Snowboard Level Three

The Snowboard Level Three Certification is aimed at working instructors wanting to progress within the snow sports industry to teaching students in all-mountain and other advanced riding situations. The minimum pre-requisite for the Level Three is SBINZ Level Two or equivalent foreign qualifications and the Children’s Teaching Certification. However you may take the Level Three Workshop before you have your Children’s Cert.

The course is split into a six-day Workshop with a three-day exam later in the season. Modules covered in the workshop include rider improvement in all-mountain terrain (off-piste), teaching advanced carving, advanced freeriding and advanced freestyle progressions, movement analysis, class handling and safety in all-mountain situations including off-piste and terrain park.

The price for the Level Three Precourses in the New Zealand winter 2020 will be: $414 NZD each (2 courses required – Ride and Teach)

The price for the Level Three Exam in the New Zealand winter 2020 will be: $552 NZD


Workshop length: 6 days (3 days riding focused, and 3 teaching and analysis focused)

Certification resource: The SBINZ Instructor’s Manual is required reading for this course.

Pre-requisites: You must be an associate member or full member and have Snowboard Level Two Certification or foreign equivalent (see FAQs), and the Children’s Teaching Certification (this may be taken between the Workshop and Exam). Note that you cannot take the Level Three Exam without attending the Level Three Workshop first.

** Before you take the Snowboard Level Three you must complete the Level Three online e-learning course, based on information in the CURRENT Snowboard Instructors Manual (downloadable for free here). You can access the e-learning system through your member profile. Look at the course outline for further information. **

Assessment Process

Candidates’ riding, teaching and movement analysis are assessed during the three-day exam. Riding is assessed over one and a half days, with a series of challenging tasks relevant to the conditions. Candidates will have two attempts at each task, but BOTH attempts will be taken into account for the assessment. The specific tasks used are selected by the Examiners on the day.

The following four areas of riding are assessed, with at least two different tasks in each (switch riding will be included in multiple tasks):

  • Freeriding off-piste on advanced/black terrain with variable snow conditions (both forwards and switch off-piste tasks are often used here) – assessing candidates’ control, rhythm, flow, board performance, versatility and creative use of terrain.
  • Carving on-piste with tasks of varying levels of performance (high performance carving is typically included here) – assessing candidates’ ability to regulate pressure, utilise edge angle and side-cut, make good tactical decisions with terrain and demonstrate a strong high performance stance.
  • Freestyle riding with frontside and backside 360s on natural hits and on small park jumps, as well as boardslides and presses on a box – assessing candidates’ precise use of ATTL and their ability to ride both park and all-mountain features.
  • Versatility riding (heel-to-heel and/or toe-to-toes are frequently used here) – assessing candidates’ ability to show both up and down unweighted movement patterns in various turn sizes and shapes, whilst also blending other freestyle or carve elements and movements.

Watch the video below for more details on some of the possible riding tasks (not all tasks are shown in this video).

Candidates’ teaching is assessed during a 30 to 45 minute lesson for advanced riders, presented to other members of their group. The assessment must be a corrective lesson for riders with a specific issue in any of the advanced riding scenarios (marked with a black diamond) within the SBINZ Manual. All teaching advanced methodologies (marked with a black diamond in the manual) must be used appropriately within the lesson.

Candidates’ movement analysis skills are assessed via two video clips, one with a written exam and the other followed by a technical discussion with the Examiners. Download the Level Three Written Analysis Exam here and the verbal guidelines here.

Level Three Resit Policy

To be successful in achieving this qualification you will need to pass all three components (Riding, Teaching and Rider Analysis). If you are unsuccessful, we do offer partial resits. The following resit guidelines apply:

  • Riding – if unsuccessful here, you will need to be re-assessed for the one and a half days of the exam (usually on first and second days, weather depending).
  • Teaching – if unsuccessful here, you will need to attend the teaching assessment day in order to be reassessed (usually day three, weather depending).
  • Rider Analysis – if unsuccessful here, this will be reassessed at a time and off-snow venue (usually on the afternoon of the first day of the exam).

To be eligible for a resit you must have passed at least one of the three components above. The other one or two components must be resat and passed within a 12 month window from when you first sat your Level Three Exam. After the 12 month window you will be required to sit all components of the Level Three exam again.

Your workshop will remain valid for life. However, as content continually changes it is recommended that you stay up-to-date by attending the workshop again after a few years if you are planning on taking the exam. Attending just one half of the workshop (either the riding or the teaching/analysis half) is possible upon request.

Level Three Riding Tasks and Demonstrations

Click here to watch on Vimeo where you can download this video for playback later.


Name: Sam Smith
Course and Resort: Snowboard Level Three (previously Stage Two) at Coronet Peak

“The Level Three Workshop was one of the funnest weeks of my season. We all had a great time riding together and talking about snowboarding. We learnt a huge amount and all agreed that our understanding of snowboarding had increased. It felt like we were given everything we needed to go for the exam and with enough experience you can pull it all together on the day. After five seasons of teaching I thought I knew it all, but I’m going back to Winter Park in Colorado with new life in my instructing!”

Name: Bjoern Aeschlimann
Course and Resort: Snowboard Level Three (previously Stage Two) at Coronet Peak and Mt Hutt (retake)

“Switzerland goes Kiwi for the Training and Exams – just because everything is perfectly organised! Going for the pre-course early season is the way to go. Get trained by professionals to the standard you need to be to pass the exam. Then you get the whole season for training to reach the level – so many fun training sessions with my friends. I went to the exam, had lots of fun riding with some strong snowboarders and learning from each other. I am now working in Wengen (Switzerland) in the Jungfrau Region which is the Top of Europe.”