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Uphill Ski Lead - Page 2

post #31 of 45
well bud..it just depends on what point you're trying to make. If you're trying to observe the relationships of various body parts to the angle the snow..it doesn't matter whether you want to think of it as the slope being inclinated or the person. There is an angle of inclination and we can observe many of the various angles between skier and snow that you would find in a turn with big edge angles.

Regarding tip lead...it probably has more to do with your hips then it does with your ankles. If you have a lot of flex in your boot, then yes the outside foot will be back, but so will the inside. If your boots are soft and you are incorrectly pressing down on the tongue of your outside boot during the last half of the turn than you could have what appears like nasty inside tip lead..but the ACTUAL problem there is something deeper...why are they pressing on their outside boot tongue during that part of the turn? Why are they using perhaps too much knee angulation? These problems can also give a false impression about A-frame and alignment issues...and visa versa. Its not simple.

However, even with all of those factors being optimal, when there is tip lead it has to do with the fact that the hip bone is connected to each femur. The hip bone has a certain width to it. In a high angle turn, there is some counter and angulation happening and though the feet will be wide apart on the snow, the legs will actually be close together. All of these things add up to a situation where there is simply going to be some tip lead. TDK's video demonstration is pretty good at showing this. Maybe about as much tip lead as the counter being used in the hips. Trying to pull back your inside foot or push your outside foot forward, etc. to give the impression of no tip lead when in fact a little bit of tip lead makes biomechanical sense, is a mistake and will result in other problems and inefficiencies in the skiing.

However, there are a variety of reasons why a skier with technique problems might have "excessive" tip lead. I have suggested one possible reason above for which pulling back the inside foot would probably not help. Boot alignment issues can be another for which the skier can do nothing. Too much forward lean in the boot might be another. Congenital reasons such as limited dorsiflexion might be another reason. I would say that a skier using too much upper body rotation would probably exhibit tip lead. Again, what is the cure?

I would suggest that most of the time, observing that a skier has what you consider to be too much tip lead and telling them to pull back their inside foot would either be completely incorrect or else the wrong advise for how to fix it. Look deeper at their skiing. Find out specifically what movements they are doing which is resulting in "excessive" tip lead or perhaps body alignment issues and either help them fix their equipment, fix their technique, or at least understand that their body is always going to tip lead a bit more than some others.
post #32 of 45
Good post BTS. Glad you liked the video. What Im trying to show in the video is that if you have a wide stance and you are inclined in regards to the slope to the extent that your inside legg needs to bend lets say 90 degrees at the knee your tip lead will be the length of your upper leg from the hip pocket to your knee. The fact that you have a lot more weight on your outside ski makes your outside ski be pushed further back which increses tip lead again. If you look at photos of WC skiers you can see that their outside knee touches the inside ski boot. From there its pritty obvious that tip lead is the ammount you are bent forwards in your outside boot.
post #33 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdk6 View Post
If the slope is pitched 25 degrees and I am in a phase of a turn where I am perpendicular to the slope pitch then I am not inclined (in reference to the slope) and therefore there will be no tip lead.

The tree grows inclined on a hill. If it was leaning 25degrees on flat soil then it would be banked .

Check out my video on tip lead in post # 12.
From my perspective you are inclined because you are not perpendicular to gravity though you have no tip lead because you are perpendicular to the slope. In my understanding "inclination" is not neccessarily synomymous with tip lead! Being at an angle, other than perpendicular to the slope, is synonymous with tip lead. The greater the angle the greater the tip lead in a functional turn not employing any concious effort to vary the position of the feet.

The tree growing on the side of a hill is NOT inclined, the hill is.

b
post #34 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdk6 View Post
to the extent that your inside legg needs to bend lets say 90 degrees at the knee your tip lead will be the length of your upper leg from the hip pocket to your knee.
weeeelllllll, not necessarily that much tip lead...In my view that would be excessive. Its not quite that simple. You have two legs with completely different flex in both legs. outside leg more extended, inside leg bent at the ankles and knee, and some angulation and counter effecting things also. Believe it or not, there will be a bit less ankle flex angle in the outside ski than the inside. I don't think I would characterize it as pushing the outside ski back. But countering your hips will definitely give your inside hip a certain amount of lead.

Quote:
From there its pritty obvious that tip lead is the ammount you are bent forwards in your outside boot.
?? both boots are bent and if anything the inside boot will be bent more than the outside..if they are different at all. This does not account for tip lead.
post #35 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by bud heishman View Post
From my perspective you are inclined because you are not perpendicular to gravity though you have no tip lead because you are perpendicular to the slope. In my understanding "inclination" is not neccessarily synomymous with tip lead! Being at an angle, other than perpendicular to the slope, is synonymous with tip lead. The greater the angle the greater the tip lead in a functional turn not employing any concious effort to vary the position of the feet.

The tree growing on the side of a hill is NOT inclined, the hill is.

b
There is indeed at least two ways of looking at inclination. I wonder which one is the correct way of using the word inclination in skiing context. IMO inclination is used in skiing for expressing the ammount of leaning in reference to the slope since our skis are therefore put on edge and we turn. No matter how the slope is leaning if we have no inclination in ref to it our skis will run flat.
post #36 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by borntoski683 View Post
weeeelllllll, not necessarily that much tip lead...In my view that would be excessive. Its not quite that simple. You have two legs with completely different flex in both legs. outside leg more extended, inside leg bent at the ankles and knee, and some angulation and counter effecting things also. Believe it or not, there will be a bit less ankle flex angle in the outside ski than the inside. I don't think I would characterize it as pushing the outside ski back. But countering your hips will definitely give your inside hip a certain amount of lead.



?? both boots are bent and if anything the inside boot will be bent more than the outside..if they are different at all. This does not account for tip lead.
IMO the outside ski leg is loaded more than the inside and therefore recieves more pressure on the shin. Since I have little or in some cases no weight on my inside legg my boot remains in its neutral position. This is where the pulling back of the inside ski comes into the picture since pulling it back creates pressure on inside legg shin and makes the inside ski uphill edge more engaged in the turn.
post #37 of 45
I understand your point of view TDK6 and you have a point. In skiing or cycling or any sport of balance, I have always understood inclination as the amount of tipping required to maintain balance in a turn. The exact method to measure this amount I don't know but I would venture to guess that if we drew a line from our base of support to our head it would estimate the angle on inclination and any movements inside that line used to increase the edge angle would be angulation. Looking at the dictionary the definition could support either of our views on this subject.

Thank you for including IMO's with your opinions, it is much easier to accept your views this way!!
post #38 of 45
TDK, during the part of the turn with the most pressure, you should definitely NOT be loading your shin of your outside foot. If the leg is extended, that means unflexing your knee AND your ankle. You should be feeling the entire bottom of your foot and you should definitely NOT be loading your shin through there.
post #39 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by bud heishman View Post
...Thank you for including IMO's with your opinions, it is much easier to accept your views this way!!
Merry Christmas BudH, and everybody else as well .
post #40 of 45

Excessive tip lead problems

There is nothing wrong with a little inside tip lead in a turn, and as others have pointed out, it is almost always apparent at high level WC racing.

There is, however, a lot wrong with excessive inside tip lead. I know this, because I often demonstrate it. (It's a family trait. I do it, my brother who also races does it, and my 13 year old son who also races does it.)

When (like me) your default technique in the gates is to use a LOT of counter when you really need to create big edge angles, unless you do something to minimize excessive inside tip lead, that inside ski can end up way ahead at gate clear, and you "scissor" your legs (inside foot foward, outside foot back.)

A bunch of bad things happen as a result:

(1) (most important) when you try to get optimally forward to carve a good racing turn by bending the shovel of the ski (reverse camber) you end up on your inside ski as a result. (Try this at home or on the slopes to see what I mean. When your inside foot is forward and your outside foot is back, getting forward just moves almost all your weight onto the inside foot.) This is exactly counterproductive, since instead of loading the shovel of your outside ski for better carving (which is one of the things we are often trying to achieve with counter and the angulation it creates) you actually unweight the outside ski and start skidding as your two skis no longer track and you end up completing the turn primarily on your inside ski.

(2) You can end up with a busy, strange independent leg action skiing, since one ski is way ahead of the other and they have to change position for the next turn. It's hard to describe, but it's ugly. I know this because I was (unfortunately) demonstrating it on video...

(3) Over time, it promotes not getting optimally far forward in your turns, because getting forward doesn't achieve the desired result of tighter carved turns and instead leads to inside-ski dominant turns. Your feedback loop tells you there is no positive reward for getting optimally forward, so you just don't get there.

(4) When compared and contrasted with more bend at the inside ankle (dorsiflexion, I believe) and more bend of the inside knee pulling the inside foot back, excessive advancing of the inside ski (excessive inside tip lead) creates a taller stance, with a higher CoM (decreased balance) and smaller edge angle (carving a less tight turn on the same radius shaped ski.)

I've given a lot of thought to this lately, driven by some stills of me at the same point in the gates as some much better skiers. I'll try that strategy of thinking about lifting the inside toes up to create dorsiflexion next time I'm out on the hill.

Re spindrift's question, I don't know what the waiststeering guys (Rick, Gary Dranow) would say about this, but I do know that when I've been playing around on the hill free skiing and trying out moves that I've taken from their waiststeering discussion (and what I've taken from that discussion is a smaller subset than that discussion that I hope has at least some points in common), I seem to have a lot fewer problems with excessive inside tip lead. Going from a slightly countered position and then using the torso muscles to rotate the outside hip toward the direction of travel (and really feeling the outside ski accellerate) seems to largely solve the problem or prevent it from developing or becoming extreme.
post #41 of 45
That last point is exactly what I've been playing with this year. I got there from a static drill that Harald used a couple years ago. I sort of think of it as "squaring up" as you go through neutral. (remember, you NEVER shift into neutral, you just pass through it)(an F-1 car does it in .0025 of a second) I proposed this to those guys and got kind of "spanked" by Tommy for it but it still seems to be the essence it to me.
post #42 of 45
Check out some of the waist steering threads. That really comes in handy for this.
post #43 of 45

Tip Lead Issues...

There's a similar discussion I stumbled upon in another forum. I posted this message there, and I think it might help generate some further thought about the implications and realities of "tip lead" in skiing.

Of course this conversation might be dead right now since the last message was like a week ago.......!!

I think to understand the implications of tip lead you have to both understand what is causing it, and imagine (logically) the implications of actively changing it while skiing. Terrain needs to be factored in as well, as well as what you might ultimately be trying to achieve or compensate for (balance, alignment, pressure, new turn initiation, etc. etc.).

It's a fairly simple breakdown to understand what causes the inside leg to naturally position itself leading the outside, or turning foot, leg. First and foremost, once you start to turn, the inside leg is traveling on a tighter (shorter) arc, and is usually uphill. Those two factors alone account for why the inside foot must be in front of the downhill foot. Ultimately, the turn shape and the pitch of the slope will go along way towards determining leg lead.

But so does your boot. Unless you are skiing on snowboard boots or with free heel bindings (note that the inside foot of Telemark skiers is always BEHIND the outside, or turning, foot... like WAYYYYY behind), such that you can flex your ankle and/or withdraw your leg while still keeping both skis tracking on edge, it's physically impossible in a turn on an inclined slope to have your inside leg not be leading your outside. That is, in normal skiing!!

Once you understand some of these more macro physics and geometry issues, it IS worth delving into more of the subtle issues of leg lead.

The next biggest issue, perhaps (or perhaps not) more subtle, is - as somebody mentioned - your hip alignment. Skiing today on shaped skis involves much less countering of the waist and hip than in days past. Mogul skiers are still on straight skis, so maybe this is somewhat irrelevant to that issue. But the facts are still worth pondering if you want to get better. With what I will call a more open, or countered, body position, the hips are not "square." In other words, the alignment of the hips (and torso) is facing outside of the direction of the turn. This means there is a more (shall I say "induced?") tip lead. You could say that this was almost a natural way to increase pressure and the skier's ability to "stand" on the downhill ski, to really try to dramatically increase turning forces onto a ski that simply wasn't carving like today's skis are capable of.

This body alignment is called "scissoring" in many circles, and many people, who have not adapted their technique to modern ski capabilities and turn turn shape, still tend to do this.

Skiing is a different sport today, in many real ways, and the movements and body alignments necessary to effectively and efficiently use the modern skiing tools are much different. Body position - in particular everything happening at or below the waist, is VERY different.

So back to induced tip lead. Imagine if your body (torso) always faced the direction of your turn... your hips would be much more "square" to the direction of travel. Your knees and feet would naturally be more "square," too. In other words, much less tip lead - except that caused by the inherent issues described above of the inside ski traveling on a different arc, and being uphill of the turning, or outside, foot. Modern skiing, especially high performance skiing, is much more "two footed" and square. One thing that many coaches emphasize is the need for many skiers who haven't yet adapted fully to the potential of the new equipment to actually retract their inside foot, or consciously pull it back so that a) the skier is stacked more squarely over the inside ski/foot; and b) so that the inside ski's uphill edge is engaged cleanly so that the inside ski tracks better; and c) the advantages of this retraction place the skier's body alignment in a more advantageous position to quickly and smoothly transition to the new turning foot (the uphill ski) when a new turn is started. "Getting to the uphill ski" quickly at the commencement of a new turn is a major goal for good skiers today. Having a more pressured/engaged inside ski also implies that your hips are more forward and over or in front of your feet, which is also key to good skiing.

There is a fair amount of nuance here... but it all makes perfect sense if you think about it. For short radius, quick, poppy turns such as in moguls, the "old" or historically successful strategies of countering (torso facing down the fall line while skis pivot beneath) are timeless in their effectiveness. Tip lead really is almost a non-issue because the turns come so quickly and as you probably know, really good mogul skiing involves alot of pressing and pivoting while trying to maintain as much ski/snow contact as possible. But it's a somewhat square pivot with the feet close together.

For people who are skiing on a "shaped" ski, which you probably are, the key is to get your inside foot/ankle working in the turn... not so much to provide major weighting or pressure in the turn, but so that it places you in the best position to be "stacked" over your skis, knees apart, with equal edge angles when you turn. When you advance to the point where you can see and feel yourself making clean "railroad track" turns, with your knees apart, and your turns flowing with minimal skidding, you will not want to have any scissoring (excessive tip lead) going on... you'll want your inside foot to be in the best position possible to get you into the next turn quickly and smoothly.

Hope this helps.
post #44 of 45

Turning foot leg shin pressure

Quote:
Originally Posted by borntoski683 View Post
TDK, during the part of the turn with the most pressure, you should definitely NOT be loading your shin of your outside foot. If the leg is extended, that means unflexing your knee AND your ankle. You should be feeling the entire bottom of your foot and you should definitely NOT be loading your shin through there.
Born2Ski you may be overstating this a bit. During the most pressured part of your turn your hips will be in front of or over your feet (should be!!). You will definitely need and want alot of shin pressure on your turning foot (outside foot).

Your turning foot/lower leg will be extended, with the knee of course bent slightly, but the pressure against the front of your shin should be intense. This also helps to promote steering and stability.

Only at the completion of the turn, after the point of maximum pressure, would your hips come behind your feet (thereby pressuring more of the tail of the ski) as you transition into the new turn.

So most of these foot/boot pressure issues are determined by the position of the hips relative to the feet.

Which is why "excessive tip lead" or whatever you want to call it is unnecessary and not good.

Hope this helps...
post #45 of 45
I just came from a lesson and the main thing we worked on for 2 hours was tip lead. He watched me ski and it was the one thing he wanted to work on.

For two runs I tried and tried to keep my skis the same throughout the turn. A few times I was succesfull until....

I figured out that if I push my downhill ski forward just as I start the turn or as I fall into the turn I was easily able to keep them the same.

A couple of things became really apparant right away. Suddenly I was far better weighted to my downhill ski (big problem for me) My tips and tails stayed the same distance apart. I had far better balance and I had much less banking.

Many mentioned pulling the uphill ski back, I tried this with limited sucess, but when I pushed the downhill ski forward it magically helped all kinds of problems I was having.
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