Pros: A keeper for anyone learning anything
Cons: May not be techie enough for the hardcore
Weems had me at the cover. Ancient Wisdom, Modern Skiing, and Big Fun are what turn me on. The photography is stunning. The layout is elegant. I even like the fonts.
Those who read the first edition will get even more out of reading the second edition, because during the time between the two publications Weems was busy using the Sports Diamond in practice with groups that attended his lectures and training seminars and with the Diamond Pros at the Ski & Snowboard Schools of Aspen, and in living through experiences that I can't even imagine, including the cruel and untimely passing of Wallace, his son of barely legal age and one of triplet boys, in a tragic accident while performing as a pro snowboarder.
As one might imagine, the author's recent life experiences and the broad exposure to skiers across the spectrum changed the material in profound ways. The writing is both humble and refreshingly transparent for a book that is, among other things, about ski technique. Boiling the four corners of Purpose, Touch, Will, and Power down to see it, feel it, commit, and make the right move brings all the corners together in the act of skiing, and will help readers grasp the more abstract concepts. I also like how Weems translated power as resilient alignment, purpose as managing the platform, touch as awareness, and connected will to action.
While obviously I resonate with Weems's technical message, what sets this book apart is what Weems teaches about Will. Especially counterposed by the light (and shadow) of Wallace's story, the notion of skiing as an activity that allows us to transcend the weight of our particular situation, concerns, problems, and, for the scant time we are in the mountains, to soar, fully captured what makes the brief time I actually spend skiing have such an outsized importance to me. Weems successfully places skiing in a very big context, where it belongs, as a metaphor for life.
Ultimately, the Sports Diamond isn't just for skiing, or even just for sports. It's good for all applications one might require in ordinary living: career, family, relationships of all kinds. Anything you want to change, accomplish, or be better at, the Sports Diamond can assist. My first introduction to this material was as the Leadership Diamond, which Weems threw to me like a lifeline when I was foundering badly. Since then I have been working on strengthening all corners of my Diamond and now, looking back over the past 10 years since I was graced with this awareness, I realize I haven't changed so much as become more of who I am and liking to be that person. I can say the same for my skiing as well -- I have become more of the skier who was always inside me and having a blast being her.
The access to self-knowledge is worth every penny, but I'd be remiss not to mention that Weems is giving a sweet bro-deal to EpicSki Supporters. Please be forewarned that this is not a manual, but a way to change your skiing by changing the way you think about skiing.
Thanks, Weems, for this brilliant book.