or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › A question about DIRT as it relates to turn initiation
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

A question about DIRT as it relates to turn initiation

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Last winter, while skiing at the end of the day on snow that was skied off in places, I found that I was able to get my skis to engage and arc cleanly whether I hit a skied off patch or not by ramping up the rate and intensity of my turn initiations.   Often times it is hard to know for sure without video exactly how we are moving, and it is also difficult to describe these movements even when you know what they are, so I may not get this right, but I think I was moving into the new turn ( or committing to the new turn ) quicker and actually generating more pressure on say the front 1/3 of my skis.   At least that's what it felt like to me.  This combined with the fact that I was able to ski quicker and overall more aggressively as the crowds thinned out really helped me get my skis hooked up and arcing through the turn.  So my question is have other people also felt this?   Does this make sense?   I have read many discussions concerning the fact that we can only increase the pressure on our skis for very brief periods of time by extending against them or driving them through our boots so I question what I think was happening, but I also wonder if a such a brief increase in pressure applied at just the right moment during turn initiation might yield the results I think I was getting.

post #2 of 9
Yes. Sometimes the duration of pressure can be extremely short. Learning when, where, how long, and how intense is the trick.

Sounds like you are starting to feel it.
post #3 of 9
Just remember that in each turn you make you will have X amount of pressure produced from start to finish and that the magnitude of X will vary based on the type(s) of turns you are making. In essence, where you generate this pressure in the turn (up high, in the fall line, or down low) will greatly influence your turn shape. Generally, excessive pressuring high in the turn is largely manufactured via "pushing" on the ski and can yield a loss of pressure (and possibly control) further down. Pressure in a ski turn is like a hundred dollar bill--when, where, and how you are going to spend it are important considerations, tactically...make sure you don't blow it all at once, unless you want to. smile.gif

zenny
post #4 of 9

Establishing the edge platform early usually involves moving into the new turn but levering forward to make the tips engage more is a separate idea. Closing the radius of the turn involves that greater tip pressure and some rockered skis like that move more than an average recreational ski. It's hard to say a lot more without knowing what you ski.

My immediate though would be if you stay levered forward through the turn the tail is likely to wash out and thus the rest of the turn will not be a clean arc. But even that depends on too much to offer meaningful advice since none of us have seen you ski.

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

Last winter, while skiing at the end of the day on snow that was skied off in places, I found that I was able to get my skis to engage and arc cleanly whether I hit a skied off patch or not by ramping up the rate and intensity of my turn initiations.   Often times it is hard to know for sure without video exactly how we are moving, and it is also difficult to describe these movements even when you know what they are, so I may not get this right, but I think I was moving into the new turn ( or committing to the new turn ) quicker and actually generating more pressure on say the front 1/3 of my skis.   At least that's what it felt like to me.  This combined with the fact that I was able to ski quicker and overall more aggressively as the crowds thinned out really helped me get my skis hooked up and arcing through the turn.  So my question is have other people also felt this?   Does this make sense?   I have read many discussions concerning the fact that we can only increase the pressure on our skis for very brief periods of time by extending against them or driving them through our boots so I question what I think was happening, but I also wonder if a such a brief increase in pressure applied at just the right moment during turn initiation might yield the results I think I was getting.

Tlougee, that's an interesting question.  To help folks respond, would you answer two questions here?

 

1.  Can you describe how you initiated the turns? In other words, what did you do to "move into the new turn"?

2.  Can you also describe how you made that "brief increase in pressure" happen during initiation?  Was there something special you did with regard to timing or intensity of some movement?  Or was it a new movement sequence, or what?


In doing these descriptions, you might include what you did with your old outside ski/leg/foot/ankle, your old inside ski/leg/foot/ankle, your upper body (hip, shoulder), and/or your pole/arm/hand, or other stuff you might have been doing.  Only include whatever you were aware of.  

post #6 of 9

Without video, it's hard to really say what is going on here, but here's a very vague crack at it.

 

There is definitely some validity to a more aggressive turn initiation leading to your increased ability to hold an edge through hardpack/ice. There is a tendency for many skiers to try to ski icy terrain more gingerly, backing off of the skis because they're having a hard time getting an edge to set. It's an instinctual action that most skiers don't even think about when they do it. However, if you are more aggressive in initiating your turn, you are much more likely to be aggressively on your ski's edges throughout the turn. An aggressive turn will generally mean a higher edge angle, and more pressure on the edges. Both of those factors will force the edge to bite into hardpack and ice better than a tentative, hesitant turn.

 

When you say that you are feeling more pressure on the front 1/3 of your ski, that tells me that you are moving forward into your turn, actively pressuring the tips of your skis as you start the turn. That will definitely get the skis to hook up and hold an edge much better in firm conditions.

 

In short, your observations, as far as they go in interwebs typing, are accurate. More aggressive turns will result in a better ability to hold an edge in most conditions.

post #7 of 9

So many options exist here, grip in the tip is a good thing (to a point) but staying that far forward isn't always a good thing. How you develop that additional tip pressure thus becomes the subject most here argue about all the time. My advice would be to try what they say and decide for yourself what works best for you.

A few tips about how to think about transitions include deciding what you plan to do with the rest of the current turn, where you want that turn to take you, and how that sets you up for the following turn. In short the transition you use must match the objectives in rest of the turn(s). So set yourself up for success in the rest of that turn by choosing a transition that compliments that type of turn.

 

Pure carves seem to be the objective you are seeking but multiple versions of arc to arc turns exist. Round GS turns, shorter SL style turns and even gliding downhill turns represent three different options. Obviously, each turn type involves a different DIRT objective since the strong shaping that follows the initiation requires a slightly different skill blend. Plantar flexing the ankles as the legs extend is one way to pressure the tips but that tends to be more a short swoopy turn option. Extending the outside hip and knee so the outside femur gets vertical to the outside ski tends to be a GS move and must be accompanied with projecting the core towards the top of the shaping phase. And a progressive but not all that quick lower body extension with a smooth projection of the core towards where the skis are heading allows us to glide through the transition and not disrupt any of the momentum we are trying to hang onto between turns.

 

Regardless of the type of turn you prefer experiment with all of these options and make up a few of your own. In doing that you will experience various successes and maybe a few failures. Only then will you trust whatever transition you decide to use. Have fun with it too. Many will suggest one method is better but if you have played with all of these ideas your ability to decide which works best and when they make sense will supersede all the generic advice we could possibly offer.

Enjoy

JASP 

post #8 of 9
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the feedback!    To answer some of your questions I was on a pair of race stock Volkl SLs, but I was making GS size turns.    The best I can do to answer some of LiquidFeet 's questions is to describe what I try to do.   In addition I will try to upload a video taken a month or so after the experience I posted about.   I doubt any major facet of my skiing will appear substantially different.   I try to initiate my turns by rolling my ankles simultaneously and then progressively moving into the turn building a strong inside half.   I try to keep my skis pressured such that they arc cleanly without washing out the tails.   What I changed, which seemed to help me initiate my turns without having the edges slide out, was the rate at which I moved into the turn and the intensity that I pressed against the front of my boots.  When I did this I noticed a marked improvement in my ability to get my skis to hookup and arc cleanly.   It might simply be the case that my turn initiations are generally not aggressive enough for optimal turns.   I found it interesting because it was so effective for me and was really all about DIRT which is something that in my experience is not coached that often.   In fact, the most frequent application of DIRT that I have encountered is coaching people to slow down their turn initiations and here I was having success ramping them up.  Of course all of this stuff is relative.

 
If I can get the video to upload, I am the second skier in a grey jacket and red pants.
 
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 

@freeski919  - I like your avatar.   Looks like you are really ripping!   As to your feedback, it is dead on with what I was feeling and thinking.    The thing is the more I learn about skiing the more I realize how much I don't know so I like to run things past other people.

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 › A question about DIRT as it relates to turn initiation