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Was working on my short turns and video result shows much more work needed, advice appreciated?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Firstly,  sorry had a look at the how to embed and couldnt work out the part of the code I had to use. 


Video1 is first day on my new skis on section of John Paul at Snow basin,  conditions were groomed hard pack with small amount of snow on top,  skiing on 102 at foot K2 kung fujas and I really could not glide an edge like I think I would of my strato80 rosi's.  Really the wrong ski for the conditions of the day but I expect many on here could of made a better fist of it than I was.

My personal beef with watching my skiing is I see myself as sking with legs too far apart which later translated to problems in bumps and of course when we got powder.   I beleive throughout the week I narrowed this stance but for some reason I fall back into wide stance easily???  Also I do not think I acheive much angulation which makes me look very boring to watch skiing and no doubt not helping acheive the s shaped turns I was striving for?








second video a few days later,  the top portion in some mild bumpy terrain  and then comming to the bottom portion with a little more snow to push through and here I think I start to form some turns linked with much more glide and a little more finess (by my standards)

Any advice to work on would be appreciated. 


How can I get myself skiing naturally with closer stance and how can I push out more angulation.

Remembering of course I think I am doing these things when I am skiing but unfortunately video doesnt lie!





cheers Richo


post #2 of 14

Not a lot of time to go into too much detail. I'm sure other's will, but what I see in a nutshell is bracing against the outside leg. Very little ankle flexion. Hips behind the feet. This works against you to an even larger degree when you enter uneven, steeper, terrain.  If I were working with you, I'd do a sequence of 'foot work' directional and connected side slips to help you correct your stance keeping your pelvis over your feet, and working on pressuring the uphill ski to help simultanious edge release and movement of both feet into the new turn. Again, all micro movements that happen largely within the boot. Once with was happening, we'd work on pivot slips to help separate your upper and lower body while continuing to addressing balance, rotary, and pressure. Pivot slips to low speed "C" shaped turns on relatively easy terrain, then move the whole show to slightly a bit steeper hill. Ok, times up. I could be more accurate with the MA if I could see you from both above and below straight down the fall line. I'm sure many will have more and more detailed things to add to my quick hit $.02.

post #3 of 14

Firstly I would agree with you that the Rossis would be a better option and I would say not just in these conditions but pretty much all the time at the moment as the 102 waists are not going to help what you need to be working on. As a matter of interest how long have you been skiing?


I agree with markojp that you are bracing against the outside ski and using it as a brake rather than to guide your arc. All the pressure is going on suddenly after the fall line to control your descent. I also agree that your ankles are rather rigid and this causes your flexing to push your hips back. I see some good things to. There is some separation developing and I agree with you that video 2 shows some more finesse. At 1.07 in video 2 I see some nice steering developing and your right turns appear stronger. There's also a nice bit of inside leg work going on at this point.


You sound a little down on yourself. Don't be. We all hate our videos. Full marks for posting it.


I would go into some really easy terrain and work lots on your stance and balance. Do lots of drills to help. Flex and extend throughout the turn: hop throughout the turn; shuffle through the turn etc. etc. Play with fore and aft balance until you feel that you're centred through your turns. There are lots of things you can do Maybe have alook at Rick Schnellman's video series. I think they would really help.


Tactically work on your turn shape. Try to make rounded 'C' shape turns and acheive speed control by finishing your turns. You will find out that this is a far more effective way to ski in control and far less disruptive to your technique. Do it all on easier terrain to begin with.


The stance is a bit too wide but remember you should be adjusting stance width anyway for bumps and powder to a narrower stance than what you use on piste.


post #4 of 14
I like your upper/lower body separation, Richo.

As Marco notes, you are using primarily your outside ski from start to finish of the turn, you are moving up with the outside leg instead of into the turn and you are ending up with your center of mass behind your feet as a result. Look at about 30 seconds into the second video to see the most obvious example of what I'm seeing. I'd rather have you move your pelvis forward, flex and extend both the ankles and knees and think about beginning turns by releasing the old outside (downhill at the beginning of the turn) ski rather than by stepping onto the new outside ski to start the turn. Flattening that ski to begin would help make your turn involve both skis throughout and probably would help bring your body into the turn.
post #5 of 14



First off - props to the videographer! To the people watching at home - this is how you do video that is good for analysis: skier coming to the camera, use zoom to keep the skier using up > 1/3 of the frame (preferably 1/2)


The reason you naturally fall into a wide stance is to increase balance. Balance is going to be extremely challenged with this much skidding going on and this much weight not keeping up with the skis. Your stance width looks functional for the skiing technique you are using. My opinion is that you won't see any significant improvement trying to change your stance width.  And I don't think the skis are going to make much difference either.


Angulation and standing on the outside foot are a catch-22. You aren't going to stand on your outside foot until you angulate. And you're not going to angulate until you stand on your outside foot. We'll see how to break this dilemma after we better understand how you currently make your turns. You start your turns with an "up move". Because you finish your old turn with your inside foot way ahead as soon as you start to stand up your weight is moving backward. As you're moving up, you start turning your feet into the new turn. This works great at cutting off your line of travel to get your weight to the inside of the new turn. It also works great at getting you out of the fall line quickly to control speed (aka "Z" turning). And that lets you do some forward movement to get recentered before your next turn starts. Call me sick, but I love this approach. You're using a lot of power over the skis and getting a great work out. This approach will get you down most slopes in one piece. But this approach is a dead end for high performance skiing.


My solution for how to break the catch-22 is to change your stance position at the end of your turns. The first step is to finish your turns more across the hill. You won't need to do this for every turn, but it will help to make learning the new movements easier. As you finish your turns you need to make sure that your skis turn more across the hill than your hips and shoulders (currently only your head is looking to the inside of the next turn). This going to cause your uphill butt cheek to move slightly to the front of your uphill (what will become the new outside) ski. From this position you will be able to start the new turn with a lower leg tipping movement instead of an up movement. This will enable you to start standing against the outside foot before angulation starts happening. It will also reduce the need to steer the feet to get the skis to turn.


All that is a lot easier said than done. Let's start with this drill to try at home. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Here your shoulders are parallel to a line drawn from big toe to big toe. Step one foot directly forward (but don't step into that foot) so that the heel is 3 inches in front of the other foot (but still shoulder width apart) and the leg is straight. Keep your hips and shoulders pointed forward in the same direction so that the line from big toe to big toe is no longer parallel. Now, without moving your upper body forward (belly button stays over the same spot on the floor), rotate your hips and shoulders until you start to lose your balance. Yikes - that weight in the back seat thing sucks! Now do the same move again, but this time bend your knee of the advanced leg so that the knee ends up vertically over the toes (leg bent) and the belly button moves slightly forward as it rotates. This should feel like a balanced position and you should feel more weight shift onto the advanced foot. Your shoulders and hips are now again parallel to a line drawn from one big toe to the other. From this position, do a pelvic thrust forward. Can you feel how that move forces both of your feet to roll onto edge? When we are skiing we don't have to pelvic thrust so much as just let our upper body flow in that direction, but the mechanics are the same as the at home exercise. We typically don't need as much tip lead between the feet as this drill directs, but the extra tip lead here helps to feel the movements better.


If you can finish your turns more across the hill (or even going uphill a little bit), turning into a position where you shoulders and hips are facing to the inside of the next turn, then you are going to be able to initiate your next turn simulating the movements in the above drill and end up with more with tipping movements and with less foot steering movements. These turns will lead into a powerful, angulated position by the middle of the turn and you will find that your stance width will naturally get wider as you get onto higher edge angles and faster speeds. There are dozens of on snow drills that we have to help learn these movements (my favorite for this is lifting the tail of the new inside ski and tipping the tip on the snow to start the new turn). Once you think you've got it, test yourself with a drill called cowboy turns. Ski with your feet wider than shoulder width apart. If you don't move your weight across the skis with lower body movement, this drill is really painful.


These new movements won't be easy. It takes some people years to master them. You may find in person coaching to be more effective at helping you to find the best drill for you and make sure that your are performing it correctly. But it does not take long to find the power that these movements can generate and add some zip to your skiing. Happy Trails!

post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your replys,  I will hopefully get a chance read more closely tonight.   


It is a bit embarrising just how much skidding there is,  but I should say during the trip  I felt I was skidding  and I felt I was back seat often.   The terrain  I was skiing in general was much steeper than I am used to in Australia  and can only guess that whilst I feel much more centered and think I dont skid near as much on my other skis,  the steeper terrain must of really exposed weaknesses in my technique that I dont normally push the boundries on as I did in Utah.


I started sking when I was about 25 and did a few seasons just a week per year,   then did not ski again until aprx 10 years ago and have done a week every year but one since.   In the last year counting Japan,  perisher and Utah I have got aprx 28days in  and feel I should be progressing faster than I am at the moment.   I really enjoy skiing and at the end of the day being perfect is not the be all and end all to my skiing,  but I do want to continue these trips to Utah etc and feel I need to improve technique to enhance my enjoyment of some of this tougher terrain.   I dont want just get down the blacks in survival mode I want to ski them!


Thanks again for your advice,   I will post a trip report soonish for those who like share in others holidays.





post #7 of 14

Hey Richo, better late than never to get into skiing.  A 28 day season is decent and I'm sure has really helped your skiing.


The terrain in videos show has some pitch and pitch always exaggerates/exposes the problems.


the others had some good comments, but I think one of your biggest problems is your hands and pole plant. I think just focusing on improving this will not only move your skiing forward, but will move you forward as well, which is needed


You constantly drop your inside hand down to your hip, hand in pocket, which twists your shoulders across the fall line and almost instantly puts you back seat with to much aft pressure to early in the turn.  It takes to much time traveling across the fall line, static, in order to get your chest forward again and get your hand out of your pocket all while riding in the backseat.


Lock both your hands forward about 6" wider than your shoulders and keep them there.  Use mostly the wrist mostly to swing your pole.  Cock your wrist open to point your pole downhill and snap it down to strike you pole plant at exactly the end of your turn.


Just working on this should move you way up the learning curve as you are slready getting you skis on edge, but you body is mechanics are killing anything you generate.  Without fixing the hands/pole plant first, working on all the suggestions above could prove frustrating and not help nearly as much as they could.


GL, keep at it, Nail

post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks all,  there is something  I can identify with in all the comments.  I am still processing it all and thinking about whether or not I will go for some private lessons in August.  

If Im going to spend that sort of money I am keen to be really prepared with want I am trying to achieve.   I have found all the responses constructive.  thanks again!



post #9 of 14



Consider group lessons either at home and/or on your next trip to Utah. You should be able to make a lot of progress in a group lesson.

post #10 of 14

Hi, Rusty


 You have good athletic ability & have the potential to become one of the few skiers that really stand out on the mountain. But if you take the path most skiers do you will most likely fail. You need to focus on drills to developing your skiing skills & you will be an amazing skier.




 I find the some what low feet apart athletic stance for short turns to slow. ( try running well doing the duck walk, more centrifical force to over come with feet far apart)


 The following works for me. But I think it is best to do drills to develope your skiing skills & develope your own style based on your skiing skills. This prevents herding when you become your own scientist & ski based on that which comes natural from well developed skiing skills.


 The stacked position so ankles are bent causing knees to be over balls of feet or as far forward as toes, tail bone sould be in line with heals of boot, bend @ the hip joint so shoulders come over top of balls of feet head up is the core position for lightening quick fall line turns. Of course there are times when ideal must be broken i.e., when absorbing bumps a lower stance will result & when the body takes a shorter path then the skis I will shoot my feet forward taking me momentarily slightly in the back seat (counter balance with the swinging of the ski pole)


 A wide stance that is often taught in ski schools is to slow for lightening quick turns, Upper body should always remain facing down hill ( your inside hand was coming to far back) When the skis are turned to the side & body facing downhill there is like a stored energy that wants to turn the skis back to alignment with the body. ( plus you want to use the wind up like a pitcher does when throwing a base ball, try bringing your hand back then pause & then throwing the ball without prestreach the ball will not be thrown very hard.)


 If you want lightening quick short turns forget about trying to make C shaped turns although itshould be part of your quiver), instead try making turns based on maxiumim edge hold then when compresion builds flex & tip skis to the other side using cross unders body travels down hill skis travel back & forth under body. The reason C turns are slower when not on ice as skis dig deeper into the snow during the snow it has more & firmer snow to bank against making a golen spiral shape turn.



 Of course this is to much for a skier to just go out & do without developing thier skiing skills through drills.


 Almost all skiers want a magical tip that will get them to expert skiing & never focus on doing any drills. Most skiers have the potential to become very good skiers but fail because they dont do any drills.


 I say forget lessons & focus on doing drills to develope your skiing skills. Try to find differnt ones on the internet (youtube), be creative , get a DVD (your ski coach DVDs I heard are good) or what ever break your skiing down & develope your skiing skills in step by step logical progression



post #11 of 14

I'm so confused Krazzy. I hope you were directing those comments to Richo and not me.

post #12 of 14

Oops, I'm late to the party...


Krazzy legs, are you powder jet? 


Richo, go easy on yourself! When looking at video, first try to find some things you like about your skiing. Off the top of my head, your stronger skills right now are that you're turning both skis, you're putting them on edge in the bottom third of the turn, and you're managing your speed appropriately for the terrain. 


Lots of good advice about working on turn shape and angulation. Contrary to some of the earlier posts, I actually see you balancing over the inside ski at the end of the turn (ie the uphill ski). You can see it as you create a "reverse wedge", you're tipped uphill, and your old inside ski has a big lead over the outside ski. I suspect that you widen your stance at the end of the turn for safety as you fall uphill. By creating some angulation, you'll resolve all of the above and be in a good position to start your next turn. Some exercises that can help: 


Sideslips while balancing over the downhill ski

Bracquage focusing on balancing downhill

javelin turns

railroad tracks/rollerblade turns

power plow


Also, given that you're accustomed to skiing on flatter slopes, you may get good results by acclimatizing yourself to the steeper pitches in North America. Try working on "maximum speed on minimum terrain": head to a green run and work on skiing a bit faster and creating strong angulation. Greens are a perfect spot to work on railroad tracks/rollerblade turns. 


As for not feeling like you're progressing as you should, give yourself some leeway here! It takes time to "unlearn" old habits and build new muscle memory. You're clearly committed to developing your skiing, so barring any physically limiting factors, you will develop. I suspect that given your motivation and current skills, several group lessons will help you more than one private. Group lessons would also be a good opportunity to put your development in context, giving you the chance to see that everyone progresses at different speeds.


Have fun on the slopes--and enjoy your winter--it looks like it's fast approaching!

post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hey great Metapor and Krazzy legs,  It really is getting me thinking all these ideas,   makes me want to be on the slopes working on it.


I followed up on the suggestion of a couple and purchased the your ski coach DVD's,  I did a bit of reading on some of his ideas and some of the technque training made some mechanical sense to me for lack of a better word.  My belief has always been group lessons are good value,  but  I need to do some hard yards on the drills that are presented on the DVDS.   I am sure most of them will have been given to me at some stage over the years in a lesson,   the problem being we do drills  in the group lesson for 10 minutes  or so and move on to the next drill   as some of the more advanced are on top of the drill quicker than others.  

I have decided I am going to dedicate my lesson time to working through the drills or building blocks as they are stated in the programme really trying to understand and emulate  balance and edging through the whole turn.   I feel with the comments above my understanding of my faults is clearer which has helped me focus on what I am trying to learn and what the outcome I am looking for is.


No longer down on myself pumped about getting out there and learning the next level.    


For all you ski coaches dont panic I am not thinking lessons are not for me,  Ive just got do the work with what I have been told before and what these DVDs spell out.  Two hours less free skiing a day for my Australian Winter should help me prepare for my next trip to Japan early 2013.


Hey will be comming back to Utah 2014 I hope,  loved it!





post #14 of 14



 Yes I was powder jet changed name to Krazzy legs because I lost my email address.


 Richo I think you will become an excellent skier because I can see you got good athletic ability, are man enough to let go of your ego post a video to see how you can improve & also willing to drills which many dont  do because they dont want to admit to themselfs they do not have the skiing skills of great skier so they never improve & or improve @ a snail pace.

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