On the contrary, I think racers and the rest of the world ought to be a lot closer than they usually are. Remember How the Racers Ski, by Witherell? A lot of people kind of looked at it as like "Fine...that's how the racers ski, but it doesn't have anything to do with the rest of us." Witherell probably should have called it High Performance Skiing, because that's what it really was. It's just that a lot of the best examples of really good skiers, at the time, happened to be racers. In The Skier's Edge, LeMaster shows photo sequences of racers, almost exclusively. But he's just using their skills to talk about what high end skiing can be. And in Ultimate Skiing, he widens the base even more. There's a bunch of racers present, but there's also PSIA folks and other great skiers.
I just like watching people like Hirscher, Lindsey Vonn, Julia Mancuso, et. al., because they're some readily available models of athletes skiing at very high levels in very demanding situations, and I think we can all learn a lot from their examples. Go take another look at Hirscher training slalom, and ask yourself what you think he'd ski like in a gnarly bump field.
I sort of high-jacked this thread, which was all about hands, so I'll offer one more suggestion and exit, stage left. We used to have a slogan when I was living, skiing, and teaching in Summit County which was "Know your limits...and exceed them frequently." Sounds liike pretty radical advice, and not something that your average lawyer would have any of us tell ourselves, much less anyone we're teaching or coaching. But I'm here to tell you, folks, that it actually works. Racing DH is simultaneously the scariest thing I've ever done and also the biggest adrenaline rush...and it's helped to make me a better skier, at age 63, than I was 20 years ago when I started Masters racing.
Please go take a look at Back to Basics, where I get into this theme. What I'm saying is along the lines of whatever that martial arts mantra is, which is something like "Don't think, do." It's fine to spend a bunch of time talking about skiing, equipment, studying the sport, and so forth. But those activities are kind of just the prerequisites, and you don't want to get stuck going through that same door too many times. To really get anywhere in skiing, at whatever level of skill you happen to be, the best advice I can give you is something I heard a few years back, which is "Point 'em down, and let 'em buck." It's the concept of free skiing, as opposed to trying to whittle yet another Cub Scout neckerchief holder. I really believe that skiing well is a lot like driving an aggressive line in a fast car on a track, which is something else I do. We all know all the rules...great, now go out and break some of them, and see what happens. With this approach, you're likely to have a few less than perfect turns...but they might also be a whole lot of fun, and maybe you'll even find out that you can do a whole bunch of things that you thought you'd never do...
I kinda got lost a few posts back.
Are you saying that we should all have our hands in the same position as racers?
I get the intricacies that a recreational skier shares with a racer's angles, but I'm not sure that race coaching and recreational skier teaching is in, nor should be the same.