I had been a pro rider for Sims, and then Burton snowboards for 4 years. MMSC (Mount Mansfield Ski and Snowboard Club) in Stowe needed a snowboard coach, and at 29 I was the oldest pro around. They asked me if I wanted to become a coach, and I figured my pro career was about over anyway. I said yes, and the rest is history.
Most notable coaching experience:
The truth is that every time I help an athlete at any age or level to have a breakthrough it represents a notable coaching experience for me. Having said that, I have had some pretty “notable” coaching moments, so I’ll throw a couple out there:
As the Head Coach of the US Olympic Halfpipe Snowboard Team at the 2006 Olympics in Torino, my athletes won 4 medals (Gold and Silver for both men and women), and narrowly missed sweeping both sides of the podium. We had all worked so hard, and I was overwhelmed with joy and pride.
At the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, as Shaun White’s personal coach, I helped him to dig deep, and after already sewing up the Men’s Halfpipe Gold medal on his first run to throw down the most stunning and technical run in history (up to that point), beating his own winning score - all when he really didn’t have to.
Why Windells Academy:
For my entire career I have been on the lookout for a special situation where all of the components that an athlete needs to fulfill their unique potential - as an athlete and as a person - come together. At Windells Academy I have found that situation. I am proud to be a member of a strong team of like-minded people with a shared vision, and the skills and can-do attitude to build something truly great together.