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Leaning forward

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
I have a problem leaning forward when i ski.
I feel unbalanced when i try to do that... any tips/help about that? Cause i ski pretty straight and then i hurt my toes badly all day and they make me stop every few minutes because of pain.
post #2 of 28
You will get some good feedback from folks more qualfied than me, but why are you "leaning forward"? I think of balancing over my arch when I ski and project forward and down the hill when initiating a new turn. I certainly don't lean forward.
post #3 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13 View Post

You will get some good feedback from folks more qualfied than me, but why are you "leaning forward"?

 

My guess is the OP's heard certain "coaches", including certain posters on epicski, give the terrible advice of "get forward" at the start of every turn. This advice is easy to misinterpret - hence why it's terrible. "Getting forward" and moving the upper body ahead of the skis is a really good way to start rotating into turns and ruin ski performance.

 

tousa, do you have some video of your regular skiing? You do not want to be standing on your toes, or even on the ball of your foot as your go-to place. At most, moving between the front and rear of the arch throughout the turn is generally centered. Video will help you receive more specific advice. 

post #4 of 28

While "getting forward" does not expressly dictate either "leaning" or "upper body" it is usually said to an audience naturally inferring "movement of CoM" and not "leaning of upper body". I think you are right in regards to how it can be easily misinterpreted by the unaware.

post #5 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by tousa View Post

I have a problem leaning forward when i ski.
I feel unbalanced when i try to do that... any tips/help about that? Cause i ski pretty straight and then i hurt my toes badly all day and they make me stop every few minutes because of pain.

 

I'll take the bait.

 

This means that you aren't forward enough to be balanced over your feet.  You need to be more forward than you are but that doesn't mean so far forward you're hanging over the tips of your skis like a ski jumper.

 

When I start a run, I typically scoot my heels back a couple times.  If your heel is seated, you toes should be back from the front of your boot and you toe pain will go away.

 

I'm required by law or risk losing my non union card of "I drank the purple juice" if I don't ask..."Do your boots fit properly?"  Boots a little big make it easy to get aft.

 

How's the quads at the end of the day?

 

How stiff are your boots?

 

What are your stats?

 

Where do you ski and type of terrain?  Steeps and bumps can get you back too.

 

Ken

post #6 of 28

Go to the link below and read how to put on your boots.

 

http://www.epicski.com/atype/2/Gear/tag/bootfitting

 

I read what you posted in the Boot Forum.  You should also read the wiki at the top of that forum about fitting and how to do a shell fit.

post #7 of 28

Tousa, stand up.  Stand easy balanced on the balls of your feet.  Not tip-toe, but just easy on the balls of your feet.  This is your new normal skiing position.

 

It is very helpful to get your body's center of mass (somewhere in the torso) out over the toe bindings to start turns.  The steeper the hill or the sharper you want to turn, the more you need your feet behind you.  This is easy--as you begin the turn strongly pull both feet behind you.  You won't be off balance any more than you're off balance when you ride a bicycle around a turn.  The forces hold you in place.  If you try to get too far forward and you're not moving fast enough, yes, you'll be off balance, because you don't want to be way out there at this speed.  So, go as far as you feel balanced, but do get off your heels. 

post #8 of 28

This thread is like watching a group of monkeys try to hump a football.

 

OP, you have fallen out of the 'backseat' and are now in the trunk. Climb into the drivers seat. How do you do that? Get your hips over your feet or your feet under your hips, whatever terminology works for you. Get some contact on the boot tongue of your boot with the front of your shin, eliminate contact with the back of the boot with the back of your leg. Bring your pelvis forward as you make that shin/tongue contact. Seriously, bring your hips forward. More. Even a bit more. Don't squat. 

 

Folks try to 'get forward' by bending their knees and getting their chest/shoulders forward, this is almost always accompanied by the corresponding move of the hips/pelvis/center of mass travelling back and down. Don't do this. Ever. (absolutes are fun! OK, if you are skiing in a tuck it's good form. All of the rest of the time on snow, don't do this.)

 

We don't need video and his boot fit is almost definitely too big... so what, it's not the real problem. You need a visual of the OP skiing? (Sorry OP, I'm trying to help, honest) imagine taking a dump, think about the process of mounting the 'throne', OP is somewhere between 1/2 and 3/4 of the way down. How can we be sure? He has to stop every few minutes due to toe pain. This isn't a mystery... and it's still just a symptom, not the whole problem.

 

The root problem is most likely fear, OP is leaning back, the back of his leg and the back of his boot are working together to jam his toes into the front of the boot. Good skiing involves moving out and down the hill as we play with gravity, all of our natural instincts scream at us to move back and into the hill for safety as we struggle to resist gravity. Skiing is a sport where our natural survival instincts will get us hurt. OP is letting instinct overcome technique. Practice good technique on non-threatening terrain until it becomes natural or else instinct will win every time. And get your hips forward. More. That's a little better.

post #9 of 28
I am by no means an expert, but what helped me a lot is not thinking about to body being forward or bringing the body forward, but to focus on the feet. That is: pulling the feet back or keeping them under me actively by using the hamstring and glutes.
post #10 of 28

While ultimately people suggest close to ball-of-foot for balance point, I find that feels precarious and I tend to try to center my balance over the arch of my foot.  This lets me feel what's happening better than if I'm only over that big toe anchor joint.  I'm not running and cutting on a basketball court, needing the ball of the foot to pivot off.  The reason to focus on ball-of-foot is pivotability, and more precisely a pivot move directly under the ball of the foot.  You think hockey skaters are on the ball of their foot when skating like demons, switching direction on a whim?  I doubt it.  When swapping from forward direction to backward direction, yes.  Otherwise?  Hmmm.  I'd be interested to hear experienced water skiers say where they put their weight when turning.  When I tried water skiing and tried to feel things at the ball of the foot, the tips went underwater and I went flying.  But I don't know how to water ski.  And I think experienced water skiers bypass the 2-skis situation as fast as they can.

post #11 of 28

You are levering your toes into the front of the boot, using the rear spoiler of your boot as the fulcrum.

Solution is not to lean forward, but to close the ankle (bringing your knees and toes closer together).  This will lever your heel into the heel pocket using the boot tongue as the fulcrum.  Pull your feet back too.

post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by walkuphill View Post
 

While ultimately people suggest close to ball-of-foot for balance point, I find that feels precarious and I tend to try to center my balance over the arch of my foot.  This lets me feel what's happening better than if I'm only over that big toe anchor joint.  I'm not running and cutting on a basketball court, needing the ball of the foot to pivot off.  The reason to focus on ball-of-foot is pivotability, and more precisely a pivot move directly under the ball of the foot.  You think hockey skaters are on the ball of their foot when skating like demons, switching direction on a whim?  I doubt it.  When swapping from forward direction to backward direction, yes.  Otherwise?  Hmmm.  I'd be interested to hear experienced water skiers say where they put their weight when turning.  When I tried water skiing and tried to feel things at the ball of the foot, the tips went underwater and I went flying.  But I don't know how to water ski.

Hockey players (good ones) generally are on the ball of their foot for various reasons...  most professionals also change the shape of their blade to more of a rocker like a figure skate has as it allows tighter turns allows you to move your center of mass forward and rearward easier. the blades don't have a contant rocker.. they're flatter in the back to offer more support when your in the back seat, and more rounded under the ball of your foot. Ankle movements are different in skating vs skiing.. there is more twisting of the ankle involved and generally the front 1/3 of the blade gets the most use when making highly dynamic moves.

 

After years of hearing get forward on your skis, and being a newb and thinking I needed to have my shins nailed to the front of my (at the time ill fitting much too large) boots I ended up way of the front of my skis and way out of balance as a result..  I've since got boots that fit better and relaxed my stance and now keep my balance over my arch.. coming from a purely recreational standpoint..  I find myself much more in balance and better able to react to the terrain changes trying to throw me off balance as i have a much greater range of motion available now before I'm past the point of no return.  Someone on the forum here clued me into this at the beginning of the season and my skiing has improved by leaps and bounds by not going forward..  From my experience if you are already skiing centered going forward is only really required when you want initiate more aggressive turns or you want to slow your feet to maintain snow contact while in moguls etc.  If you are in the back seat, then you need to stand taller and get centered.

 

One exercise I do while i'm skiing with my kids and going down slow green groomers is to straight line with ski flat, slowly and lift the tails of the ski off the snow.. carefully because if you start to get them on edge you will shoot off in whatever direction the ski hooks.  It drives the heel back and the knee forward and puts you on your toes without standing on your toes.  When I stand on my toes outside of my ski boots, generally you open your ankle up, which is the opposite of what I think you actually want to do.. if I'm pressuring the cuff and raising the heel, the forces in the boot are transfered to the front of the ski through the boot bending it to my will.  obviously a well fitting boot is required and the result is.. your on your toes despite not thinking i'm going to stand on my toes.

 

If you think of someone climbing stairs, standing on your toes to me for years meant the lower foot..  (open ankle on toes). What it really means now to me.. is the upper foot.. the one that just contacted the stair and you just transferred weight to, to pushing you up.   Does that make sense?

post #13 of 28

I think I needed to be clearer.  I was thinking about when I learned to ice skate and tried both figure and hockey skates, a figure skate's toe-brake lets you basically run on the ice as you would on soil in shoes, much easier to ball-of-foot on the ice.  A hockey blade rockers up radically and when I tried the same toe-pressure for speed I fell face first and got a bloody nose in the bargain.  Later I learned to skate exclusively on hockey skates but not a high level.  What agility I did acquire was related to stability over the arch, not over the ball of the foot.  So a hockey player's driving, powerful skating is perched over the ball of the foot, over a tiny stretch of the blade's length -- say, maybe 1" of blade length?

post #14 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post
 

This thread is like watching a group of monkeys try to hump a football.

 

OP, you have fallen out of the 'backseat' and are now in the trunk. Climb into the drivers seat. How do you do that? Get your hips over your feet or your feet under your hips, whatever terminology works for you. Get some contact on the boot tongue of your boot with the front of your shin, eliminate contact with the back of the boot with the back of your leg. Bring your pelvis forward as you make that shin/tongue contact. Seriously, bring your hips forward. More. Even a bit more. Don't squat. 

 

Folks try to 'get forward' by bending their knees and getting their chest/shoulders forward, this is almost always accompanied by the corresponding move of the hips/pelvis/center of mass travelling back and down. Don't do this. Ever. (absolutes are fun! OK, if you are skiing in a tuck it's good form. All of the rest of the time on snow, don't do this.)

 

We don't need video and his boot fit is almost definitely too big... so what, it's not the real problem. You need a visual of the OP skiing? (Sorry OP, I'm trying to help, honest) imagine taking a dump, think about the process of mounting the 'throne', OP is somewhere between 1/2 and 3/4 of the way down. How can we be sure? He has to stop every few minutes due to toe pain. This isn't a mystery... and it's still just a symptom, not the whole problem.

 

The root problem is most likely fear, OP is leaning back, the back of his leg and the back of his boot are working together to jam his toes into the front of the boot. Good skiing involves moving out and down the hill as we play with gravity, all of our natural instincts scream at us to move back and into the hill for safety as we struggle to resist gravity. Skiing is a sport where our natural survival instincts will get us hurt. OP is letting instinct overcome technique. Practice good technique on non-threatening terrain until it becomes natural or else instinct will win every time. And get your hips forward. More. That's a little better.

Poor football .... another horny monkey.

post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by tousa View Post

I have a problem leaning forward when i ski.
I feel unbalanced when i try to do that... any tips/help about that? Cause i ski pretty straight and then i hurt my toes badly all day and they make me stop every few minutes because of pain.

I'm someone that would suggest getting forward on the ski, but in this case this is not what I would suggest for you at this point.

 

Get balanced and understand edge feel.  The reason I am suggesting this is your "feel unbalanced" comment.

 

The easiest drill to do this is simple side slips on both sides for about 10 ft each side each run.  You'll be surprised, how quickly and how much of difference this will make in your skiing and understanding of balance.  Once you understand ask about some of the other related drills for this.

 

At that point when someone says get forward, you'll have a better understanding of how and what that actually means and does, without actually feeling pain or unbalanced.

 

I still do this at least once every time I am out, as it just reaffirms my balance and edge feel (even after 49 years of skiing).

 

Have fun and ski on.

post #16 of 28

I figure skated for 12 years commencing with a knee injury while competing at a provincial level.  I gave it up after that.  A normal hockey skate is radiused under the arch.. not quite sure why they do this but they do..  if you get too far forward it dumps you on your face, and too far back it dumps you on your ass..  It promotes a more centered balance I guess.  A figure skate has a rocker further forward towards the picks under the ball of the foot.. A good skater *can* use all of the blade.. much like a good skier *can* use all of the ski.. but yea in most dynamic skating, your only using 1-2" of blade under the ball of the foot.. the ankle is used in conjunction with the rocker of the blade to maintain this sweet spot in contact with the ice.  skaters develop pretty powerful calves as a result.  most rec skaters under utilize the ankle, skate on to stiff a knee and as a result have poor dynamic balance.  Often in skating competitons on tv you'll hear the figure skates making a scratching sound ( which is different from a crunching sound the blade makes when pushed hard into the ice) while skating backwards and in dance, sometimes forwards..  that's the skater being too far forward and scratching the picks into the ice.. it drives me nuts to hear it in international competition because its something that shouldn't be happening at that level.  I'm sure ski racers watching the tv with professional level atheletes see the same kind of mistakes and cringe the same why I do when I watch skating.  The picks on a figure skate aren't there to be a brake..  they are there to provide a sturdy anchor when you drive the front of your skate into the ice to provide a lever in which to vault off of.  Many a hockey player hated skating after figure skaters because there would be big holes in the ice ( usually because the ice was too hard ) where it had chunked out and left massive divot.  Of all the sports that i think that could come close to the balance required for skiing, i think it would be speed skating.. i've never done it but inclination and angulation and centered balance i think would be very much the same skill set.

 

Anyway.. back to skiing and being forward.. if i stand on my stairs with my toes on the edge of the stair and my heels down and bend my knee forward.. that's the same muscle feeling i get when i'm now.. "on my toes"  ankle closed, calves flexed, knees forward and center of mass slightly ahead moving my balance point slightly ahead of the front of my toes..

post #17 of 28
All I get when I lean or get forward in terms of stance, is tense and then tired muscles.
post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post
 

We don't need video and his boot fit is almost definitely too big... so what, it's not the real problem. You need a visual of the OP skiing? (Sorry OP, I'm trying to help, honest) imagine taking a dump, think about the process of mounting the 'throne', OP is somewhere between 1/2 and 3/4 of the way down. How can we be sure? He has to stop every few minutes due to toe pain. This isn't a mystery... and it's still just a symptom, not the whole problem.

 

Whiteroom, when a new customer walks in and says that their last bootfitter said xyz, do you immediately run to your workbench and start punching? 

 

The purpose of seeing video is to really understand the issues in the OP's skiing. Yes, (s)he might be sitting on the toilet. But (s)he feels (s)he is skiing on the ball of the foot/toes. I'd like to see what's going on to do a proper assessment and provide development strategies. Like I commented in another thread, symptoms don't always indicate cause. 

post #19 of 28
Where did the OP say they were on their toes? They said they were LEANING forward. Not the same thing.
post #20 of 28

sibhusky, that's fair, I shouldn't assume the skier's on their toes just because their toes hurt. All the more reason to get some video.

post #21 of 28
If they're on the balls of their feet, their toes won't hurt. From all they've said, I think the "lean" is coming from the waist.
post #22 of 28

Also consider the OP said that they felt unbalanced.  To me that would indicate that they don't have a good feel for balance yet along with the fine control needed, so when movements are made they are to large just to get the forward feeling.

 

In fairness to the OP unbalanced could mean a few other things ;) but I won't go there.

post #23 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Where did the OP say they were on their toes? They said they were LEANING forward. Not the same thing.

No he didn't. He said he has a problem leaning forward. never said he was leaning forward.
post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by L&AirC View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post

Where did the OP say they were on their toes? They said they were LEANING forward. Not the same thing.

No he didn't. He said he has a problem leaning forward. never said he was leaning forward.

Actually, he told me he was trying to lean forward a lot and didn't feel he had control when he did that. In any case, he never said, that I can find, that he was on his toes. Only that they hurt.
post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by sibhusky View Post


Actually, he told me he was trying to lean forward a lot and didn't feel he had control when he did that. In any case, he never said, that I can find, that he was on his toes. Only that they hurt.

 

Holy smokes, sibhusky, I get the point already! I acknowledged jumping to conclusions, which is why I'd like to see video. 

post #26 of 28
Lots of assumptions being made without all the info.

See his post in the bootfitters forum...

Beginner skier in rental boots needing instruction on how to buckle his boots.
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Metaphor_ View Post

[snip]. "Getting forward" and moving the upper body ahead of the skis is a really good way to start rotating into turns and ruin ski performance. [snip]

Can you elaborate on this or provide a calculation demonstrating the effect? To borrow from GHWB, this sounds like it might just be more CSIA skiing voodoo. Enlighten me please and dispel my suspicions. My suspicions arise from the observation that winning WC runs often contain some turns begun with a forward movement early in the turn.
post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post
 

This thread is like watching a group of monkeys try to hump a football.

 

OP, you have fallen out of the 'backseat' and are now in the trunk. Climb into the drivers seat. How do you do that? Get your hips over your feet or your feet under your hips, whatever terminology works for you. Get some contact on the boot tongue of your boot with the front of your shin, eliminate contact with the back of the boot with the back of your leg. Bring your pelvis forward as you make that shin/tongue contact. Seriously, bring your hips forward. More. Even a bit more. Don't squat. 

 

Folks try to 'get forward' by bending their knees and getting their chest/shoulders forward, this is almost always accompanied by the corresponding move of the hips/pelvis/center of mass travelling back and down. Don't do this. Ever. (absolutes are fun! OK, if you are skiing in a tuck it's good form. All of the rest of the time on snow, don't do this.)

 

We don't need video and his boot fit is almost definitely too big... so what, it's not the real problem. You need a visual of the OP skiing? (Sorry OP, I'm trying to help, honest) imagine taking a dump, think about the process of mounting the 'throne', OP is somewhere between 1/2 and 3/4 of the way down. How can we be sure? He has to stop every few minutes due to toe pain. This isn't a mystery... and it's still just a symptom, not the whole problem.

 

The root problem is most likely fear, OP is leaning back, the back of his leg and the back of his boot are working together to jam his toes into the front of the boot. Good skiing involves moving out and down the hill as we play with gravity, all of our natural instincts scream at us to move back and into the hill for safety as we struggle to resist gravity. Skiing is a sport where our natural survival instincts will get us hurt. OP is letting instinct overcome technique. Practice good technique on non-threatening terrain until it becomes natural or else instinct will win every time. And get your hips forward. More. That's a little better.

 

100% correct. People who've heard/seen the same thing thousands of times don't need video to diagnose the obvious.

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