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Ski Length for Different Race Courses - Page 2

post #31 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiRacer55
....don't change that much, so I know that my 204 Super Gs are the right skis for Ski Cooper but I'm gonna use my 212s at Keystone, and so forth. I think you have a pretty major learning curve coming up re technique and tactics, but I think you're gonna have problems with a 155 sl in GS courses. Something like a 178 or 180 with a 19-meter sidecut would be ideal...
I would envisage a major learning curve if my current aspiration was to
go from last to near top placing this season. I remember when I was
learning to ski back in 1992 whenever I wanted to make an improvement from one ski day to another I was always able to look at a book or instructional video and without fail was able to put into practise
the new instructional tip the next skiing day. Whether this approach will
work with the tips I am getting from you guys on Epic Ski I am keen to find out. I am very comfortable with my 155cm skis on the GS course
as an ideal match for my current racing ability. I also have a pair of 177cm
Volkl AC4s which I may be able to smoothly (not fast) negotiate down a GS course. Aquiring Gate Negotiation skills are going to be my primary focus next and I will worry about ski length once I have become comfortable in being able to brush/clipgates without falling as I desend the
course and I do knowthateven at the Olympic level they do not always get this part right


thanks
post #32 of 47
Thread Starter 

Went in another race today

This time I was able to ski closer to the gates and I clipped a gate with
one of my ski poles and found there was no effect on my balance which
I was happy about and I had no fear of stradling. I came second to last this time and had the opportunity to have some free runs down the course
after the race. I found from this experience there is a need to work on turn shape through the gates even though I am on my shorter skis and getting a better fit from my boots as I was able to self analyse how minute foot movement inside the boot was throwing me off center in
such a way I would ignore it in normal skiing. I am going to wear
some Technica ICON Alu boots in my next race despite the fact they are colder than my old Daschstiens that I wore today as they are warmer
post #33 of 47

Get some coaching...

...is about the best advice I can give you. You're not gonna figure it out on your own, and while all the advice you're getting from this forum is good stuff, it's not the whole picture. It's a little dated, but I'd also read The Skier's Edge by Ron LeMaster.
post #34 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiRacer55
...is about the best advice I can give you. You're not gonna figure it out on your own, and while all the advice you're getting from this forum is good stuff, it's not the whole picture. It's a little dated, but I'd also read The Skier's Edge by Ron LeMaster.
Agree after my last race on Sunday where I was not able to improve
upon my finish time from the previous weekend I will be looking into
some coaching but dont have a big budget so that is why I thought
I would go in 2 Slaloms and 2 GS races to find out where I actually
was in racing ability. On the positive side I did not fall or stradle or
come close to falling so I hope to be in a pretty comfortable position to practise any improvement to technique offered.
post #35 of 47
As has been said before, good racing is just good skiing- targeted turning. Concentrating on the fundamentals will help you immensely in your quest to climb the rankings. If you can't afford some sort of race coaching, there are many programs (books, DVDs, programs..) that concentrate on carving on modern skis that can help to some degree. Harald Harb's PMTS system is based on race progressions, and while I don't exactly agree with all of his theories, I will say that PMTS does make solid (if somewhat idiosyncratic) skiers from what I've seen firsthand. You certainly could do worse. You also might find a few tips on the USSA website under the coaches ed section.

Fully develop those fundamental skills before you spend a lot of time on tactics and shortcuts.
post #36 of 47
I second the notion of a lesson, but from a qualified race coach -- you should be skiing faster instantly.

It has been said that coaches teach speed management while instructors teach speed control, with obviously different results.
post #37 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigE
I second the notion of a lesson, but from a qualified race coach -- you should be skiing faster instantly.

It has been said that coaches teach speed management while instructors teach speed control, with obviously different results.
Will be going in for 3 days Masters Race Coaching next week weather and
visibility permitting and in addition to SL & GS I will try SG (will be using 205cm Volkl P10 for SG) I have no problem with speed off the race course
so it will be just a matter of seeing how well I am able to transfer my off race course skiing speed to the race course with coaching.
post #38 of 47
Trip report with jpegs please!
post #39 of 47
duplicate deleted
post #40 of 47
When being coached, make sure to ask for feedback after a run or two. That will give them a chance to observe your skiing and highlight you as someone who really came to learn. Be open to their observations and ask for drills you can do on your own to improve your technique. Keeping a daily diary of their comments and your own observations will help you make the most of the experience. You can post here as well for interpretation of feedback you received. Hopefully you'll get some directed freeskiing time with the coaches so they can evaluate you outside of the course.

Have fun and ski fast.
post #41 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaska Mike
When being coached, make sure to ask for feedback after a run or two. That will give them a chance to observe your skiing and highlight you as someone who really came to learn. Be open to their observations and ask for drills you can do on your own to improve your technique. Keeping a daily diary of their comments and your own observations will help you make the most of the experience. You can post here as well for interpretation of feedback you received. Hopefully you'll get some directed freeskiing time with the coaches so they can evaluate you outside of the course.

Have fun and ski fast.
One of the reasons I did the racing prior to the coaching was to familiarize
myself with skiing on an actual racecourse and to develop a reasonable degree of fearlessness regarding gate negotiation. What I did not want to happen was a situation where I was too frightened to straddle/crash to be
able to take in the advise from the coach. In the past,skiing lessons have
always worked for me when I have taken them feeling like an expert prior to the lesson. While I will not be feeling like an expert prior
to race training I do hope to be feeling relaxed enough to take all the advise in as a result of my previous tryouts on the race course.
post #42 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaska Mike
When being coached, make sure to ask for feedback after a run or two. That will give them a chance to observe your skiing and highlight you as someone who really came to learn. Be open to their observations and ask for drills you can do on your own to improve your technique. Keeping a daily diary of their comments and your own observations will help you make the most of the experience. You can post here as well for interpretation of feedback you received. Hopefully you'll get some directed freeskiing time with the coaches so they can evaluate you outside of the course.

Have fun and ski fast.
Hi Mike

Had my first race coaching lesson today (slalom) and the coach pointed out that I wasnt staying forward enough and starting off with my feet too close together. While due to the class size that was all the comment I got I was able to self analyse beyond what the coach said due to the number of runs I was able to have and have been left to focus on the following for
next time.

Staying forward over my skis and being aware that as the course flattens
out the number of turns will become tighter demanding a more upright stance than on the steeper sections of the course. This is to avoid getting in the back seat and missing a gate.

I did develop confidence in knocking the flexy gate poles hard as I descended the course which I was a little nervous about in the earlier races, so I did come away feeling if I was to race again tomorrow I
would have an improved time. I did clip a gate and fall once and it is also
good knowing that my binding settings were not too tight for a race course fall which was a thing I was concerned about.
post #43 of 47
First off, congrats on a successful first day.

For your stance width issues, it's something that you'll have to fix outside the gates. While freeskiing, try to ski with what you consider an excessively wide stance while maintaining a parallel relationship between the skis. Make nice, clean, round turns and concentrate on an active inside ski, pulling the inside foot back.

A coach of mine always said to keep your bellybutton in front of your boots. A lot of people try to get out of the backseat from the head down, but the hips are what matters here.

The gates aren't a target, they just define the course. In other words, ski a tight, clean line and you'll hit them. If you aim at the gates, you'll be late, twisted up, and probably out of the course. Ski early/high, round, and clean, and tighten up your line as your abilities and confidence improve.

Race armor helps build confidence. Hand guards for your poles and a chin guard are nice additions as you start tapping more slalom gates. A little extra padding on the shoulders can help minimize the pain of repeatedly brushing GS gates.

Have fun.
post #44 of 47

What he said...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaska Mike
First off, congrats on a successful first day.

For your stance width issues, it's something that you'll have to fix outside the gates. While freeskiing, try to ski with what you consider an excessively wide stance while maintaining a parallel relationship between the skis. Make nice, clean, round turns and concentrate on an active inside ski, pulling the inside foot back.

A coach of mine always said to keep your bellybutton in front of your boots. A lot of people try to get out of the backseat from the head down, but the hips are what matters here.

The gates aren't a target, they just define the course. In other words, ski a tight, clean line and you'll hit them. If you aim at the gates, you'll be late, twisted up, and probably out of the course. Ski early/high, round, and clean, and tighten up your line as your abilities and confidence improve.

Race armor helps build confidence. Hand guards for your poles and a chin guard are nice additions as you start tapping more slalom gates. A little extra padding on the shoulders can help minimize the pain of repeatedly brushing GS gates.

Have fun.
...if you're looking ahead, and looking at your line, you won't see that much of the gates...just peripherally as you go through them in SL or brush them in GS. I can't emphasize enough, as AM says, that you've got to get your technical chops down outside the gate, then apply tactics when you get in the gate...and when things go south, don't keep pushing a rope. Get out of the gates, go free ski until your technique comes back.

Also agree totally with the Armor All approach to ski racing. Note that helmets are required in all events in Masters this year...and that might even be for FIS races, too. A good idea. A Marker helmet, or something similar, is a great all-round helmet, and you can also buy the highly-recommended chin guard for SL and a full-face guard for speed events.
A GS suit is a good idea for GS...padded on the lats, forearms, thighs, which is where you'll usually catch gates in GS, or wear a DH suit with a Stealth top or similar on top.

For SL, I use a 2-piece SL suit with the pads where you'll contact SL gates, plus handguards, plus shinguards. Get good ones, otherwise you'll be replacing them every two weeks and you won't get the protection you need. I like Dainese stuff, personally...I have a pair of their shinguards I've had for 4 or 5 years, and they're still going strong. I happen to like Swix guards, which I got because I have Swix carbon fiber poles...but your mileage may vary.

What AM is saying about protection is totally true...it's not just, um, for your protection, it's so you concentrate on tactics and don't worry about what happens when you go into a flush a little late...
post #45 of 47
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the reply guys

I did a GS training day yesterday where the coach told me to keep my arms extended in front of me when I go down the course which I did
attempt to focus on but poor visability set in and I packed up.
Today I went up prepared to do Super G training after lunch and had
a good chance this morning to focus on practising skiing with my arms extended and noticed an immediate improvment in the handling of my skis.
As I had never been on a Super G course before I chose to use my Volkl
AC4 177cm skis in the interest of safety rather than high speed. I crashed on my first run and the guy who saw me said I looked good up untill I crashed which led me to thinking that my bindings may have released (due
to the high speed on the chopped up course) which I did not crank up for the race so something to consider next time I am on a Super G course.
I was able to successfully desend the course on the 2 following runs while
being able to remain focussed on keeping my arms forward and unfortunatly due to the large number of people doing the Super G training
I was unable to do any more runs.
I have worn a helmet for all of the races/training sessions I have done
and I appreciate your recomendations for the other safety equipment which I will look at possibly next year as my budget is limited and I dont think I will be entering any more races this year. I found the Volkl AC4's were perfect as an entry level Super G ski.
post #46 of 47
Avoid "Frankenstein arms", as that stiffens up your upper body. Keep your hands forward and in view at the bottom of your goggle lenses. I tell a lot of people to imagine that they're standing in a pool and to allow their arms to float up naturally, elbows slightly bent, with relaxed shoulders. This will help avoid static positions and make easy clearing motions without affecting the torso.

Keep your chin up and your eyes focused down the hill. Practice picking a target while freeskiing a good distance ahead of you and remain focused on it, using your peripheral vision and memory to navigate what's immediately ahead of you. It's good practice for looking ahead on a course.

Ski fast and make narrow tracks for those of us still trapped in the warm months.
post #47 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alaska Mike
Avoid "Frankenstein arms", as that stiffens up your upper body. Keep your hands forward and in view at the bottom of your goggle lenses. I tell a lot of people to imagine that they're standing in a pool and to allow their arms to float up naturally, elbows slightly bent, with relaxed shoulders. This will help avoid static positions and make easy clearing motions without affecting the torso.

Keep your chin up and your eyes focused down the hill. Practice picking a target while freeskiing a good distance ahead of you and remain focused on it, using your peripheral vision and memory to navigate what's immediately ahead of you. It's good practice for looking ahead on a course.

Ski fast and make narrow tracks for those of us still trapped in the warm months.
Thanks for the reply Mike. I understand what you are saying with respect
to keep looking along way down the hill, as when I was learning to ski 14
years ago in order to be able to keep my upper body facing down the hill
I would stand at the top of the hill and imagine there was someone I did not like at the bottom and I would focus on trying to ski down to hit them
and this worked for me. (although I am not violent in real life) Certainly
yesterday with Super G I found I had to focus on the gates only while forgetting about snow conditions and even being on skis if you know what I mean.
I certainly would not have skied as well as I had done yesterday without
the lesson I had the day before and the guy that picked up my skis after
I had fallen said I looked good prior to the fall hence me thinking a binding
release was the contributing factor as I did not recall loosing control prior
to falling. My bindings were set to my recreational setting of 8 and one guy said to try 10 next time I try Super G. He also said he broke his leg
at 13 so that was good advise.

At the end of the day I came away very pleased with my introduction to ski racing and I will be keen to try and ski the Super G Slope (traffic and snow conditions permitting) in my newly aquired racing style. The course was set up in an area that I had skied many times before at high
speed but not with any serious focuss on the position of where I had my
arms.
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