I think this is a great thread with lots of productive input and ideas. (from all sides of the issue.) Kudos to everyone.
I've been studying and practicing Harb's stuff for the past couple of years now. For the record, I'm a former PSIA Level II (dropped out 10 years ago to pursue a grown-up career. LOL)
BUT.... I just recently became ASIA Certified Level 1 last weekend at Belleayre!!! WOO HOO! http://asiaski.com
I think Harald has a great product in his "system" of skiing, putting aside all the negativity and belittling criticism toward PSIA and others with which he doesn't agree. (He could present his contrary feelings and criticisms with a bit more professionalism and dignity toward PSIA, recognizing their efforts and contributions to the sport.)
I think Rick's last post was the most insightful, and touched upon the best advice to follow for any learned experience that consists of diverse viewpoints, opinions, and approaches: listen to all sides, take it all in, and filter it through your own mind and experience.
That being said, I see Harald's greatest contribution thus far to ski technique has been to "move the middle." (of the ski technique spectrum of the general skiing population)
IOW... to illustrate, one of my healthcare teachers would be considered a "purist" or radical relative to the spectrum of my profession (Chiropractic). He would refer to a professional spectrum illustrated by a line like this:
left < ----------------------------- > right
... left being the "bad" or "unproductive" political direction, and right being the better, progressive political direction. (In his opinion of course.) He would then explain that his personal position on that spectrum was located:
left < ----------------------------- > right ----------------> here.
He then explained how most people are not comfortable out on the extremes of opinions or practices, and tend to settle more toward the middle. Sooooo.... if he was able to "extend the vision" of the spectrum to a further extreme, then those who were comfortable in the middle would move toward
his idea of the better direction.
I've concluded that this same phenomenon occurred as a result of the Atkins diet rage. In my opinion, a "purist/extremist" Atkins diet approach is not a sensible nutritional philosophy... but, if nothing else, Atkins at least shifted the American dietary paradigm further away (to whatever degree) from the just-as-unsensible high-carb/low-fat dietary extreme.
I'm sure that most of us avid skiers (all PSIA folks included!) recognize that of the three sets of skills... rotary/steering, edging, pressure control (with balancing movements as all-encompassing)... rotary movements comprise the overwhelming dominant skill of beginner/novice level skiing, with edging movements being the least-contributing skill at that level. And as skiing levels increase and skills for more challenging terrain develop and unfold, edging skills develop complementarily (along with pressure control and balance) while rotary movements become less necessary
for equipment performance. (in most circumstances)
While Harald's strict
approach in its totality may only attract and appeal to a small audience of purist-minded folks, (my jury's still out about taking it to that level for myself), I believe the sport-wide result of Harald's contributions is, and will be, to further shift the entire skiing spectrum away from the unnecessary and inefficient rotary movements
(not all rotary movements, as has been pointed out here) that tend to hamper skiers from progressing to higher level skiing.
And -- putting aside his "anti-rotary" rhetoric, I also believe Harald's practical applications of pressure control skills... particularly at turn transitions... is also a step forward for upper level skiing. I remember doing those very same applications (primarily, flexing to release at transition) about 12 years ago, right before the shaped ski wave hit, with one of the PSIA examiners at Hunter. It made so much sense and made such a difference in the whole group's skiing... especially on steeps and moguls... that we hated to "go back" to our textbook PSIA dynamic parallel. It felt so heavy and laborious!
Our examiner told us about how he presented this flex-to-release clinic to other examiners (PSIA administrators, mostly), and how they didn't know where he was going with it at first, but then liked the way it all tied together at the end. He was a little disappointed how they all liked the presentation, but "avoided talking about it" on record in relation to the official PSIA-E viewpoint.
Ah well.... my $.02, for what it's worth.
(sorry so long)