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Pros/Cons of remote instruction methods

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
SkierSynergy suggested we spin off a new thread from the High-C thread in order to discuss:
the promises and pitfalls of remote e-mail and web based ski instruction. It seems that there are issues here for instructors, consumer, and organizations.
I hope he chimes in!

I think remote instruction has promise, but not as a stand-alone method. The rule that clicks-need-mortar still applies (Internet enterprises need physical as well as virtual outlets).
post #2 of 7

Interesting Concept


Remote instruction is something we are starting to see in the golf world.

There are usually two metods:

1. Work with an instructor who video's the lesson then it is available to you over the internet for follow up

2. Forward a video of your swing to professional for analysis and feedback

A few of the difficulties that exist in my mind are the lack of immediate feedback, difficulty in seeing ball flight on most videos as well as the precision required in video equipment setup to get a camera view exactly down the target line and also 90 degrees to the student.

That having been said I believe there is a strong value in method number 1, especially if the instructor and student have a good working relationship.
post #3 of 7
Nastar has online coaching available with coaches like AJ Kitt. I found other coaches on the V1 site like Dteam coach Rob Sogard. I haven't tried it yet, but it looks interesting.


or just www.nastar.com and the link is on the home page
post #4 of 7

Everything else being the same, I believe that a coach will be more effective live in person than remotely 99% of the time.

Benefits of "live" coaching include:
-opportunity for "hands on" teaching
-immediate feedback/realtime discussion/responses to questions
-higher quality of observation (an live coach can see more than a remote one can)
-better ability to demonstrate and choose appropriate terrain
-expanded coaching time (remote sessions are typically short - e.g. 10 minutes)

Benefits of remote coaching
-coach has time to prepare his message vs delivering it spontaneously
-ability for the student to see themselves
-ability of the student to easily "save" the coaching information
-easier for the student to understand small nuances in technique
-possible access to higher caliber coaching
-possible lower cost of coaching (e.g. no travel cost)
-possible more attention because of the different medium
post #5 of 7
The problem with a forum like this is that you can never know exactly how well somebody posting here knows what he is talking about. You can post and read but stay critical to advise and opinions expressed.

My favorite threads are the ones displaying a video and we can give our comments. Its fun to analyse the video and give feedback. I have great respect for the ones posting the videos. Non for the ones giving feedback, including myself. But its fun and its therapy and I get a kick out of doing it. On the hill I get payed for it but here its all for free.

I think here lies a great future for us using the video combined with internet and "professional" advisers.
post #6 of 7
Everyone has a point about this. The comment about this in golf is right on the mark. I saw David Leadbetter, the golf pro, on a TV. He works with a lot of people at his school in Florida, then later will give advice based on emailed video clips. So, I guess he does this, but only after he's worked with them in person. Someone in my family went to his school and Leadbetter could tell almost everything from observing one practice swing. Although he's quick to admit in some interviews that I've read that he's never 100% sure that what he says is the right thing. So, he's big enough to admit that he makes mistakes. That's a big part of effective teaching.

I think part of the problem with doing this with skiing is that you need both frontal and side (and possibly rear) videos to have a really clear idea of what is going on. I think it's also tough to give feedback this way because good instruction always demands a real time discussion between the intructor and the student. Tough to do that with email and video.

I think you've also got to take instructor input with a grain of salt. I skied a few weeks a go with a guy I used to race with. After a couple of runs, for no reason, he said, "You've got to use the front of your skis more." Now, I ski pretty well and am centered. The skis do the turning and the whole edge engages when I turn. I can also vary the turn type and shape. In short, as another racing friend said, "He was just boosting his own ego." I think that that may be why a lot of folks take instrucotrs to task on this site. People just building their ego are really counter-productive. Good teachers just don't do that. From what I undestand, Leadbetter doesn't do this in his teaching, which is why he is so popular and effective.
post #7 of 7
A friend of mine that races Nastar did the online lesson and said that the detailed comparisons with the pacesetters gave him more understanding than he ever had before. Maybe the time a coach has to study a skier in slow motion next to a top model helps the coach do a bettert job of finding and explaining what a skier needs to work on.
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