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What should an instructor be able to speak to for boots?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Hi guys, 

 

Let's assume that you have an opportunity to help ski instructors develop in some bootfitting-related domain. What skills and knowledge would you want  instructors to develop? Where can you see instructors adding value to the bootfitting process? Assume the instructor teaches recreational skiers of beginner to advanced levels as well as some introductory youth race coaching.

post #2 of 9

Let them stick to what they know! If they truely value a good Bootfitter they should just bring down their clients and let the bootfitter do their jobs.

post #3 of 9

At the lower levels at least instructors I've met have very little knowledge in alignment and balance and the effects stance changes actually have in terms of skier movement patterns.  When I meet a new customer at my store the one thing I typically won't be able to do with them is ski and many of the things they tell me have been evaluated by their own experience rather than through instructor input.  I think it would be very valuable to have instructors trained more on alignment and balance so they could provide more first hand information to their client who could then relate it to me.

 

Lou

post #4 of 9

We work very closely with the Ski School and with PSIA both regionally and nationally. We provide training and services and have ongoing dialogue with the ski school here and others in the Rocky Mountain Division.

 

If a Ski Pro (that's what we call 'schoolers here in Aspen/Snowmass) understands how to recognize when something is wrong and how to describe what they see, it can be very beneficial for all concerned.

 

It also makes their job easier. If an individual is not standing right, it isn't realistic to expect them to move correctly, nor get an accurate result from their motions.

 

An Instructor who understands enough about stance and alignment to recognize problems is a great asset for our business.

 

It is also a great asset for the Instructor, it shows a Client that they understand why that person might be struggling and sets up a follow up lesson.

 

We don't need them to guess that the individual is 1.5 degrees overedged on their left leg or that they need a 3mm gas pedal. But if they have seen that the Client's left skis diverges on turn initiation, or that the person is overflexed, that is great input.

 

jl

post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post

Hi guys, 

 

Let's assume that you have an opportunity to help ski instructors develop in some bootfitting-related domain. What skills and knowledge would you want  instructors to develop? Where can you see instructors adding value to the bootfitting process? Assume the instructor teaches recreational skiers of beginner to advanced levels as well as some introductory youth race coaching.

 

 

Like other boot fitters here, I do have opportunities to work with instructors on educating them in understanding the relationship between the PSIA skills and alignment and how to differentiate between skier issues caused by equipment vs. technique vs. intent vs. physiology.  I want instructors to realize cause and effect is not limited to technique and that many times students' issues are cause by poor fitting and/or misaligned equipment.  

 

I have developed an athlete performance assessment model called T.E.P.P. (technique, Equipment, Psychology, Physiology) which is a more comprehensive assessment model for instructors and coaches to improve skier performance.  Simply focusing on technique and trying to fix everything with technique is extremely short sighted.  Finding the true cause of skiing performance issues involves evaluating TEPP and minimizing issues in each of these areas not just T.

 

As others have stated here, learning to recognize symptoms of alignment issues is a huge step to becoming a better instructor and more effective communicator with your favorite boot fitter.

post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 

So what cues should an instructor look for to identify alignment issues?

post #7 of 9

clenched teeth, burning quads, the lock down look, rubbed holes at the toes of the footbed, excessive rotation, excessive lean, excessive flexion of ankle/knee joints, weird head movements, inability to recenter the feet underneath the body in between turns, throwing every body part at the turn, moving across right or across left in a straight forward fall line, funky pole plant across the body or with excessive upward arm movement attempting to release the ski from the edge to start the turn, excessive a-framing, excessive bowlegged look, stemming to start the turn, aggressive up-unweighting to get the skis to release, aggressive down-unweighting to get the skis to release, deep sway in lower back, inability to perform drills that require equal balance laterally and fore aft.

 

the ultimate cue is when their skiing movement patterns look like they would qualify for the monty pythons ministry of funny walks!

 

jim

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input, all. Not sure I can clearly see when someone has boot issues versus when they're simply applying some deeply ingrained movements to get their skis to turn. That said, you've given a good set of cues that will prompt me to investigate boot fit with the customers. Thanks!

post #9 of 9

Metaphor,  Unfortunately many if not most of the "deeply ingrained movements" you refer to are likely caused by poor alignment!  They are usually compensations made to overcome poor alignment, not always.... but probably more often than you may believe!?

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