Originally Posted by carv_lust
Atomicman, tip lead is the natural occurrence of a countered hip. It stands to reason that if the inside hip leads, the inside knee leads and the inside foot is ahead of the outside boot, there will be some tip lead. This does not contradict the need for inside foot pull back. Harald commented on this very occurrence in a thread on the PMTS forum not too long ago. As Slatz commented about what Harald says, “The intent” is to pull the foot back and hold it; in most situations it is beneficial. It is beneficial in these ways, it produces cleaner carves, maintains a forward hold on the hips and creates better balance management over the stance foot.
Agreed. I trained for years with Olle Larsson, who is a lot like Harb in being ahead of the curve with techinical analysis (we were talking about tip lead issues back in the days of the old straight boards, and we using wider stances well before they became de rigeur
), and I've spoken with him a bit about the tip lead/counter/waisteering scuttlebutt, and it all boils down to this: there is no one technique or techincal element that will work in every situation.
Basically, the one thing that racers try to avoid is being "blocked" into a position - in other words, they want to have biomechanical options at any point in a turn (for both turn/line adjustment and to avoid injury). So sometimes it'll mean tip lead, sometimes it'll mean more counter than seems necessary, etc. Racers will train to the extremes to know what they feel like, if only to know how to avoid them in competition. They'll also train toward the "ideal" technique for their body type
to build the motions into muscle memory.
For example, there are times when my particular body geometry (long legs, shorter torso) will get "locked up" when waisteering. So I know where my limit is, and I know how to work around it without scrubbing speed. But to another skier, the same position may still have some motion available. They key is keeping options available and knowing how to use said options in a way that gets you down the course as fast as possible.
Like I mentioned earlier: all bets are off once a racer is in the race course. Racers will use whatver tools they have to get down fast, and it won't always look "ideal." That's why courses are set on tricky slopes with different gate sets (at least in SL, GS and SG) to test racers' overall skills and ability to adapt to new situations.