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Carving speed control

post #1 of 181
Thread Starter 
I have now followed two very accomplished skiers (Nolo and Uncle Louie) who are doing something that I can't understand and would very much like to do. They head down the fall line, carving relatively short turns in a basically banana shape, but they do not accellerate! : I don't get it. When I carve the same turn shapes that they do, I accellerate past them, and soon get going too fast. As a result, I either carve much more complete turns or bag it and let 'em slide.

I'm sure that I'm missing something fundamental, but I don't know what it is. Anyone care to enlighten me? My suspicion is that it has to do with pressure control, and that this is the skill that needs my concentration next, but that may be wrong, too.

Thanks...
post #2 of 181

speed

Are all three of you leaving railroad track thru the whole turn?

Are there turns a bit rounder, with less time in the fall line and
a sharper path _across_ the hill?

those would be my first two thoughts....

tune, ski length, skier weight would have an impact as well.

brad
post #3 of 181
Thread Starter 
docbrad66, thanks for the questions. To clarify...

Yes, all three are leaving a pair of carved arcs throughout the turn.

Their turns are actually less round and more down the fall line than mine. This is what has me confused!

I do, indeed, weigh more than either one of them (I probably outweigh Nolo by almost twice!). Nonetheless, it's not really the ultimate speed, it's the fact that I'm accellerating while they seem to be able to maintain a constant speed. I think our ski lengths are probably pretty close (I was on my 162/165s, Nolo can tell what her T-nines are, and UL was on his Apache Crossfires, which I think are longer than mine).
post #4 of 181
soft finish, absorbing the energy that would result in acceleration from rebound?
post #5 of 181
My Hypothesis: -assuming an s turn shape starting at 12 o'clock high and end at 6 o'clock with second turn completing the s also starting at 12 and ending at 6.

Non-accelerating skiers: From 12 to 3 not much weight being put to skis (which I assume are shapely), just enough to keep them bent. They are angulated a lot (but angluation is lessening), and the body is allowed to move down the fall line, but not being propelled down the fall line. From 3 to 6 o'clock increasing force applied to skis. Bodies acceleration due to gravity down the fall line is being resisted (by Newtonian reaction force (centrepetal force turning skier directed uphill), less angulation more banking being applied.

Accelerating skier: No unweighting before turn, start of turn has lots of force being applied to ski. Weight pushing body down the hill from 12 to 3 o'clock, accelerating the skier. Legs bending at the end of turn to avoid overpowering ski, perhaps bending faster than need be with the result that not much weight is on skis from 3 to 6, not decelerating skier on this part of the turn.
Also the friction force on your skis is in smaller proportion compared to the gravity force applied to you.

You can carve a perfectly symetrical s turn, but dig deeper trenches at the bottom of your curves (6 o'clocks) than at the top, and you will be going and slower (and vise versa).
post #6 of 181
You can follow the same general path at a slower pace by being more patient about your turn entry.
post #7 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kneale Brownson
You can follow the same general path at a slower pace by being more patient about your turn entry.
can you explain how that works, Kneale? I can't imagine it, and am frustrated at the attempt to see how it works.
post #8 of 181
Wow, most racers wish they had this problem. they are always trying to go faster than then everyone else.

Now seriously, I find I can control my speed bettter by initiating my turn more with my inside ski and still carve trenches. I really concentrate on tipping the inside ski to the little toe side at top of turn and probably keep more weight on the inside ski throughout the turn. Probably keeps me form extracting as much accelaration out of my downhill ski and bottom of turn.
post #9 of 181
By being more patient about turn entry you are not pushing so hard on your ski tips at the turn entry, and consequently the snow isn't pushing back quite so hard in a downhill direction.
post #10 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman
Wow, most racers wish they had this problem. they are always trying to go faster than then everyone else.

Now seriously, I find I can control my speed bettter by initiating my turn more with my inside ski and still carve trenches. I really concentrate on tipping the inside ski to the little toe side at top of turn and probably keep more weight on the inside ski throughout the turn. Probably keeps me form extracting as much accelaration out of my downhill ski and bottom of turn.
There you go.......
post #11 of 181
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kneale Brownson
You can follow the same general path at a slower pace by being more patient about your turn entry.
I am pretty patient, I think. And they are throwing pretty quick turns (from transition to transition, perhaps 10-12 feet with only a divergence from the fall line of a foot or two).
post #12 of 181
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman
Wow, most racers wish they had this problem. they are always trying to go faster than then everyone else.
I'm an ex-racer. I think that contributes to this challenge. Typically, I get to the point that I'm going too fast for my own comfort, and then I get "defensive".
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman
Now seriously, I find I can control my speed bettter by initiating my turn more with my inside ski and still carve trenches. I really concentrate on tipping the inside ski to the little toe side at top of turn and probably keep more weight on the inside ski throughout the turn. Probably keeps me form extracting as much accelaration out of my downhill ski and bottom of turn.
This may be a big part of it. Especially on the b5s, I tend to be more outside ski dominant (to get them bending more). Worth some "play" on Sunday.
post #13 of 181
Your weight has alot to do with it. Maybee everything to do with it.

MTT
post #14 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
I'm an ex-racer. I think that contributes to this challenge. Typically, I get to the point that I'm going too fast for my own comfort, and then I get "defensive".
This may be a big part of it. Especially on the b5s, I tend to be more outside ski dominant (to get them bending more). Worth some "play" on Sunday.
I dealt with this same issue all week in February when we were at Mt. Bachelor. The summit chair main run, I think it is called Beverly Hills is a very deceivingly consistent steep long, long groomer. You don't think it is as steep as it is and you get going incredibly fast very quickly. Although it is well groomed, it is not really very wide. I was making bigger turns on slalom skis and not staying in the fallline. In other wrods long carved turns across the hill. Actually when I made shorter turns in the falline similar to what you describe above, I didn't have this problem. The guys from Bachelor will know what I'm talking about with the constant pitch of this run! Anyway, it is very difficult to control your speed plus it is about 8,800' at the top with a high speed quad that starts at about 7,100'. Tough on us guys from sea level. And yes the base lodge is at about 6k. The good news is when you ski the blue runs down below the summit chair they seem so easy; you are looking for speed instead of trying to control it!
post #15 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
I'm an ex-racer. I think that contributes to this challenge. Typically, I get to the point that I'm going too fast for my own comfort, and then I get "defensive".
This may be a big part of it. Especially on the b5s, I tend to be more outside ski dominant (to get them bending more). Worth some "play" on Sunday.
One additional item.

Contrary to all the buzz about a very upright stance, (although I do think it applies to ramp angle & forward lean) I still believe (and evidenced by all the racer photos I see) you need to have your chest slightly inclined. Particulrly in slalom type of turns you must lead with your head!!!!

You must keep your skis behind you so to speak and keep perdindicular to the slope which really means the steeper it is the farther forward and more aggressive you must be to stay forward.

Put another way, make your skis chase your body down the hill not your body chasing your skis.

Olle Larsson always talks about leading with your head in slalom!
post #16 of 181
Well, one reason is my skis are shorter so I can carve a shorter radius turn than you, which means I make more turns and spend less time in the fall line than you do.

Quote:
My suspicion is that it has to do with pressure control
That's the other reason, progressive pressure instead of off/on.
post #17 of 181
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo
That's the other reason, progressive pressure instead of off/on.
I've really been working on this since the ESA. Comprex's friend Ogi even described my turns as "very progressive" (surprise!). But, I'm wondering if it's the inside ski activity that you use that I haven't learned, yet. Or maybe even fore/aft pressure somehow as mentioned earlier in this thread...
post #18 of 181
...sounds like an intelligent boot-fit with some control over those hips, plus keeping those legs in shape...:
post #19 of 181
Most of my friends tell me I'm very progressive but when I skied with Scott a few weeks ago I learned otherwise. Wait for my response in the tracks thread some time tomorrow.

DC
post #20 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh
I have now followed two very accomplished skiers (Nolo and Uncle Louie) who are doing something that I can't understand and would very much like to do. They head down the fall line, carving relatively short turns in a basically banana shape, but they do not accellerate! : I don't get it.
Thanks for this question. Been trying to puzzle this out all winter -- really frustrating. Can't wait to try some of these ideas.
post #21 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo
Well, one reason is my skis are shorter so I can carve a shorter radius turn than you, which means I make more turns and spend less time in the fall line than you do.
Don't think so! By his own admission he weighs almost twice as much and his Metrons have a 11 12 or 13M sidecut! (Slalom) (Can't remeber what size your on Steve)
post #22 of 181
The reaction force that several of you refer to is not a motive force. The reaction force of the snow is equal to the force applied to the snow. Force in one direction plus equal force in opposite direction equals no net force applied to the body so there is no acceleration. The idea that there is a force that can work with gravity or oppose gravity to accelerate us is a good one but the force we use is generated by the edged ski as it travles along a curved path. This force can be represented by a vector pointing up from the center of the ski through our foot. Sometimes this force vector pionts down and across the hill and we can use it to help gravity move us faster down the hill as it moves us across the hill. Sometimes the force vector points up and across the hill and we can use it to oppose gravity as it moves us across the hill.

Now to Steves question. Given similar skis, turn shapes and sizes the skis will generate similar force. The same force applied to a greater mass will have less accelerative outcome on the mass than the same force applied to a smaller mass. In the case of a skier this will result in a higher terminal velocity for the more massive object. So, Steve will have a higher terminal speed than nolo and take several more turns to reach it. I'm also sure that there are some technique differences but a large part of the issue is the mass of the skier.

yd
post #23 of 181
I agre with ydnar. The mass plays a major role. I remember the inerview on TV of the italian girl that did well in SG or was it DH in Bormio.... she said her secret wepon was spagetti and food in general, and she laughed and showed her well rounded body! So if nolo's weight is half of ssh I would not look any further.

The fact that nolo was staying closer to the fall line with banana shaped turns also points in that direction. However, she may not have been carving perfect RR tracks after all. I hosted a thread about this same topic last fall called something like "people that think they carve but they dont" because I had run into this debate so often. Its surprisingly common that even very good skiers skidd their carved turns a bit thuss making them slow down. And just for the record, pure carving in the purest form we mortal skiers can perform it exists only while carving tracks to our own pase on firm snow. WC racers drift, skidd, scarve and carve on icy and bumpy tracks sometimes 45deg or steeper.

If we look at equipment the base plays a major role. If they have race base and they are well waxed they are much much faster than regular non waxed skis.

However, ssh has a nice problem on his hands....
post #24 of 181
Its much easier to understand than to do. Several bears here have pretty good ideas about what causes one skier to accelerate while another just ambles along.

We have discussed this here before. The tails of the skis are much faster and not able to engage in speed control. The fronts of the stays the same with progressive inputs.

Uncle Louie and nolo are maintaining their stances and staying forward throughout their turns. You are likely falling in the back seat after the fall line and must re-adjust your fore and aft with a slight traverse before you can engage the next turn. This is likely why you are finishing across the fall line further.

Unless the hips keep up with the skis it is pretty hard to, as Kneale said, "Initiate the turn slower with more patinence". Atomicman put it as "Make your skis chase your body down the hill". nolo is right that progressive pressure control is a big key factor in maintaining stance.
post #25 of 181
ssh
I have had this "problem" of acceleration too. (That's why the bumps all go to crap at the lower section of a mogul run, "everyone" has it!)

While most of the responses are directed to some kind of "resistance to momentum" , perhaps it is only the physics of the skier and the selected line. I have not skied with Nolo, but I know she and U.L are not massive. They certainly have less momentum to control than a porker like myself. That may make the differences in the line they really ski and yours, too subtle to detect.

Last time out, I was reminded to look for the sensation of completing the turn. What is that feeling? It's just a perceptible reduction in the downhill attraction. Skiing could be broken into three phases: Acceleration due to gravity, Neutral to Gravity (Or negative Accel if going uphill) or resisting gravity. I'm looking at the neutral sensation. It is only a moment, the sensation of a release from either resistance or acceleration. It is just a fraction of a second, but the feeling is there, and it makes all the difference in the world. The first turn and the last turn on a steep slope (Tourist trap, Riva Ridge) were just the same. It was a revelation! To test this, I strung together 39 short radius turns on a lesser slope. ( I couldn't do more, I got so tired my legs quit working right) It works! The pattern is well imprinted, the sensation, the feeling of control is now an accepted pattern in my skiing.

It might be right for you.


CalG
post #26 of 181
Steve, Nolo is one of those deceptive skiers isn't she? She makes skiing look deceptively easy. I think this is an issue of technique rather than mass though. Nolo works her skis very effectively from the tip back, keeping the entire edge engaged through the turn. She is also very progressive with this so I think she is just consistently getting more out of her edge engagement than you. If you watch her ski you see the ankle working to keep her fore and aft balance over the sweet spot consistently also. As Pierre noted, the fast part of the ski is not worked by itself but needs the whole ski, tip to tail.

Pressure control and not rushing the lateral movement, which keeps the move to the inside of the turn a result of the progressiveness of the edge tipping movements, which keeps the pressure more consistent. This coupled with good fore and aft alignment. later, Ricb.
post #27 of 181
Please help me RicB

If it is some action Nolo is doing, "using the entire edge" and "consistant pressure" to control her speed of descent, then Nolo is resisting acceleration due to gravity and she is supplying the effort, much like braking. I know this feeling when doing short swing turns inside the handles of a toboggon ;-b

This is way different than selecting a line with less time in the fall line.

Nolo or Uncle Louie, do you get tired when you ski the way ssh is describing? If not, why?

CalG
post #28 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cgrandy
This is way different than selecting a line with less time in the fall line.

Nolo or Uncle Louie, do you get tired when you ski the way ssh is describing? If not, why?
I don't get tired skiing their way.

Tiring skiing comes from resisting or making abrupt changes to the center of mass flow ie: slowing down the center of mass, speeding it up or geting the center of mass to far inside the turn.

The essence of their skiing is the slow line fast method. They are always over the sweet spot of the ski with the center of mass. In doing so they are not straining any of the mucsles to stay in balance.

Both skis are on edge and turning a smaller circle than the radius of the ski. Naturally the skis will have increased resistance to acceleration. Another point is that both skis are carving equally because of two active feet. With most skiers, the outside ski is carving more than the inside ski.

Two active feet over the sweet spot give skiing that look like the skier is pushing through the tips instead of through the tails even right through an effortless turn transition.

I have not watched Uncle Louie ski but I have watched nolo ski. Her skiing is a very nice image to take with you on the slopes.
post #29 of 181
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cgrandy
Please help me RicB

If it is some action Nolo is doing, "using the entire edge" and "consistant pressure" to control her speed of descent, then Nolo is resisting acceleration due to gravity and she is supplying the effort, much like braking. I know this feeling when doing short swing turns inside the handles of a toboggon ;-b

This is way different than selecting a line with less time in the fall line.

Nolo or Uncle Louie, do you get tired when you ski the way ssh is describing? If not, why?

CalG
Well I'm basing this from Steves discription of the turn shape. Bannana shaped.
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If you are spending alot of time in the falline and not accelerating then you are managing your speed with consistent ski snow interaction. This is devoid of the braking action at the end of a short swing turn if the ski snow interaction is managed and spread out through the turn. Pressure control and progressive movements. Make sense? Later, RicB.
post #30 of 181
The way I ski is pretty effortless, once you get the hang of it. It may look like nothing's going on, but there's a lot of stuff happening with my feet and ankles, as Ric has noticed. I do think the skis have something to do with it. The waist of the ski I was on at ESA is 64mm so staying connected through the transition is a piece of cake. Stay connected and you don't have to waste time reconnecting.

See the Inside Leg Extension thread from last year to get the technical notes.
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