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What do you think the problem is?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
The skier in the picture is a pretty good skier overall. But, he realized that several of his turns exhibit an entry that look like in the picture below (i.e. his skis form a V). What do you think is the likely cause? I'd say he is loading the inside ski too much and the outside tend to run away from him.
Also, I suspect he lowers his shoulder a bit too much.
What would you guys say? What's a good way to "fix" him?

post #2 of 23
Put him on a snowboard?
post #3 of 23
It appears from this frontal view showing an extremely diverged inside tip, the skiers inside foot is not underneath the skiers hips causing the extremely diverged tip at initiation of the inside ski. The skier might look at a couple of things a) does he "sit" in the hips at the end of the turn causing his feet to move out from under the hips and a one two move to start the next turn and, b) are the skiers feet underneath the skiers hips at the begining and through out his turn i.e. pull feet underneath the hips to begin each turn and then find neutral.
post #4 of 23
Thread Starter 
Another picture of the same skier during the same run:
post #5 of 23
Inside hand and shoulder could be up and forward, which should level the shoulders a bit and put him over the outside ski. I very much doubt he can see his hands, so work from that focal point. Some terrain matching drills without poles could reinforce the shoulder and torso positioning. AS A DRILL, have him lift the tail and pressure the tip of the inside ski thoughout several turns to get him forward and primarily on the outside ski without getting into too many weight distribution discussions.

Some very good things going on there, so you have a good foundation to work with.
post #6 of 23
Thread Starter 
Will tell the skier. At least I can see that my impression was not too different from yours. Thank you guys, again. If you have more suggestions please do not be shy. I am always interested in different opinions. The more we are at thinking, the more comes out.
post #7 of 23
Correct me if I am off base. I suspect he is overdoing the bit about inside ski doing the the work, to a point where his weight is too much on the inside ski and his outside ski is used more as an outrigger. I also suspect that his edge angle is too great for the G forces (e.g. curve radius and speed) he was generating. Hence he ended up sitting on his inside ski. Because the inner ski traveses a shorter distance and has more weight, it carves a shorter radius than the less pressured outside ski. Hence you get diverging skis.
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
I agree with you 'Josseph'. That was my first clue.. Excessive angles on that mild slope, I cannot tell the speed he was going, but surely he deforms that poor inside ski of his. As others pointed out, his shoulder line is not on target, his hands are perhaps too low, but the divergence is caused by an excessive distribution of weight on the inside ski. Hence the V shape of his skis.
post #9 of 23
The diverging tips can also result from being back at the initiation of the turn. Not having both tips pressured when rolling into the new turn allows the outside ski to "run off" after the inside ski finally locks up as the edge angles grow higher. By the time the inside ski engages it's too late for the outside ski to get with the program. (Don't ask me how I know. )

Maybe some "10 and 2" exercises with focus on feeling shin against boot tongue. Hands up and forward. Could also be an alignment issue, but worth looking for the easy solution first.
post #10 of 23
Thread Starter 
That's a good point Medmarkco... It could be explained that way too.
post #11 of 23
What are his ankle angles like? Is he flexing and extending his ankles, knees, and hips equally? (Need a side shot to really see that.) If he is not flexing the ankles enough it could send him into the back seat. This would happen more at transition when his skiis move under him. Once you get back its hard to get forward. This jives with what medmarkco said.

You might want to check the threads on pulling your feet back.

He does have a nice smile on his face. So he must be enjoying it.
post #12 of 23
This reminds me of the old "I have this friend who...."

Sure that's not you?
post #13 of 23
Alaska mentioned inside hand and shoulder, I would agree. But I would also mention that his right hand is dropped as well. To bring him thru the turn - bring the right arm forward. The position he is in is similar to an old school traverse. He will get a more direct delivery if he pulls the arm forward. Every one knows rail road turns.

If he were to do that the flaws in his upper body would be more noticable, as well.

I have seen worse!
post #14 of 23
Given the parallel skiis of the second picture, he does know how to ski.

So, I'd say that the first shot is an example of a reluctance to commit fully to the outside ski. It's a shot of an incomplete weight transfer where the outside ski just runs away; the edge angle and position of that ski is a result of the outside ski is purely unintentional, and he is about to step back onto the inside ski to recover.

So, the fix? Ensure weight transfer is complete before edging. Early weight transfer: Traverse on uphill edge, lift and lower downhill ski. Make thumper turns.

Travers on uphill edge, then launch the turn, transfer weight to uphill ski, traverse on uphill ski, and then launch the next one. Keep the other ski either airborne or in light contact with the snow.

Javelin turns.

post #15 of 23
I don't see much wrong in the second picture, but suggest to him he should ski like a dancing angel not a Mack truck.

post #16 of 23
BigE, In the second picture, those shins are no where near parallel. That's a pretty wicked A-frame he's got going.

I'd say the guy needs a gate to be bashing with that left side (2nd pic)

He's got too much counter in both pictures. Check out the inside femur, which is pointing straight at the camera, and the outside knee is pointed at the inside ski tip.

I would probably work on gaining a stonger inside half.

Here's an exercise to get the shins parallel. Tie a piece of patrol tape around the legs, just inder the knees, loose enough that when standing static, knees and boots are the same distance apart (hip width). Have him ski without letting the patrol tape fall to his boots. Getting that inside knee into the turn may help the exaggerated counter.

OR, the problem could be the opposite, and he is thinking he wants to create a huge amount of counter (thinks it looks good? - Me racer dude!), whcih is causing his inside leg to understeer, and therefore, the weak inside lower half.

Also tell him to stop dropping that inside hand down between his knee and hip. Get it up and in front.

here's your $.03 change from that nickle....
post #17 of 23
Originally Posted by josseph
Correct me if I am off base. I suspect he is overdoing the bit about inside ski doing the the work, to a point where his weight is too much on the inside ski and his outside ski is used more as an outrigger. I also suspect that his edge angle is too great for the G forces (e.g. curve radius and speed) he was generating. Hence he ended up sitting on his inside ski. Because the inner ski traveses a shorter distance and has more weight, it carves a shorter radius than the less pressured outside ski. Hence you get diverging skis.
It's hard to tell if his outside ski has slipped out because he put too steep an edge angle on it or didn't weight it enough first, or if the edge angle is so high due to the ski having slipping out. Either way he needs to be making better use of his left ski on that right turn. Maybe he's right footed. I would have him concentrate on the front inside edge of the outside ski for a few left turns, balancing on that edge and not having his cm too far inside, and then once that's working, gradually bring the other ski back into the picture.
post #18 of 23
Most everybody has hit on most everything so far.

Josseph is right on the nose about the "G Force" concept. The position here is contrived. The skier struck a pose to hopefully create the desired result in the turn, and the external pressures are not there to make it all happen.

The skier is in the back seat--note the snow flying under the boots in both pics. The front of the ski is not engaged, the skier is therefore not centered.

Correct about the hands and shoulders being dipped. Banked.

Too much weight on the uphill ski for that point in the turn, the outside ski isn't fully commited, and can't be due to the contrived position (ie) too low with an open stance. Very tough to get on the outside ski (or off the inside one)

JohnH hits the biggie right on the nose----creating counter and the inside femur is pointed right at the next turn and the skier is in or just past the fall line. THE INSIDE LEG IS BLOCKING THE ACTION OF THE OUTSIDE LEG.

If this skiier would stand up and relax the inside leg and move his knee on that leg more in the direction of the turn he is presently on, a lot of the other smaller Problems would correct themselves.
post #19 of 23

All that you say is right, but respectfully, IMO, there are more basic things to fix than parallel shins. I'd first try to rebalance him, focussing on the outside ski first, and address the shins last, if we even get that far.

Remember, my view of his issues are based on the first picture being a recovery from a failure to commit to the outside ski..... That's why I'd address it right away -- he'd be very willing to try to fix that if to avoid future recoveries. And you do want him to walk away from your lesson improved. I'm not sure that parallel shins would stick without the right balance and commitment to the outside ski.

Getting him to the javelin turn would allow you to make the shins parallel as the next step. "So now lets put that inside ski to work...." Then you can better address his stance.

If you ONLY can get as far as the javelin turn, or even just launching turns from the uphill ski, then you've at least got him to a point where he understands how commitment controls the runaway outside ski, and he has something to practice that is fun:

"Complete the transition" (Thanks to bud heishman!)
post #20 of 23
establishing egde by moving too laterally, this forces inside ski ahead at times. Many skiers today feel they need to move further inside the turn then they really do. Focus on tipping edges with feet and legs not hip. Try having them ski and keep pole tips dragging in the ground no further back then the center of their feet. This should keep them from moving too far inside.
post #21 of 23
After making my last reply I saw a picture on the front of "Skiing the Art of Carving" good picture for comparison here http://www.firsttracksonline.com/ima...tofcarving.jpgnot the best pic of the cover, but if you have the book look at the cover if not look around the web for better pic.

The poiint I want to make is if you do want to really get the skis over ski faster so you can move the hips in to counter forces and I think it is important to notice that on the cover the skier squared with the skis, he is looking towards the next turn and his hips are not as countered as above skier. The excessive twist in the skiers uper body and hips above is preventing inside ski from being parrallel.

Javelin turns were mentioned earlier and I think this would only emphasize his over countered position.

I would still stick with the pole exercise and occasioinally remind them not to create counter just let it happen and I like the tape exercise JohnH mentioned.
post #22 of 23
I have to agree with TTF, that showing him a javeline will reinforce the over countered position.

If you look at the relationship of the direction that the inside knee is pointed compared to the direction that the feet are pointed, it becomes obvious that he does not have a strong inside half. He's being very passive with it. He can't be stacked and in a position of power if there is that much of a difference in where the two are pointed.

Here's a progression I might use to get him up and stacked, and to be stronger with the inside half. I call it a "shovel turn" progression.

1) Have him make turns on one foot, the outside foot, slightly lifting the inside ski throughout the turn.

2) Same thing, but lift the inside ski enough, and turn the inside knee into the turn enough to show the base of the inside ski to the outside boot (turn the little toe down and big toe up).

3) Same thing, but keep the tip of the inside ski on the ground.

4) Same thing, but with more emphasis on keeping the inside tip forcefully on the snow. I ask students to try to make the inside ski tip throw snow across the outside ski. This forces them to be strong in the calf and ankle.

5) Start the run doing the same as #4, but after a few turns, start lightly putting the entire inside ski on the snow.

6) Now the same thing, but more pressure on the inside ski. The intent is to have the same feeling with the position of the femur and shin while the ski is pressured, as you did when the tail was off the ground and pushing snow across the outside ski.

This progression does a number of things:
  • Works on building balance skills
  • Early pressure and edge change
  • Early active inside leg steering
  • Keeping a proper stance - forward - because you can't keep the tip down with pressure if you are back
  • Forward-and-across movement to initiate the turn (as opposed to too lateral)
  • strong inside half with upper and lower leg as well as foot steering
It will usually show a bit of a diverging inside ski, but because the pressure is obviously on the outside ski, it doesn't become a problem. And once the student puts the ski back on the ground with some pressure, the diverge stops because the ski is put down on its edge.
post #23 of 23
This skiers problems are fundamentally the same in both pictures. The problem is caused by a lack of a progressive active extension of the inside leg in the last third of the turn. The setup is complete for a repeat in the next turn because a slight tip lead remains at turn transition and the new inside hip is blocked from leading into the new turn.

This problem is so universal throughout skiing that nearly all PSIA level III instructors show this problem to one degree or another.

Two things conspire to set up the cause. When humans feel pressure build under their feet and a reflex takes over that planter flexes the foot. Another problem is how the relationship of gravity and centrifugal force change throughout the turn. In the fall line gravity and centrifugal force set up a combined force that is ahead of the skier and the skier planter flexes the foot and closes the knee (flexion). This is all great until the forces start moving toward the rear of the skier as the turn progresses. In the last third of the turn the skier needs to reverse things and start dorsi flexing the inside ankle (pulling back the inside foot) and opening the knee to move the hips forward. (active progressive extension).

If you look at the skier in the picture you can see that if he pulled back his inside foot and opened his inside knee to move the hips forward into the power position that his center of mass would move back between his skis, his shoulders would level, his outside hand would come down and forward, the outside leg would straighten and the outside ankle would close giving a powerful finish to the turn.

I would recommend skiing arcs that go back up the slope as far as possible. Those arcs allow you to see how active extension of the inside leg keeps the tracks equal with no diverging of the inside ski.

I would also recommend well finished round tracer turns. Skiing with 90% of the weight on the same ski throught several turns with the other ski in contact with the snow but just tracing along.
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