Hi all, long time lurker having picked up enough courage, about to ask a potentially silly question.
When focusing on improving ski technique, is there a strategically better kind of ski that will aid in the improvement? Don't get me wrong here, I'm not looking for skis that will magically make me ski better; I'm rather looking for a 'coaching ski'.
Specifically, when working to improve technique, does it help to work with skis which are more demanding and require precision, or could the honest feedback be detrimental to progress?
Optional background information:
I'm a CSIA L2, qualified about 6 years ago but without any intention to take up instruction professionally, just as a way to improve my skiing. Since then, my work situation, issues with my left knee (PFPS for 7-8 years, ACL sprain last season) and a newborn have all conspired to restrict me to around 10-15 ski days per season, mostly in the Swiss Alps. My skiing has consequently regressed along with my general fitness level.
This season I'm working on building up my skiing back to the level when I was skiing the whole season in Fernie BC, and have set a goal that looks challenging on a good day, but feels like a stretch on a bad day -- getting my CSIA L3. I'm provisionally planning to take the course in late April in Whistler, and I'd be over the moon if I could pass the exam end of that month.
I have quite a few things that I know I need to work on, and wouldn't be surprised if there are some things that I don't even know is problematic. Here are some things I've always had to build up early every season, and things I feel need to be at a much sharper level than now in order for me to have a good chance at getting L3:
- getting back to centre (in the fore-aft sense) when transitioning from my strong turn to my weak turn, in challenging terrain, during changes in rhythm of turns, in bumps etc.
- seeking, remaining and recovering my centre and being in more control of where it is in relation to the BoS in general.
- better extension and absorption on my weak turn.
- better symmetry of turns for short radius turns / quick rhythms.
- quieter and more symmetric pole planting, and less tension in shoulders and arms.
- more coordinated movements of the 2 feet, matching angles and consistent distance between the skis, especially when transitioning from weak turn to strong turn.
Now, I have learned that skiing a lot is really good for technique. So are all the drills I learned during the instructor courses, books, videos etc. Skiing a lot and drilling a lot is good, I know. It's just unfortunate that this season I can't really do more than ski 1-2 days every weekend until the course. So I'm trying to find ways to 'hack' this mission. Hence the question.
Looking forward to hearing the wisdom of the more enlightened.