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Try it on a seven year old rule of clarity - Page 2

post #31 of 38
Originally Posted by justanotherskipro View Post

LF, lean is four letters, inclinate, or inclined stance are no more specific and are three syllable and 10 & 14 keystrokes. What they mean is to lean, whole body, or with angulation it is still leaning. Banking on the other hand is a odd term because it is leaning but if willful it is inclinating, if not willful it is banking. I find that a bit silly and do my best to avoid using the term since intent is hard to define from a third person perspective.
Multi-syllabic grand eloquence might seem cool to some but the pioneers of the sport were common folk and spoke as such. That spirit lives on among some of us but not all of us.
As far as leaning to the outside with the upper body, well be careful to avoid implying upper body moves like reverse airplane moves.

jasp, I never said I would use the term banking with the client.  I was talking to this community in that sentence.

post #32 of 38
Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post

What's wrong with "lean?"  I'm curious.

What do you use instead?

It's the kind of thing I would explain better in person.  Basically the term lean is passive and I'm advocating active skiing.  I hear lean into the front of the boots, lean down the hill, lean forward, and others from people.  I know what they mean when they say these things, but the description is wrong.  When people say they want to lean forward, I have to ask how they plan to do that?  What are you leaning against?  We lean against a post or we lean back in our chairs.  When we ski we "project our mass" into the turn at the right time, we don't "lean"  Words have meaning whether we think about it or not and a passive non descriptive word like "lean" bugs me.  I like an active or even pro-active term like "projection of mass" much better.  This is only one non specific example of something I might say other than lean.  It gets to be a game with the students to come up with something to say other than lean and gets them thinking.


Leaning forward is a single action while projecting your mass into the turn implies that you must allow your mass to settle back at some point so that it can be projected forward again into the next turn.  It's active/dynamic where leaning is passive/static.


Originally Posted by tetonpwdrjunkie View Post

.......................What you can't see is how it goes on snow with the demos and drills that are part of the lesson.  The other part that doesn't translate here is the tone of voice and inflection that I might use while presenting this.  It seems to be pretty clear with students on snow.  My number one thing with students at all levels is that they don't move enough.  I gotta have more cowbell!  The other thing to keep in mind is that while I do teach all ages and ability levels, my primary gig is teaching levels 7-9 in adults most of whom are 40-60yo.


Also the thing about the word "lean" is really my thing.  I've never had a trainer bring this up.  It's something that came to me over years of teaching and hearing that word over and over again.  Projection of mass is something that I might say in a specific circumstance.  It is not the only phrase I use.  It's the example that I choose to use here.

Yes, context is everything.  You (we) use body language and voice inflection and demonstrations to get the message across.  I get it.  When I first read "project your mass," I thought whoah........   but the way you've explained it makes perfect sense.


I've also had clients eagerly embrace a brand new technical phrase as they learn to put it to use, so yes, it's not a RULE to never ever use multisyllabic technical phrases full of unfamiliar words.  It's just something to keep in mind.  Before I became an instructor I skied with ski club weekend skiers.  My closest buddy refused to take any lessons because she said instructors insisted on using terms like "perpendicular" and "square" and they kept switching from "uphill/downhill" to "inside/outside."  She didn't understand any of these, always got confused when instructors went into "instructor talk," and didn't want to spend valuable ski time learning new words.  I think about her when I choose my words in a lesson.

post #33 of 38
Actually, it's surprising to me how many of the instructors I work with, many of whom have been teaching for more than a few seasons, don't fully understand the meaning(s) behind certain terms/phrases. Last season when Chris Fellows came to our mountain to give a clinic, he asked everyone in the group to perform some retraction turns. As soon as he skied off one of the instructors turned to me and asked, "Whats a retraction turn?", so it isn't just clients that get confused. Of course this may be somewhat of an isolated incident, but...

As LF says though, once a particular movement is more or less "owned" the meanings behind the words become that much more clear. I agree with the idea that communication with clients should be kept a simple as possible, but perhaps the same rule of thumb should apply when it's trainer/ clinician to instructor...at least initially.

post #34 of 38
Thread Starter 
Demos and inflection support what we say but if what you say isn't body part specific, directional defined it can be improved. Move your torso towards the middle of the next turn is what the project your CENTER OF MASS to the apex of the next turn means. So the shorthand offered was abbreviated excessively and thus requires additional information. The demo and all the rest of that face to face action provides that. It is far more effective and easy to understand if we use the demo as a visual example of exactly what we said. Like I said before the best of the best have the skill to call their shot and show it exactly as they described it.
post #35 of 38
Thread Starter 
Tpj, I hope you see that feedback as constructive. It is remarkable to experience communication and teaching at that level.
post #36 of 38

Oh dear.

post #37 of 38

Eschew obfuscation.

post #38 of 38
Thread Starter 
...Espouse elucidation.
A great example of the irony of jargon.
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