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Need tips to improve bump skiing! - Page 2

post #31 of 50

I'm going to agree with HipFlip. I appreciate the artistic approach the community has offered to the OP. It has also given me (a 90% trough/zip line bumper) something more to try and mix it up. Thank you all for your time and graphics.

 

I'd like to share a type of mogul field that is both somewhat rare to come across and (at the same time) one that is easily "passed on" by the aspiring bump skier and accomplished bumper alike. This is one that Schahmatist should keep a look out for.

 

Here is the setup:

 

It is a Friday or Saturday night with little to no wind. Mother Nature dumps 12-15 inches of powder at your favorite ski area with just the right moisture content, not too heavy or light, not predisposed to crud formation or wind displacement, just the perfect consistency for moguls. It is a blue weekend morning with comfortable skier temps which generates a larger than normal crowd of short radius turn fanatics.

At 4pm that following afternoon the entire mountain is bumped up, even the novice pitches down low on the mountain. That rare view, as we all know is short lived. The groomers will mow it down that night, only leaving the typical intermediate to steeper pitched mogul runs on the mountain. But sometimes, a groom operator, who may be a bumper himself, might have been born with the generosity gene, or has a soft point of sentimentalism, leaves a 100 foot X 50 foot wide patch of well formed moguls in a novice pitch where you would say to yourself, "how the hell did those get there?"

 

Those are the perfect place for practice. Your speed is almost completely up to your own desire and control.

 

I remember seeing one at Sugarloaf few years ago nearing the Widowmaker Bar and Whiffletree Quad, first day of a 30 person 5 day trip. Knowing the mountain well, I led a 10-12 person group down the front face knowing I would stop there and ask who would like to try them.

When it was my turn I got lucky and even surprised myself bouncing off the sides of each mogul with little or no snow contact in between hits, finishing to hear one of the women comment, "A whole nother level, that's just a whole nother level" :-)

 

Hope you have enjoyed my story and that you find improvement in your mogul skiing this year.

post #32 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by bounceswoosh View Post
 

Go figure. I thought I knew all about how to ski the bumps (note: not the same as being able to ski them well), and then I had a lesson today and learned a new (to me) way to approach them, also useful in the trees (a two-fer!). This is what is so damn cool about skiing.

 

I would try to describe it, but I think I would do a poor job. It involves smearing turns followed by some amount of sort of side slipping so it's almost like a smooth and continuous falling leaf. See, I said I would do a poor job. It allowed me to stay on a single line facing down the hill whereas before I'd be more likely to do a lot of traversing and shopping.

I had a coach in Michigan have us do pivot slips through a short bump field.  Sounds like it may be a similar approach

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by HippieFlippinNM View Post
 

A lot of really good stuff in this thread.  I'm going to keep it simple and emphasize one point that has been made a few times.  Widen your stance so you can steer your skis.  This will allow you to initiate a turn (rather than a pivot) from your feet (not your hips).  The way your legs are locked together, I imagine you have spent a long time training yourself to ski this way.  It may be a difficult habit to break so I suggest you start focusing on that sooner than later.  I only emphasize this point because it is something that I have been battling in my own skiing for years.  Get your feet apart.  It will make a world of difference. 

Amen.  The crazy thing is, most people think they need their feet locked together in moguls, but the opposite is true. 

post #33 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post
 

 

 

Amen.  The crazy thing is, most people think they need their feet locked together in moguls, but the opposite is true. 

As long as we protect the one possible reader who sees this and subsequently believes that mogul skiing does not work with feet together. With practice and fitness it works perfectly but as this thread so aptly generates conscious thought of possibilities, yes, there are more ways to successfully do so.

post #34 of 50

Schahmatist, I've had some time to mentally ponder your video. I would like to preface by saying that I recognized what you were doing immediately. It is one skill that I use when skiing moguls although less often and I'll venture to say in a more subtle fashion.

 

Are you hitting the side of the mogul with the center of your ski (near the side of your foot) or with your tails (behind your foot)?

 

I'm all about using a skill I've already perfected and twerking it to improve and streamline my skiing. I'm also vain when it comes to looking good while skiing. I'll touch the loose slow usually in the middle/side of the bump with my tails after a smear to scrub a couple of kilometers when needed (unknown to others observing lol). You seem to be using your perfection of that skill in an exaggerated manner. While it may be covering another inherent weakness it also may not, either way, whereas practicing in a less demanding field can provide benefit.


Edited by JSLincks - 12/26/14 at 8:36am
post #35 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSLincks View Post

 

I'm all about using a skill I've already perfected and twerking it to improve and streamline my skiing.

 

Do tell. Is this a new drill to improve flexion?  ;) 

post #36 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by bounceswoosh View Post
 

 

Do tell. Is this a new drill to improve flexion?  ;)

 

Thanks bs (sometimes abbreviations can get us in trouble) I do mean bounceswoosh.

 

I hope you had as good a laugh as I did when I read your post.

 

Guess I could try to sell you on my desire to stay relevant with the times but the "R" just seemed like so much more fun then the "A" at that point.

post #37 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by JSLincks View Post

... That rare view, as we all know is short lived. The groomers will mow it down that night, only leaving the typical intermediate to steeper pitched mogul runs on the mountain. But sometimes, a groom operator, who may be a bumper himself, might have been born with the generosity gene, or has a soft point of sentimentalism, leaves a 100 foot X 50 foot wide patch of well formed moguls in a novice pitch where you would say to yourself, "how the hell did those get there?"

Those are the perfect place for practice.

Not to hijack this thread, but I've posted that wisdom on this board a few times over the years, whining against the powers that control our ski resorts.   One old enough to remember the era in 70s and 80s when many slopes all over ski areas were left ungroomed.  The defensive response of ski resorts is that the majority of their clients (we snow sliders) demand it.   But the truth is thats's just a lame excuse.   The majority of those running our resorts aided by facets of other elite advanced skiers never competent skiing moguls who jave tended to dislike mogul fields, mogul skiers, and especially its perceived culture have worked to quash it at several levels especially mowing them down most everywhere a cat can travel to make them out of sight, out of mind.  (especially below liftlines on advanced slopes)

 

Glen Plake in Fistful of Moguls

 

It’s time you know... I mean uh... uh... It’s time to say goodbye to all the gimmicks.

You know a lot of people are having a hard time skiing powder. It’s, just you know, it’s so difficult. But, hell, there’s an answer for that... just go get yourself some... some fat skis!

y’know I’m having a hard time skiing powder and uh, I just uh, I don’t know uh... y’know it’s really difficult.

No kidding it’s difficult. It’s skiing, it’s a difficult sport. But for $650 bucks go get yourself some tongue depressors to slide around on and guess what man? You’re skiing powder. In fact you’re chasing me around for powder!

The old carved turn. Nobody can carve a turn. You’re not supposed to be able to carve a turn. That’s like the sacred cow man. But for $650 bucks go get yourself some hourglass skis and you’ll out carve half the guys teaching skiing at Vale!

Everybody that’s ever been to Squaw Valley has counted to three and hurled their bodies off the Pallisades. Big deal!

What is a big deal is mogul skiing. You don’t buy it. You don’t fake it. It’s real. It’s alive,
and if you want to find the best skiers on the mountain, you might want to take a good hard look at who’s skiing the bumps.

But moguls now there’s something you do not buy. You earn. There’s something you do not talk about in the bar about how bad ass your mogul run was, because everybody was there. Everybody saw it. It was right there under the chair. There’s nothing to hide. There’s nothing to buy that can help you.

You know what comes from skiing? Moguls. Moguls are a product of our sport. It's not something you've got to go spend a million dollars on building a little... little playing field. It just happens naturally.

Moguls are a fact of life now. Since all the extreme skiers are out extreme skiing everything's a bump run now. Corbert's Coulour: great mogul run. You know you see people jumping cliffs and cornices. I wonder if those people are skiing or do they just happen to have a pair of skis on?

Why everyone says, "Well I don't ski moguls very much". Yeah, show me a mountain in America that isn't covered with moguls and I'll believe you.

We're coming at you Suckers!
post #38 of 50

^^^  $650 for tongue depressors and hourglasses back when Moseley won the gold. Maybe I shouldn't have low-balled a ski seller on ebay :/

 

Half joking aside, I have no gripes with the ski operators who want to mow down bumps, they along with ski vendors are allowing more people to participate and enjoy this sport. 

post #39 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by schahmatist View Post
 

1. I cannot ski  neither faster nor more aggressive than on videos (though I would love to).

2. I have problems when there is no good zipper lines (sometimes I can stick an extra turn or two, but often without a zipline I lose my balance and/or speed control).

3. I don't know how to make more round turns , and/or use more edges (should I?) also I feel that I maybe turn with ankles too much (I am not sure). 

4. I have some idea about extention/absorbtion, pressure control, and forward/backward movement, and stack position, however it's not perfect and I do not know how to further improve those elements.

5. I feel  maybe I am missing some basics (90% of time  I ski bumps, and I am not that good on groomers and other terrains).

 

 

Most of the above is due to a couple of things I see in your vids. You're pushing down on the heel on the backside as the primary way to control your speed. In general, there's nothing wrong in doing this, even our US WC champ does this. However when this is your only method of skiing bumps then it becomes problematic. By pushing down on the heel, you put yourself on the back seat, that limits the absorption range and prevents you from get ready early for the extension. Whats happening in the vid is you're absorbing with your back since the hip is further back. When the bump formation becomes irregular, its harder to throw an extra turn since the weight in on the heel, by staying off the heel, you will be ready to weight shift onto the other leg. 

 

To get out of this mode, ski the lines you normally ski, try putting your weight on center or on the ball of the foot. Put pressure on the front of the ski for the approach at the front side and put the weight on center for the backside. The other is to do short turn drills on the flat where you put pressure on the front part of the ski to initiate and control your turn

 

 

 

The other problem could be your boot setup. Most boots are more upright with lots of lateral support. You may need boots that give you some more forward lean so that so can put pressure on the front of the ski.  

post #40 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by bounceswoosh View Post
 

Go figure. I thought I knew all about how to ski the bumps (note: not the same as being able to ski them well), and then I had a lesson today and learned a new (to me) way to approach them, also useful in the trees (a two-fer!). This is what is so damn cool about skiing.

 

I would try to describe it, but I think I would do a poor job. It involves smearing turns followed by some amount of sort of side slipping so it's almost like a smooth and continuous falling leaf. See, I said I would do a poor job. It allowed me to stay on a single line facing down the hill whereas before I'd be more likely to do a lot of traversing and shopping.

Bob Barnes (WP) calls the move "rub and release". The "rub" for the side slips between the bumps, and the "release" to rotate the skis into the new turn. Keep those skis loose and avoid hard edge sets.


Edited by cosmoliu - 1/13/15 at 11:34am
post #41 of 50

I think one of the best bump tips I received was from Bob Barnes who has his "50/50 rule":

  • Half the time do it right
  • Half the time do it anyway

 

If more than half your turns are "picture perfect" models of bump skiing -- you're going too slowly.

If less than half your turns are "picture perfect" models of bump skiing -- you're going too fast.

 

"Real" bump skiing involves some things going according to plan and others...  well, not so much.  When I was in the "aspiring bump skier" stage,I always used to get upset with myself if I couldn't stick to "the plan".  The "50/50" rule is very "freeing" for lack of a better word.

post #42 of 50
 
Originally Posted by HippieFlippinNM View Post
 

A lot of really good stuff in this thread.  I'm going to keep it simple and emphasize one point that has been made a few times.  Widen your stance so you can steer your skis.  This will allow you to initiate a turn (rather than a pivot) from your feet (not your hips).  The way your legs are locked together, I imagine you have spent a long time training yourself to ski this way.  It may be a difficult habit to break so I suggest you start focusing on that sooner than later.  I only emphasize this point because it is something that I have been battling in my own skiing for years.  Get your feet apart.  It will make a world of difference. 

 
Originally Posted by Trekchick View Post

 

Amen.  The crazy thing is, most people think they need their feet locked together in moguls, but the opposite is true. 

 

I am not a great bump skier, yet, but I hope to be someday. However, I have watched a lot of great bump skiers in videos and on the hill, and even though there are different ways to ski bumps, different styles that can be effective, the best bumpers seem to use a narrow stance, and steer their way very quickly and economically through the field.

 

I was out doing bump laps recently, when another skier who had been doing the same came over and started chatting with me. I had noticed him - he was really good, very smooth and fast through the bumps. Unsolicited he started offering me some advice, and ended up doing a couple runs with me, stopping to show me things and make comments. Unfortunately even though intellectually I understood what he was saying as I tried to put it all together in real time I skied worse than I normally do. Still, it was a great mini-lesson, and just being able to watch and follow him up close gave me some valuable mental images to hold on to.

 

He was on mogul skis, and had a very narrow stance.  Watching him pick a line and do it really was like watching water flow down the hill - glued to the snow, total economy of movement. Probably the biggest thing he did that I still can't is effortlessly absorb the front side of the bump and push down the back side. I'm thinking about that, trying to do it, but just don't have that feeling/timing in my body yet. I suspect that will be a big "A HA" moment in my own bump skiing if/when I do get there.

post #43 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jc-ski View Post

 

 

He was on mogul skis, and had a very narrow stance.  

 

Mogul skis are those skinny things eh? ....the tips are narrow which makes them important for a couple of things. It forces the skier to use the front of the ski to make and control the turn. And it gives me more precision to aim the tip at the frontside of the bump. I don't think I will ever go beyond 100 mm at the tips, it may "catch" the side of the bumps inadvertently or make me lazy about pressuring the front side.

post #44 of 50

Saw a pair of Elan Bloodlines up for sale on eBay - Plake's bump ski - skinny indeed.

 

Found an interesting vid on MogulSkiing.net - jump to 2:23 for instruction/tips...

 

 

 

Nice bit at 6:10 on practicing quick turns on groomed, absorbtion/extention at 7:00.

 

This Technique Guide, also from MogulSkiing.net, is a good resource.


Edited by jc-ski - 1/22/15 at 3:18pm
post #45 of 50
Quote:
Originally Posted by jc-ski View Post
 

Saw a pair of Elan Bloodlines up for sale on eBay - Plake's bump ski - skinny indeed.

 

Found an interesting vid on MogulSkiing.net - jump to 2:23 for instruction/tips...

 

 

 

Nice bit at 6:10 on practicing quick turns on groomed, absorbtion/extention at 7:00.

 

This Technique Guide, also from MogulSkiing.net, is a good resource.

 

:)  I always enjoy watching Smart, Douglas & Barrett ripping that line. Those guys really focus on clearing the hip after the absorption. IMO, that's the reason some or most mogul coaches don't make the backward pedal a point of emphasis, instead they focus on moving the hip up and forward. 

post #46 of 50

Hi Scahmatiist, 

 

I think you have gotten so much good advice on this question, I hesitate to add to the overload. 

 

3HERLOCK gives very good intruction and sounds like a pro, TBALL is correct, you ski bumps (technique wise) as well as 70% of the people out there. TDK6's diagrams are very cool and make sense. Between he and FreeSki 919 your all ready in good hands. 

 

Anyways, here's my nickle. As a "skier" of a certain caliber we all get to the point where we all would like the ability to confidently ski seamlessly through all the terrain the mt offers. My personal litmus test: find a run (interlocking trails?) where you have half a run of medium pitch smooth (groomed) terrain where you can do 20 to 40 tip to tail gs carves, then cut into a bump section at descent speed, without hesitating (or killing anyone) and run them through, crossing at least three different "lines", jump out of the bumps and then tip to tail carve 20 to 40 slalom turns. 

 

If it sounds easy, I assure you its not. I would run a demonstration of the "course" and then I ran all my level 1 coaches through the drill when they were preparing to test their level II. It actually has little to do with coaching and more to get them to realize that THEY still were not all that and a stick of butter. 

 

Long turn carves are the beginning, you learn to use the entire ski length. Slalom turns on steep terrain will get you more forward and help you develop your timing and rhythm, which is the next step.

High speed bumps test your ability to adapt your lower angle's while maintaining your upper posture and "edging" which ever part of the ski you currently have at your disposal. Second by second. The most difficult and last step.

 

Each of these 'steps' take about 20 to 100 on snow sessions to become proficient at and the technical jargon could leave you dazed and confused. But once you accomplish the first two steps then you will be sufficiently ready to take on the physical and aerobic last step. 

 

Best tips I've ever gotten to help in this last step?

 

      1. Off snow and in normal athletic attire and decent sneakers. At the top of a long flight of a single step stairway, crouch into an athletic stance and pretend your skiing in a straight line. Then make a a smooth lap down the stairs. The key is to walk the stairs without 'bobbing' your head. From the waist up; you need to try and maintain exact level and posture while you descend. Continue at a pace that doesn't kill you - this is NOT a running drill. As you get better at it try doing a few steps two at a time until you can do the whole flight two at a time. If you want to still increase the difficulty, hold your poles, mid shaft, and add pole taps between steps. 

 

       2. On snow, preferably a nice smooth and unintimidating pitch, try to make just the tips of your ski edges to "hit" or catch and then release immediately. Both left and right, together. Then work down the ski to just in front of the bindings, to your heel and then the tails. Remember, you want them to just engage for a second and then release at your command. Then mix it up and try to do tail on left turns and under foot on right, etc.What makes this work or not is your upper body discipline; stay in posture. No cheating and leaning down or up the hill, as this will cause you to loose control. In this drill, do make sure you have the room as you will not really be turning but almost straight lining - so stopping every few turns to speed check is necessary and very much advised. 

 

Lastly, have fun. Don't critique every turn or run. Enjoy yourself and you will eventually get to the point where you can artistically make your marks all over the mountain's snow. It will become your canvas. 

 

Look for me at JH, WY. when you get there and we'll take a few giggle runs. I'll be the one Dressed in all black. 

 

P.S.- I started doing this drill on 178 Stockli Laser SC's which had alot of shape to them. I am currently running Fisher SC's which are similar and have a race plate. They are not ideal, but I run powder, chutes and deep woods all on the same ski. If you have the $ and desire you can get a carve, GS and powder specific ski's which make each step easier, but personally unless its a big pow day and I get out the 185 RC's out (same ski with a gs sidecut), I think its a waste of money. 

post #47 of 50

Couple of tips from a mogul champ...

 

While we’ve got you, how about a bump lesson from a Olympic gold medalist?

I’m not a very good coach. When you’re so deeply involved in something it’s hard to step outside of it. But a good general tip is keeping your hands up in front of you and try not to move them around a lot. That should help you stay square to the fall line and keep your upper body quiet. It’s also good to think about upper and lower body separation. Let the legs do all the work, keep the rest of the body quiet, and try to go as straight down the hill as possible.

 

What makes a good bump ski?

Straight and skinny—it’s almost a retro ski. Too much shape will over-turn, and you need to be really quick in the moguls. It’s not as soft as a consumer ski, but not as stiff as a race ski. I’m 5-foot-6 and I ski on a 170, which might be a little longer than you’d expect, and I’ve been with Volkl for 16 years. 

 

www.skinet.com/ski/article/us-mogul-champ-hannah-kearney-lets-not-talk-about-retirement

post #48 of 50

Gosh, just move your ass over to mogulskiing.net, if you want to really improve.

post #49 of 50
Quote:
genlusxsy wrote: Gosh, just move your ass over to mogulskiing.net, if you want to really improve.

 

LOL, funny name.  This site is dedicated to avoiding moguls and focus's on skiing around them.

 

Just say'n

 

Nail

post #50 of 50

Haha funny comment Nail. A wise clinician once told there was a difference between "skiing in moguls" and "skiing in moguls". He was trying to point out the difference between changing direction because of the moguls and changing movements because of the moguls. In the moguls you can take either approach or blend them. This site is dedicated to skiing, whether there be moguls or not. 

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