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CSIA-PSIA differences

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 
quoting from a thread on PMTS and moguls, in regard to n off-topic issue raised:
Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
This question was regarding CSIA and hips behind heels. All I will say at this juncture is that yes, CSIA is teaching several things that are very different from PSIA. I'm not PSIA certified yet, but Im going to take my PSIA I exam this weekend and go for II next year. So I've been paying attention. Also, I was working at Keystone for a while with my CSIA cert, and talking with PSIAers and watching them.

This excellent thread is about bumps, so I will leave it there, by just saying the two approaches between CSIA and PSIA are definitely way different, especially at the lower levels. Some of you would be flabergasted if you went to a CSIA cert clinic. If you are really curious, I would suggest you start a thread posing the question about differences and I will tell you what I think I know, after which I'm sure about 30 angry and offended individuals will reply.
What are the differences between CSIA and PSIA, skiing models, and what is the basis for the difference?
post #2 of 25
WOW!! That was quite a post ... a loong post! Here come the flames...

CSIA stance focuses on being balanced - not really hips way way back, but I've heard others misinterpret it this way. We want people to use the skeletal structure to support themselves, not the muscles and definitely not the equipment. If your standing/skiing with hips behind the heels (I'm at home trying that now and almost fell on my ass) you're not balanced - the only thing keeping you from falling are your skis. Similarly if you lean against the front of the boot (flex ankles forward), if someone sneaks up behind and opens your bindings, you're on your face

What I generally tell people is to take off your skis and get in an athletic position, with knees, ankles, hips all flexed to an appropriate point. Imagine your a basketball player and are going to guard someone in a game of one-on-one: If you stand with feet together and legs etc straight, one fake and he's around you, but if you separate the feet a bit and bend you are ready to move in any direction (same as a soccer goalie who's ready to face a shot). Of course it depends on the level of agressiveness you need as well.

Ankles - I already mentioned this a little above. We find many people lock their ankles in a flexed forward position (resting/pressing on the front of the boot), so we try to get them to unlock at the transition and initiation of the turn - common among mediocre racer kids who support themselves on the boot. There needs to be progressive movement of the ankle to go along with proper knee, hip/waist flexing.

Now my post is getting quite lengthy so I'm stopping for now.

BTW - I'm CSIA Level 3 since and CSIA Level 1 Examiner since early 1990's.
post #3 of 25
Thread Starter 
PSIA uses four basic skills, balance, rotary, edging and pressure. The blend of these skills yields the appropriate movement. The application of these skills is regulated by duration, intensity, rate and timing. All of this combines to become the foundation of the skiing model. PSIA also has a teaching model and a customer service model.

All of the skiing I have seen so far emphasizes the importance of ankle flex. Of course you cannot add to ankle flex during a turn if you do not at some other time reduce ankle flex. All of the PSIA skiing requires some contact between the shin and the cuff of the boot during the whole turn.
post #4 of 25
1) I get hammered by CSIA's regularly for not having hips far enough forward..... don't buy this one
2)Ditto re ankle flex - they want MORE....lots more
3)yes lots of pivot taught
4)canadian bob .... arrgghh bane of my life as <i would spend hours learning to do for the canadians and then remove for others..... resovled by agreeing with canadians that we will do extension and flexion in lower body only!!!
5) yes easier to understand them but harder to get the whole thing joined into big picture.... does give other views so useful for wrapping head around stuff
I don't think CSIA ski with hips back to much as they ski more "hunched over" in total.... while PSIA ski more upright than everyone else (or it feels so).... austrians want a more rounded "torso" area but not the shoulder hunch of the CSIA .... italians seem to be between austrian and canadian - more forward in shoulder than austrian but not hunched like a canadian.... not sure need to go ski with austrians again to sort that out.... maybe I just did not understand...
post #5 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Candude
WOW!! That was quite a post ... a loong post! Here come the flames...

CSIA stance focuses on being balanced - not really hips way way back, but I've heard others misinterpret it this way. We want people to use the skeletal structure to support themselves, not the muscles and definitely not the equipment. If your standing/skiing with hips behind the heels (I'm at home trying that now and almost fell on my ass) you're not balanced - the only thing keeping you from falling are your skis. Similarly if you lean against the front of the boot (flex ankles forward), if someone sneaks up behind and opens your bindings, you're on your face

What I generally tell people is to take off your skis and get in an athletic position, with knees, ankles, hips all flexed to an appropriate point. Imagine your a basketball player and are going to guard someone in a game of one-on-one: If you stand with feet together and legs etc straight, one fake and he's around you, but if you separate the feet a bit and bend you are ready to move in any direction (same as a soccer goalie who's ready to face a shot). Of course it depends on the level of agressiveness you need as well.

Ankles - I already mentioned this a little above. We find many people lock their ankles in a flexed forward position (resting/pressing on the front of the boot), so we try to get them to unlock at the transition and initiation of the turn - common among mediocre racer kids who support themselves on the boot. There needs to be progressive movement of the ankle to go along with proper knee, hip/waist flexing.

Now my post is getting quite lengthy so I'm stopping for now.

BTW - I'm CSIA Level 3 since and CSIA Level 1 Examiner since early 1990's.
I would back this .... this matches with all lessons I have ever had from a CSIA
post #6 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by FOG
PSIA uses four basic skills, balance, rotary, edging and pressure. The blend of these skills yields the appropriate movement. The application of these skills is regulated by duration, intensity, rate and timing. All of this combines to become the foundation of the skiing model. PSIA also has a teaching model and a customer service model.
I'm not PSIA certified, but it seems fairly similar to CSIA:
balance = stance and balance
rotary = turning with lower body (pivoting)
edging = balancing on edges
pressure = pressure control
CSIA also has/had timing and coordination which essentially means blending of the other skills.

We have a 3 parts approach: Technique & Skill Dev (above), Student centered method (teaching) and Guest Service.

Sounds fairly similar to me:
post #7 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
sorry, you're wrong.
Well considering I passed my Level 3, took the Level 4 course last year, and go through at least two refreshers a season so I'm certified to give Level 1 courses ... I beg to disagree with your version.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
But I'm not talking about tongue pressure hear vs back cuff pressure. I had to pressure the back cuff in order to LOOK the way CSIA examiners wanted me to look.
I've also told people to feel the back of the boot. This is because they're so used to resting/leaning against the cuff that they really need to avoid the front - could be that boots are are too much flexed forward (as are some aggressive race boots).

Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
Anyway, someone can be center balanced with a lot of different stances..including hips back. You can stand in your stree shoes and adopt many different stances without falling on your ass or your feet...some of which have more or less bending in all the various joints, hips back, hips foward...etc..its all possible to do while maintaining a neutral balance point over the arch of your foot.
Yes to a point depending on body type etc. That's why we don't tell people to stand in exact this way, but emphasize balanced stance. This takes into account body types and other issues.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
If you go for level 4 you will find out. In the early 90's they were not doing this. This will be new stuff for you.
A little clarification ... You cannot retain CSIA cert without refreshing once in a while. You seem to think I took cert 15 year ago and that was it. In fact I've taken at least one, mostly two refreshers a season (total about 4-5 skiing days with senior examiners) to keep up to date on any new innovations.

I respect your opinion, but please don't state facts, when it is really just your interpretation of the CSIA style. Maybe to you, it is hips way way back, but to me, I don't ever think about getting my hips back behind my heels ... I think about maintaining and establishing and recovering my balance as I ski.

Did you see the demo videos that CSIA has on the website.
http://www.snowpro.com/photogallery/videogallery_e.html
Maybe you feel this is exactly what you mean ... and to me it's exactly what I've been saying (mostly) ... thanks for the great discussion.
post #8 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Candude
I've also told people to feel the back of the boot. This is because they're so used to resting/leaning against the cuff that they really need to avoid the front - could be that boots are are too much flexed forward (as are some aggressive race boots).
This sort of thing is often a boot fit issue. If your ankle is flexed when you are at rest, then you have very limited dorsiflexion available. The going cure for this is heel lifts inside the boot to open up the ankle, perhaps accompanied by toe lifts outside the boot if need to get back to center.
post #9 of 25
Thread Starter 
Does any of the discussion about hips back have anything to do with tilting the pelvis? I have heard a lot of discussion amongst intructors about rotating the pelvis about the same axis a plane would rotate to lift the nose of a plane. It seems to allow more core strength to come into play, and allow for more absorbtion of shocks.
post #10 of 25
anyone else here ever dual-certified?
post #11 of 25
dewdman42,

In an athletic stance your hips do fall somewhere above your heels, give or take a centimeter and your torso should be a little forward. The PSIA obsession with a tall stance is what I find questionable. Also, having hips over the balls of the feet feels very wrong to me. It is definitely not a stacked, sustainable stance unless your ankles are way bent (meaning that you will have to bend the heck out of your boots).

Perhaps your body type is a little different. Perhaps you like to ski over the balls of your feet and rest on the boots to stack up. Maybe the CSIA examiners were too stubborn to dig deeper and find out why they did not like what they saw in your skiing. That is sad.

But when I look at the link Candude provided I see no hips behind heels, I see the proper torso angle and I strive like hell to ski like that. I definitely do not strive to ski like some of the PSIA certified video we saw here - largely because their "tall stance" and minimal A&E is not what I like to see or to feel.

Different strokes for different folks I guess. It would be interesting to see you ski and have somebody like Candude comment on it. When I get some time I will post some recent video of myself skiing and ask for laughter ... err I mean feedback.
post #12 of 25
I would think that someone who had gone though racing training would have no problem with the 'hips behind the heels' policy of the CSIA, it seems to be a natural result of keeping a low stance (the femur is that long!). Or is a low stance not correct anymore?

My problem with the CSIA certification is the wide stance .. unless a pig could squeeze between my boots they weren't happy, it felt like 'not' sitting on a public can Where does the PSIA stand on the stance issue?
post #13 of 25
I have enjoyed reading this thread, it is typical of this whole forum, which is why I only post occassionally. Dewdman42, please take this as it is meant, but reading your stuff it is obvious while you failed your Level 3, some serious holes in your understanding of skiing. What you wrote may be what you understood, but it is not correct. Candude has put it together rather well.

As a current CSIA 4, I can say this. I have taught all over the world, and discussed skiing with other pro's certified in many different countries, the more I learn about other systems what becomes apparent is this:

At the high end, or the "Final Form" so to speak, (ie, how each countries top guys ski), the differences are very subtle, good skiing is good skiing. Where things vary the most, and in some cases drastically is in the progression from never-ever to expert. No one is necessarily better then the other, but I can say that at Interski the CSIA teaching methodologies always get alot of coodos (sp?).

It appears to me that when comparing CSIA to PSIA and other systems alot of less experienced pros confuse progression, with final form, and exercises, with technique. If for example, I saw you skiing with your ankles cranked forward, ALL THE TIME, I could easily see myself suggesting, as an exercise, to try and ski with your ankles as straight as possible all the time. Only to give you a different sensation, then once I believe you have made some change from the "perma-flex" position, I will get you your flexing and straigting you ankle as required in the turn.

What may have happened in your case (and I am only guessing) is that when your examiner told you to get your hips back way back, to ski with straight ankles, he/she was only trying to exaggerate a movement for you, to create a feeling. Typically students, when learning, especially on course, will only do about half the exageration that the examiner shows, and they know this. Hence he/she may have showed you an over exagerrated picture to simply create a change in your skiing, to get you to move to a more solid technique. While it sounds like you made some changes, they were only a step to proper ankle flexion...ie, skiing like you felt your back of your boots the whole time, may have been better, since it is likely that in reality you had some ankle straightening, followed by an ankle collapse, then straighteing again...while not Level 3, it would be a step above "perma-flex".

Having skied with alot of PSIA Examiner types my advice is, you should learn why you missed your CSIA 3, or it is likely you will miss your PSIA certs for the same reason. I assure you, that while the PSIA, in their progression seem to allow for a more constant flexed ankle positon then the CSIA, there high end has the same view of proper balance as the CSIA and indeed the rest of the skiing world.
post #14 of 25
Dewdman42,

I only have a few questions for you:

1: If you are correct, and you did, as you say ski the CSIA way with your hips back, and straight ankles...why did you fail your Level 3 Skiing?

2: Ok, suppose "your" picture was not right, but clearly you at least understood what was expected...so why did you fail your Level 3 teaching?

3: I have taught at WB for years, so I know the people you are referring to, infact I know them very well, and have for years, and while agree with you we do have some slightly differing views, we certainly have no disagreement on ankle movments or hip placement....differing CSCF views vs. CSIA views come from a simple fact that the CSCF is geared to progressing fit, strong, often young, fearless athletes to go FASTER, the CSIA is geared to progressing people from all fitness and age brackets to skiing with more enjoyment and control. As a result the steps in the progression will be different. When you talk about the "shock" and horror these other heavy weights have when they talk to you, are you sure they are not commenting on your understanding? As opposed to their understanding of CSIA technique?

4: Last question, how could PSIA and CSIA "final forms" be so different when both organisations often refer to the SAME ski biomechanics/physics experts, such as Ron LeMaster?
post #15 of 25
Sorry Dewdman if you feel this has been an attack on you. It isn't. I am only trying to stress that your intrepretation of what you believe to be the offical CSIA technique is incorrect.

I know you feel that your conversations with some Heavy weights proves you to be correct, but again I would suggest you misunderstood them as much as you misunderstood you Level 3 Examiner. Are we talking about the same people? Well I have been at WB since 1990, and there are only a few WC coaches there, some current on the circuit, some retired, but you can still count them on one hand, and I know them all, so yes we are talking about the same people.

As for your comments on "Lemaster", not sure what you mean to the letter, but I assure you, after having a few discussions with Ron over the years the CSIA/PSIA understanding of basic principles is the same.

For those reading this, the point to take away is: "Good skiing is Good Skiing", the biggest difference in the various techniques...is not the final form at all, but rather the path to get there.

If you can see how the PSIA and CSIA and CSCF are different that is a good thing. However I would suggest that if you are to move up through the certs it will become more and more important for you to understand how they are the same.
post #16 of 25
Fascinating.
post #17 of 25
I'm also sorry if you feel "attacked" dewdman, that was not my intent.

The thread started by asking about the differences in the techniques and you stated that a couple of the big differences is the "hips way way back" and "ankles locked straight" or something like that.

I simply stated what I believe to be the position of the CSIA regarding those points and I too stand by my statements and viewpoint. I was hoping you would learn from my explanation and someone would contribute a similar explanation of PSIA technique so I could understand their position.

To state over and over again that everyone else is wrong and you (only you) are correct does not promote a good discussion. I'd simply say that you misinterpreted the CSIA position (and maybe you were led to misinterpret it by your CSIA trainers - I don't know).

Good skiing is good skiing! (period) It will look different depending on the person and the goal. My style looks a little different if I'm skiing on hard packed versus in the bumps. But I still apply the principles of the CSIA technique - it's just that the application is different depending on the situation.

I hope we can get back to a discussion of the differences and learn from one another. thanks
post #18 of 25

Video?

Dewdman42, by any chance do you have any video of your skiing, now or otherwise?
I try to understand people's (and organizations') thoughts and belief systems via both words and visuals.
Thanks---
post #19 of 25
ok. GOT IT. I'm tired of this topic and I'm certainly not going to sit here and respond to challenges to my credibility. If nobody wants to believe me then do whatever you want, believe whatever you want or research it yourself.
post #20 of 25
Regarding visuals, I suggest that getting Candude and Skidude to demo their excellent CSIA technique from various angles and conditions to compare against the pluthera of PSIA videos we see on here is the the closest thing that most of you will get to seeing a comparison of the two approaches.

cheers
post #21 of 25
Thread Starter 
I want to thank dewdman for exposing himself to the scrutiny of this forum in order to answer my question. I am not sure where the truth lies, but I am sure we have exposed an interesting topic to a lot of light, and unfortunately, heat as well. I would also like to thank all of the knowledgeable people who contributed to this thread. Thanks to all, and by all means please keep posting varying views.
post #22 of 25
dewdman42,

I think everyone here is trying to understand what happend in your situation rather than attack you. I may not have any professional credentials, but from a learning perspective I would love to better understand this "difference" between PSIA and CSIA. Ultimately I will ski the way it feels right to me, but at least I won't remain ignorant about alternative styles and possible tweaks in technique.

I was looking at this as a learning experience, rather than an attack. If my post came across the wrong way, I do apologize.
post #23 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
Let the flames begin...
No one seems to have taken issue with this forecast. At least you were well supported on one point.
post #24 of 25
i guess i'm a bit slow these days, i still don't quite get what's so wrong about keeing the hips behind the heels : sure, someone with a tall stance would end up in the backseat, but with a low stance is seems natural... to me anyway (maybe i've been doing it wrong all these years : ).

are his heels ever behind his hips? (might not be the best example, but i'm just trying to get a visual)
post #25 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
ok. GOT IT. I'm tired of this topic and I'm certainly not going to sit here and respond to challenges to my credibility. If nobody wants to believe me then do whatever you want, believe whatever you want or research it yourself.
I'm not sure why you feel your credibility is being challenged (whatever that means). The only thing being challenged are you statements about the CSIA technique. I do believe what you say about your CSIA experience, and I did research it myself and I know what the CSIA promotes for a skiing technique.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dewdman42
Regarding visuals, I suggest that getting Candude and Skidude to demo their excellent CSIA technique from various angles and conditions to compare against the pluthera of PSIA videos we see on here is the the closest thing that most of you will get to seeing a comparison of the two approaches.
First of all I never said I was the perfect CSIA skier, but I'm working on getting better and understanding ski technique and what works and what doesn't. If you want to see examples of CSIA skiing check out the link I posted earlier in this thread.

Sorry again if I offended you, dewdman, that was not the intention.
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