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muscle memory as you get older - Page 2

post #31 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterM76 View Post
 

I am older as well, 76. I am concerned if I take a fall take a fall at even moderate speed and the skis do not come off I could do serious damage to my knees or lower legs. I too have backed off the din value, but do not want the skis releasing when I catch an edge or make a correctable mistake.The ski shops consider ones ability age etc. and do set skis accordingly. I figure they are the experts and usually go with their recommendation. if the skies do not release after a fan that I expected that they should have or if they release while I am skiing I adjust them a little, but that is it.

 

Peter, there are four factors used in determining the din setting and they are age, boot sole length, weight and skier type (levels I, II, & III). While the skier type is indirectly dependent on ability, it is more so a measure of aggressiveness. Typically an expert skier is either a II or a III. Because most experts will always chose level 3 skier type (especially if their girlfriend is watching them fill out the service form), there is a tipping point in the age scale that will bring the din back down to a level representative of the release and retention rates that are most prescriptive relative to all four factors rather than just one or two.

post #32 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich666 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterM76 View Post
 

I am older as well, 76. I am concerned if I take a fall take a fall at even moderate speed and the skis do not come off I could do serious damage to my knees or lower legs. I too have backed off the din value, but do not want the skis releasing when I catch an edge or make a correctable mistake.The ski shops consider ones ability age etc. and do set skis accordingly. I figure they are the experts and usually go with their recommendation. if the skies do not release after a fan that I expected that they should have or if they release while I am skiing I adjust them a little, but that is it.

 

Peter, there are four factors used in determining the din setting and they are age, boot sole length, weight and skier type (levels I, II, & III). While the skier type is indirectly dependent on ability, it is more so a measure of aggressiveness. Typically an expert skier is either a II or a III. Because most experts will always chose level 3 skier type (especially if their girlfriend is watching them fill out the service form), there is a tipping point in the age scale that will bring the din back down to a level representative of the release and retention rates that are most prescriptive relative to all four factors rather than just one or two.


You forgot III+.   There is a tipping point in the age scale that will put a skier who adjusts his bindings based experience (came off too easy therefore increase, did not come off but hurt too much therefore decrease or just right) to decide that they are a III+ instead of a III .

post #33 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
 


You forgot III+.   There is a tipping point in the age scale that will put a skier who adjusts his bindings based experience (came off too easy therefore increase, did not come off but hurt too much therefore decrease or just right) to decide that they are a III+ instead of a III .

 

Adjusting the binding based on actual experience is a good point. As well, personal experience can actually result in the skier wanting a higher setting on the heel than the toe. While it is not recommended to do it yourself or have different toe/heel settings, that is what someone may wish to consider if they are only popping out of the heel and do not want to tighten the toes which has been considered the biggest risk in twisting falls. BTW, I certainly hope to be skiing at 76, which is pretty rare so hats off to you.

post #34 of 50

You're always welcome to bust out the posidrive and torque your bindings up and down as you see fit after the shop tests them for their own liability protection. 

post #35 of 50

I just had bindings mounted on a 190cm GS race ski at 6.5 DIN for type 3+ I don't know where they come with these numbers. Sons' 180 all mountain speed machine at 5.5... I don't even ski SL less than 8. And I still have a ways to 50, heh. Hmm though not as much as I used to have, I guess...

post #36 of 50
My DIN setting is 6.5 but I run them @ 8.0 and still can walk out of them. But since I don't prerelease it works.
post #37 of 50

Interesting subject.  I used to be an instructor so thought I would make a few comments. Just to lay a base, I am 73yrs, in decent shape and ski approx. 80% off piste if I can.  Ski between 60-80 days a year.  

 

As a skier I do not think about being injured as that is a very negative state of  mind when out on the slopes.  As Newfydog said here years ago, "I am ok with my skiing" and no longer  take lessons or for that matter try to learn new things.  My skiing ability has certainly changed with the years and it took me some time to change my skiing from the Stenmark era to the whatever we are in now and I am sure that more than a few of the very good skiers here on epic could tell me how to ski better.  BUT, it's not that I don't care  it is just that at this state of my life  I am ok with my skiing.  When I start skiing this year here is what I will do to activate my memory.  

 

Have pretty extensive notebooks and 3x5 cards that repeat tips and important lessons I have taught and taken over the years.  I will review a lot of this info. before hitting the slopes this year.  Even have Bob Barnes answer to my Ask a Ski Pro question I asked years ago on my Reluctance in Powder, I read this reply at least twice a year for the inspiration it gave me and still does. During the year if I notice my skiing deteriorating in some aspect, I might ask a question here on epic like I did last year on my "leaning" tendencies.  Problem identified and still being corrected.  In all honesty probably because of my age and therefore my experience on skis almost all of my skiing is from muscle memory.  This is best illustrated by myself, just taking off and doing it, with no conscious thought given to my technique.  I would find it counterproductive to think about my competence level as I am skiing at high speed on a groomer or slipping thru the trees or taking on a piece of new terrain that is steep and not known.

 

Why not take lessons?  Well to be blunt; I don't have money for this luxury anymore, a private or series of privates would have to be done as a group lesson just wouldn't cut it.  I have met too many instructors that are either bull of crap or just too........................ for my taste.  Why do I feel this way, my age?  NO, my experience in life.  

 

As you have noticed I could talk on this for quite awhile but will stop now or someone will undoubtly call me an old ......................... curr...... !

post #38 of 50

Idaho Pete, skiing 80% off piste and as often as you do. I expect although you might benefit with the right teacher/coach there is little need. Even when I had a season pass at Mount Snow It was 25 + days a year, which for me was a lot. Most of my days skiing were really half days, since although not really back country I preferred bumps, trees etc using the groomers to recover rather than my first choice. Starting early I was generally finished after lunch. I should be clear, although a lot of my skiing was and is technical. there is and will remain a huge difference between my at 70s "attacking" the bumps and what we see on TV. I have never been that quick with anything and now that I am older I have missed the window. As you, I am happy with my skiing, at least most of the time, so there is little need to work on improving technique. 

post #39 of 50

I have been "Happy with my skiing" for years; it's been decades since I couldn't make my skis take me exactly where I wanted to go.  Despite being happy with it, I like to push the envelope and seem to get better every year.  I don't need to get better; there is no "need".   However, I enjoy seeing that envelope expand.  These days, most of what I see is groomed trails, so that's where the envelope is expanding.  When I had opportunity I enjoyed skiing fresh unskied snow off the trail maps, but I also enjoy skiing groomed trails.  I even enjoy bumps now (although limited exposure means the envelope is expanding slowly there - I still suck at it).  It's all good.  I hope I still feel the same way when I'm 76.

post #40 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRusty View Post
 

 

I've had the problem of new stuff disappearing after I thought I learned it.

Rusty, Sorry to rip your words out of the context in which they were given but this sentence struck me as the ultimate description of my golf swing :D

post #41 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterM76 View Post
 

Idaho Pete, skiing 80% off piste and as often as you do. I expect although you might benefit with the right teacher/coach there is little need. Even when I had a season pass at Mount Snow It was 25 + days a year, which for me was a lot. Most of my days skiing were really half days, since although not really back country I preferred bumps, trees etc using the groomers to recover rather than my first choice. Starting early I was generally finished after lunch. I should be clear, although a lot of my skiing was and is technical. there is and will remain a huge difference between my at 70s "attacking" the bumps and what we see on TV. I have never been that quick with anything and now that I am older I have missed the window. As you, I am happy with my skiing, at least most of the time, so there is little need to work on improving technique. 

 

Well there probably is a need for coaching but I am just at that point in my life where I am having fun so why fight it.  And yes my mogul skiing is a lot slower now but still enjoy moguls unless they are really icy and hard then I avoid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
 

I have been "Happy with my skiing" for years; it's been decades since I couldn't make my skis take me exactly where I wanted to go.  Despite being happy with it, I like to push the envelope and seem to get better every year.  I don't need to get better; there is no "need".   However, I enjoy seeing that envelope expand.  These days, most of what I see is groomed trails, so that's where the envelope is expanding.  When I had opportunity I enjoyed skiing fresh unskied snow off the trail maps, but I also enjoy skiing groomed trails.  I even enjoy bumps now (although limited exposure means the envelope is expanding slowly there - I still suck at it).  It's all good.  I hope I still feel the same way when I'm 76.

Understand 100%.  Raced for years, taught, groomers were my thing and then when  I turned about 67 in a fit of being so young I started off piste, in the trees, down the backside and hitchhike back to the lodge type of skiing.  Expanding the horizons is always a good thing.  this year gonna chase the powder, leaving home in mid Jan and going to where the powder is.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JESINSTR View Post
 

Rusty, Sorry to rip your words out of the context in which they were given but this sentence struck me as the ultimate description of my golf swing :D

Yes totally that describes my golf game too.

post #42 of 50

When people have asked me how long it will take to change their skiing I tell them that for me it takes 3 seasons. One season to figure out why what I'm doing isn't working the way I would like. One season to really figure out how my proposed change really effects things. One season to lay down the neural pathways that will let me stop thinking and just ski. 

 

With 3-5 things in varying places in the process every season it's no wonder I've never been bored on skis. I guess it helps that not being a natural athlete I've always had to learn how to DO things rather then figure out how I DID them.

post #43 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave W View Post
 

When people have asked me how long it will take to change their skiing I tell them that for me it takes 3 seasons. One season to figure out why what I'm doing isn't working the way I would like. One season to really figure out how my proposed change really effects things. One season to lay down the neural pathways that will let me stop thinking and just ski. 

 

With 3-5 things in varying places in the process every season it's no wonder I've never been bored on skis. I guess it helps that not being a natural athlete I've always had to learn how to DO things rather then figure out how I DID them.

 

 

Therein lies the difference between people/learning/experience/skiing - hell I may not have 3 more years of skiing.  Be 76 in three years forget the learning, just hold on to what I have would be nice.

 

Some of the stuff I have done since turning 70 -  May not ski well or by the book anymore but FUN is high on my list.

 

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post #44 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterM76 View Post
 

Idaho Pete, skiing 80% off piste and as often as you do. I expect although you might benefit with the right teacher/coach there is little need. Even when I had a season pass at Mount Snow It was 25 + days a year, which for me was a lot. Most of my days skiing were really half days, since although not really back country I preferred bumps, trees etc using the groomers to recover rather than my first choice. Starting early I was generally finished after lunch. I should be clear, although a lot of my skiing was and is technical. there is and will remain a huge difference between my at 70s "attacking" the bumps and what we see on TV. I have never been that quick with anything and now that I am older I have missed the window. As you, I am happy with my skiing, at least most of the time, so there is little need to work on improving technique. 

 

While we do miss a window from time to time, thankfully and should one be interested, skiing always has a window or two to offer at every stage in the a life of a skier. Whether it be fine tuning what you still can, a new pair of skis, heli skiing, joining a ski club, joining the gondola club ... it's all good.

post #45 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete No. Idaho View Post
 

 

 

Therein lies the difference between people/learning/experience/skiing - hell I may not have 3 more years of skiing.  Be 76 in three years forget the learning, just hold on to what I have would be nice.

 

Some of the stuff I have done since turning 70 -  May not ski well or by the book anymore but FUN is high on my list.

 

I agree that age is one of the things that you need to take into account when 

Quote:
 One season to figure out why what I'm doing isn't working the way I would like.

I'm not advocating a 3 year cycle for anyone, its just what works for me,on the other hand it gives me a reason to keep working instead of waiting for the end. At 55 I've hopefully got a ways to go. I do know a few people you have quit at a younger age but right now I'm working on still being able to ski bumps when I'm in my 80s. Since I know a couple people who are in their mid 80s who ski bumps there is hope for us all.

 

My Step grandfather was a strawberry farmer who worked fields in 3 year cycles*. In his late 80s/early 90s he didn't think he would be around to clean up the ongoing cycles so he stopped farming. On his 100th birthday he was asked what he would have done differently if he could. He said "If I had known I was going to live so long I wouldn't have got off the tractor so soon. 

 

 

 

*Year 1 plant new plants, year 2 harvest, year 3 harvest then plow under and prep fields for the new plants.    

post #46 of 50
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave W View Post
......

My Step grandfather was a strawberry farmer who worked fields in 3 year cycles*. In his late 80s/early 90s he didn't think he would be around to clean up the ongoing cycles so he stopped farming. On his 100th birthday he was asked what he would have done differently if he could. He said "If I had known I was going to live so long I wouldn't have got off the tractor so soon. 

 

 

 

*Year 1 plant new plants, year 2 harvest, year 3 harvest then plow under and prep fields for the new plants.    

 

I garden in the green season.  When I first began working in the dirt, I thought that we mobile mammals had nothing in common with plants.  They make their changes very slowly over year-long and multi-year cycles.  I was impatient with my garden.  

 

That impatience has now gone.  I've built empathy with my slow growing plants by realizing their slowness is not that alien.  Growing up in childhood happens "in plant time."  Getting strong and building muscles takes years for real change, if you are going from couch potato to buff-ness.  Losing weight?  40 lbs off, any one?  You know that takes a very long time of consistent work.  Learning to manipulate turn entries to maximize grip on ice?  That takes time too, season(s).  

 

Does it take longer to make significant changes once we pass age 55?  Probably. Yes. I think so. Habits have strongly cemented themselves in place over the years, more so than when we were kids, and habits are the enemy of change.  

post #47 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave W View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete No. Idaho View Post
 

 

 

Therein lies the difference between people/learning/experience/skiing - hell I may not have 3 more years of skiing.  Be 76 in three years forget the learning, just hold on to what I have would be nice.

 

Some of the stuff I have done since turning 70 -  May not ski well or by the book anymore but FUN is high on my list.

 

I agree that age is one of the things that you need to take into account when 

Quote:
 One season to figure out why what I'm doing isn't working the way I would like.

I'm not advocating a 3 year cycle for anyone, its just what works for me,on the other hand it gives me a reason to keep working instead of waiting for the end. At 55 I've hopefully got a ways to go. I do know a few people you have quit at a younger age but right now I'm working on still being able to ski bumps when I'm in my 80s. Since I know a couple people who are in their mid 80s who ski bumps there is hope for us all.

 

My Step grandfather was a strawberry farmer who worked fields in 3 year cycles*. In his late 80s/early 90s he didn't think he would be around to clean up the ongoing cycles so he stopped farming. On his 100th birthday he was asked what he would have done differently if he could. He said "If I had known I was going to live so long I wouldn't have got off the tractor so soon. 

 

 

 

*Year 1 plant new plants, year 2 harvest, year 3 harvest then plow under and prep fields for the new plants.    

At 55, no reason to think about quitting.

 

I had the opportunity to start skiing more when I was 50 after I had retired early to be a relatively relaxed older parent.  I knew I had time to improve my skiing once my daughter got older.  She learned in the southeast.  We started skiing at Alta for spring breaks when I was 55.  Soon after that, I started taking high level lessons as a low advanced skier who learned as a teen but skied very little as a working adult.  In recent years, I've put more effort into general fitness and ski conditioning.  With that base, the lessons I've had with Level 3 instructors in a variety of places started making a big difference since I was also skiing more days.  I ski far better pushing 60 than I ever expected to achieve.  Not done actively working on improving.  My parents both lived to age 95.  Didn't slow down physically until the last year and were sharp mentally until the very end.  Figure I won't be thinking about slowing down on the slopes for another decade or two.

 

The Wild Old Bunch at Alta are my role models.  They complain in the late season on a groomer day when skiing off-piste in the trees won't be fun.  Lots of Over 70, Over 80, and even a few Over 90 badges among that group.  I skied with one of the Over 90 folks a few times the last few years.  She didn't ski more than a couple hours, but loved every minute.

post #48 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 

At 55, no reason to think about quitting.

I fully agree, That is why I also said...

Quote:
I'm working on still being able to ski bumps when I'm in my 80s. Since I know a couple people who are in their mid 80s who ski bumps there is hope for us all.

 In response to

Quote:
 hell I may not have 3 more years of skiing.  Be 76 in three years forget the learning, just hold on to what I have would be nice.

 My dad started skiing at 57 and died at 71. My mom started skiing seriously at 30 and and gave it up around 80 when assorted medical issues made it too hard to control her feet, but she still periodically wishes she could go take some runs*. My wife started at 25 and at ~48 was forced to stop by ongoing medical issues.  A few are resolved, most are now under control, but who knows if she will start again at this point. My point being I plan on skiing just a little longer then is physically possible for me, I am actively seeking the changes in my style, gear, and approaches, to make my run as long as possible, but both my summer and winter jobs are not great on the actuarial tables so it's all a crap shoot.

 

 

 

*Having now buried 2 husbands she is however totally done with marriage. 

post #49 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich666 View Post
 

 

While we do miss a window from time to time, thankfully and should one be interested, skiing always has a window or two to offer at every stage in the a life of a skier. Whether it be fine tuning what you still can, a new pair of skis, heli skiing, joining a ski club, joining the gondola club ... it's all good.

Very good points.  Thinking that skiers that are getting up there chronoliogically should rermain flexible.  Example:  when cat skiing in BC I tell the guide that I can ski  almost anywhere except I do not do cliffs and that anything over 3 ft. I consider a cliff.   I go around the cliffs and am happy to do so. I think being flexible to the limitations of stamina and muscular aches and pains goes a long way in having a good day, even if the day does end at 3pm instead of the younger finish of 4:30 plus.

 

When I was younger, the guys I skied with and I would wait on the top of Immigrant at Squaw and wait for the Mt. to almost close  down and then at about or around 4:45 or 5 we would nonstop ski the bar at the bottom and have a beer.  Those were fun times.   Now although I don't ski at Squaw anymore and am usually in the bar by 3:30 livfe and  skiing is still great.

post #50 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post
 

Is there any research on the effects of aging on muscle memory?

Do people have experiences they can share about how older people differ from younger ones when they are working on imprinting new movement patterns into muscle memory?

What works for us old folks, when new stuff keeps disappearing after we thought we learned it?

 

 


Been thinking about the original question.  Not sure slower development of new muscle memory is the issue for older skiers.  Thinking about kids versus seniors, seems like kids have less to un-learn while some "old dogs" may have a mental resistance to "new tricks."  If the resistance is conscious then probably not spending money on lessons.  But even someone who is interested in changing technique in some way may be resistant at an unconscious level.

 

Last season, the ski buddy (>60) I ski with the most was willing to take several semi-private lessons with me.  He's watched me improve from Level 6/7 (of 9) to Level 8 in the last 6-7 years because of mileage, improved fitness, and lessons.  In high school he was already an advanced skier who liked skiing big mountain bumps.  Can ski any ungroomed terrain without thinking much about it.  Likes turns more than high speed.  Has powder skis.  But mostly skis on relatively narrow skis for Utah even when it snows because he can.  He was curious enough to be interested in learning how to work less and make use of the skis more.  We did the lessons at Alta during two different trips, two each trip.  He had to start by widening his stance.  By the third lesson, he was clearly getting it but needed to concentrate to avoid slipping back into old habits.  Would someone half his age with similar habits learn any faster?  I'm not sure.

 

Just my musings based on observing my friends taking lessons from very experienced Level 3 instructors out west in recent years . . . not based on any research or medical knowledge.

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