Ah, SharpEdges--misinterpreting and twisting things around for some unknown reason, as usual. Why would you assume that the movements that result in the initiation (beginning) of a turn would themselves begin at the same moment as the turn? Indeed, how could they? Must the movements that result in a bat hitting a ball (and therefore "initiating" the change of direction of the ball) begin the moment the bat contacts the ball? Of course not. The swing begins well before the hit. And the movements of a new turn, likewise, begin well before the change of direction (right to left, or vice-versa) of a skier's motion takes place.
When driving a car on the S-curves of a twisting mountain road, do you wait to start turning the wheel until the new turn starts? Of course not--if you're keeping the car on the road, you start turning the wheel to the right (clockwise) when you're still in the left turn--a movement that first straightens the wheels out, and then finally (as it continues) begins the right turn. The new (right) turn begins in the middle of the steering movements of the wheels.
When you make a left turn on skis, your skis obviously tip to the left. When do you start the tipping of your skis toward the new right turn? If your turns are linked, that tipping to the right begins well back in the completion of the left turn, first "untipping" the skis, then continuing on through the edge release (starting the new turn) and finally onto the new edges, in one smooth, flowing motion. In good skiing, it's one continuous movement that started back in the old turn and continued through the transition into the new turn, with the actual "initiation" of the new turn happening in the middle of the movement.
And to the particular point of this thread, IF the release of the edges that starts the new turn is accompanied by either flexion or extension, consider when during that flexing or extending the release actually takes place. If you "rise," for example, as you roll your edges toward the release, clearly the actual release occurs at the TOP of the rise, not at the bottom when you "start" rising. Likewise with a retraction release--the release and crossover occurs not as you start flexing, but typically at the lowest point. In either case, if you start rising, or start retracting, at the same time you intend to start your new turn, you are too late, and the turn will actually begin considerably later than you intended it to.
These things are common errors that are particularly noticeable in racing. If you wait until the moment you intend your new turn to begin (tips cross the "rise line," for example) to start the movements of the new turn, you will soon find yourself way, way off your line!
"Neutral," as I have used the term above, represents the moment the turn actually starts. By definition, therefore, that means that it represents a position or attitude from which the least possible amount of movement is needed to start the turn. And that means that anything that needs to be done to start the turn must already have occurred, and any movement must already be in motion.
Movements in good skiing are (usually) continuous, cyclical, and flowing. Like the turning of a wheel, or the smooth continuous flow of a sine wave, few good skiing movements have either beginnings nor ends. That's one of the joys and fascinations of skiing, and one of the challenges of teaching it. Far too many instructors--and their unfortunate students--think of movements and ski technique as a linear sequence of discrete movements. The result is robotic skiing with a notable lack of flow, at best.
Again, the movements that cause the beginning of a new turn must themselves begin earlier, if there is to be any "flow" at all, and if the turn is actually to begin at the point you intend.
Originally Posted by sharpedges
That's a strange definition of turn initiation, equating it to the moment of transition or the point of curvature change. The initiation point is when Mr. Barnes's "movements that began previously" began -- when the initial cause of the impending turn occurred. Thus, release-related flexion/extension actions should begin very close to the initiation of the turn ... or they are mis-timed.