Ignite your passion! Imagine a sports and entertainment space centered around winter sports activities, perfect for families in search of an active and memorable experience. Sounds like a dream come true for winter sports enthusiasts, doesn’t it? SkiMachine is here to support you. That’s why we’re thrilled to present our 10 tips to help you jumpstart your very own snow sports center!

As snow conditions become less reliable, ski lift prices increase and ski seasons shorten, the need for pre-holiday practice is becoming essential. People don’t want to spend a lot of money just to practise on the bunny hill instead of enjoying the breathtaking slopes. As a result, the concept of indoor skiing is becoming more and more popular. While it’s already a successful concept in lots of countries, there’s still a lot of untapped potential worldwide. Let’s take the Netherlands as an example, where 1.7 million active skiers enjoy 56 successful indoor ski centers, 11 dry slopes, and 7 ski domes. Now, compare that to France, with over 8.5 million skiers, but only 9 indoor ski centers. Similarly, Japan, with over 11 million active skiers, only has 5 indoor ski centers, and Australia, with over 1 million active skiers, only has 4 indoor ski centers. As shown in the figure below, there are many countries where indoor ski centers are still a novelty. With 135 million skiers worldwide there is room for about 4000 extra ski centers worldwide, so start studying your local market to unlock this enormous potential.

indoor skiing potential overview

1. Conduct a solid market analysis

Identify Your Target Audience

  • How many skiers are living in your city? And how much ski shops and other facilities are there now?
  • What is the average age of your potential customer and how far are they willing to drive?

Analyze Interests and Behavior

  • What other sports and leisure activities are of interest to skiers? 
  • How often do they practice winter sports and which destination do they visit?

Know Your Competitors

  • What are the strategies of other sport and leisure centers?
  • How are your competitors positioned in the market?

Explore Market Segments

  • What ski levels are there within your target market?
  • Is there an opportunity to work together with a ski resort or shop?

Stay Updated on Industry Trends

  • What are emerging trends and developments in the sports and leisure industry?
  • Visit trade fairs such as IAAPA, NSAA, Mountain Planet, or Inter Alpin to get connected with industry peers.

Assess Market Growth

  • What is the potential expansion of the market over time?
  • In which cities is the greatest potential for indoor skiing?

2. Find the right spot for your center

It may sound logical, but the key to success for a ski center often lies in choosing a location that encourages repeat visits and fosters an active community. It’s well-known that retaining a current customer is cheaper than attracting a new one. Therefore, we strongly recommend consulting an experienced estate agent to find a location with high traffic—perhaps near malls, schools, highways, retail areas, or next to a ski shop. This strategic placement will set the stage for your success! Another option is to situate your center close to the mountains, attracting both local skiers and people visiting the area when it snows. Many enjoy skiing as a year-round sport and seek practice opportunities during the summer. Choosing a location at a less conveniently reachable location is also an option but in that case make sure to create a destination. A spot where people are willing to drive the extra mile to be there and enjoy everything else you have to offer.

snow sports center

Boca Ice and Fine Arts center
Boca Raton, FL, USA

3. Be different

Understanding how to stand out from your competition is crucial. What features will set you apart and ensure customer loyalty? Many people grow up without immediate access to slopes, missing out on the exhilarating thrill of skiing down a mountain or the cozy winter sports atmosphere of an Austrian snow sports village. Will your center provide a unique ambiance similar to an Austrian village, or will you opt for a modern fitness vibe and decide to go for a subscription model? What will make your center stand out to your target audience?

Consider partnering with a ski resort, skiing federation, or local ski shop to benefit from each other’s customer base, but also offering a variety of ski training sessions can set you apart. The right combination of partnerships and unique offerings will help your ski center stand out and attract loyal customers.

4. Develop a comprehensive training program

One of the most crucial elements for running a successful ski center is having an outstanding team of instructors. Skilled and enthusiastic instructors are key to ensuring your ski center thrives. Their expertise and friendliness make sure customers have a fantastic experience and want to return. It’s essential not only to have personable staff but also to ensure they excel at teaching skiing, as this is what customers are ultimately paying for. We recommend organizing annual training sessions to keep instructors up-to-date with the latest teaching methods. Additionally, consider creating a comprehensive ski program that caters to skiers and snowboarders of all ages and skill levels. This program could include slalom courses, interactive activities, and video tracking systems. Training options to consider are ski holiday preparation, fear reduction training, children’s skiing, athlete training, and overall health development. By offering a wide range of training options, your ski center becomes more accessible to a larger audience, increasing your chances of success. This approach fosters an endless learning curve, making skiing and snowboarding both fun and challenging, and ensuring people return time and again.

5. Thematize for recognition

Creating brand awareness is a critical factor in your journey toward success. How can you ensure that visitors and potential customers remember your brand name? Luckily for you, our SkiMachines double up as giant billboards displaying your brand name, so that helps. But, there is more that can make a difference; The atmosphere of a snow sports village with twinkling lights, a cozy après-ski bar featuring wooden designs where visitors can socialize while zipping a well-deserved ‘weissbeer’ or ‘gluhweihn,’ or a Ice Age-themed SkiMachine tailored for kids with additional sound effects and projector displays – these are the elements that leave an impression on your visitors. Their visit is not just about skiing or snowboarding; it’s about the entire unique experience from the moment they enter until the moment they leave your center. Creating a themed environment doesn’t mean becoming the next Universal Studios; it can start on a smaller scale, such as introducing a photo corner, designing the right lighting plan, creating a thoughtful walking route, and incorporating some storytelling – the difference is in the details and makes the experience complete for a visitor! These themed touches can fit different budgets, as long as your brand is noticeable and memorable to visitors.

indoor ski center

6. Implement gamification and innovation

Stay ahead of the curve by prioritizing gamification and innovation! Our Treadmill SkiMachines offer customizable incline adjustments, allowing ski instructors to smoothly transition between different slope levels. To enhance the experience even further, you can incorporate slalom projections with dynamic obstacles like moving snowmen, introducing a range of engaging gaming experiences. Currently, we are working hard on advanced video tracking systems that enable users to analyze their performance and identify areas for improvement. Additionally, we can accommodate a variety of projects by offering custom sizes of our SkiMachines and opportunities for uphill sports such as cross-country skiing. In the future, we will also provide endless slopes with augmented reality features, as our initial tests are already completed. Imagine being the first snow sports center where enthusiasts can experience a gaming mode similar to Mario Kart! How exciting would that be?

7. Keep visitors entertained

Endless slopes, endless adventures. In a winter wonderland dedicated to sports, visitors can gather with friends to race down tube slides, try artificial ice climbing, enjoy golf simulators, skate on an ice rink, practice on freestyle training trampolines, test their skills at an ice hockey slap shot station, or even play mini curling with a drink at the bar. By offering a diverse range of snow sports, you ensure visitors remain entertained well beyond their skiing lessons, captivating them for hours. This approach not only broadens your target audience but also attracts a larger crowd to the center, whether they come to ski or simplyenjoy the snow-filled fun. Family entertainment centers often focus on one main activity, such as skiing, and complement it with various side activities to keep customers engaged longer and create a destination worth travelling for and thus boost revenue streams.

8. Create social awareness

Captivate your audience with a photo booth where visitors can view action shots of themselves and choose their favorite background. Imagine the excitement of seeing yourself skiing to escape an avalanche or jumping over the roof of a mountain restaurant! Plus, you can offer video playback options on the ski slopes so visitors can relive their adventures. The ability to instantly share these photos and videos on social media opens up a fantastic opportunity to increase social awareness, boost brand recognition, and attract new visitors. Why solely rely on your own promotional efforts when your visitors can also help spread the word about your center?

9. Boost revenue streams with summer and winter camps

As your customer base expands, exciting opportunities arise. Consider organizing summer and winter camps tailored for beginners, kids, or advanced skiers, where skiing is combined with other enjoyable activities like bouldering, skateboarding, and more. For adults, you can introduce ski fitness programs for those aiming to enhance their physical fitness. Additionally, you can offer ski team training sessions, allowing athletes to maintain their progress even during the summer. Don’t limit your creativity—countless possibilities are waiting to be explored, ensuring the success of your new center!

10. Cooperate with SkiMachine

Starting a snow sports center requires a strategic approach; you can’t just dive in without a plan! That’s where SkiMachine comes in to help turn your dream project into reality. Once we commit to this journey, we’ll go through five phases of concept development.


We start by translating your project vision into visuals through brainstorming sessions.


A feasibility study assesses the potential of the concept by analyzing the market and competitors


Detailed 3D models are crafted, incorporating all themed elements and technical specifications necessary for construction


The venue is prepared, and our state-of-the-art SkiMachine is manufactured in our factory in the Netherlands, transported to the destination, and installed by our skilled engineers.


After completing on-site operational training conducted by our team, we reach the final step—the grand opening of your new snow sports center!

With SkiMachine’s guidance, your vision will be transformed into a successful and operational snow sports center.

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