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Hip and Weight Distribution Coaching (feedback requested)

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Hello, I had a question regarding a specific coaching method I received. I know there is a "balancing" thread right below, but I had a few specific questions regarding a specific method of instruction. A bit of background:

 

Intermediate skiier, been skiing recreationally for over 20 years, get a few lessons here and there but nothing serious. I went to the slopes yesterday with a coach for about 8 hours of private lessons with a PSIA instructor.

 

I apparently struggle with keeping enough pressure on my downhill ski, therefore making my turning process less efficient. So, the thing we worked on most was changing my CoM during my transition to my outside (old inside) ski right before entering the fall-line.

 

His coaching approach to resolve my balancing issue, was to do everything on the green slopes, either parallel or snow-plow, without letting my skis get on edge. Basically, here was the drill I did:

 

1) During my turn, I'm putting 95% of my CoM on my outside leg. As I'm doing so, I'm consciously moving my hips, butt, shoulders and even my head to my outside leg (i.e., "leaning" my hips/butt/upper body together as one). He wanted me to really exaggerate this, to the point where even my head was sort of bending down the fall-line.

 

2) In transition, I slowly "get up," move into a "neutral" CoM (i.e., no more of the exagerrated stuff above), and start putting pressure on my inside (new outside) leg.

 

3) Once I fall into the fall-line, I repeat step 1 above but this time on my other (now new outside leg).

 

Based on the above, I had a few questions:

 

A) Is this training approach sound? I've never seen this before or heard about it, so I'm a bit confused as to what to make of it. I'm especially confused as to this direction to consciously move my hips/butt across my skis. I'm also confused about consciously trying to "lean" my upper-body down the fall-line, given I thought you wanted a "neutral" upper-body.

 

B) Regarding moving my hips/butt - I had been trained to move my hips forward, into the turn. This seems to contradict #2/#3 above, where I actually practiced moving my hips/butt onto my inside (new outside) leg once I enter the fall-line and begin my new turn. Intuitively, this seems to be a miscommunication on my end regarding the timing of the drill - in #1 above, my hips are already on the outside and facing the fall-line, so although I am stepping into a neutral CoM in #2, I'm already beginning my turn and so can put my weight back onto my new outside leg?

 

C) Is it natural to be thinking about moving your hips/butt constantly during a turn sequence?

 

D) I'm really not quite sure how this drill would translate to my normal edged turning process. In my mind, when you are carving, in order to initiate a turn, you "fall" into the fall-line, or your outside (new inside) ski line, whereas for this drill, you almost let your inside (new outside) ski do the steering with a simple CoM distribution onto the ski. While the latter would work when the skis are in snow plough or not on edge, how do you get your skis on edge if your CoM is on your inside (new outside) ski? Am I confusing this with the process of "flattening" your ski in transition?

 

Apologies for the long post, but would really appreciate your help.

post #2 of 28
Thread Starter 

In case you don't want to read the wall of text above, the "tilting" thing I mentioned above is very similar to this video I found:

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5m_RDpA_BZg

 

It's weird. At 4:36 his hip and butt is clearly over his outside foot (as I was told to do), but at 4:48, he's doing what I normally do when I ski (hip into the turn all the way through.

 

It's even more perplexing when you see this same guy's video here, at 0:36

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qX04vGv8yzM

 

In the pop-up diagram, his body actually forms an arch, which is like what he does at 4:48 in the first video, BUT THEN, in this second video, notwithstanding the pop-up diagram, he is doing exactly what he says you should do at 4:36 in the first video.

 

All confusing....

post #3 of 28
Advice is hard since none of us were there. One of the fundamental movements is to use lateral inclining and angulating to direct pressure to that outside ski.
How and where you create edge angle during a turn is part of that. Some talk about a vertical zipper, others talk about a perpendicular zipper. There is value in exploring both and drawing your own conclusions. Feeback from your coach as to why to use either is also important but situational. Thus making it hard to suggest any rightness, or wrongness in what they said.
post #4 of 28
Thread Starter 

That sounds about right - thanks for the quick response.

 

I just wanted a second opinion, since it's a form of training I had never seen before, before choosing to continue on with this particular coach (I had specifically asked for PSIA doctrinal "by the book" style so wanted to make sure I wasn't learning something off the cuff). I do have problems with my lateral balancing and tend to have too much of my weight on my inside ski on steep terrain, so I guess he thought this was the best way to fix my problems (my boots have been properly fitted and aligned, no problems with sitting back, etc.).

post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 

Just in case others are interested, I was poking around and found this thread which seems to answer all my questions, and I seem to understand what my coach was trying to teach me with this whole "shoving my butt around" business - he was trying to show me how to "progressively angulate" into a new turn, rather than simply inclining into it! :)

 

http://www.epicski.com/t/87660/angulation-inclination-at-turn-entry

 

Justanotherskipro also was very helpful in that thread as well, so thank you once again!

post #6 of 28
After spending 8 hours with a PSIA individual and describing the sequence of the drill in as detailed fashion I have one suggestion. You should call the instructor that worked with you and pose this question to him/her. It appears as if you have a pretty good idea as to where the disconnect of understanding is. As aforementioned in this thread we were not there to actually see your skill set and therefore it's more difficult comment on the exact specificity of a drill and how that may sequentially relate to a flaw in your turn. Rather then ripping apart whether or not the drill makes sense for you in this forum I would direct this back to the individual that you spent your good time and money with. This could clear everything up and you improve as a result which is your goal. I am almost certain that the instructor would greatly appreciate this as well. If after that you are still confused then perhaps your question and or concerns are more warranted.
Happy skiing:)
post #7 of 28
BY THE BOOK stuff is a bit in flux as the new technical manual attempts to move away from the overuse of the BREP acronym. Same goes for DIRT and much of the rest of the 90s jargon. So here is the thing, Clarity and brevity are not mutually exclusive but crafting a sentence, paragraph, or article, in an easy to digest form takes practice. Simple but not too simple is the new (and very old) form of communicating well.
Obviously your coach struggled to do that. But in that is the possibility that some active listening also would help minimize confusion. New stuff often makes us start comparing things rather than staying open to the new idea as it is being presented. We all do it but when we can shut off the subjective narrator long enough, those new ideas often make more sense. Just sayin....
post #8 of 28

iheart, they made it way too hard.  Try this.  Your feet should be as far apart as (and directly under) the sockets of your hip bones.  Not the full hip width and certainly nothing to do with shoulder width.  http://thesebonesofmine.files.wordpress.com/2012/02/bones_of_the_leg_text.jpg  A too-wide stance makes it nearly impossible to balance over the outside ski without ridiculous contortions.  When deeply angulating in a powerful turn, the width of the legs apart stays the same.  One foot is lifted, and the distance between feet changes, but the legs aren't spread apart. 

 

Balance on the ball of your foot over your outside ski.  Lift the tail of your inside ski an inch, no more, off the snow.  Don't lift the tip, that tends to put one into the back seat.  Ski all the way through the turn with the inside ski tail off the snow.  As the first movement to the next turn, switch feet.  Balance over the previously lifted foot and lift the tail of the other ski.  It is really this easy.  You'll find it much easier to move your relatively light weight feet under your relatively heavy body than to try to move your body over your feet.

 

Add power steering.  Continuously pull the inside foot back and try to keep it alongside the outside foot.  It won't pull back that far, but keep the tension on.  This will keep your body mass over the sweet spot on the outside ski, and it'll turn easier than you've ever done.  Don't let the inside hip & shoulder/arm rotate to the inside of the turn, keep them toward the outside, but pull the foot back.

 

That Korean video....is a stem turn a skill to be learned or a bad habit to break?  Don't learn anything that will have to be unlearned.

post #9 of 28
That certaianly is a lot to think about, especially during a ski turn.
1)Yes the distance between the acetabulums and between the two talus/calcaneus should be equal. However physical differences and past injuries unique to each individual make that ideal rather impractical in practice.
2) Consider the specific requirements of a turn may include adopting a less strict interpretation of this rule about lateral stance width.
3) Same hold true for fore / aft balance where moving just the feet represents a small portion of how we can control CoM/BoS relationships. Exploring these additional options and solutions will expose the learner to a lot of viable options they might otherwise miss.
Perhaps the best example is to watch any race and you will see a wide variety of stances being used because they work.

Which leads us right back to how do we focus forces through the outside ski.
More active foot to foot weight transfer? Sometimes yes and no
Passive foot to foot transfer? see above.
More tipping and flexing of the inside leg? Wait a minute, if we pulled that foot back as suggested we also limited the ability to flex that leg because the boot will bottom out. Thus making it difficult to accept these two suggested solutions would work well together.
Tip the shoulders or torso? Depends on where and when but the additional inertial momentum created will require a subsequent corrective movement to correct the correction. Setting up a closed loop where each correction produces the need for a correction.
Inclinate / angulate to line up forces through that ski edge? Hmm, this counter balancing act uses many of these previously mentioned ideas but leaves us some wiggle room. Hmm...
Edited by justanotherskipro - 12/1/14 at 2:15pm
post #10 of 28
Thread Starter 

All very helpful, thank you!

 

I think I really may be over-thinking this process, and thinking there is one single "right way" to enter a turn. My coach said my turns look good when I'm going relatively slow or on normal terrain - it's just when I try to go fast on steep terrain that my balancing goes awry (entering fall-line too late, inside leg getting that "burning" feeling). I'm trying not to unlearn everything I learned in my previous years of skiing (mostly learned to ski in Canada and on the east coast of the US with my racer friends), but keeping an open-mind that some of what I learned in the past could have been either plain wrong, or I didn't apply those lessons correctly.

 

I did try asking these questions to my coach, but he responded using all sorts of complicated jargon about different outside forces (gravity, centrifugal/petal force) and how to use my body angles to compensate, and well I'm just not scientifically gifted and all that stuff went way over my head. I'm thinking mileage and visual cues are the best way for me to learn, so before I dive into this and get this ingrained into my "muscle memory," I need to make sure I'm not learning any bad habits which I will later have to unlearn again.

 

Softsnowguy, thanks for that tip. We did do javelin turns at one stage and that was much more easier and naturally, but apparently even then I still had problems not getting my hip "centered." I was subconsciously pushing my hip into the uphill side although my upperbody was properly angulated towards the fall-line, creating my balancing problems.

post #11 of 28
The science is easy if we avoid detail but the detail will support the basic premise of Gravity always pulls us down, on a slope that becomes downhill. Straightliners try to do this as much as possible but in traffic this leads to collisions so ski areas discourage it. The opposite of this is to not spend time facing down the hill. Traverses are an example of that. Gravity still pulls on us though but since we are facing across the hill the effect of Gravity is to first pull us down and then onto the downhill ski a little more than thr uphill ski.
The other major factor is as we move momentum is created. Momentum is in one direction and will carry us in that direction unless something acts to alter that path. That might be us acting to change direction, or it might be an external force. It can even be a combination of us and an external force.
That in short is the world we operate in as we ski. But we make turns you might say and knowing why is important but often misunderstood. We turn to change direction. A benefit of this is speed control because we can turn downhill and accelerate, or turn across the hill to slow down. All great stuff but what does this have to do with carving? Well both Gravity and Momentum are straight line things and as we turn back and forth they still try to act in a straight line. The most common example is turning in a car everything in the car tries to go straight except the tires. A loose object in that car would move to the outside of the turn because it is still trying to go straght.
As I mentioned earlier in skiing something else happens, Gravity tries to pull us into the new turn during the first half of that turn. Mostly because we are traveling across the hill, not down the hill and Gravity want us to go straight down the hill. So even though our forward momentum is carrying us across the hill, Gravity will eventually win.
So focussing the forces to line up so they pass through that outside ski has become the accepted best way to make the skis take us where we want to go and that is along a curved path down the hill but not directly down it.
There is more involved but for most knowing that establishing a strong edge platform (carving) requires some leaning and often some lateral bending is more than enough.
Hopefully this explains why the instructor focussed on what he did.
Edited by justanotherskipro - 12/2/14 at 6:53am
post #12 of 28

Originally Posted by iheartnyc View Post

 

Intermediate skiier, been skiing recreationally for over 20 years, get a few lessons here and there but nothing serious. I went to the slopes yesterday with a coach for about 8 hours of private lessons with a PSIA instructor.

 

I apparently struggle with keeping enough pressure on my downhill ski, therefore making my turning process less efficient. So, the thing we worked on most was changing my CoM during my transition to my outside (old inside) ski right before entering the fall-line.

 

His coaching approach to resolve my balancing issue, was to do everything on the green slopes, either parallel or snow-plow, without letting my skis get on edge. Basically, here was the drill I did:

 

1) During my turn, I'm putting 95% of my CoM on my outside leg. As I'm doing so, I'm consciously moving my hips, butt, shoulders and even my head to my outside leg (i.e., "leaning" my hips/butt/upper body together as one). He wanted me to really exaggerate this, to the point where even my head was sort of bending down the fall-line.

 

2) In transition, I slowly "get up," move into a "neutral" CoM (i.e., no more of the exagerrated stuff above), and start putting pressure on my inside (new outside) leg.

 

3) Once I fall into the fall-line, I repeat step 1 above but this time on my other (now new outside leg).

My coach said my turns look good when I'm going relatively slow or on normal terrain - it's just when I try to go fast on steep terrain that my balancing goes awry (entering fall-line too late, inside leg getting that "burning" feeling)

 

I did try asking these questions to my coach, but he responded using all sorts of complicated jargon about different outside forces (gravity, centrifugal/petal force) and how to use my body angles to compensate, and well I'm just not scientifically gifted and all that stuff went way over my head. 

I just wanted a second opinion, since it's a form of training I had never seen before, before choosing to continue on with this particular coach (I had specifically asked for PSIA doctrinal "by the book" style so wanted to make sure I wasn't learning something off the cuff). I do have problems with my lateral balancing and tend to have too much of my weight on my inside ski on steep terrain, so I guess he thought this was the best way to fix my problems (my boots have been properly fitted and aligned, no problems with sitting back, etc.).

this whole "shoving my butt around" business - he was trying to show me how to "progressively angulate" into a new turn, rather than simply inclining into it! :)

Based on the above, I had a few questions:

 

A) Is this training approach sound? I've never seen this before or heard about it, so I'm a bit confused as to what to make of it. I'm especially confused as to this direction to consciously move my hips/butt across my skis. I'm also confused about consciously trying to "lean" my upper-body down the fall-line, given I thought you wanted a "neutral" upper-body.

 

B) Regarding moving my hips/butt - I had been trained to move my hips forward, into the turn. This seems to contradict #2/#3 above, where I actually practiced moving my hips/butt onto my inside (new outside) leg once I enter the fall-line and begin my new turn. Intuitively, this seems to be a miscommunication on my end regarding the timing of the drill - in #1 above, my hips are already on the outside and facing the fall-line, so although I am stepping into a neutral CoM in #2, I'm already beginning my turn and so can put my weight back onto my new outside leg?

 

C) Is it natural to be thinking about moving your hips/butt constantly during a turn sequence?

 

D) I'm really not quite sure how this drill would translate to my normal edged turning process. In my mind, when you are carving, in order to initiate a turn, you "fall" into the fall-line, or your outside (new inside) ski line, whereas for this drill, you almost let your inside (new outside) ski do the steering with a simple CoM distribution onto the ski. While the latter would work when the skis are in snow plough or not on edge, how do you get your skis on edge if your CoM is on your inside (new outside) ski? Am I confusing this with the process of "flattening" your ski in transition?

 

 
In blue above I've selected some comments you've made about your current skiing, and your coach's teaching.  In green are your questions, which I'll answer below.
 
----It sounds like on steep terrain you lean into the hill, a very common thing to do, which results in a burning inside thigh.  You don't mention it, but this "leaning in" also likely produces lack of speed control and some unwanted skidding at the bottom of your turns.  Your turns may be Z-shaped (not good) instead of C-shaped (good).  Your turns rely on skidding and friction to slow you down on those steeper trails, which is not working very well (it never does).  You need to learn how to get your outside ski to do almost all the work of gripping the snow, because one ski grips stronger than two, and because the outside foot's big toe edge is stronger at holding its grip than the inside foot's little toe edge.  But that's not enough.  When you learn to direct the forces/pressures to your outside ski, you'll find a new-found ability to control your speed by controlling the shape of your turns, instead of relying on the skidding which is not effective.  Turn shape will change from Z to C.  This should do the trick of getting you much more control of your speed on steep terrain.  C turns will have a top to them, instead of a quick pivot followed by a skid (Z).  The top of that C shape slows you down and allows that outside ski to get a good grip before the forces add up.  So you'll be able to modulate your speed even on steep terrain once these two things kick in:  outside ski dominance, and round turns.  Directing the forces to your outside ski and starting your turns so they will be C shaped instead of Z shaped is all connected.  This is a big deal.  It sounds like your coach worked with you on doing just this.

 

---You ask if this training is sound.  Yes indeed it is!

 

---You sense a contradiction in being told to move your hips downhill across your skis, which results in pressure on your new inside leg, when the goal is to have pressure on your new outside leg.  Well, that can seem confusing.  But the contradiction is an illusion.  You also sense a contradiction between being told to move your hips downhill across your skis, "leaning" your upper body downhill, and standing tall and upright and neutral between turns.  I think you also may think that moving your hips over the outside ski puts the "weight" on that ski, while moving your hips over the inside ski, or even farther inside than that, puts the "weight" on the inside ski.  Whoops.....  problem here!  Your questions B and C above really highlight how garbled these issues can get.  People on this forum can get it sorted out for you since you stated your questions so thoroughly.

 

---Maybe this explanation will help.  Imagine a C shaped turn, a round turn.  There is a top (very important part!), a middle when the skis are pointed straight down the fall line, and a bottom to the turn.  When the skis are pointed down the fall line and immediately afterwards, the "forces" your coach talked about are strongest.  That's when you need your outside ski doing all the work.  If at that point you can lift your inside ski and not fall over, you're doing something right.  Having your hips inside the turn, on the other side of your inside ski, and having your upper body leaning out over your outside ski, will enable this to happen on blue/black groomed terrain, and at high speeds on greens.  Hips inside, shoulders & head bent out over outside ski.  On a cold day your nose can drip (so embarrassing!); make sure in the middle and at the end of your turn your nose drips on the outside ski for the rest of the turn.  

 

---So you should not be moving your hips over the outside ski.  You move them in the opposite direction, and move your head/shoulders over your outside ski.  This directs the forces in the middle and end of the turn to the outside ski.

 

---Now for the top of the turn.  It sounds like your coach kept you on green terrain, at very slow speeds, all 8 hours.  Is that right?  Your descriptions are unclear about how he had you start your turns, so I'm going to guess.

 

1.  Did he have you stand tall between turns as your flat skis traveled across the trail, and then did he have you lean your entire tall body (from the ankles up) downhill and wait for the skis to slowly turn themselves downhill?  If yes, did he then have you move your hips after that to the inside of the turn, as the skis pointed downhill, as I just described, while leaning your head/shoulders out over the outside ski (this is called angulation)?  If yes, then this all makes sense.  For the top of the turn, on gentle terrain, you can stand tall, allow your body and skis to straighten, then lean downhill (from the ankles, not the waist) -- which edges the skis so they will turn.  This sequence is a popular way to teach people to start turns.  Then at the fall line, you "angulate" to direct the building forces onto the outside ski.  

2.  If my guess is wrong, what did he have you do to start your turns? 

3.  Last question.  Did he have you practice keeping your upper body facing downhillish while your skis turned right and left?  You haven't mentioned this, but you did mention javelin turns.  Javelin turns are a drill to help people allow their skis to turn while their upper bodies don't turn.  It's called many things (upper body-lower body separation, counter, independent leg steering, quiet upper body, etc.).  Holding your upper body more downhill-facing as your legs turn independently below your hips is very important because without that upper body-lower body separation, moving your hips inside and leaning your head/shoulders outside (angulation) is very difficult.  I suspect he worked with you on separation as well.

 

In conclusion, with 8 hours on snow your coach had time to cover separation, angulation, and how to start at turn.  He did this on slow easy terrain.  All this was new to you, very different from what you've learned in the past, and it got jumbled up.  He probably used terms that I'm using and they added to the confusion.  My guess is that you need a fresher-upper with the same guy to help untangle the mess. My sense is that you got a good lesson.


Edited by LiquidFeet - 12/2/14 at 9:57am
post #13 of 28
Thread Starter 

JASP,

 

Thanks for the explanation regarding gravity and forces - that actually helps a lot in trying to decipher some of what my coach was trying to say.

 

LiquidFeet,

 

Your post is very surprising, in that it almost feels like you were there watching me the entire day. Your guesses on #1 and #3 are exactly right, and your description of what happens to me on steep terrain is exactly right as well.

 

Thinking about it some more, I think my biggest problem during my lesson was that where my instructor was trying to tell me to incline and angulate my hips in a balanced line with the rest of my upper-body (previously, I tended to push my hips into the hill, angulating only my torso and shoulders towards my outside ski), I made the stupid mistake of interpreting that to mean I needed to also place my hips and butt over my outside ski.

 

Just to make sure I understand everyone correctly, I should more or less keep my hips centered somewhere between my skis throughout an entire turn, except perhaps right before I begin a turn where I may move my hips a bit more to dynamically enter the fall-line. Body angulation/inclination should more or less be directly down the fall-line keeping my weight on my outside ski and working with gravitty rather than against it.

post #14 of 28

@iheartnyc , there are no hard and fast rules that fit every single turn you make.  All turns are not alike.  The amount of angulation you need and that business of weight distribution between feet ... it just depends, and changes from turn to turn.  So it's difficult to answer your question from the previous post.  What I just said can be a not very satisfactory response when you're determined to increase your skills.  I know; I've been where you are, swimming in seemingly contradictory information coming from all directions and finding frustration there.  So here's the deal....

 

We ski for those moments when sliding on snow feels transcendent, when everything feels-so-fine.  It's a sensation sport.  Those moments come every now and then, and happen more often the higher up the skill ladder you climb.  These moments can be elusive.  Your instructor must have talked about balance a lot in those eight hours with you; it's the word you use the most in your initial posts.  When you are moving and you're "balanced" (people on this forum can argue what that means for pages and pages), you are most likely to feel that sublime feeling.  So seek "balance."  For now, go for lateral balance over the outside ski particularly at and just after the fall line in each turn.  If you have that, then you are doing something new and good!    

 

To figure out if you've got that lateral balance good-to-go, try this little test in your regular turns.  Lift just the tail of your inside ski.  Keep its tip sliding forward on the snow.  In your turns, you can lift the tail, set it down, lift it again, set it down.  In other words, lift and tap the tail of the inside ski on the snow through the turn.  If that works fine, work up to lifting and holding the tail up through the turn without the tapping.  If you can tap or fully hold that tail up in your turns, you'll know you are focusing your balance on the outside ski, your angulation must be working, your hips must be inside just the right amount, your upper body must be angled over your outside ski just enough.  This little test is also good for fore-aft balance.  If you can actually lift and tap that inside tail while keeping its tip sliding forward on the snow, you'll also know you are not in the back seat.  If the tip insists on coming up off the snow, you're aft and you need to bend forward at the ankles more, pressing your shins into your boot cuffs.   If the tip keeps coming up, go to easier terrain and work on it until you can lift only the tail while pressing the tip down on the snow.  Then work back up to doing this test on your normal terrain.  If this is a chore, work on it every day you ski until you get it down to easy-peasy on all your regular terrain.  This may take many days; dont' expect to do it in a couple of runs.  Once you're passing this little test most of the time on easy terrain, I'd suggest taking another lesson with your guy.   Going back to this same instructor will save you from getting contradictory instruction from some new person.

 

To get any significant new movement pattern embedded, you just have to endure the jumbled mess of contradictions and the awkwardness of torture-drills for a while.  This is the way it goes for anyone trying to re-do their skiing as an adult.  Best of luck!


Edited by LiquidFeet - 12/3/14 at 6:02am
post #15 of 28
Here is another often misunderstood physical reality. High C edge engagement on steep terrain and where critical edge angles are lost are often confused and misrepresented. As I mentioned previously Gravity does it's thing (pull us down and downhill) immediately when our edge purchase is insufficient to resist Gravity's downward pull. In other word Gravity accelerates us into the new turn at that exact moment. Nor is it likely the edge change and establishment of the new edge platform occur there. Especially on steep terrain where the feet would need to be uphill of your body and in the case of really steep terrain you would be upside down (real upside down traverses are what I am talking about here). Pipe skiers do this on the wall but it is extremely rare otherwise. The edge change and engagement of the new edge platform must occur later. As in subsequent to the start of the new turn. Forward monentum is sometimes offered to explain how a skier could do the upside down High C move but I have yet to see it live, or on video outside of a pipe.
What is more common is the edge change and new edges gaining purchase closer to the one third point of the turn.
So it is very likely the left behind feeling is a function of being too far inside the current turn when the edges actually release. In other words finish the turns better and you will be in a better position to start the next turn. Here is how...
... release the core at about the two thirds point in the turn but make the feet finish the turn much longer. As the feet swoop back under you and across the hill you will feel the point where the edges release, change and re-engage. It almost becomes a non event as you swoop side to side not uphill and downhill.
Hopefully this helps explains that turn finish is where speed control actually happens, where the subsequent edge changes actually occur, and why steep terrain exposes our bad habits like lingering inside the turn through the finishing phase.
post #16 of 28

sounds very weird.

 

you should simply do the phantom turns drill, yes, on green.

post #17 of 28
More drills won't explain much Razie. Perhaps you can explain the mechanics of that drill and why it will help him focus force on the outside ski.
post #18 of 28
Right.

As you go down the slope, to start a turn to the right, pickup the tail of the right ski and bring the heel of that boot close to the left boot. Leave the tip of the ski on snow. Then just tip the lifted ankle into the turn. This will "pahntomatically" tip the other ski as well. As you finish the turn, put the inside ski diwn and pick up the other ski and repeat.

It helps with balance over the outside ski since that is the only one on snow. Keeping the boot back close to the other one will align you fore/aft. Lifting the heel slightly will allow you to tip it more easily.

I would do minimum 2-3 runs of that, followed by 1-2runs with J turns every morning for a week.

J turns are the same but at some speed, on a blue/black and you do a J turn across the hill until you stop facing up the hill. One ski only, feel pressure and stay balanced throughout.

That's about it. Repeat daily for a week.

Cheers.
post #19 of 28
Thread Starter 

Thanks much. I went to the slopes today sans coach and tried to ski with everything in mind what was mentioned in this thread and wow what a difference. Really felt that "sweet spot" mentioned by SoftSnowGuy on the blues, and felt that I was skiing more dynamically and fluidly than ever before. On top of that, my "quad burn" problem was gone. I did about 6 hours today and I feel minimal fatigue, and don't even think I got a workout.

 

On the blacks, I took it a bit easier but again, a world of difference. I still need to keep working on it, as I do notice at times I tend to lean into the hill at times, but I immediately can tell when I'm doing it wrong. I'm going to meet up with my coach again next week (and hopefully get further feedback.

 

Thanks again for the feedback, and I just have to say this place rocks.

post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by justanotherskipro View Post

More drills won't explain much Razie. Perhaps you can explain the mechanics of that drill and why it will help him focus force on the outside ski.

 

The reason it works is two fold.  For one thing it forces the skier to learn to balance on their outside ski and just find their balance there, similar to javelins that way.   But this is more then just a javelin, he's being asked to bring the inside foot in close and tip it like crazy towards the LTE.  The movement creates focus below the waist for tipping skis and creating edge angles, as opposed to dumping the CoM down the hill in an attempt to incline into edge angles.  By doing it below the waist, the upper half is free to do whatever it needs to do to maintain balance on the outside ski. (hint: angulate).

post #21 of 28
While it forces a one footed stance the pivotting of the pelvis upon the stationary femoral head is always a concern. Tip and rotate the non stance leg and ski while maintaining tip to snow contact only creates a moment arm that introduces angular acceleration (torque) either underfoot, or around the tip. Thus requiring an additional arresting of that angular momentum. Add edging to do that and now we have the simultaneous requirements of one footed balancing, projecting forward and holding the unweighted hip forward while keeping the pelvis level, inclining and angulating to balance on that one ski, and creating the turn shape with that stance ski. It seems like a long way around to simply focus forces through the edge of that outside ski. Nor am I interested in debating active verse pasive foot to foot steps, or taking a ski off the snow to focus forces. All I am suggesting is simpler and more natural ways exist where we cooperate with the natural rather than use contrived stances to teach outside foot dominance.
post #22 of 28

There are a lot of ways to approach it I agree, I was just attempting to provide an answer to your question about what Razie suggested.  I find that quite natural, not sure why you don't, but perhaps you're not doing it the prescribed way, I don't know.  For myself when I start tipping my inside foot as aggressively as I possibly can, I find it easier to be balanced on that outside ski.  The reason is because the tipping comes from the free foot rather then from trying to move the CoM inside by pushing or letting gravity take it overly zealously.  So I end up getting bigger edge angles while maintaining my outside ski balance at the same time, ie...avoid a dump inside.

 

By the way, what he suggested did not include a rotary aspect to the inside free ski, its meant to be tipped without pivoting.

 

As you correctly pointed out, its hard to know for sure exactly what the OP experienced on the hill that day or why his instructor did whatever he did with him.  But it does seem apparent the instructor wanted to see less dumping to the inside and earlier/better establishment of outside ski balance.  

 

Also want to say something about your comment about high-C being impossible on super steep stuff, etc.  Ok, yea, maybe.  But...STRIVING for high-C engagement is still crucial.  It might not get achieved on super steep, or it might with enough inertia, but even if you get it by 1/3 into the turn or 1/4 or whatever...that is good and benefits the skier.  

 

I would also say the OP should consider doing some drills where he lingers on the uphill LTE of the old inside ski (new outside ski), with full weight on it, before rolling onto the BTE.  This will help him learn to do whatever is required to make it happen.  Well in order to do that you have to have a few things going on, which includes the free foot tipping Razie mentioned earlier, but also some early angulation and balance awareness of obtaining and keeping balance on the outside ski ASAP.  This may or may not be always appropriate thing to do in super steep places, etc..  and I agree there are other approaches, but just commenting on what that particular instructor appeared to be doing with him.

post #23 of 28
I can do all of those moves very accurately BTS. They all have been around for a long long time. Javelins were mentioned and they include the pelvis rotating on the femoral head. This projects that inside hip forward by definition. So now saying that doesn't occur is contradicting what Razie wrote. It cannot be both rotary and no rotary.
post #24 of 28

razie wasn't talking about javelins.  whatever.

post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by justanotherskipro View Post

I can do all of those moves very accurately BTS. They all have been around for a long long time. Javelins were mentioned and they include the pelvis rotating on the femoral head. This projects that inside hip forward by definition. So now saying that doesn't occur is contradicting what Razie wrote. It cannot be both rotary and no rotary.


the point is balancing over the outside ski, so the phantom drill has no rotary or pivoting of the ski, as it is much harder to balance while skidding, very much like a car is harder to control while drifting. which is why this is a green/blue slope drill, at low speeds, edging and tipping only.

 

it is different from a javelin. first, the javelin puts you slightly back since you have to cross the right boot in front of the left. also, the javelin does not usually include tipping the inside ski, which is a must even if only to keep the shins parallel. the Javelin has the advantage of countering you, though.

 

the Javelin has its place certainly. but the phantom turn has roots that go way back. it is the way professionals have been turning the skis since at least the 60s. and it is certainly at the root of and visible at all high-end skiing today as well.

 

here's a CSIA example (hint: look carefully at the tail of the inside ski in the next few turns at the time mark.):

 

 

a PSIA example:

 

 

 WC examples are everywhere. the tail doesn't really have to come off the snow to demonstrate complete commitment to the outside ski - it is the same movement pattern that allows commitment to the outside ski, fore/aft alignment and tipping of the inside ski, even when it doesn't come off the snow. 

 

why is this even a discussion?

 

cheers

post #26 of 28
Here is why Razie, Active weight tranfers vs. passive where the slight flexing and abducting of the knee corresponds with the core shifting towards the flexing leg and the linear momentum of the core causing the weight shift/pressure focus on the BTE of the outside ski.
Stepping uphill is used but retards downhill flow so you literally cover the same ground down, back up, then down again. There is a valid tactical use for that move but it is much slower than simply flowing across that terrain once. If it was faster everone would be skiing like Stenmark and his peers in the late seventies and early eighties.
Not leaning inward (inclining) is the idea the op was given here and in person. So the more advanced drilling without a clear picture and explanation as to why and what benefits they might realize was important.
Together we have done that and my hope is all of these options help the OP. I have to go teach right now but Thanks for the supporting ideas, you too BTS...
post #27 of 28

Yea I agree that stepping up impedes flow.  Note, however, that lifting or lightening the downhill ski and tipping it, while lingering on the LTE uphill edge of the uphill ski, does not neccessarily require a step up, in fact once its dialed in, the flow you speak of should and will happen.  The act of transferring weight from the downhill ski to the uphill ski creates fairly strong crossover.   What we're really talking about here is creating downhill tipping into the new turn, flowing that direction, while also at the same time establishing and maintaining weight bias on the uphill/outside ski.  A step up is not required.  Angulation-up is required, lower half flowing down.  Think about the flow moving the lower half down the hill while holding back some of that flow on the upper half through angulation (or the nasty word counter-balancing).  The upper half will still flow, but not as quickly as the lower half that is doing the tipping.  The upper half makes sure to establish and maintain balance on the outside ski.

post #28 of 28
Think of flow as uninterrupted and the need to establish the new edge so early and so strongly disappears. It is why top skiers inclinate early and angulate a bit later. The core flows from apex to apex and the feet reach out swooping away and back under the torso flowing along their path without any interuption. The redirect early is not dependent on pressuring the ouside ski and we are free to get set up for a strong shaping phase at the one third point. Nor is there a need to linger inside late in the turn and in turn precipitate the need to thrust the body downhill with the new edge platform. Huge offset might force that requirement like during the Sochi downhill but that was only one turn not what occured during the rest of that course.
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