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My perspective on the Epicski Academy.

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I must say that I was totally blown away by the smoothness and precision with which the academy unfolded. This could not have been a small feat nor was there a real blue print in place from which to work. The Epicski Academy was inpresidented in the skiing industry. There have been many others who have organized outside events but none from the perspective on a voluntary basis or from the internet. I must stand in awe and profoundly thank the orgainzers of this event. To be sure, I have many questions on how to orgainize such an event.

I knew going into the academy that it was going to be physically very taxing for me. Physically taxing it was, but the rewards went far beyond my wildest imagination. My imagination conjured up plenty of things that could go wrong as well as right and I only saw things happening right.

I had two participants, Mary and AC both strong accomphished very competent telemark skiers. Both had all the necessary well developed skill sets needed for top level skiing. My job was to change the blending and timing of the skill sets.

Let me tell the group something. When you ski as well as AC and Mary, you have to REALLY WANT more improvement. When you are a competent accomplished skier its easy to sit back and be complacent about improvement. Improvement at the expert level is a little like watching paint dry. At the expert level you're looking for small refined movement changes with big shifts in mind and attitude. Those big mind changes in the way you view practicing movements and your approach to improvement are NOT easy at the high end of skiing. You have to REALLY WANT IT or things are not going to happen for you. Lip service to yourself and others just doesn't cut it. Mary and Augie stepped up to those challenges far above what I was expecting. The comraderie of the group was totally dynamic. Both made great strides in their skiing. I made big improvements in my own skiing too. I was totally blown away. My biggest improvements happend yesterday, here at the home hill, with the D team but those improvements had there roots in Utah.

I have worked hard and have had a very good clean transition through neutral and edge change but never really could take the G forces in the middle of the turns. I was never really comfortable with speed and assumed that most of my problems were due to a strength issues in my legs. Well it turns out that what I have been doing is dropping my left hip in the left turn and falling out of the power position. Bob Barnes pointed this out to me last spring but things really didn't click then. The power position is much smaller in terms of movements than I would have guessed. Once I understood this and found the right hip position that allowed great G forces to build without weakness, I discovered what Bob Barnes and Weems were talking about when they said they just like to rip carved turns anymore. WOW, what a feeling. I was suddenly able to get rediculously low to the snow and experienced real boot-out for the first time. In the power position I can go all the way down until boot-out while feeling total control and power in the skis with no edge fade. I am not talking about going really fast, I am talking really tight reaching carved short radius turns with a glass smooth turn transition. I can tighten that radius and get my hip close to that snow. What a cool unbelievable feeling. It all started in Utahr.
post #2 of 6
Nothing to say but wow! Thanks for sharing.
post #3 of 6
Great to meet you at the Academy! Hope my music didn't keep you awake at 2am... [img]redface.gif[/img]

It was great doing that Tele / Alpine comparison on video that afternoon. I sure learned alot from you about tele-ing.

And to hear that more breakthrough's are continuing- I hope everybody- participant and coaches alike have that occur!

Till we meet again, (online or in person) keep the waxed side down!

post #4 of 6
Thanks for the post, Pierre. It really was great watching you, AC and Mary on video at day's end.

Please consider coming to the New England [or East Coast] gathering March 1,2,3 and 4 at Sugarbush. I didn't get a chance to ski with you in Utah, and I think maybe if you ski fixed heel alpine, I might pick up some tips in the bumps.

[ February 06, 2003, 02:39 PM: Message edited by: oboe ]
post #5 of 6
Bumped up for Aspen's marketing commitee!
post #6 of 6
Pierre, as one who has enjoyed your great insights and willingness to speak your mind over the past couple of years participating in these Forums, I know that if you are applauding the Academy so strongly, it must have been an incredible success from a pure instruction perspective. I don't mean to play favorites, but I'll honestly say that your endorsement is more likely to sway me to attend next year.

Thanks for your candor.
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