Beginner adults often feel uncomfortable in a wedge because it challenges their range of motion. This is especially true when they are asked to flatten that downhill ski. Direct to parallel would be so much easier, but if terrain does not provide a safe way to stop or slow down as they learn to balance at the beginning of the lesson, they will need the wedge for enhanced balance and also for speed control. They may also need it for their first attempts at slowing down and stopping before they learn to turn, if the only alternative is to ram into the fence .
But back to releasing that new inside ski....
----They often show up with rental boots that are way to big, so tipping the foot at the ankle inside the boot doesn't necessarily do anything to the ski.
----Tipping at the ankle can also remind them of spraining an ankle; some may be reluctant to do it for this reason.
----Plus, they can't see you demo the ankle tipping. Words may be going into one ear and out the other, as they are overstimulated anyway.
----Moving the downhill knee out, as in "going bowlegged" on that side, will move the cuff over if they have boots buckled tight enough, and that should have a flattening affect on that ski.
----Moving that knee over can work as long as they have a narrow wedge (it goes without saying that flattening that ski is easier if they have a narrow wedge than a wide wedge).
----However, moving that knee outward is hard for them because of range of motion issues. They often bank their whole bodies to get that knee to move. Remember, they are insecure and have a lot of new stuff to think about. We don't want to have them banking.
----Moving the hip inside the new turn along with the moving knee, while keeping the torso upright, is the solution, but this is complicated and often they just can't get this to work in a short amount of time.
I think that's why focusing on doing something to the uphill ski to get the very first turns to happen works more easily and gives them quicker success. I'm not promoting it, however, please remember this. But terrain challenges may drive an instructor in this direction. Very short first-day-beginner-lessons also encourage doing whatever works.
Then there's the rotary thing. Asking them to also turn that ski in the direction of the new turn once it's flattened won't work unless they are centered over their skis. How often do they successfully stay centered over those skis? You can have them move their bodies uphill over the new outside ski so the new inside one gets lightened, but that should be a clear no-no as we don't move our bodies uphill to start our turns.
So I have some questions for BTS and others who teach with an exclusive focus on new inside ski actions to motorize the very first turns.
------How do your beginner adults fare at the very beginning of their first turns, when you have them focus entirely on that new inside ski, rather than do something with the new outside ski? What makes it work for you?
------How much time does it take to move them to success? Are your lessons all-day lessons?
------Do you have helpful beginner terrain that features an uphill slope, or at least a flat run-out, without cross traffic, where you can let them work on this without fear?
------Do you have a carpet that gets them back uphill after every attempt, or do they tire out as they climb back up after every very short attempt at making a turn .... after avoiding running into the fence at the bottom?
Q: What's the best thing a resort can do if it has an expanse of flat land near the lodge?
A: (owner): Fill it with condos.
Edited by LiquidFeet - 6/2/15 at 1:28pm