I spent yesterday on the snow taking a mock exam for my PSIA Level 2 Certification. I failed it. The exam is made up of 8 maneuvers. You have to pass bump skiing and the basic parallel alone, and then have to have an average score of at least a 4 for the other 6.
This is how I did:
Linked Railroad Track Turns: 4 passed
Wedge Cristie: 2 FAIL
Linked Hockey Slides/Stops: 2 FAIL
Medium Radius Turns on Smooth Terrain: 4 passed
Variable Terrain and Snow Conditions 4 passed
Switch Basic Parallel: 2 Failed
Basic Parallel: 3 Failed
Linked Short Turns in Bumps: No Score (the examinar said he laughed, he said ripping the bumps like Johnny Mosely in a bump competition is cool, but he needs to see some turn shape, he said to mix it up, a little zipper line with some actual turns and I’ll get a 5 or 6, I can do it, so I’ll give myself a 5)
My exam is April 13-15th. Yesterday was only the second time I had tried many of these maneuvers. It was awesome to have had the chance to get out there and fail early. I now know where I’m weak and what to work on to make sure I pass. These maneuvers are very, very technical. Who can’t do a wedge right? Clearly me. 🙂 PSIA is looking for very specific movements, executed properly. They take practice. Failing early was big for me yesterday. It showed me where I stood and what I need to do to pass. At the end of they day I quickly called a friend of mine who is a PSIA examiner and told him I failed. We’re building a plan to fix it.
Failing early is huge. It gives you a chance to make things better. It allows you to pivot, correct, and realign with little damage or impact. Failing is an awesome tool if you use it right. There is a time for failing and it’s the earlier the better.
My exam is in a month. I have 35 days to fail some more, then the failing has to stop.
Fail when it’s OK, not when it’s not.