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Where Does A Skier Slow Down In Moguls

post #1 of 79
Thread Starter 

This came up at summer camp this year.

 

Where does the skier slow down when skiing moguls? On the upside or the downside?

post #2 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by cvj View Post

This came up at summer camp this year.

 

Where does the skier slow down when skiing moguls? On the upside or the downside?



whereever they can. I personally can do both but if your line is right you shouldnt need to scrub speed at all your line choice should be doing most if not all of it for you.

 

disclaimer - ,my goal is to ski everything, I am would rather know all the moves and be able to pick and choose than just know one way and be forced to ski that way all the time.

post #3 of 79


Quote:

Originally Posted by cvj View Post

Where does the skier slow down when skiing moguls? On the upside or the downside?


Not really a hi-jack, but more of a corollary: "how" does one control speed in the moguls? I've read the other bump threads and didn't notice this question addressed specifically; maybe I just don't understand the terminology. 

 

For example: last winter at MRG, I saw saw older men and women (in their 60s) cruising down some tough bump runs (I saw these folks at other places too, but not in the same numbers as at MRG).  They just had this smooth style...kept at a pretty constant pace...and looked good doing it: never too fast, never too slow...just real smooth.

 

When I went to do the same run, I start out smooth...then pick up speed and work harder...then pick up more speed...start to lose form...then spazz and either srub and come to almost a complete stop (where I start all over looking good..then mediocre...then bad) OR I crash. 

 

They were so smooth and effortless; what's the secret to controlling speed in the bumps?

(Note: I don't have this problem in less steep runs...so is it just a matter of contuning to practice or is there something I need to understand better?)

 

-Smarty

 

 

 
 

 

post #4 of 79


Quote:

Originally Posted by Smartyiak View Post

Quote:

Not really a hi-jack, but more of a corollary: "how" does one control speed in the moguls? I've read the other bump threads and didn't notice this question addressed specifically; maybe I just don't understand the terminology. 

 

For example: last winter at MRG, I saw saw older men and women (in their 60s) cruising down some tough bump runs (I saw these folks at other places too, but not in the same numbers as at MRG).  They just had this smooth style...kept at a pretty constant pace...and looked good doing it: never too fast, never too slow...just real smooth.

 

When I went to do the same run, I start out smooth...then pick up speed and work harder...then pick up more speed...start to lose form...then spazz and either srub and come to almost a complete stop (where I start all over looking good..then mediocre...then bad) OR I crash.

 

They were so smooth and effortless; what's the secret to controlling speed in the bumps?

(Note: I don't have this problem in less steep runs...so is it just a matter of contuning to practice or is there something I need to understand better?)

 

-Smarty

 

 

  

 



This sounds awfully familiar.

 

post #5 of 79

I am not an instructor, but as someone who has skied more bumps than most I have come to the conclusion that unless you have skis with an even mellow flex the bumps tends to push your weight back, and then the tails accelerate the skis, forcing your farther into the back seat, and the situation worsens on each bump.  Skiing slowly and smoothly in bumps requires keeping your tips on the snow (i.e. weight constantly forward), which is inhibited by stiff tips and/or stiff tails. A soft tail ski can actually slow you down at the beginning and end of a bump turn, whereas a stiff tip/tail will do exactly the opposite and constantly force your skis into the air, which does not provide much resistance.

post #6 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post

I am not an instructor, but as someone who has skied more bumps than most I have come to the conclusion that unless you have skis with an even mellow flex the bumps tends to push your weight back, and then the tails accelerate the skis, forcing your farther into the back seat, and the situation worsens on each bump.  Skiing slowly and smoothly in bumps requires keeping your tips on the snow (i.e. weight constantly forward), which is inhibited by stiff tips and/or stiff tails. A soft tail ski can actually slow you down at the beginning and end of a bump turn, whereas a stiff tip/tail will do exactly the opposite and constantly force your skis into the air, which does not provide much resistance.



That is my experience as well.

post #7 of 79

Depends on the line you choose through the bumps.

 

If you can edge the skis well early in the turn you can control speed throughout the entire turn. That being said the most dramatic speed control comes at the end of the turn... If you want keep speed down finish the turn more. The easiest place to finish a turn is usually the upside of a bump although a good skier should have the ability to finish a turn virtually anywhere. Completing a turn on the downside of a bump requires much stronger edging skills.

 

Many people people pivot and skid down the backside of the bumps... this is certainly a good tactic to slow down, however sliding into a deep trough side ways will seriously inhibit your ability to absorb the next bump.

post #8 of 79

If you're a competition bump skier, why would you want to slow down?

 

Speed is your friend and you have the tools to handle it.

 

But why don't you tell us cvj.

 

Let me see, one can scrub some speed using resisting absorption going up the bump face, or scrape a little going down the backside making sure you don't drop into the trough sideways, blocking pole plants work some but it's a little rough on the wrists and shoulders and can lead to the backseat if you don't release them soon enough, or you can use various lines making rounder turns higher up. I don't suggest snowplowing as you will cross your tips and faceplant.

 

If the answer is in there somewhere, lets ask another question. Does a mogul skier ever reach terminal velocity where he gets to a speed and doesn't go any faster? Or will he just keep going faster till he stops or ejects?

 

Mudfoot and Liam, my favorite bump skis used to be Slalom Race skis. My prime favorite was a Rossi 7SK in a 195. Their mogul specific at that time was the 7SM which was the same sidecut but softer tips. To me, the stiffer tip gave me more contact with the snow and less deflection.

 

BWPA, I don't see how line can control your speed. You can always chose a slower line if you're experienced enough to know. But, line isn't in control of your turns only you can do that with the knowledge and technique you've aquired over the years. Of course as always, this is just my humble opinion.

post #9 of 79

Speed check just before the air bumproflmao.gif

post #10 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post

Speed check just before the air bumproflmao.gif



They have speed bumps for that don't they?

post #11 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars View Post


BWPA, I don't see how line can control your speed. You can always chose a slower line if you're experienced enough to know. But, line isn't in control of your turns only you can do that with the knowledge and technique you've aquired over the years. Of course as always, this is just my humble opinion.



slower line would control your speed,.

post #12 of 79

line and tactics.

 

As my Aspen friends Squatty and Weems have helped me discover, the anatomy of the bumps and where we choose to place our edges on that anatomy largely determines our abilities to smoothly control our descent.  Try to picture looking at a bump run below you and more specifically the first ten yards in front of you... Notice the contours of the moguls and that there are very steep sides, the valleys, and sides or berms.  Now take a ski off an place it, as if you were standing in balance over it, on the steep downside of the mogul and notice the edge angle to the snow.  It is on a very high edge angle and the likelihood of you gripping or holding an edge here are slim to none.  Next, place your ski near at the bottom of the trough or valley and notice the edge angle to the snow is much lower however this line precludes the skis from skidding or steering outside of this line which results in more speed.  Now take your ski and move in even farther to the outside so that it is banked against the side of the next mogul over.  Notice the ski is now flat on the snow compared to the alignment of the skier permitting the skier to easily steer their skis around a smoother arc banking or using the bumps as berms, many times using two bumps in one turn to bank against before starting a new turn.  

 

Look outside the line you typically take through the bumps to discover a rounder, smoother, line which permits the skis to remain relatively flat to the snow and thus easily steered around a smooth line and controlling speed all the way around the turn.  Note the snow is typically softer on this line as well and easier on the joints and back.  At first you may be able to see this line appear in front of you for a couple turns then disappear.  After some practice this smooth as silk line begins to appear more and more frequently.

 

good luck.

post #13 of 79

I agree that line choice offers the skilled mogul skier options as far as which line is faster and which line will allow you to ski slower, but that wasn't the question asked by the OP.

 

The question is "Where" do you slow down?

 

Line offers you a choice and it's your choice if you want to ski the slow line fast or ski the fast line slow. That's always a given for those skilled enough to do so.

post #14 of 79

Ah, the beauty of simple and sincere trick questions! The shortest answer is "Yes!"

 

Is the skier in question "the skier" (in general) or "a" skier in particular? If it's general, are we talking about a beginner or an expert, an ideal mogul skier or the "average" mogul skier? For the sake of discussion, let's start with in general and expert.

 

Ideally you want to maintain a consistent speed down the fall line (but please note that I think "ideal mogul skiing" is an oxymoron even at the expert level). So, in one sense, the skier "slows down" all the time. But there also components of speed laterally across the fall line and vertically with respect to the snow surface. Ideally those components begin to slow at the midpoint between extremes (because speed along that axis hits zero at the extremes and then reverses direction). Ideally, what the bumps look like under foot is irrelevant. So in this respect, the question can not be answered as asked. I can't answer the question "When you will stop beating your dead horse?" because I don't have one.

 

There is also upper lower body separation to consider. When I'm doing my best Wayne Wong imitation I will jet my lower body out ahead of me, plant my feet on the next bump and keep them there while the rest of my body catches up. So while my lower body speeds up and slows down, my upper body speed ideally remains constant. That horse is starting to smell.

 

Finally, if you're talking about a skier, you could see a reduction in speed whenever you have skidding, edge checks, skis turning out of the fall line or absorption. One could argue that this can happen anywhere in the bumps (absorption on the back side of a bump if you go uphill/use a double fall line?). It's possible you could even get two people to agree on what was happening for a specific skier. But surely it wouldn't be long before someone promoting a specific style of mogul skiing would start complaining about that smelly dead horse again.

 

So my answer would be "Yes. Follow me." And then I'd ski the bumps slowing down on the upside, the downside, in the ruts, across the ruts, over the top, skiddy, scarvey, with edge sets, jet turns and maybe throw in a few dolphin turns 'cause I haven't tried that particular stupid pet trick yet.

 

 

 

post #15 of 79
This is a good topic! I tend to agree with Bushwacker--a good bump skier can control (shed) speed on pretty much any part of a bump as needed or desired, and great bump skiers use this ability creatively. But certainly, there are easier and harder places to slow down on the bumps.

As always, there are two, and only two, general ways to slow down on skis (or pretty much anything else). You can increase the resistance to gliding--brake, generate "friction"--usually done on skis by twisting them across the direction of travel and digging in the edges to scrape off speed by braking (but also including things like falling down, running into trees, and so on). Or you can change your direction--go uphill--which works every time whenever you are actually on a hill (and when you're not, there is not usually much need to shed speed).

Friction and direction--that's it. Braking (friction) is defensive--stop or slow down going this way, which is NOT to say that it cannot be highly aggressive and often effective. Direction (tactics) is offensive--GO that way. Interestingly, your mindset can even be, "go that way as fast as you can"-even when your need is to slow down. Just go uphill--as fast as you can.

And moguls does not change this simple fact. But they do increase your opportunities for both options. Bumps can be little obstacles you can run into, greatly increasing the resistance to forward travel. That's how most skiers ski bumps, even many advanced skiers. They twist or push their skis sideways where they skid until they hit the next bump, checking speed quickly and effectively. It's easy to do--it's easy to pivot skis on the convex top of a bump, especially when aided by the natural lightness ("terrain unweighting") as you float over the downhill side. And it's pretty much a sure bet that your skis will stop skidding when they hit the next bump. Used this way, bumps can be easier to ski than smooth conditions, especially when it's slick or icy.

Or moguls can be little hills to "go up," using "speed control from direction." Glide up them, or slam into them--either one will slow you down. On flat (non-bumpy) runs, you have to complete a turn back up the mountain to "go uphill," but in moguls, you just have to go up the next bump--again, making it potentially easier than smooth conditions.

Most good skiers--because they can--try to use "direction" as much as possible to control speed, and "friction" whenever needed, but only as much as needed. They control speed with tactics--trying actually NOT to control speed at all, but skiing what I've long called "the slow line fast."

Ski a slow enough line, and you can avoid braking entirely, focusing your technique on gliding, on going where you want to go, rather than trying to use your skis to control both direction AND speed--which are largely contradictory and mutually exclusive purposes when you think about it. Weaker skiers have to think "go that way--STOP--go--STOP--go--STOP...." Tactical, offensive skiers can think only "GO"--as fast as you can, using their skis for the singular purpose of controlling only direction.

Of course, in real bumps, great skiers will need to brake too at times, and they'll be good at it. With highly developed absorption skills, they can manage pressure to control both speed and direction on any part of the bump, including the back side (steeper, downhill side). Then can ski many different lines and tactics, as they choose, from the zipper line (which itself can be skied offensively or defensively) to long-radius turns. In my opinion (yours may vary), I admire most the skiers who can ski every bump and every run a little differently, caressing each bump as the unique and individual feature that it is, while expressing personal creativity and flair. Great skiers' lines will change with their mood, and they ski the bumps any way they want--not just any way they can!

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #16 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post

I am not an instructor, but as someone who has skied more bumps than most I have come to the conclusion that unless you have skis with an even mellow flex the bumps tends to push your weight back, and then the tails accelerate the skis, forcing your farther into the back seat, and the situation worsens on each bump.  Skiing slowly and smoothly in bumps requires keeping your tips on the snow (i.e. weight constantly forward), which is inhibited by stiff tips and/or stiff tails. A soft tail ski can actually slow you down at the beginning and end of a bump turn, whereas a stiff tip/tail will do exactly the opposite and constantly force your skis into the air, which does not provide much resistance.

Mudfoot--what you say is generally true, but consider that, ironically, one of the most common causes of getting "forced into the back seat," as you put it, is trying to "keep your weight constantly forward." As you suggest, it's especially true with stiff skis, but either way, think about it. When you feel like you are pressing forward on your boots, which way are they pressing on you? The "Force" that pushes you into the back seat is actually those boots, and the harder you push on them, the harder they push back.

Now consider what happens when you press those tips down and they hit the next bump. It's exactly what would happen if you were just standing there (pressing forward) and I came up and grabbed your ski tips and jerked them sharply upward. I could throw you right over backward--just like a bump. Now, imagine instead that you see me coming, and when I pull up on your ski tip, you let me do it--maybe even help me a little. Let your foot come up and forward as I pull up on it. Suddenly, it does not throw you out of balance anymore.

That's what absorption, as discussed in a couple other threads, is all about. Press forward and down on your tips constantly, and you fight the bumps when they push up. Lift your tips in harmony with the bump, and press them forward down the back (downhill) side again, and you're absorbing, working with the terrain. Do it repeatedly, and your feet move in the circular-ish pattern that I've described as "backpedaling."

So "being forward" is critically important, but it is more complex than it may appear at first glance. Yes, you want to press your tips down to follow the terrain. Skis will actually act like a shock absorber when the tips hit the next bump and start to bend. But you must be ready to very quickly push your feet forward at that moment, and allow your tips rise up and your knees and hips to flex, or you will get thrown into the back seat.

Best regards,
Bob
post #17 of 79

Well, lets take a tally here.

A good skier can ski pretty much wherever they choose in a bump field and speed up or slow down at will.

-Most popular response

-followed by all kinds of discussion of absorption and such.

 

Turn down the backside and check more speed, get skis more lateral there before negotiating the next bump.

- Favored suggestion for learners

-I'm going to add cutting across the fall line more and doubling once in a while to this suggestion (AKA line selection).  What would you do to avoid if someone popped out of the woods right in to your line?  Slowing down can be just an abbreviated version of what you would do to stop in an emergency.

 

And Lars, I thought the "speed bumps" were those little chopped up cupcakes placed in the landing zones after the air bumps and the other little ruts right at the end where competitors straighline to the finish wiggling their butts to look like they are turning..

 

 

post #18 of 79

Extend...Flex/Absorb...Plant...Steer/Carve...Lather/Rinse/Repeat

 

Moguls_1-17.gif

 

In this case it's the Flex/Absorb step that the skier uses to control speed.

 

This is high level, zipper line skiing slowed way down, but isn't this generally a good model for skiers trying to get a grip on the bumps? In more modest moguls, (and perhaps over time generally as the skill develops), the sideways slam, flex/absorb step would be less pronounced and move more in the direction of a series of linked turns.

 

Nay?

 

I know this has been debated to death - if this post adds nothing to the conversation I will edit/blank it out.
post #19 of 79



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Barnes View Post


Mudfoot--what you say is generally true, but consider that, ironically, one of the most common causes of getting "forced into the back seat," as you put it, is trying to "keep your weight constantly forward." As you suggest, it's especially true with stiff skis, but either way, think about it. When you feel like you are pressing forward on your boots, which way are they pressing on you? The "Force" that pushes you into the back seat is actually those boots, and the harder you push on them, the harder they push back.
Now consider what happens when you press those tips down and they hit the next bump. It's exactly what would happen if you were just standing there (pressing forward) and I came up and grabbed your ski tips and jerked them sharply upward. I could throw you right over backward--just like a bump. Now, imagine instead that you see me coming, and when I pull up on your ski tip, you let me do it--maybe even help me a little. Let your foot come up and forward as I pull up on it. Suddenly, it does not throw you out of balance anymore.
That's what absorption, as discussed in a couple other threads, is all about. Press forward and down on your tips constantly, and you fight the bumps when they push up. Lift your tips in harmony with the bump, and press them forward down the back (downhill) side again, and you're absorbing, working with the terrain. Do it repeatedly, and your feet move in the circular-ish pattern that I've described as "backpedaling."
So "being forward" is critically important, but it is more complex than it may appear at first glance. Yes, you want to press your tips down to follow the terrain. Skis will actually act like a shock absorber when the tips hit the next bump and start to bend. But you must be ready to very quickly push your feet forward at that moment, and allow your tips rise up and your knees and hips to flex, or you will get thrown into the back seat.
Best regards,
Bob


Bob:

 

I do not disagree with anything you are saying, but you are talking more about absorption with your body, where I was talking specifically about the part your skis play. When you say, "Skis will actually act like a shock absorber when the tips hit the next bump and start to bend. But you must be ready to very quickly push your feet forward at that moment, and allow your tips rise up and your knees and hips to flex, or you will get thrown into the back seat."  my point is that skis with a softer even flex will make hitting the bump less of a shock by absorbing more of the impact (while staying in contact with the snow), thereby not pushing you as forcefully into the back seat and actually giving you more time to roll your weight forward.

 

Most of the people on this forum who have questions about skiing bumps are looking for how to ski them more smoothly and in control, not for zipper line technique tips.  I think when you are talking about "good bump skis" you need to make a distinction between what you are after.  Zipperline bumpers prefer old narrow stiffer slalom skis that reward agressive technique, but IMO that is the last thing an advancing intermediate should take into the bumps.  A soft even flexing ski will allow you to ooze through the bumps with a large forgiving sweet spot, rather than punishing you with unwanted acceleration as soon as your weight gets a little back.

 

After many years of skiing bumps on everything form 210 cm GS skis to 182 cm (short for me) rippers the one fact I am certain of is that if you are in the back seat or getting unwanted air you are in trouble, and softer skis (particularly in the tails) provide for a smoother and more controlled experience.  When I am skiing the bumps well my skis feel like rubber snakes following every curve of the terrain.  When that happens they virtually disappear and it is just my feet gliding on the snow in constant solid contact.  Attaining that feeling is just not possible on stiff skis that continually resist maintaining contact with the ever changing terrain of a bump field.  Skiing bumps is hard enough without your equipment working against you, and my only point was that IMO the stiffer your skis (up to a point), the more difficult they make the process.  MF

 

post #20 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by jc-ski View Post

Extend...Flex/Absorb...Plant...Steer/Carve...Lather/Rinse/Repeat

 

Moguls_1-17.gif

 

In this case it's the Flex/Absorb step that the skier uses to control speed.

 

This is high level, zipper line skiing slowed way down, but isn't this generally a good model for skiers trying to get a grip on the bumps? In more modest moguls, (and perhaps over time generally as the skill develops), the sideways slam, flex/absorb step would be less pronounced and move more in the direction of a series of linked turns.

 

Nay?

 

I know this has been debated to death - if this post adds nothing to the conversation I will edit/blank it out.


Looks to me like they are throwing the skis COMPLETELY 90 DEGREES across the fall line on every left turn to control speed. 

 

 

Edit:

 

FWIW, that works very well too.  I do that a lot... strong leg side.. Like I said, a good way to slow down is to do the same thing you'd do to stop but to a lessor degree.


Edited by crgildart - 10/26/11 at 9:46am
post #21 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post



 


Bob:

 

I do not disagree with anything you are saying, but you are talking more about absorption with your body, where I was talking specifically about the part your skis play. When you say, "Skis will actually act like a shock absorber when the tips hit the next bump and start to bend. But you must be ready to very quickly push your feet forward at that moment, and allow your tips rise up and your knees and hips to flex, or you will get thrown into the back seat."  my point is that skis with a softer even flex will make hitting the bump less of a shock by absorbing more of the impact (while staying in contact with the snow), thereby not pushing you as forcefully into the back seat and actually giving you more time to roll your weight forward.

 

Most of the people on this forum who have questions about skiing bumps are looking for how to ski them more smoothly and in control, not for zipper line technique tips.  I think when you are talking about "good bump skis" you need to make a distinction between what you are after.  Zipperline bumpers prefer old narrow stiffer slalom skis that reward agressive technique, but IMO that is the last thing an advancing intermediate should take into the bumps.  A soft even flexing ski will allow you to ooze through the bumps with a large forgiving sweet spot, rather than punishing you with unwanted acceleration as soon as your weight gets a little back.

 

After many years of skiing bumps on everything form 210 cm GS skis to 182 cm (short for me) rippers the one fact I am certain of is that if you are in the back seat or getting unwanted air you are in trouble, and softer skis (particularly in the tails) provide for a smoother and more controlled experience.  When I am skiing the bumps well my skis feel like rubber snakes following every curve of the terrain.  When that happens they virtually disappear and it is just my feet gliding on the snow in constant solid contact.  Attaining that feeling is just not possible on stiff skis that continually resist maintaining contact with the ever changing terrain of a bump field.  Skiing bumps is hard enough without your equipment working against you, and my only point was that IMO the stiffer your skis (up to a point), the more difficult they make the process.  MF

 



I'm thinking pretty much the opposite of this. A stiffer ski will give you more control in bumps because it's less likely to throw you into the backseat.

 

Like in a car, if your shocks or struts are weak, worn out or just too soft, you won't have the control you need on a bumpy or curvey highway. Your wheels are going to have less control. Same with skis in my book. If your skis are deflecting all over the place because they're too soft for the conditions you're skiing, you're going to be all over the place forwards and backwards.

 

Unless you're just flat out banging the zipperline all the time, a stiffer ski with some substance is going to be your friend. The stiffer a ski is in bumps the longer it's going to be in contact with the snow. That's what you want isn't it?

 

jmho but it works for me.

 

post #22 of 79
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars View Post



I'm thinking pretty much the opposite of this. A stiffer ski will give you more control in bumps because it's less likely to throw you into the backseat.

 

Like in a car, if your shocks or struts are weak, worn out or just too soft, you won't have the control you need on a bumpy or curvey highway. Your wheels are going to have less control. Same with skis in my book. If your skis are deflecting all over the place because they're too soft for the conditions you're skiing, you're going to be all over the place forwards and backwards.

 

Unless you're just flat out banging the zipperline all the time, a stiffer ski with some substance is going to be your friend. The stiffer a ski is in bumps the longer it's going to be in contact with the snow. That's what you want isn't it?

 

jmho but it works for me.

 



eh I find REALLY stiff skis to much in the bumps personally.  My 8.7 for instance are realy the limit I would want for bump skiing. My Favorite bump skis off all time are still my 179cm PEs my bushwackers are a close second both of them I wouldnt call stiff.

post #23 of 79

Quote:

Originally Posted by Lars View Post

Unless you're just flat out banging the zipperline all the time, a stiffer ski with some substance is going to be your friend. The stiffer a ski is in bumps the longer it's going to be in contact with the snow. That's what you want isn't it?

 

 

Lars:

 

I think we agree that if your skis are not in contact with the snow you cannot control your speed or direction (other than maybe by flapping your arms), so maximizing contact in the bumps is key, but I disagree with your bold state above.  My experience is that when a stiff ski runs into a bump tip first it will be pushed up quicker and with more force than one with a softer forefront section, hence it is harder to keep the ski tips on the snow and your weight out of the back seat.  Likewise, a ski with a stiff tail will accelerate quicker if your weight moves back. Stiff skis are extremely unforgiving in the bumps because they keep bouncing you off the snow and increasing your speed unless you are right on the center all the time, which requires more physical and mental energy than I want to expend 100% of the time I am in the bumps.

 

I have had some long soft skis (i.e 208 cm Volant G-max and 192 cm Watea 101s) that allowed me to rear back and carve a turn with just the tails if I missed doing in on the front of the ski, in effect giving me two chances at every turn in the bumps.  You cannot get anymore forgiving than that.  A softer ski will more easily and naturally follow the contours of the bumps, but obviously there is a point where too soft will not work.  MF

post #24 of 79

You need stiff skis torsionally but less firm longitudianally.

 

I have skied more then a fair amount of bumps over the years. In fact I used to find the gnarliest I could find and ski them just a bit faster then was my comfort zone. This tactic really hones your edge control and balance skills. I tend to ski the troughs

 

3 important aspects

 

#1 You must meticulously plan and execute your first 3 or 4 turns. (The path becomes very apparant to you the more you ski bumps)

 

#2, I always try to get my upper body through the trough first. I am always reaching down the hill to keep my balance ahead of my skis. I have said this before. You want your skis chasing you down the hill not you chasing your skis. If you can stay ahead of your skis, you are in total control. Speed control is inherent. i am not trying to ski Mogul Competition style zipper line, but pulling out of the fall line and traversing the bumps to control your speed is unacceptable to me. If I have to pull out of my line I would rather stop , reassess and and start from plan and execute the first 3 or 4 turns again and try to keep in my line longer. difficult skills take practice and discipline.

 

Someone mentioned air as a negative in bump skiing, but I embrace it, stay balanaced in the air and use it to my advantage. Helps get a little playful with the hill and be light on your feet and lighten up your mindset!

 

#3 Goes with #2: Pole plants are crucial. I try to lead through the bumps with my pole plants. You can NEVER, EVER let your shoulders drop or your hands/arms get back. This will put you on your arse immediately.

 

#4 good bump skiing in particular takes a very strong core. Ya gotta be in shape and it has to come from your middle!

 

Problem is I am getting older and not as quick as I used to be.

 

Like my signature says: The older I get the faster I was!

 

 

 


Edited by Atomicman - 10/26/11 at 2:41pm
post #25 of 79

I'm with Mudfoot on this. Stuffing the shovels into the face of mogul is only going to work if the shovels can absorb the energy.

 

My RX8's were very good in moguls, Elan Speedwave 12's not as much:  the energy through the shovels pushed me back 

quicker than i could manage.

 

A Indy car with a very stiff suspension would NOT be a nice ride over bumps in the road,

while a touring sedan would moderate out the impact of the same bumps.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post

Quote:

 

Lars:

 

I think we agree that if your skis are not in contact with the snow you cannot control your speed or direction (other than maybe by flapping your arms), so maximizing contact in the bumps is key, but I disagree with your bold state above.  My experience is that when a stiff ski runs into a bump tip first it will be pushed up quicker and with more force than one with a softer forefront section, hence it is harder to keep the ski tips on the snow and your weight out of the back seat.  Likewise, a ski with a stiff tail will accelerate quicker if your weight moves back. Stiff skis are extremely unforgiving in the bumps because they keep bouncing you off the snow and increasing your speed unless you are right on the center all the time, which requires more physical and mental energy than I want to expend 100% of the time I am in the bumps.

 

I have had some long soft skis (i.e 208 cm Volant G-max and 192 cm Watea 101s) that allowed me to rear back and carve a turn with just the tails if I missed doing in on the front of the ski, in effect giving me two chances at every turn in the bumps.  You cannot get anymore forgiving than that.  A softer ski will more easily and naturally follow the contours of the bumps, but obviously there is a point where too soft will not work.  MF



 

post #26 of 79

Look, I'm not saying I use the stiffest skis on the market here. But you surely don't want to use noodles either.

 

You need a ski of substance and a balanced ride.

 

My favorite bump ski the past few seasons have been a Telemark ski mounted Alpine. The ski is designed and built for the flex and stiffness of a teleski and the balance between the shovel and the tails makes it great for mogul skiing.

 

While there are some skis made specifically for mogul skiing i'm going to tell you for the hundreth time. It's not the ski, it's the skier. I know guys who could rip up a bump run on 2x4's. That's a fact.

 

I've got 4 different skis in my quiver and I feel comfortable on everyone of them. Sure my Dirtybirds ski moguls smoother than my B3's. But it doesn't really matter.

 

Most bump specific skis are designed for one thing. The zipperline. And as much as I like to ski the zipperline when the conditions are right, it's way better to use a ski that's more versatile so you have a comfortable choice of lines and the way you want to attack the run.

 

Why limit youself?

post #27 of 79
Hey, I'm with you, Lars. Although we've wandered a little off-topic (speed control) here, I've got to say one more thing about the "soft vs. stiff ski" debate. Skis, of course, come in a spectrum of flexes, and skis that are very stiff can be unforgiving and challenging in bumps. But some stiffness does help, especially as you ski faster. Personally, I really dislike skiing bumps on skis that are too soft, unless I'm going very slowly. Same with too-short skis, for much the same reason. With some length and some stiffness, the skis start absorbing the bump the moment the tips touch it, slowing down and softening the impact. With too soft skis, I feel like I hit the bump with my feet, and then the impact is sudden and harsh. With too-soft skis, I miss the sensitivity that my ski tips give me, sort of acting like feelers to communicate the bump to me before I hit it with my feet. It may just be a few milliseconds, but it really helps smooth the ride and gives me more time to react.

But of course, if the skis are too stiff, they lack the springiness that allows them to bend and help absorb the bump. The skis do need to bend and follow the contour of the mogul trough without needing an excess amount of pressure (that would cause them to press back equally hard, tending to throw me into the back seat). Skis so stiff that they bridge every bump are, indeed, challenging in bumps.

For what it's worth, I'll add that skis with "early rise" or reverse camber act very much like skis that are too soft in bumps. Yes, they are exceptionally easy to pivot, and they can make it easy to ski slowly in bumps. But since their tips are "pre-bent," they cannot absorb any of the energy of the bump impact like a ski with traditional camber and the right flex as it uses some of the impact force to bend the ski.

---

One thing is certain (to get back on topic): the less absorption and turning skills you have, the less choice you will have as to "where to control speed on the bumps." A straightlining out-of-control skier will naturally shed a little speed every time he crashes into a bump, and will have no speed control whatsoever when he's airborne. Where will he finally stop? Surely, it will be against the uphill side of the bump--if not against the trunk of a tree!

Best regards,
Bob
post #28 of 79


icon14.gif
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Barnes View Post

Hey, I'm with you, Lars. Although we've wandered a little off-topic (speed control) here, I've got to say one more thing about the "soft vs. stiff ski" debate. Skis, of course, come in a spectrum of flexes, and skis that are very stiff can be unforgiving and challenging in bumps. But some stiffness does help, especially as you ski faster. Personally, I really dislike skiing bumps on skis that are too soft, unless I'm going very slowly. Same with too-short skis, for much the same reason. With some length and some stiffness, the skis start absorbing the bump the moment the tips touch it, slowing down and softening the impact. With too soft skis, I feel like I hit the bump with my feet, and then the impact is sudden and harsh. With too-soft skis, I miss the sensitivity that my ski tips give me, sort of acting like feelers to communicate the bump to me before I hit it with my feet. It may just be a few milliseconds, but it really helps smooth the ride and gives me more time to react.
But of course, if the skis are too stiff, they lack the springiness that allows them to bend and help absorb the bump. The skis do need to bend and follow the contour of the mogul trough without needing an excess amount of pressure (that would cause them to press back equally hard, tending to throw me into the back seat). Skis so stiff that they bridge every bump are, indeed, challenging in bumps.
For what it's worth, I'll add that skis with "early rise" or reverse camber act very much like skis that are too soft in bumps. Yes, they are exceptionally easy to pivot, and they can make it easy to ski slowly in bumps. But since their tips are "pre-bent," they cannot absorb any of the energy of the bump impact like a ski with traditional camber and the right flex as it uses some of the impact force to bend the ski.
---
One thing is certain (to get back on topic): the less absorption and turning skills you have, the less choice you will have as to "where to control speed on the bumps." A straightlining out-of-control skier will naturally shed a little speed every time he crashes into a bump, and will have no speed control whatsoever when he's airborne. Where will he finally stop? Surely, it will be against the uphill side of the bump--if not against the trunk of a tree!
Best regards,
Bob


 

post #29 of 79

I suspect we are more in agreement than we think:  

  if you are posting on Epic Ski in a mogul thread, you probably havent been on a noodly ski in quite a long time.

  So it may be more in the sense of "softer within the range of skis that i actualy ski"

 

Looks like a good snowy start for Coloradoresort this year

post #30 of 79

Smartyiak mentioned the old people at MRG. One of them was probably Terry Barbour. He's not 60 yest but over 50. If you want to see how it's really done watch him. Here's another way to think about skiing the bumps. I love this way because I can really slow it down like walking down stairs. It's great in the trees where speed control is saftey.

 

This method of skiing bumps is anchored in the premise of speed control. Specifically, speed control enables the skier to move at a comfortable pace which goes a long way in alleviating fear. At slower speeds the skier has time to see the line and make the turn. This tactic works well for every level of bump skier who wants to ski a bump run very slow. Anyone can go fast, now try it slow.

 

For explanation purposes the term “squared up” refers to the point at which the skier’s body is moving in the same direction as the skis. In every turn there is a straight run, a point in which the skier is squared up with the skis. This usually occurs at turn transition, between turn completion and turn initiation. It is at this Point that I believe it is easiest for the skier to be properly balanced, fore and aft and laterally.

 

Try this in the bumps. Find a lower level bump run . Traverse across the bumps with an angle of decent such that the speed allows you to stall on top of the bump. Your body position should be square with the skis, looking at the trees on the side of the trail. Adjust the angle of decent so you have enough speed to get up the side of the bump and you don’t stall before they get to the top. This is just a traverse so it should be easy to square up on your skis.

This is a great time to adjust your balance and see if you come out of the parallelogram, ( back parallel with your shin or nose over the knees over the toes)like by straightening the back, you'll tend to end up out of balance in the back seat.  Understand how skiing up the side of the bump slows your  speed without braking or edging. Also see try to feel if you are perpendicular to the pitch starting down the far side of the bump. At this point you should be able to stall on top of the bump. If you  are not in balance you won't stall.

 

Once you're able to stall it's time to work turn initiation and pole touch. Between the tip of the ski and where you touch the pole is the doorway to the turn. You want to move through the door at the start of the turn. Movement through the door is with your core (poetry). Try this on top of a bump from a stop. This is where you should feel the move of "forward and to the inside". Separation of the upper and lower body is usually achieved without mention. It becomes a result of the "forward and inside" move. This move makes skis want to follow the direction of the skiers body. Direct the movement through the door to side of the next bump so you can go up the side of the bump and stall. I'm constantly feeling for my balance, your parallelograms. Now it's mileage time. Start to link your turns making sure your speed is under control. As long as you square up towards the completion of the turn you will time to adjust your  balance and  stall on the top of the bump.

 

I have found that when I get a group of intermediate to advanced bump skiers they always want to improve their speed control. The intermediate/advanced group usually has a problem of too much counter. They get twisted up. For them the counter rotation has them dropping their hip inside and back. They can't ski slow because their skis are constantly shooting out in front and they get more in the back seat, again out of balance. I use a variation or the progression above to untwist them and slow them down. Once they stop the severe counterotation I can work on their parallelogram. The tactic of using the side of the bump and stalling at the top gives them a  new a dimension to their bump skiing. Once they can slow it down I can turn up the pitch, go in the trees and ski more advanced terrain. It all comes back to balance. I have found the best way to address that is in a squared position at slow speed. Once they get the function of the parallelogram and trying to keep that position through flexion and extension their skiing improves.

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