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Layman's question about edge lock

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Can someone please explain exactly what "edge lock" is?

I'm an advanced skier, been skiing off and on for 20 years, but mostly self-taught since I learned parallel turns many years ago. I've never come across the term "edge lock" until I recently read an article about edging. But the article was confusing, and I haven't found much on the internet that actually explains the what and how of edge lock.

Thanks in advance!
post #2 of 18
The tails follow the tips in a hard edge!

One ski, one thin line

CalG
post #3 of 18
Pure slicing of the skiis as you ride an arc. It's very quiet. You get edge lock going, you'll know it!
post #4 of 18
First off, sps77, welcome to EpicSki! Please take some time to look around; you'll find some really amazing insights into making great turns on and in snow on this site...

That said, FWIW, I've never heard the term before! What Cgrandy and BigE say makes sense, but I had never heard it called "edge lock". What did the article say and what did you find confusing about it?
post #5 of 18
Sometimes this can refer to wedge "turns" where one ski is locked on edge and tracking and pushing the other ski in a skid.
post #6 of 18
D'oh!

Of course. There's a photo of a "goofy edge lock" in warren witherall's "the athletic skier". A ski that is experiencing edge lock is not skidding. The other on might be...
post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
First off, sps77, welcome to EpicSki! Please take some time to look around; you'll find some really amazing insights into making great turns on and in snow on this site...

That said, FWIW, I've never heard the term before! What Cgrandy and BigE say makes sense, but I had never heard it called "edge lock". What did the article say and what did you find confusing about it?

Thanks, SSH. Here's a quote from the article:

"Given the high "natural" edge angle that skiers experience on very steep slopes, it turns out that we are always on the brink of having too much edging, If you get a little nervous, and tighten up, stiffen up just a bit (and who hasn't felt themselves tense up a bit on steep slopes?) then that extra tension, that tightness or stiffness, is transmitted right through your legs and feet to your skis and — presto — edge lock! Once the edges of your skis have "caught" on a steep slope, what's next? Acceleration for sure. The ride for life. All too typically for many skiers, nervousness about steep slopes becomes a self fulfilling prophecy. You tense up, the edges over-grip the snow, and suddenly your ski shoots ahead, right our from under you, when you would much rather be slowing down. Most skiers assume that more edging equals slowing down. Wrong. Most of the time, and especially on steep slopes, more edging can only speed you up.


"It's excess edge bite that makes your skis run out from under you on the steeps. And because the natural edge-angle is already so high on a steep slope, we are always just one moment of sudden muscle tension away from disaster."


Here's the link: http://www.breakthroughonskis.com/Pa...ruction30.html

Presumably the author is referring to excess edge angle with skis pointed at least somewhat downhill. But even so, I don't think I've ever experienced what is described here, so maybe I'm misunderstanding what the article is saying. Seems to me if I don't get enough tilt on my edge, I don't decelerate enough. If I get too much, the ski skids out. Of course, I do the former much more than the latter.

Thanks!
post #8 of 18
That's unintentional. That skier has "caught an edge".
post #9 of 18
I've read it half-a-dozen times, and I still don't get it. I've always like Lito's writing, and think that he's a pretty smart guy, but this just doesn't make any sense to me...

If I get too much edge angle, I'll "boot out" or I'll just exceed the ability of the "shelf" of snow to hold me up, and the edges will release and I'll go down towards the hill. Not enough, of course, and I'll release down the hill, too. If I'm riding a perfect edge, though, I'll be carving, in which case it is not possible to brush off speed by buttering the turn. To do that, we need less edge and the ability to allow the tails to spread snow through the turn. Perhaps this is what he means? If we get up onto an edge in a carve and cannot butter the turn, we need to turn a lot more up hill or we need to let go of some of the edge angle in order to let the skis drift.

Does that help at all?
post #10 of 18
sps77 - great question!!

I's just Lito with more anti ATS (PSIA) off "centerline" heresy, he is suggesting that more sideslip on the steeps can in fact be a smoother more efficient way to negotiate steep terrain....that the obsession with a carved turn can actually hold one back in some slope situations and such obsession should be avoided ....Lito is my main man.....I was a bit of a heretic too, as I suggested his videos to all my level 5 students when I was teaching (5 yrs ago now) .....his demonstrations and presentation I felt were amazing, and my students agreed....of course cost me a lot of privates....but I was never about the money and had a very small ego, I am about the smiles...congrats for finding www.breakthroughonskis.com - and like me finding www.epicski.com. I am new to the forum and enjoy it very much, learning a lot esp about gear and getting some real giggles too....Re Lito links from breakthroughonskis are good too....Harald Harb is amazing....his demo videos are just ridiculous good....a bit too intense for me, I prefer Lito's laid back style....check em out and decide for yourself....of course I am sure there are more teaching aids avail now....like I said been out of the teaching game 5 years...lotsa PSIA pros prowl these pages...listen to em sort out what works for you.....ttyl
post #11 of 18
I'm also a Lito disciple, and I've experienced and seen exactly what he's describing many times. What he doesn't add in this discussion is that when the skier tenses up, this is often accompanied by an attempt to "hold on to the hill," ie, even a slight lean back due to fear combined with over-edging will cause the skis to shoot out and land you on you keester. When I practice staying in balance over my skis on steeper slopes, I can get away with more edging and not fall.

BTW, I've basically taught myself to ski over the past 3 yrs just with Lito's book, videos, and a week at his clinic. I also have appreciated all the helpful info. on this site!
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by IceMan
I'm also a Lito disciple, and I've experienced and seen exactly what he's describing many times. What he doesn't add in this discussion is that when the skier tenses up, this is often accompanied by an attempt to "hold on to the hill," ie, even a slight lean back due to fear combined with over-edging will cause the skis to shoot out and land you on you keester. When I practice staying in balance over my skis on steeper slopes, I can get away with more edging and not fall.

BTW, I've basically taught myself to ski over the past 3 yrs just with Lito's book, videos, and a week at his clinic. I also have appreciated all the helpful info. on this site!
yep I love talking Lito( iceman I really would like it if you started a thread about his clinics, I never quite got there would read your comments with great interest....)...right on here big time by iceman and covered in detail in the video "breakthrough on skis, how to get out of the intermediate rut" One of the key ironies of expert skiing is one actually needs to project downhill on steep terrain, the exact opposite of what gravity(and fear) is telling you to do...by projecting the turn downhill with anticipation and a solid pole swing/ plant...you actually engage the upper edge early and easily - as Lito calls it bombproof way to start a parallel turn....whatever watch the video, it is all clear...I am not the wordsmith that many who prowl these pages are, I am too out of practice with the ski lingo...buy the DVD and let us know how you make out!! You can buy it right on Lito's website....Iceman and me we wanna know what you think!
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by IceMan
I'm also a Lito disciple, and I've experienced and seen exactly what he's describing many times. What he doesn't add in this discussion is that when the skier tenses up, this is often accompanied by an attempt to "hold on to the hill," ie, even a slight lean back due to fear combined with over-edging will cause the skis to shoot out and land you on you keester. When I practice staying in balance over my skis on steeper slopes, I can get away with more edging and not fall.
That's what he's talking about? Really?

OK, well, I'll buy that. But, that's not what I got from the article...

Certainly, if you "edge lock" on the uphill ski and/or the tails, you're toast.
post #14 of 18
Let me take a shot here. This has always been my understanding of the term, and my observance of the factors behind it's occurance.

A carving skier finds himself suddenly out of balance and temporarily unable to adjust edge angle or disengage from the turn. He finds himself a passive passenger on the ski with no controll over the course of travel. To abort the lock he must either lay it down, or make an aggressive athletic move to jar his body back into a position conducive to regaining controll over the edge and turn.

This is observed in the racer who suddenly gets locked on an edge and shoots out of the course. Sometimes they recover their balance, make a quick pivot and re-enter the course and continue,,, sometime they don't recover. From my recollection of the Bill Johnson crash I think I remember edge lock being a factor.

I'm sure everyone has felt themseves get back on their tails while freeskiing and become locked on their edge, temporarily unable to get off it while being shot across the slope. This is an example of getting out of balance and edge locked.
post #15 of 18
Rick, that's a nice description. Strong and athletic skiers can "recover" and save themselves more times than not (I've done it a few times this season). If you want to see "edge lock" in action, just watch novice skiers taking on a steeper pitch than they're used to, and even from a slow traverse, you can see the skis "shoot out" from under them, if they tighten up. I've been working on sideslipping with my wife, who's at that level, to help her "let go" of the slope and keep her balanced stance while relaxing her feet.
post #16 of 18
Rick, that makes sense and I totally get it. I just find it fascinating that I didn't pull that out of Lito's article. I suspect it has more to do with me and my current midset/perspective than anything else...
post #17 of 18
[quote=hrstrat57]yep I love talking Lito( iceman I really would like it if you started a thread about his clinics, I never quite got there would read your comments with great interest

HRSTRAT57: I attended Lito's clinic 3 years ago, and now he's not doing them. It was fun to ski with the same group and instructor for a week, and we got to ski Aspen, highlands, and Snowmass. The video analysis was most helpful. We'd ski all day, then have a reception and he'd give a talk on various subjects. He's a very engaging guy, and he knows how to teach. When riding up the lift with him, he'd tell great stories. My only complaint was he talks so much; I wanted to ski more with him!
post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
Rick, that makes sense and I totally get it. I just find it fascinating that I didn't pull that out of Lito's article. I suspect it has more to do with me and my current midset/perspective than anything else...
Steve, hence Lito's point is (as I described it) his position that obsession with the pure carved turn can lead to disaster on steep terrain for the inexperienced/ there is no harm for a turn to have sideslip in fact in his opinion it is prefrd/ having skied east coat double blacks after a hard freeze I tend to agree with him....like Iceman says sometimes he talks to much....watch the video....it is crystal clear...turn down the sound if you have to....but I like the music....perhaps reading Iceman's comments regarding his clinics he also did too much talking not enuff skiing( like a lot of nameless PSIA-E clinic leaders I was fortunate not to ski with)....hey Lito the line in your video is"short bursts of practice and then let's do it" shaddap and ski already!!! Like any other ski instruction you gotta take the good from the bad...
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