EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › PSIA-E Level III (3) Skiing Tasks - Suggestions
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

PSIA-E Level III (3) Skiing Tasks - Suggestions

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

I was hoping if any skier out there passed their Level 3 Skiing recently and would not mind provding a breakdown outside of what is in the manual.

 

I am starting my training and want to make sure I focus on the right stuff.

 

Thanks.

post #2 of 29
Focus on everything.

You either ski it or you don't.
post #3 of 29

Along with everything Kneale said :

Get off the groomed and ski on as much other conditions/terrain (ice, mank, death cookies, bumps, breakable crust, powder,trees, etc.) ski in the worst conditions you can find, rain, sleet, snowstorm, 20 below, etc., ski bell to bell no breaks, ski multiple days in a row, ski thru pain, ski at different areas, you have to push yourself , good luck

post #4 of 29

Try to ski with a current Ed. Staff member. (Dev, DCL, ACE, ETS or examiner) if you can and perform a few tasks to better understand what you may need to focus on in your skiing.  And what Kneale said.

post #5 of 29

Sign up for one of the LIII practice exams. They usually run through the current seasons exam tasks at the practice exam and the examiner gives general feedback on your execution. Or contact an examiner directly and schedule some one on one time to evaluate your skiing.  

post #6 of 29

which division are you in?  makes a difference

 

here's a good tip - watch the examiner carefully when they (or sometimes a dev team along for the ride) demo's the task during the exam - make a note of the size and shape of the turns, the speed its skied at and other variables and then use those same factors when you ski that task.  They show you exactly what they are looking for if you pay attention.

 

Also ski at a speed andw with tatics that you would teach at particularly in the bumps.

 

Also try to make sure the speed you reach on your 3rd turn stays the same the rest of the task - unless of course the task calls for speeding up or slowing down

post #7 of 29
If you can, find a LIII or higher mentor on your ski school staff willing to spend some time skiing with you every time you're both at work. Repeated MA of your skiing by someone with the experience to judge will help a lot.
post #8 of 29
Thread Starter 
I am skiing a lot and working with my mountains trainers. I was hoping for some direct feedback from someone who may have just been through the exam. Appreciate any and all advice, keep it coming.
post #9 of 29
Again what division?

I passed the ski module western div last season spring.

DC
post #10 of 29
post #11 of 29
Duh.

Thread title says eastern Division.
post #12 of 29
Ski in the worst possible conditions off piste as much as you can and concentrate on good turn mechanics in all these conditions.
post #13 of 29

Short and medium radius on groomed and ungroomed

Pivot slips

School house bumps

Bumps

More bumps

One ski carved arcs

dynamic parallel to open parallel to wedge Christie to wedge

post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillA View Post

Short and medium radius on groomed and ungroomed

Pivot slips

School house bumps

Bumps

More bumps

One ski carved arcs

dynamic parallel to open parallel to wedge Christie to wedge

 

What are school house bumps?

 

For the "one ski carved arcs", do you mean doing it on the inside or outside ski?  Outside ski is obviously significantly easier then the inside, so I'm assuming you mean inside for an L3 task?

post #15 of 29

One ski means skiing on only one ski making turns in both directions using both the inside and outside edge of one ski.

 

Schoolhouse bumps is a demonstration of how the instructor would lead a class, using a variety of tactics and technique  through the terrain  selected by the examiner for the task. That's how I understood the task maybe someone else has a better description.

 

If you can ski you should be able to pass the LIII exam, if you fail you need to learn how to ski. I'm still learningredface.gif


Edited by BillA - 1/8/13 at 4:08pm
post #16 of 29

The PSIA-E exam guide has a list of possible exam tasks. When you can do all of the drills (e.g. White Pass turns, pivot slips) accurately and with ease, then you you will "know" that you are ready. I have no good reason to say this, but I believe that if you can do these tasks you can pass L3 skiing tasks in any division with the only exception of having experience with terrain and snow conditions for your region.

 

Observe the differences between level 2 and 3 pros. When you can visually identify (it's hard to put words to, but you'll know it when you see it) difference in edge engagement and smoothness and can rate your own skiing against that scale then you will know where your skiing needs to go in order to be ready. You should be able to assess your own skiing by look (video) and by feel.

 

The scoring system and common perception lead people to believe that they may be only one or two successful tasks or just getting the right examiner away from passing (e.g. if 1 of 3 pass in two failed attempts then if you only had those two who passed you in the same exam you would have made it). My observation is that many of the people that fail level 3 are within one or two movement fixes of passing. For those people it's not who the examiners are or what particular task they were weak at, it's simply one or two ineffective movements that are in "their skiing" that happen to make some tasks fails, but shows up in all of their skiing tasks. After 2 attempts at the skiing exam, I am amazed at the huge variety of great skiing technique displayed by both those who passed and those who failed. Yes I saw amazingly good skiers fail. They failed because they had so great a mastery over some movements that they neglected other movements. They did not need these movements to ski great, but you need all of the "effective" movements to pass. The written comments are much more important than a "score", but you may need help interpreting written comments. Often different examiners are making the exact same observation in totally different words.

 

Too many pros attempt L3 cert thinking that they will pass if they have a good day. I flunked when I had two good days and passed when I had a bad first day (2 out of 3 examiners) because I had a flawed movement on the 2 good days and had the movement fixed the second time even though I was skiing poorly in my own estimation. As much as I say this, a group of candidates can always be broken down into definite pass, definite fail and borderline. The examiners know this within the first 15 minutes and you should too. Examiners will give everyone a fair chance and let the scoring system decide the results, but they know. For borderline people, they are either looking to see if the accumulation of movement flaws is too many or how serious a serious movement flaw is demonstrated throughout the exam. As much as L3 seems like "perfect" skiing, everyone has flaws. It's your job to identify and eliminate major flaws prior to the exam.

 

Coach's tip is a good one, but use your knowledge too. I had one examiner demo wedge turns with a braking wedge width, but a gliding wedge edge angle. We only needed to demonstrate a gliding wedge. No one doing a narrow wedge got dinged.

 

Teamwork can help pass an exam. Most candidates don't want feedback from other candidates, but some do. Talk about it as a group up front. Although examiners often make it clear that they are always willing to offer clarifications, often times they take off to do a demo and leave some in the group wondering about some detail. Talking about it in the group instead of skiing down to the examiner for clarification can save time and prevent needless mistakes. Saving time can open up the opportunities for "do overs". Personally I don't think do overs are much good, but I have seen them work for some people. In the example above, our group watched the examiner demo and several people observed "WTF?!" We noted that her demo was inconsistent with our examiners, we reviewed what the task was supposed to be testing and as a group decided we would do narrow gliding wedges. I have no doubt that a couple guys in our group would have tried wide wedges without this discussion.

post #17 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillA View Post

Schoolhouse bumps is a demonstration of how the instructor would lead a class, using a variety of tactics and technique  through the terrain  selected by the examiner for the task. That's how I understood the task maybe someone else has a better description.

 

 

Of the 6 examiners I had who gave me the schoolhouse bumps task, 5 did it as an open ended task: show me a line/tactic(s) you would use for a beginner bump class. One examiner (who was a real "Hoser") demonstrated a specific tactic (straight down the fall line skidding into the face of each bump) and wanted to see us do it. BTW - I've seen two examiners fall doing their demo for schoolhouse bumps (which does NOT give a free pass to the group).

 

 

Quote:
If you can ski you should be able to pass the LIII exam, if you fail you need to learn how to ski. I'm still learningredface.gif

Hmm - once you pass L3 you will inevitably hear "Now you are ready to learn to ski". I'm still learning.

post #18 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRusty View Post

Of the 6 examiners I had who gave me the schoolhouse bumps task, 5 did it as an open ended task: show me a line/tactic(s) you would use for a beginner bump class. One examiner (who was a real "Hoser") demonstrated a specific tactic (straight down the fall line skidding into the face of each bump) and wanted to see us do it. BTW - I've seen two examiners fall doing their demo for schoolhouse bumps (which does NOT give a free pass to the group).

 

 

Hmm - once you pass L3 you will inevitably hear "Now you are ready to learn to ski". I'm still learning.

 

Hmmm-apologies, I thought I was providing some useful information............ never mind.

post #19 of 29
Thread Starter 
I have been told by the trainers at my mountain that my skiing is solid and I should definitely take the exam. At the movement analysis clinic I attended last spring I told the clinician that I was planning to take the year off and focus on my skiing and get ready for my level 3 and she said don't wait, take it this year that my upper level skiing is good. I love skiing steeps, bumps, trees all day in a foot of pow, firm, or a spring slurpee. I really do not want to take any thing for granted and fail a task that may be new that one of my locals may not have been aware of. I am focusing a lot on white pass turns, javelin turns, skating, and one ski skiing. Again, I appreciate all the help.
post #20 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillA View Post

 

Hmmm-apologies, I thought I was providing some useful information............ never mind.

Hmmm - your info was useful and true - no apologies necessary. When one can make sense of contradictory info it is like snatching the pebble from the master's hand.

 

Good luck rdavis - let us know how it works out.

post #21 of 29

A couple of tasks that I would definately suggest mastering are

 

Lane changers - they are really looking to see that the medium radius turn is not just a traverse and is shaped as a medium turn.  Also make sure the speed stays the same with the medium or you will have trouble with the short turn right after it

 

Pain in the S turns - aslo known as short around round - this takes some practice to get the short turns shaped in a large pattern - tests for your ability to really control your arc at will with proper leg rotation

 

Synchro - in the ART clinic I took there was a focus on using Synchro during the L3 exam - I'd practice this with someone also prepping for the exam

 

other paths in the bumps - med turns etc in the bumps

 

I took the ART clinic in the east last season and the focus is shifting away from white pass for some reason but I would work on them just in case

post #22 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRusty View Post


The scoring system and common perception lead people to believe that they may be only one or two successful tasks or just getting the right examiner away from passing (e.g. if 1 of 3 pass in two failed attempts then if you only had those two who passed you in the same exam you would have made it). My observation is that many of the people that fail level 3 are within one or two movement fixes of passing. For those people it's not who the examiners are or what particular task they were weak at, it's simply one or two ineffective movements that are in "their skiing" that happen to make some tasks fails, but shows up in all of their skiing tasks. After 2 attempts at the skiing exam, I am amazed at the huge variety of great skiing technique displayed by both those who passed and those who failed. Yes I saw amazingly good skiers fail. They failed because they had so great a mastery over some movements that they neglected other movements. They did not need these movements to ski great, but you need all of the "effective" movements to pass. The written comments are much more important than a "score", but you may need help interpreting written comments. Often different examiners are making the exact same observation in totally different words.

 

Too many pros attempt L3 cert thinking that they will pass if they have a good day. I flunked when I had two good days and passed when I had a bad first day (2 out of 3 examiners) because I had a flawed movement on the 2 good days and had the movement fixed the second time even though I was skiing poorly in my own estimation. As much as I say this, a group of candidates can always be broken down into definite pass, definite fail and borderline. The examiners know this within the first 15 minutes and you should too. Examiners will give everyone a fair chance and let the scoring system decide the results, but they know. For borderline people, they are either looking to see if the accumulation of movement flaws is too many or how serious a serious movement flaw is demonstrated throughout the exam. As much as L3 seems like "perfect" skiing, everyone has flaws. It's your job to identify and eliminate major flaws prior to the exam.

 

 

FYI I was doing well on all my "tasks" the last few times I took the exam (sure there were a few glitches here or there) but if the exam were just points for my best run of each task, I would have passed several years ago.  It was the "overall blend of skills" that was lacking, and when the skiing got real rough, a lot of the old "go to" athletic recoveries appeared.. The last several attempts I was told, stop doing drills and just go out and ski. Ski hard, Ski in the worst possible conditions you can find, ski the crud, icy bump,s junk, and steeps that no one else wants to because it's going to be a rough ride. Pick a line, ski it and deal with what comes your way, keeping in mind good turn mechanics.. This was and is how I have been training all last year and this year, getting ready for the L3 teach..

 

PSIA West does use the tasks to assist the examiners isolate movement patterns and see where the strength's and weaknesses are, however, they are looking to see the overall skiing package.. Are we presenting an LIII image, with proper movements and turn mechanics in all our skiing 90% of the time. Tasks, free skiing, demos, steeps, bumps and crud.

 

I agree the written comments were far more enlightening than the scores.

 

DC

post #23 of 29

and BTW I did pass my L3 ski module last spring.. .. and I'm still learning.. I usually tell people, when I get my L3 It will be my license to learn..

post #24 of 29

Thanks David - I thought I was just making all this stuff up. And congrats - now go get that teaching portion done.

post #25 of 29

As far as the skiing goes just remember the LIII standard is  "All terrain, all conditions"

 

As far as Exams are concerned watch what the examiner does.However you understand what you were told to do, do what they do. In other words develop your MA abilities at least as much as you work on skiing tasks. You can be the strongest skier in your group, but if you can not figure out what skill blend the examiner is using to preform a particular task you're in for rough sledding.  I've found a great way to work on this is to follow people at all ability levels and try to make your skis do exactly what theirs do. 

 

Originally Posted by TheRusty View Post
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Hmm - once you pass L3 you will inevitably hear "Now you are ready to learn to ski". I'm still learning.

 

 

Agreed. I hope I'm starting to get a handle on how big task I set for myself when I decided to try teaching skiing in hopes of learning how to ski.

 

My old SSD the the day after I passed my (what was then called full, now called) LIII told me "Now you can ski however you like.".

 

Last week I was shadowing a LIII tele exam prep group when the examiner headed towards a long steep gnarly icy bump run and invited me to join them. I told him that as I already

 A: knew I could do it, B: based on conditions the day before knew it wasn't going to be much fun, and C: already have my LIII tele pin, I would go ski how I wanted and catch them elsewhere.    

post #26 of 29

Sometimes ya gotta rattle them bones in the gnar just to make the others in the group get really pissed about unskiable conditions that actually are skiable (especially by an old fart). Sometimes you gotta do crazy stuff just to keep your reputation intact. Other times you you just have to take the sane alternative.

 

I would agree wholly with "Do what the examiner does" except that I've already been through one exception to that rule. If you've done your homework and fully understand the task objective you can and should be wary of "traps" the examiner may be setting (either intentionally or unintentionally). In my example an examiner (no names mentioned Barb) demoed a wedge turn with skis set wide apart, but flattened to still make it a gliding wedge. The entire group went "Whoa - uh, no" and decided we would do "normal" gliding wedges. 

post #27 of 29

I would definitely go to a Level III skiing clinic.  They are great.  When you go MAKE SURE TO ASK WHY each task will be given.  Each task is designed to show a particular skill.  For example, one legged skiing is designed to demonstrate stance and whether you can move your center of mass appropriately.   So, when they give you a task to practice as "so, in an exam, what exactly are you looking for and why?"

 

In the east, we only have one document without much info.  It's HERE.  But PSIA Rocky Mountain has a great set of materials to prepare for exams (their exams are different from ours, but what they look for in tasks is the same), I recommend them HERE  Pay attention to the "Level III Skiing Standards".

 

Lastly, don't go to the exam if you say to yourself "if I have my best day I can pass".  You should look for validation from any examiners, DCL, Dev Team, or Level IIIs you can find.  Ask them to be brutally honest.

 

Bob

post #28 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRusty View Post


I would agree wholly with "Do what the examiner does" except that I've already been through one exception to that rule. If you've done your homework and fully understand the task objective you can and should be wary of "traps" the examiner may be setting (either intentionally or unintentionally). In my example an examiner (no names mentioned Barb) demoed a wedge turn with skis set wide apart, but flattened to still make it a gliding wedge. The entire group went "Whoa - uh, no" and decided we would do "normal" gliding wedges. 

 

 

I would say from your description it wasn't an exception, though it may have been a "trap".

 

Having done your homework, and fully understanding the task, you were able to watch the demo and see the key idea (gliding-v-braking wedge) and not get thrown by the red herring of the wide stance. It sounds as though you made an acceptable call in doing "normal" gliding wedges as that is what you would be more likely to demo while teaching. However I contend that having the versatility to also demo a wide track gliding wedge, as demoed to you, would be a better response in an exam situation.

 

A friend was at an exam prep at which an examiner went to the top of an icy bump run with a large knoll, that showed lots of big air potential, in the middle of it. After setting the task of skiing the run as a professional the examiner skied down the side of the trail. As a group most of them decided this was a chance to show how big they could go, some of them even pulled it off. My friend skied the same line as the examiner. At the end of the day the examiner congratulated him on being the only one to understand the task.

 

 

 

WVSkier. I fully agree with "don't go to the exam if you say to yourself "if I have my best day I can pass"".  At LIII the best attitude to go to an exam with is "Gimme the damn pin". If you are tentative or otherwise lacking in confidence it will show in your skiing and your teaching. On the road to my alpine full exam I was half way through the mock exam our on staff examiners gave to candidates when I realized that If I hadn't yet made up my mind to go at that point, I wasn't ready. It was a relief when my SSD started to chew on me about my lousy demos that night to say I fully agreed, and that's why I was withdrawing for that season.  I've gone 4 for 4 in exams since then (Alpine full, Tele I, II, III) So at least for me it works.   

post #29 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave W View Post

 

 

However I contend that having the versatility to also demo a wide track gliding wedge, as demoed to you, would be a better response in an exam situation.

 

A legitimate contention. Personally for me, it is something I had practiced, but not a lot. It was a risk reward situation that I deemed to be not worth the risk. It was definitely a questionable call. The group discussed this and made our decision within the full context of the situation (what the task was supposed to be within the context of the exam guide, how the task was verbally presented and how it was demonstrated). I can't remember if we followed up after the task to verify whether or not the examiner wanted to see a wide track gliding wedge or not, but we were certainly aware that the examiner could have been specifically looking for that to be demonstrated.

 

Sometimes the trap is opportunity to earn extra credit.

 

Another task in one of my exams was to do GS turns in the bumps. On a trail where the bumps were only 8-10 bumps wide (groomed flat on one side and trees on the other), the examiner offered extra credit for doing the task using the exact full width of the bump run. 1/2 way through my run I realized the risk of screw up was a lot higher than I thought. The trap was that using exactly the full width was almost guaranteed to run you into a wall at some point and test your nerves when holding a high edge angle going over a bump a couple feet away from a tree. It definitely would have been a lot smarter to leave a one bump margin on the tree side. But those of us who went for the extra credit had much better looking runs.

 

I guess the message here is be ready to make some tough calls and then just go execute.

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Instruction & Coaching
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › PSIA-E Level III (3) Skiing Tasks - Suggestions