Union Internationale des Associations d’Alpinisme
International Union of Mountaineering Associations
MODEL TRAINING STANDARDS
for Voluntary Leaders and Instructors
UIAA Training Standards Working Group – c/o The United Kingdom Mountain Training Board – Capel Curig – GWYNEDD LL24 0ET – UNITED KINGDOM
Tel: + (44) 1690 720 272 – Fax: + (44) 1690 720 248 – Email: Theukmtb@aol.com
UIAA Office – Monbijoustrasse 61 – CH – 3007 Bern – SWITZERLAND
Tel: + (41) 31 370 18 28 – Fax: + (41) 31 370 18 38 – Email: UIAA@compuserve.com
Our member federations asked the UIAA to develop model training standards for voluntary leaders and instructors so that they can base their own training courses on widely accepted principles and standards. This work was undertaken by the members of the UIAA Mountaineering Commission with help from many others from many different countries. To date twenty two standards in seven countries have been approved with a further four countries being processed and inquiries from another eleven. This shows that a wide acceptance of these standards as good practice is already happening. However the test of their success can only truly be measured if they result in a reduction in the rate of accidents in the mountains. Although there is
no replacing experience there is no doubt that good initial training can make those early days in the mountains much safer.
I would like to compliment and thank all the members of the UIAA Mountaineering Commission for the work they have put in preparing these standards and to all those people who have helped. In addition I would like to thank those federations that have adopted them and have given feedback on making improvements.
The UIAA Model Training Standards for Voluntary Leaders and Instructors have een established in cooperation with the UIAA Mountaineering Commission. Access to the mountains remains free for everybody and these standrads have not been prepared to try to regulate practice but to make an important contribution to mountain security and the development of mountaineering activities and alpinism.
Our aim is to distribute these standards in order to lead to an improvement of technical knowledge, to prevent mountain accidents and to increase the quality of mountaineering activities.
These standards were ratified by the General Assembly held in October 1993,
Santiago de Chile.
Those who have cooperated in this project are:
Alan Blackshaw – BMC, Chair of the Mountaineering Commission
André Rieder – SAC, Switzerland
Giancarlo Del Zotto – CAI, Italy
Igor Novák – CMA, Czech Republic
Lluis Lopez – FEDME, Spain
Jordi Colomer – FEDME, Spain
Paul Vierin – CAF, France
Louis Volle – CAF, France
Jean Ruedin – FFME, France
Karl Schrag – DAV, Germany
Mike Nikkels – KNAV, Holland
Iain Peter – BMC, Great Britain
Roger Payne – BMC, Great Britain
Eliza Moran – AAC, USA
Mike Galbraith – CAC, Canada
Patrick Lamarque – CAF, France
Phillipe Dedieu – FFME, France
Robert Rennsler – OAV, Austria
Manel de la Matta – FEDME, Spain
John Cousins – UKMTB, UK
UIAA MODEL TRAINING STANDARDS
1.1 The UIAA is concerned to promote mountain training as an important aspect of the development of mountaineering and has given responsibility for this to its Mountaineering Commission, working in collaboration with member Federations and other organisations as appropriate.
1.2 The UIAA Mountaineering Commission is frequently asked by member Federations for advice about mountain training standards and methods. This was, for example, raised by the Ukraine and other countries at recent discussions with mountaineering Federations of the former USSR in Moscow.
The Commission has accordingly put forward international model standards as defining current accepted good practice among a number of member Federations with considerable experience of mountain training programmes for voluntary leaders. The Commission hopes that this may provide a basis on which it may advise those requiring assistance and suggests to such member
Federations that they take these standards into account in setting up or revising the training programmes for which they have responsibility.
1.3 If the standards are followed widely by member Federations, this might gradually encourage widespread international acceptance of the UIAA model standards as defining accepted good practice in mountain training, while leaving total discretion to member Federations to apply them in their own
countries as they wish. The UIAA believe that the existence of such international standards will help to ensure a uniform minimum standard of good practice beneficial both to the leaders concerned and those undergoing instruction or being led.
1.4 The UIAA also believes that it would be desirable for there to be a system of mutual recognition of UIAA standard leader qualifications between members of the UIAA so that voluntary leaders trained in one member country, in accordance with the UIAA model standards, may operate freely in other member countries. This would bring obvious benefits in facilitating mountaineering by voluntary groups in different countries and regions, and thus support UIAA objectives of encouraging international mountaineering.
The Mountaineering Commission recognises that this may need time to develop, in consultation with member Federations, taking account of legal issues.
1.5 The present standards cover the following main qualifications for voluntary mountain leaders or instructors:
- Mountain-walking (chapter 4)
- Rock-climbing (chapter 5)
- High-Alpine mountaineering (chapter 6)
- Mountain ski-touring (chapter 7)
The UIAA Mountaineering Commission would be pleased to add further standards as necessary to meet the needs of member Federations.
1.6 It is emphasised that the standards apply only to voluntary leaders and that professional guides, instructors and leaders may have additional requirements. In a case where a member Federation wishes to use or develop one of the present proposed model standards for professional use, it should first consult the UIAA Mountaineering Commission or the relevant professional organisation.
1.7 The UIAA is committed to promoting equal opportunities for all people taking part in climbing and mountaineering. Training Schemes will be expected to demonstate a positive attitude towards equal opportunities.
1.8. The Commission will revise the standards as necessary from time to time, taking account of the experience of member Federations and others.
2. THE UIAA SCHEME OF MODEL TRAINING STANDARDS
2.1 This chapter defines the general arrangements for the UIAA scheme of model training standards.
2.2 Organisation and Administration The UIAA Mountaineering Commission has responsibility for organising and administering the Scheme, reporting to the UIAA Committee and the UIAA Council, which have the final responsibility.
2.3 For these purposes the Mountaineering Commission has a sub-group on mountain training, comprising both members of the Commission and experts in mountain training appointed on their recommendation.
2.4 A uniform basis for the UIAA Model Standards The title ‘UIAA Standard’ indicates the completion of structured training validated by examination. The award is an indication of the levels and abilities attained in technical and teaching areas, as well as those of safety, security and nature protection in the mountains.
2.5 The Mountaineering Commission proposes, as far as possible, a common format for all of the model training standards in the UIAA Scheme, though the level of skills and experience required will vary according to the needs of the particular standard. By providing for the maximum uniformity in the coverage of the standards, the UIAA Mountaineering Commission hopes to ensure that each of the individual standards is comprehensive and to encourage the use of modular training programmes at the various levels, so that duplication in examinations and assessments may as far as possible be avoided. This is defined further in chapter 3 below.
2.6 Application of the Standards by Member Federations As noted above (para 1.2) the present standards only define accepted international good practice and it is for member Federations to apply them in their own training programmes according to their own circumstances and requirements.
2.7 The Mountaineering Commission will be pleased to co-ordinate advice or assistance to member Federations on request, for example, by arranging the temporary provision by other member Federations of suitably experienced and qualified instructors to those Federations requiring them. Normally the recipient Federation would be expected to meet travel expenses and all costs in its own country. However, the supplying Federation would be encouraged to assist with other costs (e.g. the salaries of the instructors) in case of need.
2.8 UIAA Approval Where a member Federation considers that its training programmes meet the minimum UIAA standard for any particular course it may request the UIAA to approve the programme or course.
2.9 In such a case the Mountaineering Commission would need to satisfy itself that the member Federation concerned is applying the relevant UIAA model standard correctly and that it has suitable training procedures, staffing, and monitoring arrangements to ensure that its programmes consistently meet that standard. The Mountaineering Commission would normally arrange to send a suitably qualified person (or persons) to the member Federation concerned, who would subsequently report to the Mountaineering Commission with recommendations. All of the costs of such a visit, including any salaries, would normally be met by the member Federation requesting the approval, but the Mountaineering Commission should be informed in cases where this might cause difficulty.
2.10 Where the Mountaineering Commission is satisfied that the member Federation meets the model standard for any particular level of qualification it may grant its approval for that programme or course. The Commission hopes that in due time it will be possible to develop the Scheme so the member Federation concerned might be authorised to use the UIAA label, alongside its own, on the carnet issued to the holders of the awards, as explained in paragraphs 2.12-14 below. Such approvals would be listed from time to time
in The UIAA Bulletin.
2.11 The authorisation would be valid initially for a period of 5 years and the Mountaineering Commission would be expected to monitor the programmes or course involved from time to time and to agree with the member Federation concerned the basis for renewing the approval at 5 year intervals. The costs of this work would in principle be borne by the recipient member Federation concerned.
2.12 UIAA Identity Card or Carnet The UIAA Mountaineering Commission is designing a standard format for a carnet or identity card for each of the present proposed UIAA Model Standards.
2.13 It is intended that this should include the following details:
- the name and sex of the holder of the UIAA Standard the forenames
- place and date of birth
- a personal photograph (passport type)
- the date of award of the UIAA validation
- the name and address of the organisation providing the UIAA identity card.
2.14 In the event that a member Federation obtains UIAA agreement that its mountain training programmes meet the UIAA Model Standards concerned (see paragraphs 2.8-11 above), that Federation will be authorised to issue the carnet or identity card to its holders of qualifications meeting the respective UIAA Standard. Such carnets or identity cards can be withdrawn, permanently or temporarily, by the issuing member Federation under conditions defined by it.
2.15 The UIAA may require a fee from the member Federation concerned for each carnet issued bearing the UIAA emblem in accordance with regulations to be approved by the UIAA Council from time to time.
2.16 Civil Liability Insurance Any Federation administering the UIAA Training Standards must ensure that appropriate civil liability insurance is available to each leader.
3.THE COMMON BASIS FOR THE UIAA STANDARDS
3.1 As noted in paragraph 2.4 above, the UIAA Mountaineering Commission is keen to ensure that each of the Model Standards is drawn up and operated on a standard or common basis and this chapter defines these common elements.
3.2 The common format for each of the Model Standards (chapters 4-7 below) comprises the following main elements:
- Purpose and nature of the Standard
- Definitions of the Standard
- Minimum age of the candidate
- Experience required for that Standard
- Course syllabuses, intended to provide the training and assessment courses, are designed to ensure that the candidate meets the full requirements of the particular Standard by the time of assessment Examination and assessment procedures
- The Award Available This may either be in the form awarded by the member Federation alone, or may be in the form of the equivalent UIAA carnet if the Federation has made arrangements with the UIAA for his purpose, as provided in paragraphs 2.14-16 above
- Revalidation requirements
In each case these recommendations cover only the minimum Standard and additional or more stringent requirements may be applied by member Federations to meet their own circumstances.
3.3 The Common Requirements for the Candidate The candidate’s technical ability is attested by:
- Training and assessment schemes covering the leader’s ability toorganise, lead, teach and provide assistance in a variety of subject matters in the appropriate Standard.
- The psycho-physical aptitudes of the leader and the moral and worth requirements are attested by the Federation having charge of the award.
3.4 Access to training requires the following:
- Age Limit. Each country will have its own legislation governing age at which leaders are deemed to be responsible. In European countries this is between the ages of 18 and 21.
- Nomination Candidates for the UIAA Standard will be nominated by their member Federation.
- A medical certificate indicating fitness for the activity dated within three months of the date of application for training.
3.5 Candidates must have considerable experience and background knowledge at the appropriate level for the proposed Standard as defined in the respective chapters below.
3.6 A candidate must also have a full and comprehensive knowledge of the following items:
- party leadership
- physical ability
- security in the mountains
- safety and rescue
The candidate should be aware of the possible hazards pertaining to the area of operation and all activities should be planned so as to only include areas for which the leader has received appropriate training.
3.7 A record of the candidate’s training and assessment activities should be kept; either in the form of a log book or in some other way acceptable to the member Federation.
3.8 Common Requirements for the Training Courses It is essential that the training should allow the acquisition of skills and knowledge for the respective Standard. This is controlled and measured by tests and examinations.
3.9 The training will consist of one or more practical courses that will take account both of the universal technical provisions as set out in this chapter and the specific technical requirements for the particular Standard as set out in chapters 4-7.
3.10 All of the courses will be organised in accordance with the administrative arrangements as defined in chapter 2.
3.11 The Federation will determine the frequency and length of the trainingcourses.
3.12 The training will consist of theory and practical work. In all cases priority will be given to practical.
3.13 As a minimum the training should ensure that the holder of the respective UIAA Standard is competent in the following:
A. The Mountain Environment
- the geography and the geology of the mountains
- access to the mountains and their conservation and protection
- the application and practice of the UIAA Mountain Code
B. Legal Matters and Conditions of Work Operation
- responsibilities and legislation of each country in which the holders will operate
- knowledge of the rights of operation in their own country and in other countries in which they intend to operate
- rescue organisation
C. Group Leadership – the ability to manage the group will particularly include:
- presentation of activity programmes
- organisation and control of the group
- adaptation of programmes to suit different groups
D. Teaching – as an ‘educator’ the holder of a UIAA Standard should have an understanding of teaching methods that will enable knowledge to be transmitted effectively to others, particularly in the mountain environment.
E. Anatomy and Physiology – as they relate to activities in mountainous country, particularly:
- physical preparation
- characteristics of mountain exercise
- tiredness and recuperation in the mountains
- the effect of mountains and altitude on the above
- physical fitness for the activity
F. Orientation and Navigation – familiarity with navigation techniques and equipment so that they can navigate in all situations and conditions. The skills and knowledge of the holder of a UIAA Standard should include:
- Maps – use of different types and scales, their legends and the signs and
- relation of map to ground
- appreciation of and ability to measure or estimate map-ground distances
- use of compass, orientation of map, magnetic variations
- navigation in clear conditions
- navigation, using a compass, in difficult conditions
- orientation and position finding with and without instruments
- preparation and realisation of a route
G. Weather – candidates should have a fundamental understanding of mountain weather. They should be capable of interpreting weather maps and forecasts and be able to use basic instruments and natural signs helpful to weather forecasting.
H. Security in Mountainous Terrain – candidates should have the knowledge and techniques needed to safeguard groups in the mountains, taking account of mountain risks and hazards.
I. Mountain Rescue – candidates may operate unassisted in remote and wild places and should:
- have knowledge of mountain rescue equipment as appropriate to the
- have the ability to dispense first aid
- be able to organise a rescue appropriate to the level of activity undertaken:
by setting tasks for those involved and by deploying outside agencies,
- be able to effectively use radios and other communication systems and
signals (such as the Alpine distress signals) as necessary.
J. Bivouac and Survival – candidates should be able to organise and assure
- the well-being of a group without support or back-up. In particular:
- Bivouacking – candidates should be able to organise an improvised bivouac for the group
- Survival – candidates should be capable of looking after a group in difficult conditions
K. Snow-covered Terrain (where applicable)
L. First Aid
M. Organisation of the Federation and the UIAA
3.14 Each domain listed in 3.13 shall be examined separately or as part of a continuous assessment.
3.15 It is essential that candidates demonstrate an ability to pass on in a suitable way the items listed above.
3.16 All of the examinations and tests should take place within a 3 year period.
3.17 The successful candidate will operate with responsibility to and from the member Federation.
4. THE MOUNTAIN-WALKING LEADER STANDARDS
4.1 Purpose and Nature of the Standard This standard is for those who lead parties on walking expeditions in the mountains. It is designed to equip the holder with training and other qualifications required for mountain-walking terrain and for the type of obstacles normally encountered on such terrain: small rock steps, patches of snow and ice. It is not designed for use in situations that require the techniques of mountaineering to make progress, such as rock climbing, ropes, ice axes, crampons.
4.2 Definitions of the Standard The mountain-walking leader Standard is based on the provisions in chapter 3 and the present chapter defines the variations or additions to those provisions for the purpose of this particular Standard.
4.3 Age of the Candidate This should be defined by the respective Federation, taking account of the circumstances in its own country but should not be less than 18 years at the time of assessment.
4.4 Experience Required The candidate for the mountain-walking Standard should:
- be an active and competent mountain walker
- have appropriate experience of a variety of mountain areas
4.5 Course Syllabuses The training and assessment courses should be designed to ensure that candidates meet the following requirements by the time of assessment.
4.6 Candidates must demonstrate effective personal techniques and leadership ability in:
- ascending and descending steep ground, grass, scree, broken ground
- choosing routes through difficult terrain
- proceeding on ridges
- route planning, choice and preparation of itineraries
- organising and leading a group in bad weather
- personal techniques associated with travel on snow
- emergency techniques and rope work
4.7 The candidate should have the knowledge and techniques needed to operate on steep broken terrain, and be able to use a rope as a means of safeguarding a group or individual in exceptional circumstances, including:
- movement on short, easy sections of rock and mixed terrain
- choice of line and supervision of a group both with and without a rope
- basic knots
- elementary belaying techniques, including choice of safe anchors
- basic moving together skills
4.8 The candidate must:
- understand and be able to identify mountain hypothermia, cold injuries and heat disorders
- have an awareness of major environmental mountain hazards, including loose rock, stonefall, flooding, lightening, avalanche and other snow hazards
- be able to evaluate the dangers posed by river crossings and, where applicable, safely ford swollen rivers
- be able to recognise and follow different forms of way marking on paths and tracks
4.9 The candidate should be able to organise expeditions for groups lasting one or more days, including:
- choice of equipment
- camp craft
- use of mountain huts, including waymarking of paths
- any necessary insurance and legal requirements
4.10 The candidate must have a keen interest in, and knowledge of, flora, fauna and the mountain heritage
4.11 Examination and Assessment Procedures The course examinations, in which candidates will have to prove that they have mastered correctly all areas of the training, will take place during the final session. These examinations will be based on:
- group leadership in all sorts of terrain
- general mountaineering training
- ability of the instructor or person in charge
- technical abilities on appropriate terrain
4.12 The Award Once the examinations have been successfully passed, the candidate will be entitled to the award of the mountain-walking leader qualification. This may either be in the form awarded by the member
Federation alone, or may be in the form of the equivalent UIAA carnet if the Federation has made arrangements with the UIAA for this purpose, as provided in paragraphs 2.8-11 above. This will be valid for three to five years, according to the protocol in the member Federation.
4.13 Re-validation Every three to five years the award-holder should follow a proficiency course, in the field, under arrangements made by the member Federation. If this proficiency course is not completed the certificate is no longer considered as being valid.
5.THE ROCK-CLIMBING INSTRUCTOR STANDARD
5.1 Purpose and Nature of the Standard This Standard is for those leading or instructing others in rock climbing in either single or multi-pitch situations either with or without fixed equipment. Unless it is combined with the UIAA Mountain-Walking Leader qualification (chapter 4 above), it is only valid for crags that present no mountaineering or navigational problems, either in approach to the foot of the climb, or in descent following the completion of the climb.
5.2 Definition of the Standard The rock-climbing instructor Standard is based on the provisions in chapter 3 and the present chapter defines the variations or additions to those provisions for the purposes of this particular Standard.
5.3 Age of the Candidate This should be defined by the respective Federation, taking account of the circumstances in its own country, but should not be less than 18 years old at the time of assessment.
5.4 Experience Required The candidate for the rock-climbing instructor qualification should be:
- able to lead at UIAA Grade 5 minimum
- committed and experienced with as broad an experience of rock climbing as possible.
5.5 Course Syllabuses The training and assessment courses should be designed to ensure that the candidate meets the following requirements by the time of assessment.
5.6 Candidates must demonstrate effective personal techniques and leadership ability in the following areas:
- climbing calls
- choosing and following routes
- emergency procedures
- solving common problems
- first aid
5.7 The candidate should have the practical techniques and knowledge needed to operate on a variety of types of rock and be able to use and advise on:
- ropes (including double ropes) and slings
- all protection devices
- belay plates and descenders
- care of equipment as appropriate to the climbing area.
5.8 The candidate should have knowledge of:
- climbing history and traditions in the member country
- physical training and recuperation methods
- insurance and legal requirements
5.9 The candidate must have the ability to manage:
- students in an appropriate and safe manner, including tying on, climbing, belaying and descent arrangements
- instructing students to lead
- emergency procedures
5.10 The candidate must:
- have an awareness of major environmental hazards, including descent routes, loose rock and weather
- understand and be able to identity injuries resulting from overloaded training, cold injuries, heat disorders
- be able to respect access and conservation rules in every rock area
5.11 The candidate should be able to instruct students in:
- using a guidebook
- choosing routes suited to one’s ability
- confident movement on rock at grade 4 level or above
- basic knowledge of safety chains, fall factors, runner strength and problems of connecting runners to climbing rope
- safety precautions
5.12 Examination and Assessment Procedures The course examinations, in which the candidate will have to prove a mastery of all areas of the training as described above, will take place during the final session. These examinations will be based on:
- group leadership in all sorts of rock areas
- abilities of the instructor or person in charge
- technical abilities
5.13 The Award Once the examinations have been successfully passed the candidate will be entitled to the award of the Rock-Climbing Instructor qualification. This may either be in the form awarded by the member
Federation alone, or may be in the form of the equivalent UIAA carnet if the Federation has made arrangements with the UIAA for this purpose, as provided in paragraphs 2.8-11 above. This will be valid for three to five years according to the protocol in the member Federation.
5.14 Re-Validation Every three to five years the award-holder should follow a proficiency course, in the field, under arrangements made by the member Federation. If this proficiency course is not completed the certificate is no longer considered as being valid.
6.THE HIGH-ALPINE LEADER STANDARD
6.1 Purpose and Nature of the Standard This standard is for those who lead parties on Alpine-mountaineering terrain (including snow, rock, ice and mixed ground), in high mountains and on glaciers. Candidates must have levels of personal skill and, above all, experience relevant to the demands made by this exacting environment before presenting themselves for assessment.
6.2 Definition of the Standard The High-Alpine Mountaineering Standard is based on the provisions in chapter 3 and the present chapter defines the variations or additions to these provisions for the purposes of this particular standard.
6.3 Age of the Candidate This should be defined by the respective Federation, taking account of the circumstances in its own country, but should not be less than 21 years at the time of assessment.
6.4 Experience Required The candidate for the High-Alpine leader qualification should:
- be an active mountaineer and at ease in all sorts of Alpine terrain (rock, snow and ice)
- climb at a minimum of UIAA Grade 4
- have experience of a considerable number of both easy and difficult routes typical of the terrain described above
- be competent in rope handling, knots, roping together of climbers, belaying, security, rescue
- have knowledge of mountain orientation, climate, weather conditions and first aid
6.5 Course Syllabuses The training and assessment courses should be designed to ensure that the candidate meets the following requirements by the time of assessment.
6.6 In terms of personal skills, the High-Alpine Leader should possess the ability to lead small groups in high mountainous regions, regardless of the terrain, with emphasis on:
- choice of route adapted to the ability of the group in terrain of rock, snow, ice or a mixture, including descent
- command and knowledge of dangers: crevasses, avalanches, falling rocks, amongst others
- competence in first aid in case of accident
- raising alarm and organising aid
- rescue from crevasses
- transportation of injured climbers
6.7 As regards teaching skills, the candidate should be able to pass on to others sufficient knowledge for them to be able to practice Alpine mountaineering in line with their abilities, in particular:
- basic knowledge of good teaching techniques and methods of imparting information and skills
- teaching of mountaineering techniques: rock climbing, crampon technique, belaying on all surfaces, ice and neve walking
- teaching basic knowledge for mountain navigation, forecasting of weather, rescue and first aid
- organisation of practical exercises and theories on these themes
- use and preparation of route descriptions
6.8 Examination and Assessment Procedures The course examinations, in which the candidates will have to prove that they have mastered correctly all areas of the training, will take place during the final session.
6.9 These examinations will be based on:
- group leadership in all sorts of typical Alpine terrain
- general mountaineering training
- ability of the instructor or person in charge
- technical abilities on rocky terrain
- technical abilities on snow and ice terrain (approx. 50 degrees)
- technical abilities on mixed terrain
6.10 The Award Once the examinations have been successfully passed, the candidate will be entitled to the award of the High-Alpine Leader qualification.
This may either be in the form awarded by the member Federation alone, or may be in the form of the equivalent UIAA carnet if the Federation has made arrangements with the UIAA for this purpose, as provided in paragraphs 2.8-11 above. This will be valid for three to five years, according to the protocol inthe member Federation.
6.11 Re-Validation Every three to five years the award-holder should follow a proficiency course, in the field, under arrangements made by the member Federation. If this proficiency course is not completed the certificate is no longer considered as being valid.
7.THE MOUNTAIN SKI-TOURING LEADER STANDARD
7.1 Purpose and Nature of the Standard This standard is intended for those leading groups on ski-tours in mountainous terrain. It covers all aspects of these activities but is primarily related to skiing. In situations where climbing and general mountaineering are also contemplated, or where glacier travel will be undertaken, it should be in conjunction with the High-Alpine Leader Standard (chapter 6).
7.2 Definition of the Standard The Mountain Ski-touring Standard is based on the provisions in chapter 3, and the present chapter defines the variations or additions to these provisions for the purposes of this particular Standard.
7.3 Age of the Candidate This should be defined by the respective Federation, taking account of the circumstances in its own country, but should not be less than 21 years at the time of assessment.
7.4 Experience Required The candidate for the Mountain Ski-touring Leader qualification should have:
- good technical skiing ability (i.e. parallel) on piste
- good skiing ability off-piste (i.e. competent in varied snow conditions and on steep slopes)
- extensive experience of ski-touring in winter mountains over several years
- mountain climbing ability up to UIAA Grade 2
- knowledge of rope handling, especially knots for roping up and security rope safety techniques
- knowledge of mountain climate, weather conditions, orientation, first aid, avalanche theory and practical, including the use of electronic protection devices
- an appropriate first aid award
7.5 Course Syllabuses The training and assessment courses should be designed to ensure that the candidate meets the following requirements by the time of assessment.
7.6 In terms of personal skills, the candidate should be able to demonstrate an ability to lead small groups in high winter mountains on ski-tours, with emphasis on:
- route finding and navigation in non-glaciated terrain
- ability to lead a group when skiing
- judgement and assessment of avalanche risk, factors which decrease or increase avalanche risk, factors governing choice, and minimisation of risk
- knowledge of other Alpine dangers, particularly associated with ski-touring (falls, steep slopes, cornices, etc.)
- mountain weather conditions
- snow structure and physical properties
- navigation with map, compass and altimeter whilst skiing
- first aid in the event of a mountain accident
- raising the alarm with the mountain rescue services
- evacuation of injured people
- nature conservation
7.7 As regards teaching skills, candidates should show that they can instruct others in techniques, skills and knowledge of ski-mountaineering with, in particular:
- basic knowledge of good teaching techniques and methods of imparting information and skills
- instruction of others in ski-mountaineering techniques and improvised rescue using appropriate equipment
- instruction of others in avalanche and weather theory, navigation, mountain rescue and first aid
7.8 Examination and Assessment Procedures The training will conclude with an examination in which candidates must demonstrate that they meet the requirements of a Mountain Ski Leader. Tests will be conducted on the following aspects:
- off-piste skiing
- choice of route in both ascent and descent
- leading and group management skills whilst on ski
- snow and avalanche theory and practice
- rescue and first aid
- teaching ability
- further theory subjects
7.9 The Award Once the examinations have been successfully passed the candidate will be entitled to the award of the Mountain Ski-touring Leader qualification. This may be either in the form awarded by the member Federation alone, or may be in the form of the equivalent UIAA carnet, if the Federation has made arrangements with the UIAA for this purpose, as provided in paragraphs 2.8-11 above. This will be valid for three to five years, according to the protocol of the member Federation.
7.10 It is emphasised that for tours on glaciers or in the high mountains, leaders must hold both the Mountain Ski-touring Leader Award AND the High-Alpine Leader qualification.
7.11 Re-Validation. Every three years, the award-holder should follow a proficiency course, in the field, under arrangements made by the member Federation. If this proficiency course is not completed the certificate is no longer considered as being valid.