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Question on outside leg position

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hey guys - I'm a volunteer ski coach - helping with house league. Raced alot, but no coaching levels - 

 

I saw an instructor (not race coach) plus some other photos (mostly adverts in ski mags) of skiers making hard carves with the outside knee bent medially into touch the inside boot - maybe you've seen this. The  outside leg is making a < at the knee to touch in.

 

I'm assuming this is for some extra edge angle - but it's different than I was taught. Has something changed - I assume when I look at this that adjusting the angle of leg medially to the inside would break down the amount of power you could add to the edge of the ski. Doesn't this break down the innate mechanics of the lag - Shouldn't the bones be stacked athletically for power and control? 

 

Is this just for aesthetics? Thanks!

 

post #2 of 6

Knees dont bend like that.  Try it!

 

What you are seeing is knee bent normally (in the fore/aft plane) but the femur is rotated in the hip socket giving that look.  It is done for a variety of reasons, and is as much a part of good ski technique today as it every was...although, the amount we turn the femur is less prominent then in the straight ski days because we can generate more steering angle in the bent ski then before, thus less need to generate steering angle via pivoting.

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

Knees dont bend like that.  Try it!

 

What you are seeing is knee bent normally (in the fore/aft plane) but the femur is rotated in the hip socket giving that look.  It is done for a variety of reasons, and is as much a part of good ski technique today as it every was...although, the amount we turn the femur is less prominent then in the straight ski days because we can generate more steering angle in the bent ski then before, thus less need to generate steering angle via pivoting.



Yes, Medially rotated femur is exactly what I was talking about - feels like the power of the leg breaks down to the inside to me?

post #4 of 6

Yes it is not as biomechanically strong as staying square.  But if you stay square your ability to angulate is greatly diminished there by reducing outside ski pressure/lateral balance and your steering angle is limited to what you can generate from the sidecut.  Its all tradeoffs.

post #5 of 6

If what you are saying is that they are doing this with one leg and not the other at that point in the turn, they are likely doing something suboptimal although possibly necessary in the circumstances.  Even accepting that knee angulation, which is really a combination of flexing the knee and rotating the femur, is a necessary movement at times, there are very few circumstances that it should be happening only in the outside leg at a given point in time.

 

If you are just saying the knee angulation is occurring which can create a triangle appearance from certain perspectives, then like skidude said it's a tradeoff.  You are trading structural stability which means you are going to have to use muscular force to hold yourself up for additional edge angle.  Tactically, that might be a worthwhile tradeoff or it might not be depending on the circumstances.

post #6 of 6

These days in CSIA our coaches focus on rolling ankles to start creating an edge angle, and extending laterally through the leg. In doing so your body stays stacked and it's less stressful on your joints--and creates efficient angles.

 

Less stacked and more vulnerable techniques involve pushing/dumping the hip into a turn which effectively twists the lower body around, or twisting via the knee as the OP described. Makes me think of an MCL tear waiting to happen. 

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