Nia Brinkley is originally from Columbus, Ohio, but now lives in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. She is a level 3 certified snowboard instructor since 2012 and works at Steamboat Springs.
If you could have any three people (dead or alive) over for dinner who would they be?
First person would be my dad, he died about ten years ago, so that would be pretty cool. Michelle Obama seems pretty cool, I’d eat a meal with her. Maybe Gabby Maiden, she was the first black female professional snowboarder, I kind of looked up to her so I think that would be pretty cool.
How do you relax? Do you have any favourite hobbies that help you winddown?
Just sitting on my couch, I love to chill.
How have things changed for you during this pandemic? Is it different working at the mountain this year?
Yeah, we took away all of our all-day lessons. We’re not eating lunch with our students, so it’s kind of weird to get used to having to do morning and then afternoon sessions. Always wearing a mask while running up and down the beginner hill is kind of a struggle with the breathing situation. And having the season end abruptly last year just sucked, kind of felt like an incomplete season.
What do you love most about Coalition Snow?
Everything is just so real. They are really inclusive and just trying to make the world a better place. And I love that they don’t really beat around the bush, it’s just straightforward, like “hey, this is messed up, what’s going on?” kind of thing.
What sets Coalition Snow apart from other brands?
Obviously, being female owned and operated. I feel like they just care a lot more than other brands, or at least more than what other brands appear to. There are so many aspects to Coalition that most other brands don’t have, the magazines, the podcast, and it feels a lot more relatable than other brands when you pay attention to those things. Whereas it seems like the other brands are just out there trying to make money.
What is your favorite product? Why?
I ride the Queen Bee and this is my first season on it, I really like it, it’s got a lot of pop to it. And then I’ve been getting a lot of compliments on my Coalition face mask that I wear every now and then, I really like that one.
What do you expect from Coalition Snow? Working with them and being an ambassador?
I just expect to hangout with a bunch of cool chicks. They all seem pretty cool and I like the direction it’s been going.
What is the best advice you can give to younger athletes or aspiring snowboarders?
As far as beginner snowboards, I always tell them to give it at least three days because the first couple days are typically pretty rough with a lot of falling. But just stick with it, it is a hard sport to learn for most people so just don’t give up.
Do you have any tips for finding motivation to push through tough days?
I guess just keep going for it, like sometimes I struggle with it too when I’m not getting a trick, but just dig deep.
What is your least favourite type of music?
Do you snore?
I don’t think so
What did you eat for breakfast?
What is your favourite movie?
Coffee or tea?
What is your favourite season?
It used to be winter but living in Colorado summer and winter are getting pretty equal at this point
Dark chocolate or milk chocolate?
Would you go to a movie alone?
No, I rarely go to the movies even with people
Window or aisle seat?
Favourite ice cream flavour?
(ed. note: interview has been edited for length and clarity)