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Need help with slow, short-radius edge transitions - Page 2

post #31 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by BinghamtonEd View Post
 

Vindabona - first off, wow, that's quite the response and I honestly appreciate every word of it.

 

Skis - I purchased these skis as new old stock (previous year's model) about 10 years ago.  I skied 3 or 4 normal seasons (1-2x per week, central NY seasons) on them, then marriage/kids/home got in the way and I went through a few years of only getting out 3-4x per season.  So while used, they've not seen extensive use, and a new pair is not in the financial picture until at least one kid is out of day care.

Boots - Bought at the same time as the skis.  Technica  TNT Icon X.  I've never had them professionally fitted or checked.  Wouldn't even know where to start with that, but they feel like the best fitting boot I've owned (they're the 3rd pair of boots).

 

Skiing flat - I believe this is a product of years of bad habits without formal instruction.  I feel like after skiing for 20+ years I've gotten pretty darned good at skiing the wrong way.  Now I've reached the point where, to improve, I need to ski differently.  I was in the back seat, muscling my way around the hill by pushing with my heels.  I've since gotten my weight forward ina  more ahtletic stance and I remember the "Aha!" moment first time skied a moderate slope with my weight forward and felt my tips engage.  The feeling of stability and control was noticeably different/better.  I'm sure my equipment could be better set up, but the glaring problem was in my mechanics.  Sort of like my golf game...I have OK clubs that I've had for probably 7 or 8 years.  I'm a 14 handicap, and I know that buying new clubs is not going to fix anything until I fix my game itself.

 

I think the hesitance is both.  I fear the transition because I don't have that skill down.  Same way I feared having my weight forward until I realized that it actually made skiing a lot easier.  Once I figured that out and did it a few times, the fear went away.  I'm thinking that this is a similar situation.  I'm just looking for (and receiving) advice on how to get those first few successful transitions to the downhill edge at the top of the turn.

You're welcome. Thanks for the comments. 

 

As a golfer you understand the notion of it being a "game of opposites". In other words, to make the ball go up you have to hit down.  If you lift up, you get a worm burner.  Skiing is much like that. 

 

Think of the new never-ever skier who doesn't take a lesson.  Skis get a bit out of control, and what is the instinctual thing do do? Move AWAY from the direction of travel (usually sitting back as a response). And does this help?  Heck no. He'll stop when he reaches the parking lot.  To get control he would have to to the one thing that is counter to his natural response: Move INTO the direction that the skis are traveling so he can stay over them and control them.  It's not that much different at the advanced levels.  It is the defensive more, or more aptly, the inability to commit to a move that seems counter-intuitive by nature. 

 

And so, as I thought, #3, moving/transitioning the CoM throughout the turn is one of  the key elements of the problems.  The short answer is that you need to learn to have your body further downhill at the end of the turn than you're used to doing. It is the commitment necessary to ski in advanced situation.   So, let's take a worst case scenario and your upper body was TOO FAR down the hill (over your outside ski)  at the end of a turn. What would happen? Let's see... You'd be forced to make an adjustment. What would that be? Your feet might just have to roll over to keep up. Right? And what would that mean??? That would mean that you just released the turn earlier than you may have intended and started the next turn a bit earlier as well. What does that mean?  It means (in way oversimplified terms and notions) that you just learned the ingredients to making quick turns.  So, now you have something to work with as you refine the other elements. Feel me?  And trust me, you'd have to move your body W A Y down the hill to fall over downhill of your skis. 

 

Again, you need a good instructor to work with you on the hill, but IF he/she can identify the root of your issues and know how all the other pieces fit together, it's not all that difficult. All it takes is a little retraining. 

 

Good luck. 

post #32 of 37
Thread Starter 

I have 3-4 hours tomorrow morning to try this out.  I will post back.  I'm feeling pretty positive about this, you guys have given me a lot to think about.  I'll focus on not thinking too much. Thumbs Up

post #33 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by vindibona1 View Post
....

Here's the deal... If your body (CoM) is too far uphill of your skis at the end of the turn, you cannot release the old turn (and engage the new one) with foot movement first. You would have to bring your body are enough down the hill to release the old turn by flattening the skis. Because of the delay you will probably experience some spontaneous skidding.  However,  if your body is balanced properly increasing toward  the outside ski as each turn progresses, then it will become a matter of rolling your feet and ankles to begin to flatten the skis. Doing that actively will also help maintain the proper CoM tracking into the next turn. I find that aggressively rolling my feet and ankles actually helps pull my body into the correct position for upcoming turns.  This is the secret of the quick, short radius turn.  Being in a position to release and engage turns with minimal movements. However, if at the end of the turn, your body is too far up the hill, you release will be slow as will be your initiation because you will have to take corrective action with your body to put it in  a position to release/engage the edges. You become a "top-down" skier  (meaning a body>feet>skis>snow sequence) rather than a "bottom up" skier (snow>skis>feet/ankles>[knees]>hips [with quiet upper body sequence].   In other words, your CoM must transition into the proper position as each turn develops to allow execution with a minimal amount of movement in as short a period of time (and distance traveled). 

 

The above deserves repeating.  Multiple times.

post #34 of 37
Thread Starter 

Today's skiing has been OBE, will get out there tomorrow instead.

post #35 of 37
Thread Starter 

Well I got out skiing, if only for three hours after work and before I had to pick the kids up, but I did.  I worked on this a bit with mixed results.  I tried to keep everything in mind that you guys have said.  As was expected, I had an easier time making these transitions when I had a little bit of speed on my side.  I wasn't going fast, but I also was not going at the snail's pace that the instructor had shown me.  He had had me starting from a stop, traversing at what could be described as a brisk walking pace (very slow in skiing terms), and then making a short-radius 180 turn and repeating, so the upper body pretty much followed the skis instead of pointing downhill.  He made them look easy last week, but right now I'm struggling.

 

I spent most of my time on a run that was top-half green, and bottom half-blue, so I could practice both ways.  It also helped that it was a near whiteout at times and I had no desire to speed things up as I couldn't see to far ahead of me.

 

When I'm going a little bit faster, it's easier for me to get my skis outside my CoM, I feel a good crossover and easier to get them on the new edges.  On the snail's pace, not so much, and I have more of a tendency to pivot and force the skis into the fall line at the beginning of the turn, and then ride the edges around and slow down as I traverse, then repeat.  I did notice improvement on the lower half of my turns, I'm getting the edges in much better than last week.  Here's what my snail's pace turns look like (sorry for MS paint, I was once again skiing solo) :

 

post #36 of 37
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post
 

The above deserves repeating.  Multiple times.

Reading that made so much sense to me as well. Now I just need to implement...

post #37 of 37

If you move your upper body down hill and face downhill at the same time you will most likely be initiating a skidded turn with upper body rotation.  If you tip your down hill ski to its LTE and balance over the new outside (uphill) ski with counter balancing and hip counter rotation you won't fall down hill because you will be balanced over your new outside ski.  It is called getting up side down.   Look carefully at WC photomontages and you will be able to identify this move.  Words leave so much to be desired.  I hesitate to describe this because it is so much easier to demonstrate it.   One of my favorite drills is to do RR track garlands tipping to my downhill edges and then back to my uphill edges.  Really requires good counter balancing.   YM

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