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Why PMTS ain't gonna go mainstream. - Page 6

post #151 of 236
Yes. Level 1 certification requires no teaching experience.

Level 1 certification is all about being taught how to teach, and displaying the skills at a level appropriate for teaching beginners, up to the intermediate level. It assures a minimum standard every.
post #152 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by winter warrior
A couple on this thread have stated that PMTS is becoming a important player .

To say that PMTS is a majorplayer in ski instruction (with its "thousands of students") is like saying that because I pick up the ocassional hitchhiker, i'm part of the masstransit system of the US.
influence to me indicates "major player"

are you saying ski instruction is NOT influenced by Harb's criticisms and his development of PMTS?

I'm pretty convinced that it has indeed become influenced POSITIVELY by Harb's efforts, although I think Harb might have had an even stronger positive influence with a slightly different approach.
post #153 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzostrike
influence to me indicates "major player"

are you saying ski instruction is NOT influenced by Harb's criticisms and his development of PMTS?

I'm pretty convinced that it has indeed become influenced POSITIVELY by Harb's efforts, although I think Harb might have had an even stronger positive influence with a slightly different approach.
I agree with you that "influence indicates major player". You may be over estimating the impact though. I've talked to many skiers and instructors alike about this very issue, and I'm close to drawing the conclusion that outside of these forums (Epic & Realskiers), very few skiers or instructors have ever heard of PMTS.

I'm not saying that PSIA, as an organization, hasn't reacted to the existence of PMTS, but I think to have widescale influence people would have to be more aware of it's existence.
post #154 of 236
influence within PSIA and ski instruction is what I mean Coach, not influence in skiing as a whole.

I think most skiers don't care much about PSIA, much less PMTS.
post #155 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzostrike
I think most skiers don't care much about PSIA, much less PMTS.
No debate there, for sure.

I do find it interesting though, that most of the PSIA instructors that I've talked with have never heard of PMTS.
post #156 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
No debate there, for sure.

I do find it interesting though, that most of the PSIA instructors that I've talked with have never heard of PMTS.
I think you would find it rare to see an Examiner who doesn't know about Harb and his system. whether it is known under the label "PMTS" isn't so relevant... I am talking about the impact upon PSIA top level folks (it's a top-down dissemination system). I can't imagine that most would be ignorant of Harb and his criticisms of PSIA. but what do I know, I don't teach skiing!
post #157 of 236
A couple of years ago, I asked Johanna Hall, SSD at Steamboat, when the ski school was going to start teaching direct parallel? She said, "Harald Harb's system?" The rest of the conversation is irrelevant. But a lot of the higher end teachers and directors know of Harb's system. What of the rest of PSIA? Not many below DCL.

For a 2-4 person operation, they do quite well. Try to get into one of their camps or a day on the hill.

Rick H
post #158 of 236
One should look at book and video sales numbers, not just numbers of PMTS students. Most PBS TV shows make their money off the books they sell, and I bet Harb makes money off his books, which probably reach 10's of thousands of people, not thousands.
post #159 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick H
a lot of the higher end teachers and directors know of Harb's system. What of the rest of PSIA? Not many below DCL.
This is pretty much as I imagined it would be.

Couple that with the fact that most non-instructor type skiers know little about either PSIA or PMTS, and I think you have a major stumbling block to PMTS ever becoming mainstream.

BTW, I'm in no way attempting to diminish HH's success in the small corner of the market in which he's "set up shop". His books/videos are popular and I've noticed that his camps sell out quickly. At least in somebody's eyes he doing some good things out there.
post #160 of 236
As a new convert to HH's PMTS (most of you will remember my quitting PSIA in March after witnessing something I could not tolerate on the slopes during an examination) I can only say that it re-ignated my passion for skiing. I even went out and bought a plastic skeleton to see how movements starting at the feet and in the ankles travel up the body, something I have never had the desire for when I was with PSIA.

PMTS didactic material is way better than anything PSIA has or has ever had. I have been told that HH will soon be coming out with a 3 volume new edition. I also decided to purchase a pair of Harb carvers that I will soon start to use.

Last year at the end of the season I had the pleasure to bring a coworker of mine on the slope and teach him using some rudimentary PMTS. Results: a guy who never skied before was pretty much parallel after 2 hours and in his 3 days on ski went down a black diamond runs after probably 8-9 hours of skiing total. He could not believe it, and I could not either, but it happened. It took me 2.5 weeks to ski my first black diamond run (the very same one he did). There is something about PMTS and I am determined to find out about it. Goodbye PSIA, welcome PMTS at least in my life.
post #161 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
I do find it interesting though, that most of the PSIA instructors that I've talked with have never heard of PMTS.
The level of awareness surely varies from area to area. In the Midwest I would suspect that a majority of instructors are at least aware of PMTS. I can think of a half dozen or more ski areas that have held some kind of PMTS training event. And there are a number of PSIA-C Ed Staff/Examiner who have chosen to expand their knowledge to include PMTS training of some sort, several achieving Accreditation and some becoming PMTS Trainers (myself included). :

In my school, over 60% of our staff of 110+ have attended some form of PMTS clinic, camp or Accreditation. Many have made a point to come to me to voice positive feedback as to the value of applying PMTS concepts in their teaching, and skiing.

While it is clear that throughout the ski teaching community PMTS has certainly had some degree of influence, I also know there are some who are blindly adamantly opposed without really knowing very much about it. That is a lost learning opportunity.

One might surmise that no single system holds al the answers for all students’ needs. And that an instructor who extends their range of knowledge by delving into whatever resources are available will be more apt to have the knowledge and options necessary to meet the diverse needs of more of the students out there.
post #162 of 236
>>>One might surmise that no single system holds al the answers for all students’ needs. And that an instructor who extends their range of knowledge by delving into whatever resources are available will be more apt to have the knowledge and options necessary to meet the diverse needs of more of the students out there. <<<

Roger, I have put this very point forward on 'realskier' and HH refuted this in a recent post saying that what one learns with PSIA is totally incompatible with PMTS and to succeed with PMTS one MUST cast everything learned aside. And one must use all or nothing, one can't mix and match.

My point was that one should know, even if one doesn't use that knowledge, but should an emergency or opportunity arise to use a tool in a way not commonly used, one has the know-how.

I found many ways of skiing described in PMTS quite desirable, but do I use them, or my PSIA or Austrian or French training exclusively?....no, I use whatever it takes...your miles may vary...

....Ott
post #163 of 236
Skiing and ski instruction are, after all, art.
post #164 of 236

Ott - please provide link

I didn't read that in what HH wrote. Certainly that's not the impression I've gotten talking with him on that subject.

Many teachers in PSIA that come from a racing background teach much in common with PMTS. (this based on my personal experience with certain PSIA cert III's) Some other type III certs teach stuff nothing like PMTS.

He did recently have a comment on a specific skier that asked that had to do some foundational re-working.

As far as structuring and organizing a logical and very holistic approach to skiing from alignment, on-slope analysis, the whole teaching concept of a primary movement, the concept of SMIM, the vast selection of drills and choices for the instructor to use for a particullar student for a particullar need, it's quite a system. If you reduce PMTS and think it's just ski movement patterns - lots of PSIA people with no PMTS background teach similar things. The movements taught in PMTS are not unique to PMTS. The whole system, however, is pretty unique.

At the November Instructor camp the non-profit PMTS org holds, most the participants are PSIA certs as well as many of the instructors at the camp.

PMTS - that concept of teaching primary movements - good efficient expert type movements rather than trying to teach outcomes - this defines the heart of PMTS. Had PSIA grabbed on to that concept when HH was trying to work within the PSIA system, PMTS as it now exists would have never happened. We wouldn't be having this discussion. My understanding from multiple sources was that PSIA was very close to going that direction but an abrupt change occured with the focus changing to "make sure the skier had a good time".

That's probably why many of the PMTS supporters are a little upset about PSIA or their experiences with same. This focus to the skier experience rather than effective teaching of the skier creates the possiblity that some day the skier will discover the effectiveness of a system like PMTS and resent all those dollars and time they spent having a good time learning bad ways to ski. (certainly I'm not trying to paint all PSIA instructors in that broad brush - but just pointing out why some people get emotional about this subject)
post #165 of 236
John, I don't know how to link to a particular quote in a post on another forum, but since many over here read realskier anyway, I'll just insert the quotes from the "Teaser pics from Harald's...." thread by HH:

quote>>>Someone on Epic, then said (yes, I confess I visited because someone told me the longest thread was about “High C” turns). Am I crazy or do you like me, just not get what they are complaining about over there?

One of the posters on Epic stated, “If an instructor knows both systems PSIA and PMTS, he would be a very effective instructor.” Very nice sentiment but, I know both systems very well and I don’t use any thing that includes the PSIA side. <<<end quote.

And another quote, tongue in cheek, I presume:

>>>So, I guess I can’t be a completely effective instructor without incorporating PSIA's system.

I’m still working hard to become the most effective instructor I can be. There are just so many concepts, and I’m not smart enough to keep them running around in my mind and still teach a lesson that will be effective for my students, sorry. I probably need to gather a bigger bag of tricks.<<<

BTW, this is just a difference of opinion on whether to discard previous knowledge of skiing or not, one I share with Arcmeister, this is why I chimed in. Harald certainly knows his system best and if he belives one can't use anything learned with PSIA in PMTS, so be it, I am just a hoarder of knowledge and hate to throw anything out, even if I just use it for reference.

In teaching skiing one has a student sometimes who just can't do it the prescribed way, that is when a good instructor devises crutches to ease him into it, and yes, better a student ends up enjoying himself learning to ski just so-so than not enjoying the ski experience at all, he can always improve.

....Ott
post #166 of 236

Ott's Thoughts (great name for a rock band)

I haven't read the whole of this thread, but I will work through it soon.

Instead, I jumped to the end, mainly because I always enjoy Ott's thoughts.

I completely agree with him about not throwing anything out and using what is necessary and appropriateto to make it work for the guest.

At the risk of being considered self serving here, I think that Ott summarizes what our Sports Diamond™ program is all about. The idea is to build a set of folders or buckets in which you can store and retrieve all your stuff when you need it. And you will need it at some point because the playing field and the player are fluid--changing from day to day and minute to minute.

It is not "system based". In other words, my proposal is that you can use it to recognize the bias of any specific system, benefit from and balance that bias, use the system more skillfully, and above all, avoid getting stuck in the process. In this way, you can become a real collaborator in your own process--self coaching better, letting your coach know more accurately what you need, and creating your own great days every day.

I believe, like Ott, that the "prescribed way" sometimes needs tweaking. Here we hope to balance the clarity of the system with flexibility of application.

I'll start a discussion thread on this stuff soon. Please be patient. I'm fresh off the boat!

I'll also get some names of coaches for the ESA academy available within a month. I hope we can bury Snowbird with bears this year.
post #167 of 236
To the extent that PMTS is a teaching system, one can either use that system, use the PSIA system or make up their own system. Is Perfect Turn a teaching system? To some extent, there are pieces of each system that are incompatible (e.g. a system that says you never teach wedge turns to beginners is incompatible with a system that says you MAY teach wedge turns).

Quote:
having a good time learning bad ways to ski
Thanks John. This is a good example of why some people have shied away from PMTS. It is this kind of rhetoric that turns people away from a system that could possibly be beneficial. The implication that PSIA's new focus on Guest Service has caused PSIA to allow their skiing model to become out of date (or bad) is wrong. HH has publicly stated some very derogative comments about "traditional" ski instruction. I think these statements were very effective marketing ploys. But I've considered many of the statements to be misleading with respect to "current" PSIA teaching and materials and personally offensive with respect to the teaching that I do. Is it that hard to understand that some people refuse to do business with those that insult them? As I've seen the rhetoric level ratchet down and seen that there is some meat behind the marketing, I've become more willing to attend a PMTS event. But I'm still a firm believer in extolling your own virtues without besmirching your competition.

PSIA's latest focus on movements is called "visual cues to effective and ineffective skiing". So the debate here is "primary" movements versus "effective" movements. Here again there is the potential for incompatiblities. PSIA says rotary movements can be effective. It is my understanding that PMTS disagrees. However, the consensus of those on the forum seems to be that there are more similarities than differences between the movement "systems". How can PSIA be teaching "bad skiing" if the movements are so similar. Hmmm - must be those rotary and wedge things?

I applaud those who pick and choose from a wide menu. I'm interested in people who say they have the "best" solution AND say why. Unfortunately those people lose credibility when they say everybody else sucks.

Quote:
HH refuted this in a recent post saying that what one learns with PSIA is totally incompatible with PMTS and to succeed with PMTS one MUST cast everything learned aside.
Ott - From the quotes you subsequently posted, I think you've put words in HH's mouth. There may only be a subtle difference between "I don't use any PSIA" and "PSIA is totally incompatible", but it is a difference that I respect per my above comments. And I've experienced individual people with such fundamental problems that the "forget everything you know" teaching approach can be effective. So a single case of this does not define an entire philosophy.

"Completely effective instructor" is an interesting choice of words. One would think that HH's marketing approach would focus on "more effective instructors". What is effective anyway? My earlier comments about rookie instructors come into play. If a lesson starts and ends on time, there are no injuries, everyone has fun and everyone achieves their objectives, then is the instructor "completely effective"? Aside from exceeding objectives, what else is there? HH is apparently arguing that a simplified teaching system is more beneficial than a complex one. Per my earlier comments there are pros and cons for both approaches. Which makes Weems' approach a natural response. Any teaching system that uses buckets of diamonds is bound to succeed! (sorry Weems).
post #168 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by weems
...my proposal is that you can use it to recognize the bias of any specific system, benefit from and balance that bias, use the system more skillfully, and above all, avoid getting stuck in the process. In this way, you can become a real collaborator in your own process--self coaching better, letting your coach know more accurately what you need, and creating your own great days every day.
oh yeah.

thanks for your wisdom, weems. bang on!

excellent words above from Ott and from Arcmeister on this very same theme. well said, gents, very well said!
post #169 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Mason
That's probably why many of the PMTS supporters are a little upset about PSIA or their experiences with same. This focus to the skier experience rather than effective teaching of the skier creates the possiblity that some day the skier will discover the effectiveness of a system like PMTS and resent all those dollars and time they spent having a good time learning bad ways to ski.
I think John should buy out that HUGE ski area near Rutland VT, convert it entirely to PMTS teaching, and then John could become the director of the ski school at...

SHILLington.

bah, John. you and your US vs THEM. you and your overprescribed salves and poultices. you're a midwife, ye know? try being a surgeon, getting the real deal in skill and knowledge and application.
post #170 of 236
I've an idea. Let's get rid of all large ski teaching organizations. The best skiers at the area will teach if they want to. If they don't teach, people can still watch them. Beginners can learn to snow plow from the snow plow ski school. Get rid of certs. and levels of certs. and the whole pile of crap.
post #171 of 236
Is it strange or is it always how it's been that skiing organizes itself around "schools" -- I'm not talking about ski schools per se, but schools of thought. I think PSIA started as a school of thought (the American Ski Technique, brainchild of Paul Valar) something like Harb's school but over the years it has democratized as it sought a balance that would include both top-down and grassroots innovation through the D-Team (top-down) and the divisional-national summit and task force meetings (grassroots). The thing that will keep PSIA strong, in my opinion, is encouraging diversity and dissent while maintaining strong traditions like certification and mandatory continuing education to keep the entire membership at least two years current. To summarize, PSIA has chosen an open architecture and PMTS has chosen closed.
post #172 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzostrike
I think John should buy out that HUGE ski area near Rutland VT, convert it entirely to PMTS teaching, and then John could become the director of the ski school at...

SHILLington.

bah, John. you and your US vs THEM. you and your overprescribed salves and poultices. you're a midwife, ye know? try being a surgeon, getting the real deal in skill and knowledge and application.
I've come to realize "us vs. them" is the only way one could sell the concept that "anyone" can achieve "expertise".

Folks fail and blame everyone except themselves. Whether it is a frustrated level II cert seeking an alternative or someone who has an introductory lesson that doesn't go as well as one had hoped.

What I do find interesting is the idea that eventually some folks will wake and smell the roses. No system,tapes,books, will take the place of the relationship between student and teachers. I used the plural on purpose. I was lucky enough to have exposure this winter to a wide variety of clinicians. Some were from the US and several were from other countries. Several had ideas diametrically opposed to their peers, however, EVERY clinic gave me additional tools for my own skiing as well as advantages in helping the students that I teach.

I cannot help but think folks will eventually realize they have not attained anything resembling expertise withen the narrow confines of "primary movements" or "systems" and will seek the influence of individuals who are gifted at assessing and prescribing movements that will improve their skiing.
post #173 of 236
but nolo, how does that explain the ostracizing attitudes that crossover coaches like Arcmeister sometimes experience?
post #174 of 236
Children, children, children, can't we all "just get along?" I've taken instructor training in both "systems" and I find that both are effective when understood and used correctly. A good instructor can understand various different systems of teaching. Then use them to help a student/client/buddy/friend get the most out of the learning experience.

It goes back to Nolo's signature block above, "There is only one kind of good skiing: the kind that enables you to cope with whatever conditions may be encountered. --Fred Iselin & A.C. Spectorsky, 1947" A good instructor works toward this goal.

As an adaptive instructor I've learned that what works, works. What doesn't, doesn't and you throw it away for that lesson. However, even if something doesn't work, I keep everything in my bag of tricks to be pulled out as needed to fit the needs of my student.

I don't know how many lesson plans that I've modified as a student walked in the door or things showed up on snow. Heck just recently at the VA/DAV Winter Sports Clinic at Snowmass I pulled a student out of skiis and put him on a snowboard to get him moving on snow. He had ankle issues due to wounds and ski boots hurt him beyond belief. I ended up teaching him to snowboard with an outrigger, and I don't snowboard myself. He did a great job making turns and controlling speed. His next lessons will need to be with a snowboard instructor.

I plan on continuing to learn other "systems" so I become a better instructor. In fact, I thank Epic Ski for all the "controversy" on PMTS. Because of the threads here I went to a PMTS camp and learned a lot. Of course, I've been to many PSIA clinics and have learned a lot at them. To me they are all tools to be learned and used appropriately.

What I'm saying is simple. Keep your mind open to new and different ideas. Learn from them. Become a better skiier and instructor. Just because its different doesn't mean its wrong.
post #175 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo
Is it strange or is it always how it's been that skiing organizes itself around "schools" -- I'm not talking about ski schools per se, but schools of thought. I think PSIA started as a school of thought (the American Ski Technique, brainchild of Paul Valar) something like Harb's school but over the years it has democratized as it sought a balance that would include both top-down and grassroots innovation through the D-Team (top-down) and the divisional-national summit and task force meetings (grassroots). The thing that will keep PSIA strong, in my opinion, is encouraging diversity and dissent while maintaining strong traditions like certification and mandatory continuing education to keep the entire membership at least two years current. To summarize, PSIA has chosen an open architecture and PMTS has chosen closed.
Once an investment is made, once one "buys" into a concept it is tough to divest. I guess it's clear the investment can be financial, time, or heart and soul.

It happened with the sport of golf. "A book was written in the seventies called "Square to Square". It caused more bad backs as golfers attempted to minimilize pivoting (startling the similarity to rotary movements) and maximize lateral leg "drive" at impact. It went the way of the aluminum and fiberglass shafts. It is also of interest to note new technologies (composit shafts) drove changes in technique a la "shaped" skis.

Old fat golfers who couldn't drive a golf ball two hundred yards bought the book, bought the new clubs, all seeking expertise. They ran around locker rooms espousing their "answer".

Now it's done online. Blogging will be next. Instead of a blog from Shillington it will merely be a...........flog
post #176 of 236
The banana that leaves the bunch gets eaten. I said that PSIA should encourage diversity and dissent, not that it does particularly well. Weems taught me something a few years ago. He said, "The universe's first answer is always NO." To anything. The secret is to get past the first answer to YES. How? By paying attention to what the objections were and addressing them in your next approach. Maybe what you learn is that the organization isn't ready or otherwise prepared to say yes quite yet, and you need to help them with that. Sometimes what you need to do is leave and build your own organization, like Harald did, and change PSIA from the outside. He has, you know.
post #177 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty Guy
It happened with the sport of golf. "A book was written in the seventies called "Square to Square". It caused more bad backs as golfers attempted to minimilize pivoting (startling the similarity to rotary movements) and maximize lateral leg "drive" at impact. It went the way of the aluminum and fiberglass shafts. It is also of interest to note new technologies (composit shafts) drove changes in technique a la "shaped" skis.
but rusty, that square-to-square concept taught me a lot about leg drive. in HS on the golf team, I was the littlest guy but the 2d longest and straightest hitter between tee and green, eh? thanks to learning lateral leg drive, mainly... and some good coaching.

the problem was misunderstanding. the leg drive is a complement to the torso windup, and must be done with good timing and a steady head/spinal column.

but try to tell that to someone trying to **buy** a longer drive or better mid-iron short.
post #178 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Square
What I'm saying is simple. Keep your mind open to new and different ideas. Learn from them. Become a better skiier and instructor. Just because its different doesn't mean its wrong.
Would you dare say that at a PMTS camp?
post #179 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rusty Guy
Would you dare say that at a PMTS camp?
He may would, but no one else there would buy it.
post #180 of 236
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
He may would, but no one else there would buy it.
sweet. southern ways of talking.

"may would"

"might could"

that's the best surplus badinage you can get.
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