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Some carving questions: inside foot

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi. I am new here and never imagined there was such a great resource on the net, thanks guys

I spend some time reading topics on carving a week or two ago (right before I took to the slopes). This was my first skiing this season - apart from a couple of sundays, and my goal was to learn making carved turns.

Now I don't have an instructor, so it was up to myself to get something right. After some trial and error I finally got something right. However, since I'm doing this on my own I would like to get some advice on technique.

My main concern is the role of the inner foot. I've heard about initiating the turn with the inner foot (must say that I've heard exactly the opposite too). At first, however, it was very difficult to do anything with the inner foot - whenever I managed to edge the inner foot the ski would throw me off balance. I then tried edge the outer foot, which was pretty simple but felt wrong, because it was very close to a skidding turn (I still believe it to be a carve because the outer ski left a distinct cut in the snow). In this case the inner foot doesn't work at all.

Now after four days of intensive skiing I achieved the following. On light green or blue slopes I manage to edge *both* feet and get both skis to leave an edge mark in the snow. I don't know which foot goes first - it seems like both to me. On steeper slopes however, I have to stick with the outer foot doing all of the job. Partly I can prescribe this to not having sufficient strength, however I have heard of some difference in technique for steep and non-steep slopes, so I'd like to hear some comments from the more experienced. Any word on whether I'm doing this right or wrong.

Thanks,
Narek
post #2 of 7
Hi Narek!

Great to see you joining in on the forum, and asking for assistance. Certainly, you'll be able to find lots of information from many discussions here by using the "Search" function at the top of the page. You could try searching for "inside ski" or "carving" discussions to get you started.

Yes, I believe the inside ski/foot plays a very important role in carving and upper-level skiing.


I find that this following series of "online ski lessons" is very helpful, as a preliminary guide, for folks who are getting stuck or confused about certain parts of their technique... especially the role of their inside ski:

http://harbskisystems.com/lessonindex.htm


Hope this helps.

Good luck!
post #3 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Narek View Post


Now after four days of intensive skiing I achieved the following. On light green or blue slopes I manage to edge *both* feet and get both skis to leave an edge mark in the snow. I don't know which foot goes first - it seems like both to me. On steeper slopes however, I have to stick with the outer foot doing all of the job. Partly I can prescribe this to not having sufficient strength, however I have heard of some difference in technique for steep and non-steep slopes, so I'd like to hear some comments from the more experienced. Any word on whether I'm doing this right or wrong.

Thanks,
Narek
Good discovery, Narek. Both feet participate in the turn, and it's nice when both edge angles are the same, although it won't happen all the time.

To carve in steeps is harder, more complex, and more illusive. At first, I would worry less about that, and more about making sure that you move you center forward, pressing your shins to the front of the boot and toward the turn. The ski accelerate and change pitch very quickly in the steeps, and you have to learn to move with that. The more committed you are at the top of the turn, the more comfortable you will be at the bottom.
post #4 of 7
IMHO, to turn both skis, both skis must be tipped on edge, each ski must have at least enough pressure on it to keep it decambered so the edge is on the snow, and you should keep the edge moving forward in the direction that aligns with it. Once you understand how the ski works, it's pretty easy. Tipping the inside ski, lifting the inside big toe, pressing the inside little toe, etcetera are just tricks to get your body to make the right moves to get the skis to tip and for you to stay in balance and not fall off of them. Once you have the basics, you can work on points for style: vary weight distribution, vary angulation and counter, keep parallel shins, be kind to your knees, stay balanced........
post #5 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
IMHO, to turn both skis, both skis must be tipped on edge, each ski must have at least enough pressure on it to keep it decambered so the edge is on the snow, and you should keep the edge moving forward in the direction that aligns with it. Once you understand how the ski works, it's pretty easy. Tipping the inside ski, lifting the inside big toe, pressing the inside little toe, etcetera are just tricks to get your body to make the right moves to get the skis to tip and for you to stay in balance and not fall off of them. Once you have the basics, you can work on points for style: vary weight distribution, vary angulation and counter, keep parallel shins, be kind to your knees, stay balanced........
As usual, Ghost, an exceptionally insightful description. A lot of those recommendations and drills are simply tricks to get our bodies working in ways that we want them to work. And ways which are often counter to our natural reflexes.

For example, how many of us would naturally move our upper bodies out into space and downhill on steeper terrain? Very few, if any.

The goal is to move our bodies in such a way that we can balance along the inside edge of our outside ski in our turns. Moving our new inside foot and ski first clears the way for the outside foot and leg, plus gets the rest of our body moving correctly. On gentler terrain, this is more subtle. On steeper terrain, it is more distinct.

I find that if I think about moving my inside ski first, they move pretty close to simultaneously. If I think about moving my outside ski first, I get stuck on my old outside ski. This has been one of the biggest shifts for me from the more traditional technique to a more modern, smooth technique that keeps both skis on the snow throughout every turn.

(I take a lot more words to say what I'm thinking than Ghost does... )
post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi and thank you all for the great responses! I was hoping to take the slopes today to check out some of the advice here, but unfortunately got stuck at home here with my pc )

I did suspect that working with the outside ski alone is wrong now I know what to keep working on.

>Baja

Thanks! The link was really helpful and I did get a perception of what the inner foot is supposed to do.
post #7 of 7
I drive everything from my inside foot. If I want to make a turn to the right I tip my right foot to the right. When I'm ready to make a turn to the left I bend my left leg to release the turn and then tip my left foot to the left. At the very least I try to tip enough to keep my shins parallel. If I want bigger angles I tip even more to pull my hips deeper into the turn.

I try to keep most of my weight on my outside ski so I can bend it into a nice tight arc to help with speed control. Carving runs that are steeper and maintaining a consistent speed is a high level ski that takes time to develop. It requires a series of movements that work together to position your body in such a way that you end up with a bent and strongly carving ski.
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