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A Little Book about Skiing Better: Review - Page 2

post #31 of 41

“i don't think im doing anything that feels right so i dont know what im trying to feel.”

 

The idea of focusing on feelings or sensations is one of the keys to accelerating your learning.  The important part is that you connect what you are feeling (whatever that is) with what is actually happening with your skis.  Understand that what you are feeling is a very personal experience.  What I may feel when my skis are carving might be very different from what you feel when your skis are carving.  What is common though is when I feel what I feel, and when you feel what you feel, both our skis are carving.  So, just focus on what the skis are doing when you feel whatever you are feeling. 

 

At first it doesn’t matter if what is happening is what you want to happen.  What’s important is that you have what is called a “concrete experience,” that is, making the connection between what you are feeling with what is actually happening with your skis.  Without that connection, there is no starting point for making a change.  If you can’t feel what’s happening to begin with, how can you make something else happen?

 

Once you can feel what is happening, you will be surprised how much easier it becomes to make what you want to happen actually happen.  Here is where a good coach can really help in getting you to understand what you might want the ski to do in different situations.  I am always amazed at how many skiers don’t really have an idea of what they want their skis to do.  When I ask, “What were you trying to do there?” the answer is often something like:  “I was trying to extend more at the beginning of the turn.”  When I get more specific and ask, “What were you trying to get your skis to do?” the answer is very often a blank stare.  Having a clear image of what you want your skis to do, (i.e. what path you want them to take - do you want them to skid or carve, etc.) is fundamental to great skiing.  A great way to figure out what you might want your skis to do is to follow a really good skier and try to make your skis do exactly what their skis are doing.  Once you connect your sensations with what your skis are doing, you can then repeat the experience whenever you feel it’s appropriate or desirable.

post #32 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Daveski7 View Post

Is this a book that with practice could take a skier from any level a notch or so higher or is it geared more towards instructing?



Most of the principles in the book apply to any level skier and while it is specifically written to help a skier advance his or her own skiing, there are a number of sections that are very useful for instructors.

post #33 of 41
Originally Posted by Jim Vigani View Post

“i don't think im doing anything that feels right so i dont know what im trying to feel.”

 

The idea of focusing on feelings or sensations is one of the keys to accelerating your learning.  The important part is that you connect what you are feeling (whatever that is) with what is actually happening with your skis.  Understand that what you are feeling is a very personal experience.  What I may feel when my skis are carving might be very different from what you feel when your skis are carving.  What is common though is when I feel what I feel, and when you feel what you feel, both our skis are carving.  So, just focus on what the skis are doing when you feel whatever you are feeling. 

 

At first it doesn’t matter if what is happening is what you want to happen.  What’s important is that you have what is called a “concrete experience,” that is, making the connection between what you are feeling with what is actually happening with your skis.  Without that connection, there is no starting point for making a change.  If you can’t feel what’s happening to begin with, how can you make something else happen?

 

Once you can feel what is happening, you will be surprised how much easier it becomes to make what you want to happen actually happen.  Here is where a good coach can really help in getting you to understand what you might want the ski to do in different situations.  I am always amazed at how many skiers don’t really have an idea of what they want their skis to do.  When I ask, “What were you trying to do there?” the answer is often something like:  “I was trying to extend more at the beginning of the turn.”  When I get more specific and ask, “What were you trying to get your skis to do?” the answer is very often a blank stare.  Having a clear image of what you want your skis to do, (i.e. what path you want them to take - do you want them to skid or carve, etc.) is fundamental to great skiing.  A great way to figure out what you might want your skis to do is to follow a really good skier and try to make your skis do exactly what their skis are doing.  Once you connect your sensations with what your skis are doing, you can then repeat the experience whenever you feel it’s appropriate or desirable.

 

Brilliantly stated.  Thanks, Jim.

 

I love what this book says about starting with concrete feelings, how they relate to BALANCE, and how one needs to move forward from there.  The authors focus most on the starting point, feeling your balance.  Their discussion of what needs to be prioritized and why clears the air about what to pay attention to and what to ignore.  Because they focus on what to do first, and what can wait till later, what this book has to offer applies equally to skiers wanting to get better and to instructors wanting to guide their students more effectively.  

 

It's taken me six years to begin to feel what my skis are doing, and to feel whether I'm in balance or not.  This book gives me the clarity of vision to know that these issues are more important than a lot of what I've heard and read elsewhere.

 

It's all so much easier when the fog lifts. 

 


Edited by LiquidFeet - 4/5/11 at 5:33am
post #34 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liam View Post 

 

I'm sorry, but without the recommendations on this thread (which have piqued my interest in this book)-if I saw that book just sitting on a shelf in Barnes and Noble I wouldn't pick it up.

 

Packaging Matters.

 

Liam

I think you mean someone else might not pick it up. You, who actually looked at this thread and have posted on a dedicated ski site for years would most likely pickup any book on skiing in a book store. There's not that many ski books on the shelves at Barnes and Noble and anything new would most likely catch your eye. You'd at least pick it up. smile.gif

But then, I picked up White Heat  in a bookstore. That cover was ok, promised interesting content, but the writing was terrible. A lot of it was almost intolerable.

Frankly, this cover to me says: small book on skiing, more likely about concept than specific techniques, could be interesting. Will not sweep the nation and be a best seller.

Wow, it's been years since I skied with Jim and Joan at Race Clinics at Stratton and Wyndham. Fun times. Great to see they've got a book out.

We should get Jim to talk about his work with boots.

 

post #35 of 41

 

 

Quote:
 

I'm sorry, but without the recommendations on this thread (which have piqued my interest in this book)-if I saw that book just sitting on a shelf in Barnes and Noble I wouldn't pick it up.

 

 

 

 I disagree!  I LIKE the cover because it looks like a REAL person, not some ski model or Olympic skier.  This looks like somebody's father or grandfather!  That picture would make me MORE interested than most other books on the same shelf that contain basically the same stuff, just regurgitated with different words!

post #36 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiFox View Post

 

 I disagree!  I LIKE the cover because it looks like a REAL person, not some ski model or Olympic skier.  This looks like somebody's father or grandfather!  That picture would make me MORE interested than most other books on the same shelf that contain basically the same stuff, just regurgitated with different words!



It seems like the consensus here is that those who can ski with high-edge angles find the cover somewhat off-putting.  Those who prefer a more "relaxed" skiing style (for lack of a better word), find the cover ideal.  Personally, I fall into the former camp -- i.e., I saw the cover and was like "really?".  But I am still intrigued and will probably read this over the summer.

post #37 of 41

OK  I'm a "feeler" kind of skier.  Go figure ..an engineer and scientist by profession.  but when I ski, the sensory parts dominate the conceptual.

 

Will this book benefit me?

 

I suppose I should really try it out,  and see how it feels......

 

Or perhaps this is but a shameless bump to the top ;-)

 

Cal

 

 

post #38 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cgrandy View Post

OK  I'm a "feeler" kind of skier.  Go figure ..an engineer and scientist by profession.  but when I ski, the sensory parts dominate the conceptual.

 

Will this book benefit me?


 

 


Based on our experience, the answer is "YES."  Our ski school director who is probably the most kinesthetic skier I know, loves the book, particularly the section on the Kolb learning model.  Following the Kolb model expands your learning to incorporate all four learning styles, a key to accelerating the learning process. 

 

post #39 of 41

OK Thanks!

post #40 of 41

i just finished the book and am in the process of re-reading it.

 

i enjoyed the simplicity approach to tossing out many rules and instead to keep in mind

a few core ones esp the 'feel what your skis are doing and what they're supposed to do'

(among a few others) vs focusing on 'how is my form' and to keep an open minded fluid approach

to skiing as ongoing problem solving.

 

i'm only an intermediate, aged 49, seeking to get out 50-60x this yr, and retook up skiing 3 yrs ago after a 15 yr hiatus

so this  book is probably more appropriate than to perhaps a very advanced skier.


Edited by canali - 11/20/11 at 5:45pm
post #41 of 41

Just to let everyone know, an e-version is now available on Kindle.

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