village
Niseko ISS
Niseko Go Snow
Canyons Nozawa/Yuzawa
Club Med Hokkaido
Nozawa Onsen
Hakuba Snow Sports
Evergreen Hakuba
Mt Naeba
Rusutsu
Shiga Kogen

Niseko Village

Niseko Village Ski Resort, famous in Japan and around the world as Japan's #1 snow resort. Located in Hokkaido, and towered over by the giant Mt. Yotei, this ski resort is renowned for its consistent snowfall and dry, light powder.

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Niseko ISS

Experience the authentic culture of Japan at this epic Japanese resort! Get ready to explore the local onsens, big powder skiing, sushi and ramen and fun nightlife in the centre of Hokkaido!

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Niseko Go Snow

Niseko is well known as the hub of Japanese skiing, the mix of culture, incredible skiing, and amazing people make the resort town a must-see destination for skiers from across the globe.

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Canyons Nozawa/Yuzawa

Culture, fun and an immeasurable amount of yearly snowfall! If you are up for a steamy combination of authentic Japanese culture, deep fluffy powder, great people and a chance to teach skiing in an English speaking ski school then this is for you.

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Club Med Hokkaido

Club Med can be simply summed up by saying, great powder and luxury accommodation in an English speaking environment.

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Nozawa Onsen

A dream resort with expansive ski areas and long seasons. EA is proud to offer Ski and Snowboard instructor training at Nozawa Onsen ski resort. Nozawa is a true snow paradise and is renowned as one of Japan’s most superb and expansive winter sports areas.

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Hakuba Snow Sports

Hakuba Snow Sports School is a privately owned business catering to holiday-makers skiing and snowboarding in Hakuba Japan. Based at the Iimori snow resort (part of Goryu & Hakuba 47), it has the best teaching terrain in Hakuba as well as steeps, powder, trees & the biggest terrain park in the valley.

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Evergreen Hakuba

Hakuba is famous in Japan and the world for great skiing and boasts some of the best resorts and snowfall in the country. For more than 70 years Hakuba has been providing skiers, snowboarders and outdoor enthusiasts the ideal conditions for enjoying an epic winter experience.

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Mt Naeba

Naeba is one of Japan’s most visited resorts since it is the closest big mountain to Tokyo. It gets around 10m of snowfall per year putting it on the top ten list for big mountain snowfall in Japan.

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Rusutsu

Rusutsu Resort is located in the village of Rusutsu, Hokkaido. Famous for consistent annual snowfall and some of the deepest and lightest powder snow in the world. The winter resort is blanketed in snow that transforms into a world class ski resort with the largest skiable area of any single resort in Hokkaido.

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Shiga Kogen

Welcome to Japan's largest interconnected resort area. EA Ski & Snowboard partner with Shiga International Ski School, in Shiga Kogan where there are 19 ski resorts, all interconnected on one ski pass, Shiga Kogan is no laughing matter! Yet, go here and you'll find yourself grin & hollering from top to bottom!

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