Pro of the Month: Daniel Andersson
Our Pro of the Month column celebrates the remarkable individuals within The Pro Collective. Enjoy inspirational stories shared by your fellow mountain professionals and see how Faction Skis allow them to thrive on the front lines. To be featured as a Pro of the Month, or to nominate someone you know, fill out the form linked at the bottom of this page.
Daniel Andersson, based out of Åre, Sweden, is a freestyle coach, ski technician and our February Pro of the Month.
Daniel grew up watching his favorite ski movies on repeat, and then trying to recreate the tricks he saw on snow. Fast forward a few years and he has turned his passion into a career; meeting new people, inspiring young talent and witnessing the raw joy people get from skiing on a daily basis. Daniel joins us today to give us the lowdown on life as a freestyle coach, how he got into the profession, and his skis of choice for work and play.
What's your job on the mountain? And what does your job entail?
D: I am a freestyle ski coach and have been for the last 6 years. I also work as a ski shop technician at Åre Sportshop. I have spent the last few years in different mountain resorts across Sweden, to inspire the next generation to come and spread joy on snow.
How did you get into this profession?
D: It was the most natural thing for me to do. Skiing is my life. It has given me countless opportunities and friendships the world over, something I will be forever grateful for. I realized that freeskiing was the right direction for me when I kept missing second runs in racing because I was in the park or off on different adventures around the mountain.
I got my first real experience with park skiing when I lived in Oslo. I was usually hanging around the older freeskiers because there wasn’t a youth group for that type of skiing at the time. This was during the times where the first twin tips were making their way onto the scene, along with helmets with brims, studded belts and balaclavas. Simply put: the good old days. I slowly but surely convinced the coach of the "Adrenaline Squad", a more extreme ski group for older kids, to give me a shot because I was so eager to learn. I watched ski movies every morning before school, no matter what time of year it was. I watched the same DVDs over and over again until I could replay them frame by frame in my head and try to repeat what I saw on snow.
What are the aspects of your job that make you feel proud to work in this role, and in this industry?
D: Meeting people, hearing what needs they have on snow, and what they get out of skiing. I am blessed to meet people on a continuous basis who enjoy spending time in the mountains. I love seeing the purity of emotions that people get out of skiing, whether it’s seeing somebody do their first 360, or slashing snow on pow days; that joy is priceless. I simply love sharing happy moments with other people. That’s the best way to live.
Do you have one or two short stories to demonstrate happy or noteworthy moments on the job?
D: I was approached by a former student of mine about a year ago who told me how happy he was that I had coached him, and that after freeskiing high school he also wanted to start coaching. I felt blessed and remembered having the same feeling after my freestyle coach in Norway put me on the path of skiing. He was one of the few people that recognized my talent and pushed me to grow. I guess things have a way of going full circle. Every day I get to spend on snow is another great day. All days have their strengths and weaknesses; it's about enjoying the journey when the path is unknown.
What do you ski on at work?
D: CT 2.0! I have ridden the Faction Candide Thovex 2.0 for the last 5 years. I have had every model of that ski since it came out. I fell for it immediately and the versatility of it is perfect for what I do. It’s a “do it all” type of ski.
What do you ski on "at play"?
D: I mostly ski on the CT 2.0 because it gives me everything I need in a daily driver, but on the slightly deeper days, or if I just want to trash the mountain, I will take the CT 3.0 out. Since I have a CAST setup on the CT 3.0, I take that ski out on sidecountry and backcountry adventures and it works like a dream!
What kind of skiing do you do in your free time?
D: Any time spent on the mountain is a good time. However, powder and park are some of my favorites. You will usually find me in the park on the days where new snow is nowhere to be found, but as soon as the white gold drops, I am a full-on powder hound! I am also a very avid freestyle ski photographer. When I am not out skiing myself, I am usually found behind the camera shooting friends and ski professionals.
What do you do for work during the off-season?
D: I still work within the ski industry as much as possible. If I have to do some handy work in order to spend more time on snow, I’ll end up doing that. I have worked within the construction industry installing solar panels, and I also worked as a summer camp coach a couple of years back.
Lastly, what summer sports are you passionate about?
D: My biggest summertime passion is probably golf. It is such a technical and mental game, something that allows me to escape reality and feel truly free. I also enjoy skateboarding, wakeboarding, frisbee golf and mountain biking.
Have your own story to share with The Pro Collective? Apply to be featured as our next Pro of the Month via this link. TPC - The Pro Collective is now taking applications for the 20|21 season. Apply today.