“People weren’t made to fly, that’s why we make kickers,”
– Warren Miller
The Park & Pipe disciplines operate in their name sake terrain: Slopestyle, Big Air and Halfpipe.
With focus on judged “trick” performance rather than against the clock Park & Pipe has adrenaline high consequence creativity at its heart. Skiers and Snowboarders successful in Park and Pipe competition have to match phenomenal athletic capability with creativity. The three park and pipe disciplines are incredibly popular in the wider snowsports industry given their accessibility and the excitement in riding jumps, rails and transitions.
Slopestyle is where riders compete and ride down a purpose built course that will include a variety of features including jumps, rails, transitions and gaps. Increasingly these courses are becoming unique to different events, and challenge the rider’s ability to adapt to lots of different features and put down a run that is innovative, technical and well executed. Typically a course will consist between 2 – 4 jump features and 2 – 4 rail features as well as other unique features. Again this is judged by a panel similarly to Big Air. The Overall Impression score (how well linked together the run is) is an important marker here too. Again, in Scotland there are a large number of facilities that make it possible to try out and train for Slopestyle courses. Springtime in particular is great for finding the best real-snow Slopestyle courses given the weather and snow available.
The nature of the Park & Pipe disciplines means that generally riders focus more on skill and trick progression and less on formal competition in comparison to other snowsports disciplines, that said there are still a multitude of competitions around the country for those wishing to compete. There are an array of different competition formats out there, the two main competition formats are:
A set time window is given to lay down the best tricks possible. The open time means entrants have multiple attempts to land a trick resulting in a much more laid back but exciting atmosphere. Sometimes prizes are awarded from the initial jam, in other cases the top riders make it through to a semi-final, or final for another jam or in some cases a head to head with another competitor.
After practice on the course competitors have two judged, qualifying runs. The top competitors, usually 12 of them but not always, move forward to the finals, where they have a further two judged runs. This format allows the judging panel to concentrate on each run in its entirety and provide a calculated score for each run, thus allowing the placement of athletes from 1st to last in an accurate manner. Something not possible in a Jam Format.
Big Air is where riders compete and ride on a single large jump and perform a single trick in an effort score as high a mark as possible. Normally riders will perform a jump with a blend of rotation (spin) and somersault (flip) action, with a grab (holding onto the snowboard/skis) to show control and individual flair. It is judged by a panel who will look out for qualities such as: amplitude, technical difficulty, style, execution and more. Some of the most prestigious events in Big Air include the Air and Style Series, X-Games Big Air and now a World Cup / Olympic series of Big Air. From artificial slope to the mountain resorts, it is easy to try out hitting jumps in Scotland, with a large variety of sizes and transitions available to try
Halfpipe is the original Park & Pipe discipline, stemming from the skate/surf culture in 60’s USA. Originally a hand-shaped course, halfpipes are now cut to very specific sizes using a variety of machinery. The Olympic standard pipe is now 22ft on both transitions, with a flat bottom that slopes up to a vertical ‘lip’ where riders takeoff. Riders will perform a variety of airs including spins/flips on both sides. Again, it is judged on similar aspects to that in Big Air and Slopestyle, with the unique challenge in Halfpipe being able to ride the transition continuously. You can find quarter-pipes at many artificial slopes and by spring Cairngorm Mountain often builds a half-pipe too.
There is a vibrant slopestyle competition scene throughout Scotland! The competitions range from fun low-level jams for local freestylers through to the Triple Crown - the national level competition appealing to performance-orientated athletes. To find a fun competition and get involved please see the Snowsport Scotland event calendar
The main competition series delivered by Snowsport Scotland is the Triple Crown an inclusive event for both rookies and higher performance athletes.
The Triple Crown is Snowsport Scotland's Championships Slopestyle Tour incorporating 3 rounds of competition on indoor snow, the mat and at the mountain.
The three-event multi-surface format allows a means to identify a truly versatile overall slopestyle tour champion, who can perform and excel in all environments.
Each event in the tour is unique offering a very different park, surface and environment to challenge riders. At each Triple Crown event there are three separate competitions:-
- The CrownJam (A fun jam format competition for all levels ages and abilities)
- The Junior Champs (A jam format championship for U12's only)
- The Triple Crown Champs (A 2+2 Championship format for U16 and Open only)
The Triple Crown Indoor Champs
- Where: Snow Factor
- When: September
- What: A different park every year - 4-5 banks with 3 features. Rookie and Pro lines.
The Tripe Crown Dryslope Champs
- Where:- Alternates between Bearsden and Aberdeen
- When: Late November or Early December
- What: If at Aberdeen then 2 lines, rails and kicker. If at Bearsden then a large kicker and Quarter Pipe (but it varies each year!)
The Triple Crown Mountain Champs
- Where:- CairnGorm (with Lecht as a backup option)
- When: March
- What: A different park every year dependent on snow volume!
Want to Enter?
HOW TOUR RANKINGS ARE CALCULATED
Overall tour rankings are for the Champs event. Tour ranking is based on accumulated "Tour or Series Points" which are awarded to competitors at each champs competition, according to their overall ranking at that event in their M/F Ski/Snowboard category (regardless of age).
Points are awarded in a diminishing scale per this table.
As riders attend each event, so they accumulate series points and at the end of the tour, overall Triple Crown Slopestyle Tour Champions can be identified.
If on final calculation of the overall tour ranking, two competitors achieve the same score, their ranking order will be determined by the competitor with the highest final run points score in the final event.
To view upcoming competitions in Scotland visit our Competition Calendar.
The Performance Pathway
Snowsport Scotland employs two park and pipe coaches to run our development and national performance programmes.
They support park and pipe athletes to progress through the pathway and into the GB Snowsports teams. This is done in partnership with the Clubs, Academies and GB Snowsports.
- Development Coach - Euan Baxter
Euan works with local clubs and scenes develop their coaching team, facilities access, equipment, and more to ensure young riders across the country have the best opportunity to ride in the best environments! Once selected to Home Nations status, riders will have the opportunity to attend extra training opportunities and develop their on and off-snow skills with the inclusion of camps abroad.
- National Performance Coach - Murray Buchan
Murray has dual role with Snowsport Scotland and GB Snowsports and works with both the GBPark&Pipe Main Team athletes and the Snowsport Scotland Performance Squad in the UK and abroad. The pathway promotes as much snowboarding and freeskiing as possible, alongside cross training disciplines such as gymnastics, skateboarding, and strength and conditioning work.
GB Snowsport (GBS) is the national governing body for Snowsports in the UK and focus is the elite British athletes selected to its programs.
They select, manage and lead British teams to international events and provide opportunities for our athletes to achieve their full potential as individuals and as a team.
To get involved with Park and Pipe activities, please speak to your local slope/mountain to find out if they are holding an introduction to freestyle course or have a dedicated freestyle night for you to join on. Please check our Clubs to get in touch with your local Park and Pipe scene/club.
Selection to the Park & Pipe Pathway happens at multiple points in an Athletes progression toward World Class performance. The first entry point in Scotland is with the many Snowsport Clubs Snowsport Scotland work closely with. Snowsport Scotland would recommend attendance in a club structure is the best entry point in engaging with the Park & Pipe pathway. At a certain level of Performance SnowSport Scotland select athletes to their Park & Pipe programs to give those athletes with demonstrated talent the best opportunity to develop toward World Class and selection to GB Snowsports Park and Pipe Main Team.
For a list of clubs see Clubs
Snowsport Scotland selection takes place in September each year. We would recommend touching base with your local club or contacting us for more info. For those interested in applying for selection to the Snowsport Scotland Home Nations see the links below.
Please note Snowsport Scotland is not running formal selection for the 20/21 season due to covid. We advise any applicant interested in the applying to get in touch direct. The next formal selection period will be May 2021.
We recommend you discuss your submission with your local coach as they will be able to help guide you through the process, if however you are unable to do this please feel free to contact us.
For Selection to GB Park & Pipe main team program please see:
|Roahan Duncan, Age 11
I love competitions and learning new tricks with my friends
My dream would be to represent my country 1 day
|My name is Lewis Ballantyne, and I’m a freestyle skier for the Snowsports Scotland Home Nations Pathway. I love skiing and it’s my favourite thing to do. I’m from Aberdeen and I ski at Aberdeen Snowsports Centre. There’s a great atmosphere there on Wednesday nights, and it’s always fun trying new tricks with the help of Rob Wilkinson, my coach. I have a great group of friends down at the slopes, and I think that really helps us progress as we can try new tricks together.
In the future it would be my dream to make it to X Games, as it looks like a lot of fun and a great competition. I would also like to represent my country in the Olympics, it looks like an amazing experience.
Overall. I love freestyle skiing and I’m so glad I can be apart of Snowsports Scotland. It has opened up training camps for me such as going to Livigno which I loved as it really helped me improve when it comes to bigger jumps. I’m so grateful for these opportunities I have been given.
|Zander Williams, I am 13 years old and my passion is freestyle skiing. I am from Aberdeen, Scotland. I want to be able to improve my riding and keep going to competitions around Scotland, Although soon I want to do more competitions abroad. When I am older I want to be able to land a double cork 10. This is one of my goals that is quite important to me. I was lucky enough to start skiing in Scotland when I was very young, but I didn’t get into freestyle until about 3 years ago.|
|Name: Leon Drynan
My dream and ambition is to compete at the Olympics. My goals in the sport are to keep progressing, consistently learning new and bigger tricks. My preferences in snowboarding are riding mountains and travelling aborad to different places. My riding preferences are Slopestyle and Big Air.
Lives in Paisley, Scotland
Trains in Austria during the winter and competes throughout Europe in Slopestyle, Big Air and SBX.
Highlight of last season was experiencing the World Junior Championships in Klaeppen Park, Sweden
|Name : Reece Grimmer
Age : 15 yrs
Location : Aberdeen – Aberdeen Snowsports Club
Since learning to ski at a young age I was given the opportunity to experience Freestyle skiing at my local dry ski slope and was immediately hooked. Since taking up the sport 2.5 years ago I am now a competitive amateur Freestyle skier, regularly competing in competitions locally and nationally.My commitment to training and competing has resulted in some success, narrowly missing out on podium finishes and securing 4th place (in my age category) at two ‘Triple Crown’ events in Snowsport Scotland’s three part competition tour, to decide the overall Scottish Freestyle champion.At the ‘Go Big or Go Home’, UK’s largest independently run dryslope event, I progressed through the qualifying stages to finish 4th place in my age category.During the last 12 months I have travelled abroad to Hintertux in Austria and Livignio in Italy to attend P&P training sessions, to develop my Freestyle technique and work on my tricks and style, which I have thoroughly enjoyed - it has motivated me to continue working hard on my training and to look forward to bigger and better success in the future.
|Connor Sheves - 13 year old freestyle Skier from Aberdeen. My dream would be to compete in the X Games or the Olympics|
Address 130 Chemin Des Mollettes
Albertville France 73200
Ambition : To become a pro snowboarder and to make the best of the opportunities I’m given in life .
Goals and dreams: I want to become pro and be able to compete at a national level
Preferences: slope style and big air
Ambitions: To be the best I can be
Traffic Light Tracker
The GBPark & Pipe pathway utilises the Traffic Light Profiling System. In its simplest form the “TL’s” are used by individual skiers and snowboarders for charting tricks. This profiling tool has many utilisations for coaches and riders alike and our primary use is as a coaching tool to enable athlete-coach conversations.
A secondary is the use of the TL’s is supporting athletes applications to the pathway or national team whereby candidates can use it demonstrate their current level. Any submission of this kind is requires supporting video submission of the top level tricks or first hand coach exposure to those tricks.
Of note: The TL’s will be going through an update prior to the 2019/20 season.
Please fill in the "Info" tab first before the TL Tracker. The TL Tracker already has examples in there, delete them and complete with the correct information. Please use the current date for tricks which are already established and all new developments can be tracked going forward.
Snowsport Scotland is committed to supporting clubs, centres, and organisations to run high-quality, efficient competitions. Below are resources that Snowsport Scotland has provided to help you run your event or competition.
Please visit our Competition Resources section for more information.
In addition Snowsport Scotland offers a series Event Crew Development (ECD) workshops aimed to provide education and support to individuals, clubs, centres, and organisations looking to run competitions.
Please visit our Training Courses section for information on training for slopestyle event crew.
If your Club or Organisation is hosting a snowsport related event or competition and would like to display it on our Calendar, please either complete this online form or contact email@example.com