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Discussion request regarding terminology, Specifically Retraction movements

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hi

 

In the process of studying for L3 teach exam and wanted to start a conversation/dialog regarding some terminology.

 

I know what a "retraction" movement is in the "textbook" sense of the word.

 

I also know that when we are asked to do "retraction" turns or "extension/retraction" turns the examiners are looking for an "active" retraction or pulling up of the legs under our body.

 

In the bumps for instance we "retract" to absorb an oncoming bump.

 

In the powder, we "retract" to get our feet out of the the crud or powder so we can either turn our feet or change edges.

 

In a medium to long radius turn we might retract to create an edge change and cross under move to get our COM moving down the hill or get the skis to a high edge angle early in the turn.

 

The question and dialog I am interested in is where else is a "retraction movement" used?

Is a lightening of pressure at the apex or exit of a turn in order deal with chatter on ice a form of retraction? however...(fill in with your thoughts and why please)

post #2 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dchan View Post

The question and dialog I am interested in is where else is a "retraction movement" used?

Yes!

post #3 of 14

OK - so out of context "yes" is not going to be helpful. But it's good to learn the context so that we can ski more and talk less.

 

Yes means anywhere. Yes means the question shouldn't be "where else is". It should be "where else can". Yes means if cross under turns involve retraction and any turn can have cross under combined with cross over movements, then retraction movements can be used in any turn. Yes means that if  long leg/short leg movements in turns use retraction movements to make a long leg short, then retraction movements can be occur in one or both legs at the same time.

 

We talk about weight distribution in turns being more to the outside ski in turns, sometimes lifting the inside ski to make the weight distribution 100-0 (outside to inside). But we do a drill called White Pass turns where the distribution is 0-100. It's possible to ski with the weight distribution reversed, but it's weird. Similarly, we can use pure retraction movements to initiate turns on groomed snow in large radius turns. It's possible, but it's weird. So you've nailed the major areas where retraction moves are most useful. Retraction movements in other situations could be somewhat useful or even somewhat more difficult. Lightening pressure could be the result of retraction movements. This is where we start getting into the area where it is good to have retraction movements in the tool bag to be used when one finds a good place to use them but it's bad to have only retraction movements in the tool bag. I saw the latter kind of skier in one of my L3 skiing exams. This person was a fantastic skier but did not pass because they were a one trick pony and could not demonstrate other movements at a high performance level. Your Movements May Vary.

post #4 of 14

Avalement is active absorption of terrain, or pressure through the use of muscular retraction and extension of the legs and body. Flexing and extending is another way to express this idea. Often we see folks mistakenly assume you can do one without the other. I explain this as once you have fully extended a leg, you cannot extend it any further. So you must flex it before extending it again. You offered great examples and TR is spot on with the advice that anytime you flex you are retracting. Although the examiners in your region may have a different opinion. Since you are studying for an exam their definition is probably what they expect you to use and understand. Good Luck with the test!

JASP

post #5 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dchan View Post

Hi

 

In the process of studying for L3 teach exam and wanted to start a conversation/dialog regarding some terminology.

 

I know what a "retraction" movement is in the "textbook" sense of the word.

 

I also know that when we are asked to do "retraction" turns or "extension/retraction" turns the examiners are looking for an "active" retraction or pulling up of the legs under our body.

 

In the bumps for instance we "retract" to absorb an oncoming bump.

 

In the powder, we "retract" to get our feet out of the the crud or powder so we can either turn our feet or change edges.

 

In a medium to long radius turn we might retract to create an edge change and cross under move to get our COM moving down the hill or get the skis to a high edge angle early in the turn.

 

The question and dialog I am interested in is where else is a "retraction movement" used?

Is a lightening of pressure at the apex or exit of a turn in order deal with chatter on ice a form of retraction? however...(fill in with your thoughts and why please)

 

Are you sure?

 

You might understand what it means to "flex"...but you clearly dont understand "why".  Learn "why" and then the "when" will become obvious.

post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by justanotherskipro View Post

Avalement is active absorption of terrain, or pressure through the use of muscular retraction and extension of the legs and body. Flexing and extending is another way to express this idea. Often we see folks mistakenly assume you can do one without the other. I explain this as once you have fully extended a leg, you cannot extend it any further. So you must flex it before extending it again. You offered great examples and TR is spot on with the advice that anytime you flex you are retracting. Although the examiners in your region may have a different opinion. Since you are studying for an exam their definition is probably what they expect you to use and understand. Good Luck with the test!

JASP

Thanks for the thoughts..

 

I do understand that any flexing active or passive is a "retraction movement" any time we shorten a leg by what ever means we do, so it is a retraction movement. It is an exam and I am quite certain that they are "thinking active retraction" in this case the answer would be "we don't use a retraction movement to control chatter on ice" however, a lightening of the old outside ski to let off some pressure so the ski does not chatter on the ice would technically be a retraction movement. . The request for dialog is to help me (and others) learn and understand what a "retraction movement" is not just what we think an examiner trying to get us to do, or say.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skidude72 View Post

 

Are you sure?

 

You might understand what it means to "flex"...but you clearly dont understand "why".  Learn "why" and then the "when" will become obvious.

Actually I think I do have a good understanding of "why" as well as when. The question I posed was worded specifically to try to start this very dialog we are getting.

 

After taking the skiing portion of the exam several times and really working on the tasks (one of which of course is retraction/extension turns) for some reason we almost always use a medium radius carved turn, with a retraction/crossunder move to show this task. This requires that the examiner sees a distinct active retraction movement as we exit the turn and as we change edges, followed by an active extension reaching our feet out towards the apex of the next turn. Yes it's an retraction/extension movement but in the written portion of the exam, it's not quite so clear that this is what they are thinking. I talked to several other L3's and our trainer at my hill, and they agree with me, we can argue both sides of the example. So I'm just trying to get more thoughts and hopefully a better understanding.

post #7 of 14
Quote:

dchan wrote:

 

This requires that the examiner sees a distinct active retraction movement as we exit the turn and as we change edges, followed by an active extension reaching our feet out towards the apex of the next turn. Yes it's an retraction/extension movement but in the written portion of the exam, it's not quite so clear that this is what they are thinking.

 

You hit on it in your quote above.

 

There is only "1" reason for retraction, it is to RELEASE the engaged edges at the turn finish.   "Absorbing" terrain by flexing and pivoting is not retraction, although professional ski instructors probably consider this retraction, it is not.  This is a major error and does no one any favors.

 

There a "2" major benefits that are also gained from retraction at the turn finish, regardless of how slight the range of retraction may be.  It could be 1/2" or it could be 6", the benefits are still there.

 

1.  As the skier extends the knees and closes the ankles into and at the turn finish, the retraction gives the skier "range" to flex the knees and open the ankles while floating weightless through transition.  This gets the skiers feet back under them and properly aligned.

 

2.  As the skier floats through transition, the opening/ extending of the ankles allows the skier to develop early shovel edge pressure to engage the edges early in the high "C" of the new turn.

 

Just my $.02.

 

Don't think about what I wrote to much or you'll be sure to fail your test, but if you just want to become a better skier, give it a second read.

 

Nail

post #8 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nailbender View Post

 

You hit on it in your quote above.

 

There is only "1" reason for retraction, it is to RELEASE the engaged edges at the turn finish.   "Absorbing" terrain by flexing and pivoting is not retraction, although professional ski instructors probably consider this retraction, it is not.  This is a major error and does no one any favors.

 

There a "2" major benefits that are also gained from retraction at the turn finish, regardless of how slight the range of retraction may be.  It could be 1/2" or it could be 6", the benefits are still there.

 

1.  As the skier extends the knees and closes the ankles into and at the turn finish, the retraction gives the skier "range" to flex the knees and open the ankles while floating weightless through transition.  This gets the skiers feet back under them and properly aligned.

 

2.  As the skier floats through transition, the opening/ extending of the ankles allows the skier to develop early shovel edge pressure to engage the edges early in the high "C" of the new turn.

 

Just my $.02.

 

Don't think about what I wrote to much or you'll be sure to fail your test, but if you just want to become a better skier, give it a second read.

 

Nail


I have never believed that there is "only one reason" for any one movement pattern.

post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dchan View Post


I have never believed that there is "only one reason" for any one movement pattern.

 

That's strange.  Some skiing movements have only one reason -- to attain or refine balance on a turning ski.

post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote

There is only "1" reason for retraction, it is to RELEASE the engaged edges at the turn finish.   "Absorbing" terrain by flexing and pivoting is not retraction, although professional ski instructors probably consider this retraction, it is not.  This is a major error and does no one any favors.

 

While I think retraction has many other uses, I would hazard a guess that if you came over a bump and saw a large rock that you could not avoid by turning, you would be doing some kind of retraction move.

post #11 of 14

Or a quick extension move!smile.gif

post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by markojp View Post

Or a quick extension move!smile.gif


except that often coming over a bump it's on the down side of the bump that we notice the rockeek.gif. Too late to extend to get ourselves off the ground. "Sure don't want to put my feet there!" but see it early enough, and you bet it's extend to "hop over" the obstacle.

post #13 of 14

And more seriously, good luck on your exam!

post #14 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by dchan View Post
 I talked to several other L3's and our trainer at my hill, and they agree with me, we can argue both sides of the example. 

Perfect. Just like debate team. They argue either side of a debate to test their skill. We argue either side of the debate to test our understanding.

 

 

 

Quote:
for some reason we almost always use a medium radius carved turn, with a retraction/crossunder move to show this task.

Because it is the optimal combination of difficulty to execute and ease of observation.

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