A Day in the Life of a Beaver Creek Snowboard Instructor

Snowboard School in Beaver Creek, CO.

Posted April 12, 2024

By Veronica Kuffel 

Beaver Creek is known for many things: warm afternoon cookies, terrain for every level, world-renowned events and entertainment––the list goes on and on. But one of our resort’s most precious jewels is the Ski & Snowboard School, thanks to our talented pool of instructors and staff. They dedicate their days to teaching generations of guests how to enjoy their favorite snowsports.

Today, we’ll take a look at two outstanding instructors and how they navigate each day of snowboard lessons.


Tzvi Bieler has taught guests to snowboard for over 17 years. While he works on mountain slopes and conventional snowboards, the instructor himself learned to ride in a not-so-traditional way.

“It was on a discarded vacuum cleaner that my friend and I found in Flushing Meadow Park in Queens, NY when I was a teenager,” Tzvi said. “It snowed out and the vacuum had a plastic cover that slid on the snow pretty well. We took turns standing on it and riding down a snow-covered hill.”

His first time properly snowboarding happened years later, and after a few lessons, Tzvi was hooked. He later volunteered for the Burton Chill Program, helping children learn life skills and face fears through snowboarding. By the end of the day, he decided to become a snowboard instructor.

In 2014, Tzvi came to Beaver Creek for the work culture and terrain diversity. From sliding on snow in Haymeadow Park to exploring the bumps of Grouse Mountain, here is Tzvi’s day in the life as an Adult Snowboard Instructor.

Q. How do you start your mornings before lessons?

TZVI: My favorite way to start my mornings is sipping a cup of coffee on my deck, watching the sky get lighter as the sun rises over the mountains. I try to do this regardless of the temperature outside.

Q. What do you expect from a normal day of lessons? What’s your favorite part of the workday?

TZVI: I enjoy every lesson that I teach. The reason for this is I don’t feel like I am teaching snowboarding, but what I am doing is teaching people how to snowboard. The connections I have made with my students over the years are incredible, and I have stayed in touch with some students years after the lessons. I have watched kids grow up into young adults and some of my former students are now instructors themselves, spreading their love of snowboarding to other people.

My favorite part of the workday is cultivating these relationships through teaching an incredibly fun sport.

Q. What do you usually do after a day of work?

TZVI: After a day of work, I usually try to have a relaxing evening, eat some good food and do some yoga to prepare for another fun day on-snow.

Q. What advice would you give someone who wants to take a lesson?

TZVI: Go for it! The more you know about skiing or snowboarding the more fun you can have on the mountain! The amazing thing about these activities is that there is always more to learn and explore. I have been snowboarding for 21 years, teaching for 17 years, and I am still learning new things all the time.

Older children snowboarding with an instructor


10 years ago, Richelle Wagner made the move to Beaver Creek from Wisconsin, following a bug she had for winter sports and a hunger for the mountains. She learned to snowboard at a young age, but it took some time and a diploma before she became an instructor.

“After graduating college, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do… but I knew I enjoyed the mountains and snowboarding so I moved out to Colorado,” Richelle said. “In college, I got a degree in Human Development and Family Studies with a focus on Child Development, so working with children--especially in sports or the outdoors--is definitely what I'm passionate about.”

According to Richelle, Beaver Creek was the perfect opportunity to get her foot in the door of the snowsports industry. She’s grown to love the teaching terrain and the opportunity for fun throughout the mountain, regardless of skill.

Richelle has also taken the time to share her grand day in the life as a Children’s Snowboard Instructor.

Q. How do you start your mornings before lessons?

RICHELLE: I usually try to get a quick workout in the mornings before coming to work because I find it helps keep my body in shape and strong for snowboarding... although let's be honest, sometimes sleeping an extra hour does happen as I do love sleep! I make some coffee and double-check the forecasted weather to know what my outfit needs to be, and then I also check what my assignment is for the day. Knowing what I'll be working on, where I'll be riding and what the weather will be is definitely important to prepare for the day.

Q. What do you expect from a normal day of lessons? What’s your favorite part of the workday?

RICHELLE: Depending if I'm in classes or a private, I can expect to meet new guests who are very excited to snowboard or even a little nervous to try it, but that's all part of being an instructor and managing expectations as well as taking care of a guest's needs.

My favorite part is definitely meeting new people and starting to figure out each person's motivations to learn snowboarding. Each person is different and also has a different style of learning, so this part is what makes instructing really fun for me. 

Q. What advice would you give someone who wants to take a lesson?

RICHELLE: I would advise anyone wanting to take a lesson to remember that snowboarding is a very physical sport. Always keep in mind that it will be tiring and that it's important to take breaks for food or water when you need to. Patience is always key, too, as everyone progresses at a different pace.

Tzvi and Richelle are two of the hundreds who devote their weeks to teaching the sports they love at Beaver Creek. Whether you’re new to the mountain or an experienced thrill seeker, our instructors are here to help you up your game and get the most out of your time on the slopes.