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Crossover-crossunder - Page 2

post #31 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowDog
Here we identify many varieties of turns, and they all can be made on any type of ski.

*Steered turn- All direction change is accomplished through a controll twisting of the feet. Done while skis are being pressured.

*Carved turn- No twisting of the feet. All the direction change is accomplished by tipping the ski on edge and letting the shape of the skis edge on the snow create the turn.

*Pivot- The twisting of the feet while the skis are unweighted.

These methods can be combined, as desired by the skier, or demanded by the situation. A turn can begin with a steer or pivot and then feather into a carve, or vise versa. Sometimes the specific type of turns being referred to in the posts here are not clarified well enough.
I Like psia's older definition of steered, which is a turn where the ski snow interaction is overpowered, and the term guiding, which is at the carving end of the spectrum, where the ski snow interaction dominates. Skarving (sorry fastman) fits in here as well. This alows us to find the middle ground that Ott spoke well about, and allows us to play with degrees.

I can pivot my skis weighted and stil not change direction, the direction change comes only through edge engagement. Pivoted side slips come to mind. we're pivoting our skis but there is no edge interaction with the snow. A weighted pivot. These absolutes can be confusing.

For those who want to experience the whole range, try the funnel exercise. Start with long turns and slowly decrease turn shape down to short radius. If done smothly and progressively you will feel the whole spectrum. Even if you start with log pure carved turns you will quickly start adding some skid and start blending between crossover and crossunder.

Great post Ott. Later, RicB.
post #32 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by BillA
So, what's wrong with going slow?
There's nothing wrong with going slow, if that's what you want to do, but this discussion has been about pretty advanced techniques, and someone made a comment that carving is always faster. Racing (or any athletic skiing) is more about carrying energy from turn to turn than it is about perfectly clean carving.
Some instructors seem to be overly impressed with their own "pure carved turns," and that's what reminded me of the golf cart joke. That's not entirely fair: to demonstrate new techniques, instructors need to maintain good control and eliminate extraneous movements, and that's why they all look alike. When they are free skiing, some of them need to let loose a little.

Regards, John
post #33 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by RicB
I Like psia's older definition of steered, which is a turn where the ski snow interaction is overpowered.
Really, Ric? You find "an overpowering of ski snow interaction" a clearer description of whats really happening during a steered turn than "a controlled twisting of the feet"?

To each his own; but it seems to me that during a steered turn the skis and snow are still interacting. The interaction is just of a different nature.

By explaining it as "a controlled twisting of the feet" the exact movement that creates the turn is clearly communicated, and it's suggested that the turn radius is under the "controll" of the skier.

Quote:
I can pivot my skis weighted and stil not change direction, the direction change comes only through edge engagement. Pivoted side slips come to mind. we're pivoting our skis but there is no edge interaction with the snow. A weighted pivot. These absolutes can be confusing.
The crucial thing to understand is that a pivot changes the direction the skis are pointing without changing the skiers direction of travel.

What you're saying here is true Ric, you can do that with pressure on the skis, but it's a much more labor intensive method and it produces a greater breaking effect. It's great when used as a drill for skill expansion, but in real skiing it would be considered defensive skiing. Watch upper level skiers in action and you will see that 90% of the time a pivot is made during turn transition with the skis light. Even when not used during turn transitions the pivot is typically preceded with some type of unweighting (up, down) to make the pivot easier to accomplish, and minimize it's disruptive affect on the flow of energy.
post #34 of 55

Instructors obsessing???

Quote:
Instructors love to obsess over how perfectly purely they carve. That's great for doing demos for your intermediate adult group on the blue groomers, but it's not very useful in any high speed, high energy skiing.

Regards, John


PS: Why are ski instructors like golf carts?

A. They all look the same and go slow.
An instructor would rarely be doing pure carved turns to an intermediate group. It would not be appropriate unless he/she was showing off some advanced skiing.

Actually, high speed, high energy skiing is mostly about carving nowadays. The faster you go the easier it is to carve, and the most precise.

Lastly, the joke punchline is "because they all look the same and their top speed is 15 mph."

Bob

ps, Ott said it very well above. I don't need to repeat it.
post #35 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by WVSkier
An instructor would rarely be doing pure carved turns to an intermediate group. It would not be appropriate unless he/she was showing off some advanced skiing.

Actually, high speed, high energy skiing is mostly about carving nowadays. The faster you go the easier it is to carve, and the most precise.

Lastly, the joke punchline is "because they all look the same and their top speed is 15 mph."

Bob

ps, Ott said it very well above. I don't need to repeat it.
I don't think we are really disagreeing about anything, except maybe that any skier who needs a demo of simple carved turns is certainly what I think of as an intermediate. I'm sure some of those guys think of themselves as experts.

While it's true that high quality skiing requires a lot of carving, it's equally true that it also requires a lot of steering, pivoting, slipping and guiding, all without dissipating energy or losing balance. Those are actually the harder skills to learn, especially in the last 10 years or so. That's what I thought Ott was getting at. The "pure carved turn" really is a fixation of intermediates and instructors who don't have the enough opportunity to ski with really hot skiers. You won't hear USSA coaches, or the PSIA Educational Staff or Demo Team talking about carving much. They emphasize balance first, then pressure management or movement or energy.

As Ott said, "Skiers need to realise that carving is not a major part of expert skiing, just something that has to be mastered to be used when needed. It seems to be the Holy Grail right now, mainly becaue with the new skis it's become possible for lower skilled skiers to do."

When race coaches tell that joke, it's about instructors' course times, not their top speeds. I like that joke because I resemble those slow instructors, and it reminds me to let loose a little.

Regards, John
post #36 of 55
Snowdog I think what you are saying here, "*Steered turn- All direction change is accomplished through a controll twisting of the feet. Done while skis are being pressured." is not the same as what you are saying here "but it seems to me that during a steered turn the skis and snow are still interacting. The interaction is just of a different nature.

I agree with your second statement, because direction change isn't accomplished by just Twisting of the feet (what I tried to point out with the pivot slip) and legs and that's why I think it is important to draw this out. We need ski/snow interaction for direction change in all skiing, it boils down to which is the primary or controling force or movement. In most skiing in the real world we are constantly blending between both and sometimes the blend might be 50/50 or 25/75, or 75/25. These distictions seem very important when we start talking about the fundamentals as applied to real world skiing.

The same seems true with crossunder/over. As the blending of the ski/snow interaction changes so does the blending of the lateral core movement versus the flexion of the legs and ankle or the crossover/under. We don't really do one or the other eccept at the extremes do we? I see it being very important to keep this understanding which is why I see the ski/snow interaction the important reference. I approach this in teaching with a scale of one to ten. One being pure sliding pivot and ten of course being pure carve. As Ott pointed out very few of us spen much time at the extreme ends of the spectrum, but in the huge middle of the blending of the extremes. Just as pressure control has a big effect on ski/snow interaction so do core movements. Understanding that we need constant blending and the relationship between core movements and pressure, or how to stand on our skis in different situations is the start of upper end skiing as I see it.

The other word that I think is misleading is the use of the word retraction instead of flexion. retraction is an overpowering move to shorten the legs, a reversal or opposite muscle effort from most skiing effort. Sure it is used sometimnes but in most skiing I would venture that flexion which is the decreasing of the muscle effort in the legs allowing gravity and turning forces to shorten the legs is used most. Not limp legs but reducing the effort to control pressure and allow greater steering and or movement of the core while still maintain some ski snow interaction and control.

With begginers I say turn the feet, at higher levels I start drawing attention to the relationships. I'm really not trying to be a pain, but I just found some things being said not quite on the mark. I could be the pot calling the kettle black. What do you think? Later, RicB.
post #37 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by RicB
Snowdog I think what you are saying here, "*Steered turn- All direction change is accomplished through a controll twisting of the feet. Done while skis are being pressured." is not the same as what you are saying here "but it seems to me that during a steered turn the skis and snow are still interacting. The interaction is just of a different nature.

I agree with your second statement, because direction change isn't accomplished by just Twisting of the feet (what I tried to point out with the pivot slip) and legs and that's why I think it is important to draw this out. We need ski/snow interaction for direction change in all skiing, it boils down to which is the primary or controling force or movement.
My goal is always to simplify explanations. Tell someone to twist their feet while they're skiing and they'll turn. Why? Because it takes very little edge angle create a turn when steering, and most will use adaquate amounts of edge angle naturally without having to mention it. In fact, anyone but a skilled skier will be in real danger of catching an outside edge and face planting if they attempt to steer with zero edge angle.

If you want to focus on the element that distinquishes steering from carving you need to focus on the foot twisting. Edging is a necessary constant in both.

Finally, your statement that "We need ski/snow interaction for direction change in all skiing" demonstrates the potetial for confusion the use of the term carries. Of course it takes ski/snow interaction to change the direction of travel, but it's presence doesn't ensure it.

As long as our skis are in pressured contact with the snow there's ski/snow interaction of some kind taking place. It's there when we carve, its there when we steer, it's there when we're going straight down the fall line, it's there when we sideslip, it's there when we brake. If you really want to refer to ski/snow interaction you have to be more specific as to the type if you want to be understood.




Quote:
The other word that I think is misleading is the use of the word retraction instead of flexion. retraction is an overpowering move to shorten the legs, a reversal or opposite muscle effort from most skiing effort. Sure it is used sometimnes but in most skiing I would venture that flexion which is the decreasing of the muscle effort in the legs allowing gravity and turning forces to shorten the legs is used most. Not limp legs but reducing the effort to control pressure and allow greater steering and or movement of the core while still maintain some ski snow interaction and control.
Ric, retraction is a pretty commonly accepted term for describing the leg flexion done at turn transition that allows the feet to pass under the body without overly disturbing the center of mass.

Flexion was a term from the old days that more described the sinking into a turn in preparation for a strong end of the turn extension.

I won't go into a long discussion here on the biomechanical accuracy of the current use of the terms in skiing, but I will say that common ussage doesn't always coincide well with technical accuracy. Are you proposing we change the book?
post #38 of 55
don't have any real disagreement here only that at some point we need to address the ski/snow interaction, and how our feet are turning differently with respect ot turning forces. A typical student might ask "My feet are always turning when I ski, what's the difference when you say a steered turn"? What better to reference this than ski/snow interaction? Definetly at the instructor level we need to talk about the significance of this interaction, wouldn't you agree?

Retraction used interchangably with flexion. One is very active muscle action and the other not as active though it is controled. The second I would use to control the forces and the rebound of my skis, and the first I would use to powerfully release my skis, pull them up out of the snow, or trough maybe. Maybe they use the term differently in racng circles. I guess I'm old school, because I've never heard them used interchagably by any clinnicians, examners or trainers, but hey, we are a small division. Maybe some others would sound in on this. Yeah, I do like to keep it bio-mechanicaly correct, to me this cut's down on confusion, when our sport uses terms the rest of the world uses. To each Their own. Later, RicB.
post #39 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by RicB
Definetly at the instructor level we need to talk about the significance of this interaction, wouldn't you agree?
Most definately. At the instructor level there should be an extensive understanding of all technical aspects of the sport. At the student level that knowledge should only be supplied as needed, in small, easily digestable doses.
post #40 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowDog
Most definately. At the instructor level there should be an extensive understanding of all technical aspects of the sport. At the student level that knowledge should only be supplied as needed, in small, easily digestable doses.
I agree here to. Do you teach?

Good conversation. Later, RicB.
post #41 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by RicB
Retraction used interchangably with flexion. One is very active muscle action and the other not as active though it is controled. The second I would use to control the forces and the rebound of my skis, and the first I would use to powerfully release my skis, pull them up out of the snow, or trough maybe. Maybe they use the term differently in racng circles. I guess I'm old school, because I've never heard them used interchagably by any clinnicians, examners or trainers, but hey, we are a small division. Maybe some others would sound in on this. Yeah, I do like to keep it bio-mechanicaly correct, to me this cut's down on confusion, when our sport uses terms the rest of the world uses. To each Their own. Later, RicB.
RicB,
I would suggest that an important issue relative to the semantics here are the perceptions of the skier. When a suggestion to flex is given to some skiers they will just sink down and put themselves in the back seat. For some, retraction triggers a light bulb for pulling the skies up or lightening the load on the skies. Of course for others retraction is just a confusing term.

I don't at all see how one is more "active" than the other. Unless these two terms are defined by the person using them to mean different things relative to skiing I don't see much difference in the context of skiing. Personally, I find the concept of retracting my skis or feet up to work much better. (I can give you a number of personal anecdotes demostrating this effectiveness).

As an instructor (who I am impressed with by your posts on Epic) I would think you would just want to try and choose the terms that your students respond to most appropriately.
post #42 of 55
I first heard about crossunder movement in a clinic called "Turn Initiation Techniques" that was led by PSIA Demonstration Team coach Mike Porter at a NRM Spring Symposium in the mid-Eighties. He introduced it by saying, "Try this!" at the top of a run, and demonstrating. After praising those in the clinic who gave reasonable facsimiles in front of the group, he named what they did a "compression turn" and used qualifiers like "Slinky" to explain how to do it.

It was the most fun segment of the clinic, I thought, and my students also enjoy it when we play with compression turns.

They are functional and also a lot of fun.

As for the notion that crossover and crossunder are clear choices, I suggest a chairlift exercise: watch a skier descend and for each turn declare whether it was a crossover or a crossunder. Unless the skier is doing a demonstration of one or the other, he/she will mix them up so that your tongue will be tied up in knots by the off ramp.
post #43 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowDog

Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by cgeib

Is it always necessary? I'll have to play with this when the snow returns, but it seems like it would depend on the amplitude of the arc whether this is necessary or not.

In a pure cross-under move, yes. Without it cross-under serves no purpose because turns happens no faster than during cross-over transitions. Might as well just make a cross-over move. A pure cross-under with no pivot either puts you in the back seat, on your inside hip, or both, depending pn the amount of lateral movement of the skis during the cross-under.
Snowdog,

Thanks for the reply. I believe I understand what you are saying. Guess I'll have to take it to the snow and see ...hopefully without too much time on my hip

Chris
post #44 of 55
Thread Starter 
I can't get over the dialog over two relatively simple sounding terms.

I posted the query almost in jest as I was already convinced that all I ever did was crossunder to transition! The other seemed impossible on ski's---using the ice skate terminology.

Now I have a fuller understanding of terms and I agree with Nolo that you will likely never see a completely over or under transition from the lift unless you happen to witness a demo.

This has been a great excersize.
post #45 of 55
I think of cross under as releasing pressure to start the turn and cross over as applying pressure to start the turn. In the end it is a spectrum of pressure changes you need to have the ability to deal with pressure as you desire to control turn shape and deal with terrain and snow changes. I dislike the terms as in every turn we have a cross over and a cross under. It is tough to pinpoint when which happens. I think more in terms of pressure change and what I am doing with flextion and extension movements from my legs. It is a GREAT activity or drill to force your self to try to do each different range so you can hone your skill until you are able to just apply them natural as needed to continue an even controled flow from turn to turn down any terrain with your desired outcome of speed and line.
post #46 of 55
Hallo Ott, ich komme aus Deutschland, bin aber sehr gerne in Österreich.

Although it wasn't my question you all gave me a deeper insight in your points of view. I understand you are discussing a turn usually as a composition of different techniques. You consider 'pure carved' turns more as a technique for a demo or drill or some fun when terrain and conditions fit.

Reading your posts is also a challenging task to enrich my English language abilities.

CarvingFan

PS: My answer is a little late, but I prefered to have some time in the snow.
post #47 of 55
Thread Starter 
Carving Fan

There are many that claim english as a FIRST language that don't do as well with the language as you!
post #48 of 55
Thanks skier_j, but it takes time.
post #49 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Si
RicB,
I would suggest that an important issue relative to the semantics here are the perceptions of the skier. When a suggestion to flex is given to some skiers they will just sink down and put themselves in the back seat. For some, retraction triggers a light bulb for pulling the skies up or lightening the load on the skies. Of course for others retraction is just a confusing term.

I don't at all see how one is more "active" than the other. Unless these two terms are defined by the person using them to mean different things relative to skiing I don't see much difference in the context of skiing. Personally, I find the concept of retracting my skis or feet up to work much better. (I can give you a number of personal anecdotes demostrating this effectiveness).

As an instructor (who I am impressed with by your posts on Epic) I would think you would just want to try and choose the terms that your students respond to most appropriately.
You're right about talking to students students SI. I'm much more likely to use words like shorten and bend your ankles knees and hips than I am to say flex or even rarer, retract. In the end whatever connects to a student is what I would use. In general discussions like here, we need to be able to differentiate between words and define what we mean by them. I'll try to explain the difference between these two, retraction and general flexion as they apply to our lower body in skiing. As I see it anyway of course.

1: We can all agree that flexion simply means decreasing the angle between two bones or body segments, so retraction lies within this action.

2: Generaly retraction is defined as pulling something back or removing something. In skiing I see this as pulling up the feet towards the butt, and that's how it has always been presented to me.

3: In retracting the legs, or pulling the feet towards the butt we are using different muscles than we are when we simply allow the forces to let the butt move towards the body. Retracting would use the flexors, while using the power of the forces and reducing the muscle effort to allow flexion is using the extenders, working in eccentric contraction. I'm simplifying this so bear with me.

4: If we subscribe to the "your muscles can only do one thing at a time", and we understand that most of our hip/leg flexors also do double duty as hip/leg rotaters, and if we need to be actively rotating or steering from the hip then we might find a conflict here in use here, when we ask our flexors to rotate the joint as it flexes it.

5: When we extend our legs and hips we overpowering the force of gravity and turn generated forces, to flex and allow those same forces to pull our butt towards our feet requires nothing more than reducing the effort in our extender muscles. Here I might say relax the leg to a student, and then proceed with an explanation of how and why.

Try this exercise. Stand in a good tall ski stance with slight flex in your lower joints and then simply reduce the effort you are using to hold the position, you let your butt move towards your feet. You can do this faster or slower depending on how much resistance you maintain in your muscles. I find a great degree of control here, and I can instanly adjust the rate or stop it. Now stand the same way and pull your feet towards your butt, retract. Different muscles are used here, with much less control and more effort required. Hopefully this will show the difference between the two.

I we use the muscles we are already using to change from extension to flexion by reducing the effort they are putting out, and harnessing the power of the forces we reduce the effort, are more efficient and free up other muscles to work in different ways (rotation). Now I'm not saying we should not retract, but that I think most people react differently to the words retract and flex, and they aren't interchangable. I could be way off here, and I'm no final authority, but that's how I see it. In everday skiing I see allowing our butt to move towards our feet in varying rates, is much more effective than pulling our feet towards our butt. Later, RicB.
post #50 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by RicB
Try this exercise. Stand in a good tall ski stance with slight flex in your lower joints and then simply reduce the effort you are using to hold the position, you let your butt move towards your feet. You can do this faster or slower depending on how much resistance you maintain in your muscles. I find a great degree of control here, and I can instanly adjust the rate or stop it. Now stand the same way and pull your feet towards your butt, retract. Different muscles are used here, with much less control and more effort required. Hopefully this will show the difference between the two.
....[snip]....
In everday skiing I see allowing our butt to move towards our feet in varying rates, is much more effective than pulling our feet towards our butt. Later, RicB.
The issue boils down to eccentric vs concentric contractions.

Retraction demands concentric contractions. With each added concentric contraction the bodies ability to locate and manipulate the position of its COM is compromised. I won't go so far as to say that balance goes out the window, but certainly locating and manipulating COM are components of balance.

OTOH, flexion is an eccentric contraction that allows the COM to sink. Since lowering the bodies COM under control, requires the body to know exactly where it's COM is located to remain in balance, balance is NOT compromised. Flexion is ultimately a balance skill.

IMO retraction is always followed by a "recovery like" action no matter how smooth! Since the COM has become somewhat detached from the platform that supports it during the retraction, the body needs to reacquaint itself with the location of its COM to make further moves.

That's how I see it.
post #51 of 55
Good knowledgable points BigE. I was trying to stay as untechnical as I could and still point out that all flexion isn't created equal and how we achieve flexion has a big impact on our skiing. What muscles we use and the form of recruitment is very important, so to not draw distinction between different types of flexion ignores the impact it has on our skiing. It's not about what words we use in a lesson, it's about what common language we use in our disscussions of the fundamentals and how this tranlates to the bigger picture of bio-mechnics and common definitions, and more improtantly cause and effect. These are issues in all movements and sports and not just skiing. An understanding of balance issues and the relationship of the type of contraction and recruitment is something that is sorely needed in ski instruction. Later, RicB.
post #52 of 55
Ric, a good rule of thumb is to not depend on buss words, but instead speak in clear and detailed concepts. When that's done everyone can understand the point being made, from beginner to expert, and no terminology confussion occurs. As I said in my jargon post that was the catalyst for this thread; word tossing without background knowledge is the domain of the inept, it's not a place true pros should dwell.

Big E, good thoughts. I like your pointing out of the retraction disconnect. Always results in a less than optimal (sloppy) new turn initiation.
post #53 of 55
RicB and BigE,

I think this is mostly a matter of semantics. I can think about retraction in terms of using gravity and other forces to "let" retraction occur vs. "actively" retracting. I also think there is a time for active retraction and that it is a critically important component of skiing that some skiers never discover.

My point was that it has been my observation that telling somebody to flex can (not trying to generalize here) lead to something very different from bringing their feet toward their butts or their butts toward their skis. Additionally I think that the concept of retraction can (again, not always) help a skier learn how to "lighten."
post #54 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by SnowDog
Ric, a good rule of thumb is to not depend on buss words, but instead speak in clear and detailed concepts. When that's done everyone can understand the point being made, from beginner to expert, and no terminology confussion occurs. As I said in my jargon post that was the catalyst for this thread; word tossing without background knowledge is the domain of the inept, it's not a place true pros should dwell.

Big E, good thoughts. I like your pointing out of the retraction disconnect. Always results in a less than optimal (sloppy) new turn initiation.
Agreed snowdog. I just never thought of flexion and retraction as buzz words. Whether old school or new school we need terminology to communicate and define skiing and it's concepts. Terminology that is grounded in sound fundamentals and bio-mechanics. That's why I posted about this. It seemed to me that someone could read this thread and get easily mislead.

There are many levels that we talk about skiing at, from the beginer, to expert to the instructional level. At every level it seems to me we are only adding layers of complexity for the subtle and not so subtle distinctions that arise in the fudamentals as our skill level and skiing grow. This isn't the same for begginers, advanced skiers or instructors. One would assume that asking about differences in crossover/under that they are looking for a more complex explantion than simple concepts, but as my wife said to me the other day, "assume makes an ass out of u and me". Oh well. Later, RicB.
post #55 of 55
Quote:
Originally Posted by Si
RicB and BigE,

I think this is mostly a matter of semantics. I can think about retraction in terms of using gravity and other forces to "let" retraction occur vs. "actively" retracting. I also think there is a time for active retraction and that it is a critically important component of skiing that some skiers never discover.

My point was that it has been my observation that telling somebody to flex can (not trying to generalize here) lead to something very different from bringing their feet toward their butts or their butts toward their skis. Additionally I think that the concept of retraction can (again, not always) help a skier learn how to "lighten."
I agree here SI. With my students, it's important that I give them the "what", along with the how, and why so they fully understand what I'm asking of them, and I might use different words wit hdifferent skiers. Someday, maybe the words we use will no longer be important. In the meantime it nevers hurts to hash out what we really mean by our words does it? Especialy here in cyberspace. wouldn't you agree? Later, RicB.
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