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Letting The Skis Drift Out

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Recently I have been rolling my ankles more then usual and creating increased edge angles. To do this I had to learn to relax and let the skis drift out further then I usually allowed them. This also helped slow down my movements and ease into my turn initiation so I wasn't hammering the ski and weighting it to early.

I also started working on driving my outside hip and leg into the turn to decrease my inside tip lead.

Are there any drills that would help me improve my fluidity and work on rolling both ankles more to allow the ski to get further out to the sides?

I will continue to practice just freeskiing but I wanted some things to think about while doing it.

I know this is basic stuff but I want to continue improving so I can enjoy the sport more.
post #2 of 24
might want to try compression turns, when you are in a retracted (short/compressed) stance through the completion of old/intiation of new turn.
post #3 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
Recently I have been rolling my ankles more then usual and creating increased edge angles. To do this I had to learn to relax and let the skis drift out further then I usually allowed them. This also helped slow down my movements and ease into my turn initiation so I wasn't hammering the ski and weighting it to early.

I also started working on driving my outside hip and leg into the turn to decrease my inside tip lead.

Are there any drills that would help me improve my fluidity and work on rolling both ankles more to allow the ski to get further out to the sides?

I will continue to practice just freeskiing but I wanted some things to think about while doing it.

I know this is basic stuff but I want to continue improving so I can enjoy the sport more.
Scalce,

Be careful with leading with the outside hip and reducing the tip lead too much. This could lead to rotating the upper body and then to banking with too much pressure on the inside foot. Generally we lead with the inside hip to maintain the strong inside half. However, since it's all a matter of proportions, and we haven't seen you ski this, all I can do is say to make sure it's not too much outside hip lead and too little tip lead.

As for other things to think about, I would suggest keeping the shoulders somewhat level so that you maintain angles and weight on the outside ski (don't drag the inside pole). Also make sure you don't just drop laterally into the new turn. Make sure you keep a proper fore/aft stance and have the hips lead the skis as opposed to having the skis get ahead of you.
post #4 of 24
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tips.

I try to keep my upper body from rotating and it is pretty quiet so I guess I try to drive my outside ski rather then my hip most of the time.

I have been working on keeping my shoulders level and I think that is what has helped me stop banking and start angulating more.

Do you guys just try to keep your shoulders level in general or do you think about actively bending at the waist or driving the inside shoulder upwards until it feel natural?
post #5 of 24
Scalce,

Actually, rolling/flexing the ankles and letting the skis drift away from your body is not "basic stuff." At least when carving on flat snow, the ability to get your skis away from your center of mass is what separates real expert skiers from weekend warriors. Once your feet are outside of your center of mass, you can create the high edge angles necessary for clean carves in the snow, and the ability to regulate angles and edge pressure with your feet out there is how you change the radius of your turn without skidding. (As an aside: While there are situations where skidded turns are appropriate, don’t let anyone fool you into using the word “skarve” there is only “carving” and “not carving”)

In essence, I am trying to say that the technique that you are working on is pretty advanced there is not going to be a single drill or even set of drills that is a magic bullet for this. There is no substitute for mileage and experimentation. Play with your edge angles; play with your center of mass; be patient with your moves, and give the ski time to work; follow the best skier you can find and try to imitate their movements; try things first on gentle slopes and work your way to steeper slopes. The hardest part is accepting that you need to stand “against” your skis and not “on” them, which you seem to have already accomplished. If you’ve gotten this far on your own, you don’t need much help from this board.
post #6 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
Thanks for the tips.

I try to keep my upper body from rotating and it is pretty quiet so I guess I try to drive my outside ski rather then my hip most of the time.

I have been working on keeping my shoulders level and I think that is what has helped me stop banking and start angulating more.

Do you guys just try to keep your shoulders level in general or do you think about actively bending at the waist or driving the inside shoulder upwards until it feel natural?
Instead of thinking of 'bending' at the waist ..which would imply fore/aft movement.....I would think of angulating at the waist......think of the the outside/downhill latissimuss dorsi muscle contracting in relation to the arc of the turn as the uphill lat extends/expands.
I have found using exercise 'bands' in the gym useful in simulating angulation of higher speed turns.....if used correctly the muscular blend needed can very accurately mimic what is happening on the hill
post #7 of 24
Scalce

I've been recently dealing with some of the same issues that you're raising. I had been working on skiing with a strong inside half, developing appropriate counter, angulating, and keeping the hands and shoulders level with the slope. Nolo posted in the counter thread a post that brought it all together for me in one fall swoop. She simply recommended that during the turn that the inside hip be aligned with the outside foot during the turn. What did this result in? Plenty. It created the right amount of counter, which led to the ability to easily angulate and keep the shoulders level. It also helped get rid of any excess inside tip lead.

As to my outside half, the only thing I think about is making sure my outside hand beats my outside leg through the turn. The rest of the outside half (hip, leg, and foot) just takes care of it's self and manages the pressure as it builds.
post #8 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
She simply recommended that during the turn that the inside hip be aligned with the outside foot during the turn.
Could you elaborate on this?

Do you mean if you had a line pointing straight from you inside hip it would be aiming in the direction of your outside foot?
post #9 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
Could you elaborate on this?

Do you mean if you had a line pointing straight from you inside hip it would be aiming in the direction of your outside foot?
Yes, to the inside of the outside foot.

Here's the thread in which she (and fastman) describe this move. She did have a picture there with lines drawn, but I don't see it now. It's discussed in posts 13-19.
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
Recently I have been rolling my ankles more then usual and creating increased edge angles. To do this I had to learn to relax and let the skis drift out further then I usually allowed them.
Scalce, thought I should jump in here to clarify something. I'm assuming you understand this and simply mis-worded. In cleanly linked carved turns there is no lateral drifting of the skis. Lateral separation of the skis and CM is created entirely by moving the CM inside. The skis remain on a consistent track.

The common advice dispensed to students by many pros to "get the skis out from under the body" can be very misleading.
post #11 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
Yes, to the inside of the outside foot.

Here's the thread in which she (and fastman) describe this move. She did have a picture there with lines drawn, but I don't see it now. It's discussed in posts 13-19.
Coach, I am a little confused by this....what is being defined as the inside hip?......Is it the inside aspect of the outside/downhill hip bone.... the center of the hips?.......or is it the inside/uphill hip...the picture is noted that the yellow line is not exact....What is your understanding?
post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick
Scalce, thought I should jump in here to clarify something. I'm assuming you understand this and simply mis-worded. In cleanly linked carved turns there is no lateral drifting of the skis. Lateral separation of the skis and CM is created entirely by moving the CM inside. The skis remain on a consistent track.

The common advice to "get the skis out from under the body" can be very misleading.
I figured the statement made it easier to get my point across.

I understand that the skis continue to track while the CM moves away from them.

Sorry for the confusion.
post #13 of 24
I figured you knew, Scalce.
post #14 of 24

Turn size

Hey, Scalce,

I like to make a series of turns like the shape of an hourglass. start with long radius and speed them up to short radius and back again to long radius. With the log radius turns, as you micro adjust you can focus on how far in your CM is compared to your skis, or how much tip lead you have at any given moment, or something else you want to think about, you will have time to do it there. As the turns get quicker, its like putting it all into motion for a few turns, then backing back out of it with slower turns to re-adjust if necessary.

I personally like to feel the skis carving back and forth, out-then-under-then back out while I "race" them down the hill. I feel like I get out in front and inside of them by driving the hips "for-agonally" into each turn, then they catch up in the fall line. I then "race" them to the next fall line. (ying-yang, I guess. Its definitely a zen thing at that point and is all about Flow and Rythem, the OTHER DOUBLE SECRET skill set. BERPR. Everything else just fades into the background, including thoughts!)

Let me ask you this. Do you prefer cross over, or cross under and what type of turns do you find each one more appropriate for?

See you on the slopes
post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shen
Coach, I am a little confused by this....what is being defined as the inside hip?......Is it the inside aspect of the outside/downhill hip bone.... the center of the hips?.......or is it the inside/uphill hip...the picture is noted that the yellow line is not exact....What is your understanding?
It's the hip to the inside of the turn, as in "strong inside half". The yellow line is only off at the point of the arrow. If the point of the yellow arrow connected to the inside edge of the outside boot/ski, it would be correct.
post #16 of 24
Scalce, I am playing with similar tactics in my skiing, and have been focusing lately on ankle flex (both dorsi- and plantar-). I am finding the strong dorsiflexion of the inside ankle during the turn tends to "pull the inside ski back" without actually doing any "pulling". As a result, it's easier to do the alignment that Nolo talks about (btw, that's to the actual inside hip, not the inside part of the outside hip).
post #17 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jpski
Let me ask you this. Do you prefer cross over, or cross under and what type of turns do you find each one more appropriate for?
That is something that I have recently been thinking about.

I think the current way I ski is more of a cross under but I would like to focus on feeling like I am doing more of a cross over movement.

I know there has been alot of talk on this subject so I need to do a search and look at some old threads.
post #18 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
Scalce, I am playing with similar tactics in my skiing, and have been focusing lately on ankle flex (both dorsi- and plantar-). I am finding the strong dorsiflexion of the inside ankle during the turn tends to "pull the inside ski back" without actually doing any "pulling". As a result, it's easier to do the alignment that Nolo talks about (btw, that's to the actual inside hip, not the inside part of the outside hip).
I have limited, but not horrible, ankle flexibilty so I have to actively flex and also think about where my knee placement is.

Sometimes I don't drive the inside knee far enough towards the hill to keep my stance even throughout the turn and tighten the turn radius.

Man I have alot of stuff to work on.

Lately I have been thinking more about where my feet are rather then where my skis are. When I do this it helps me keep rhythm and be fluid throughout the turns. It almost feels like my feet are diving into the turns.
post #19 of 24
Scalce, I bet you feel like you're "diving into" the turns at times, don't you? Ain't that fun?!

I don't have the same flexibility issue, but I still have to work at it. I have a lot of years of developing the habit of flexing off the ball of my foot instead of the ankle, and it's going to take some time to migrate.

Related to your thought about pointing the knee, and again, in conversation with Nolo, RicB, and Rick, I learned that it sometimes helps to focus on rotating my inside femur in the direction of the turn instead of pointing my knee more into the turn. While it actually results in the same action when both are done correctly, I believe that it is easier to "point the knee" incorrectly and create some angles that weaken the knee's leverage (and could, at extremes, make me more susceptible to injury there).
post #20 of 24

It doesnt take much

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
Man I have alot of stuff to work on.
I see a very common thread to the posts here. I doubt you have that much to work on, only refining what moves you are making now.

You said that you do not have much ankle flex right now. Is it a physical limitation? Are your boots adjusted (and can they be) to help you with this? Do you ski with them cranked down, or just snug enough....
I have heard that with the forces shaped skis are generating, the need for soft boots, and value of them, has diminished to the point of their extinction, but.... ever try one?

After my boot fix (thanks, BigE), I found I was finally ABLE to flex more in the ankle. I had range of motion that I didnt have before, and man did it make a difference! (it was a real breakthrough for me. Havent had one of those in nearly 2 seasons!)

I also found that I didnt have to crank the boots down as hard, which was reassuring, and comforting that I might get another season or two out of them!
post #21 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
Scalce, I bet you feel like you're "diving into" the turns at times, don't you? Ain't that fun?!
It feels really cool and I was extremely happy to have another ski breakthrough.

I thought I was stuck in a learning rut and wouldn't get out of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpski
You said that you do not have much ankle flex right now. Is it a physical limitation? Are your boots adjusted (and can they be) to help you with this? Do you ski with them cranked down, or just snug enough....
I don't have horrible ankle flexibility but they are not as loose as some people I am sure. I guess they would be considered normal. My boots were fitted and realigned a few months ago and that helped my knees track better. I also have heel lifts in the boots to help open my ankles up. I picked up some Booster straps and those totally helped me keep shin contact without cranking the buckles.

I have recently started skiing with my boots alot looser then I have in the past.
post #22 of 24

Crossing over

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
That is something that I have recently been thinking about.

I think the current way I ski is more of a cross under but I would like to focus on feeling like I am doing more of a cross over movement.

I know there has been alot of talk on this subject so I need to do a search and look at some old threads.
For me, when I have time, I feel myself cross over, when I dont, I feel them cross under...
post #23 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Redsox Racer
Scalce,

Actually, rolling/flexing the ankles and letting the skis drift away from your body is not "basic stuff." At least when carving on flat snow, the ability to get your skis away from your center of mass is what separates real expert skiers from weekend warriors. Once your feet are outside of your center of mass, you can create the high edge angles necessary for clean carves in the snow, and the ability to regulate angles and edge pressure with your feet out there is how you change the radius of your turn without skidding. (As an aside: While there are situations where skidded turns are appropriate, don’t let anyone fool you into using the word “skarve” there is only “carving” and “not carving”)

In essence, I am trying to say that the technique that you are working on is pretty advanced there is not going to be a single drill or even set of drills that is a magic bullet for this. There is no substitute for mileage and experimentation. Play with your edge angles; play with your center of mass; be patient with your moves, and give the ski time to work; follow the best skier you can find and try to imitate their movements; try things first on gentle slopes and work your way to steeper slopes. The hardest part is accepting that you need to stand “against” your skis and not “on” them, which you seem to have already accomplished. If you’ve gotten this far on your own, you don’t need much help from this board.
Right on, good advise!------------Wigs
post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
Scalce

I've been recently dealing with some of the same issues that you're raising. I had been working on skiing with a strong inside half, developing appropriate counter, angulating, and keeping the hands and shoulders level with the slope. Nolo posted in the counter thread a post that brought it all together for me in one fall swoop. She simply recommended that during the turn that the inside hip be aligned with the outside foot during the turn. What did this result in? Plenty. It created the right amount of counter, which led to the ability to easily angulate and keep the shoulders level. It also helped get rid of any excess inside tip lead.

As to my outside half, the only thing I think about is making sure my outside hand beats my outside leg through the turn. The rest of the outside half (hip, leg, and foot) just takes care of it's self and manages the pressure as it builds.
Right on! Also good advise.-----Wigs
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