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Gimme some MA (2 photos)

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
ok...I've been hanging around here for a few years, but realized that I've never really participated in the instruction forums. Mainly because, not being an instructor or having an overly technical background, I always felt like I didn't have too much I could add to the discussions. So I always lurked and tried to glean some knowledge from the instruction forum from time to time.

But obviously, the best way to get anything from the resource that is instruction forums is to actually use them, so I thought I could learn something by putting up some photos for some MA by the qualified eyes here.

So...i present two photos. Both of me from a number of years ago either 2002 or 2003 (can't quite remember). Both of these were taken in the backcountry on Mt. Lassen, CA one late Spring/early Summer (I think these are from June).

Equipment in both of these photos are 193 AK NoKaOi's with Fritschi Freerides and Salomon alpine boots.

Photo #1:
What the heck am I doing here? To my untrained eye, it looks like all of my weight is on the downhill ski mainly and it almost looks my downhill tail is washing out. I was trying crank a turn into the camera for a photo, but the conditions were strange...an inch of quickly melting corn (nearly slush) on top of a firm, fast base, so I took the turns slow and just tried to force out a few short radius turns. I recall the turns feeling very sloppy, and everytime I see this photo I think, "meh...looks way to defensive. It looks like I'm in a wedge". What was I doing wrong?

(clicky to enlarge)


Photo #2:
Lower down the mountain we started encountering the sun cups you see here. I was trying to crank some high-speed GS turns w/o getting bucked by the cups, but I always thought I could have been smoother. Particularly with my hands....in this photo, to me, it looks like I'm driving my downhill hand way too far across my body...and my 'uphill' hand seems likes it's falling behind me a little. is that righ? and if I am, what impact is that having on how I am turning?

(clicky to enlarge)


thanks in advance!
post #2 of 24
Both of those turns have at least on ething in common. A lot of pressure on the skis atthe bottom of the turn. In the first photo, too much pressure for the snow to support the load and that's why your outside ski is going away. You asked about your hands in the 2nd photo and what impact will that have. It will have an impact on your next turn making it hard to get pressure early. That's what I see. I'd want you to work on the transitons and getting some more action at the top of your turns.
post #3 of 24
Might be just the angle of the shot but your poles look kinda long to me.
post #4 of 24
Tyrone, you don't really worry about crappy little things like that, do you? In the first picture you are building a platform with your lower ski to get a nice rebound, your uphill ski is already anticipating the next turn, and in the second picture it looks like you are starting to transfer weight onto the uphill ski. As for the pole, plant that sucker, roll your knees and you are on your way.

As a photographer who has covered many skiing events I can tell you that I have many shots of top skiers doing odd things while making turns.

In my opinion you didn't let the things in the photos upset your turn a bit. You just had a couple of nice pictures and you wanted us to admire them .

....Ott
post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by epic View Post
Both of those turns have at least on ething in common. A lot of pressure on the skis atthe bottom of the turn. In the first photo, too much pressure for the snow to support the load and that's why your outside ski is going away.
I think that's pretty good assessment, and I think you nailed what I've never been able to describe to myself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn View Post
Might be just the angle of the shot but your poles look kinda long to me.
ha...you're right. Those are expandable BC poles. I think I had them extended to help with the skin up, and don't think I clicked them down into their usual position for the descent.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ott Gangl View Post
Tyrone, you don't really worry about crappy little things like that, do you?
ha...I do. Not so much when I'm skiing...but mainly in the waning months of Summer and I haven't skied since April. Normally I wouldn't care too much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ott Gangl
In the first picture you are building a platform with your lower ski to get a nice rebound, your uphill ski is already anticipating the next turn, and in the second picture it looks like you are starting to transfer weight onto the uphill ski. As for the pole, plant that sucker, roll your knees and you are on your way.



As a photographer who has covered many skiing events I can tell you that I have many shots of top skiers doing odd things while making turns.
But that's the thing. For these turns ... especially that first one...I was trying to make a better turn than what I think is presented there because of the prescence of the photographer. And then when we went back and looked at the shot we were both a little disappointed. So it always kind of gnaws at me knowing that I blew the shot to some degree and am always going back and analyzing them trying to see what I can improve.
post #6 of 24
Is there a frame before the 2nd one?
post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by epic View Post
Is there a frame before the 2nd one?
There probably is, but I don't have it.
post #8 of 24
I notice you don't seem to be able to turn but one direction---statistically speaking that is---based entirely on this two picture sample.


BTW I am not mad---I just love that particular emoticon!
post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier_j View Post
I notice you don't seem to be able to turn but one direction---statistically speaking that is---based entirely on this two


Here's what happens when I try to turn in the other direction


As could you expect that ended in a SPECTACULAR explosion that I'm quite proud of
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyrone Shoelaces View Post


Here's what happens when I try to turn in the other direction


As could you expect that ended in a SPECTACULAR explosion that I'm quite proud of
I rest my case:
post #11 of 24
Ty,

Here's what I see in those 2 1/1000ths of a second.....

Shot 1)
Weak inside half. What that means is that you aren't guiding/steering and pressuring your inside ski through the turn. You can't decide when you want one turn to end and the next to begin. You would want to be more "offensive" in your decision to end one turn and start the next. Granted, trying to slam the end of a turn for a camera is about the best way to get yourself into a position like this. It's definitely not a wedge. It's a down stem due to over rotating the outside ski (looking for that rebound) while not using your inside ski for anything other than a security blanket.

Shot 2)
Much better guiding and pressuring the inside ski. But you over rotated the bejeezus out of your shoulders. That works okay in long radius turns in the mucky stuff, but makes it slow and difficult to start the new turn (slow transitions are okay in those long turns you love so much). Your head and eyes say "I want to go down there", but your shoulders and CoM are screaming "NO!!". The biggest drawback to this is that as you come up to start the new turn and the body starts to unwind, you're more likely to not be in balance and have good edge pressure on the snow, so the skis could so some weird stuff in those conditions. If you were on a groomer or hard surface (I know you avoid those like the plague) the top of the turn could easily get all washed out and skidded, and you wouldn't be able to hook up the edges until late ini the turn. Unless you're cross blocking gates, that outside hand shouldn't cross in front of your body. And even if you were clearing gates, only the hand should be crossing, the shoulders should get pointed more up hill than the direction of travel.

Now that I've explained the over rotation thing, go back to the first picture. The shoulders and hips are still pointed straight at the camera. From that position, it's going to be incredibly hard to get moving down the hill, where you want to go. My suggestion for that rurn would have been, rather than pressure and look for rebound at the bottom of the turn, think about lightening the load on the skis (expecially in soft conditions) and getting the body to point and move to where you want to be a half second in the future.

Now... go huck some cliffs and stop worrying about this stuff.
post #12 of 24
Mr Shoelaces, (I like that) Gutsy skiing. Looks very patroller. Good, strong and safe. You want to ski more effectivly? First lose the pack. I know that in back country you need it but the Patrollers I've coached have all developed similar habits carrying that extra 30+lbs on their backs. Airtime makes a cargo vest many Mt Hood Patrollers have adopted to dispurse their equipment more evenly around their body. The pack makes you bend more with your knees and waist, bending excessivly forward at the waist to counter the weight of the pack on your back. This results in an over flexed stance that causes you to over pressure the down hill ski (Pic 1) and stiffen the downhill leg as the ski fails to support your weight (abstem). Fixing this starts high in the turn. As you enter your turn make the extending movement last for a longer duration, at least untill the skis are pointed straight down the hill, then make sure all flexing motions begin with the ankels, not the waist or knee. This will keep your weight moving forward along the length of the skis throughout the turn and not back and inside (pic 2).
post #13 of 24
without getting overly technical... it seems that you would want your shoulders, hands, arms and upper body facing down the fall line....even in big radius turns at speed. your head seems to be looking at where you're anticipating for your next turn, i would try and get your shoulders, arms, and hands to follow suit. OTOH.... skiing is very fluid and dynamic. so sometimes it is hard to really figure things out from a picture.

in any case, we gotta hook up for some turns etc. this season. i know we're at opposite ends of Tahoe (Kirkwood vs Alpine) but we should figure out something. i need to work on my hucking technique (or lack of)!
post #14 of 24
Strong skiing!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyrone Shoelaces View Post

Photo #1:
What the heck am I doing here? To my untrained eye, it looks like all of my weight is on the downhill ski mainly and it almost looks my downhill tail is washing out. I was trying crank a turn into the camera for a photo, but the conditions were strange...an inch of quickly melting corn (nearly slush) on top of a firm, fast base, so I took the turns slow and just tried to force out a few short radius turns. I recall the turns feeling very sloppy, and everytime I see this photo I think, "meh...looks way to defensive. It looks like I'm in a wedge". What was I doing wrong?
The bold is a classic reason for the down stem. The loose snow make the wedgy huge.

I would not worry about it unless you always "force out" your short turns on all terrain. If so, I'd think about how to improve pressure control to stop that wedgy two-step.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tyrone shoelaces
Photo #2:
Lower down the mountain we started encountering the sun cups you see here. I was trying to crank some high-speed GS turns w/o getting bucked by the cups, but I always thought I could have been smoother. Particularly with my hands....in this photo, to me, it looks like I'm driving my downhill hand way too far across my body...and my 'uphill' hand seems likes it's falling behind me a little. is that righ? and if I am, what impact is that having on how I am turning?

thanks in advance!
You are "cranking" so hard, you've lost the counter rotation in the turn, and will have to rotate back to start the next one. Losing the counter, means your legs are not positioned properly to handle the highest force part of the turn.

IMO, in both shots, you're just trying to do too much to the skis while mugging for the camera, and not letting the skis do enough for you.

Thanks for the pictures!
post #15 of 24
What Max501 is doing at 00:46 - 00:56 of this video is really effective in suncups. The high early edge angle gives the skis tremendous stability.
post #16 of 24
Speaking about figure 1. You appear to be suffering from a severe case of stubbornness. The downhill ski is obviously pressured past the point of breaking loose, yet you are sticking to your resolution to turn anyway. I bet today with fat skis on you would just go along with gravity slipping down a bit as you adjusted the radius and not force the turn any which way you can. Then again if you hadn't set it up with the cameraman earlier, you probably would have accepted a straighter line too.
post #17 of 24

counter rotation is over rated

Quote:
You are "cranking" so hard, you've lost the counter rotation in the turn, and will have to rotate back to start the next one. Losing the counter, means your legs are not positioned properly to handle the highest force part of the turn.

IMO, in both shots, you're just trying to do too much to the skis while mugging for the camera, and not letting the skis do enough for you.

Thanks for the pictures!
[/quote]
With both pictures showing the end of the turn you can still see how pressure is managed early in the turn. Tyrone discribes snow conditions that seem pretty sweet for spring backcountry. I'm willing to bet he was using a fair amount of up-unweighting to inniate pic 1. The loss of ski snow contact early in the turn causes skills to be fragmented, separated and therefore inefficient. Excess vertical movement draws the skiers weight away from the intended direction of travel, and into the back seat. Turning the skis while unweighted promotes a skidded turn shape. Upon contact the skis slow their turning as the edges engage, pressure on the skis increases rapidly and the leggs rapidly flex in response to the rapid pressure increase. This results in the feet no longer turning under the body which is evidenced by the outside hand crossing the body (pic 2).

To increase efficiency, reduce fatigue and generally get more out of the skis begin turns with a more deliberate crossover, use slower extending movements to pressure the skis high in the arc while increasing edging before the skis enter the fallline. This allows skills to blend and gives the skier controll of the turn shape. Then you can decide at any time to make a long or short turn, speed up, slow down, catch air, stay on the snow. The skiers intention creates the desired ski/ snow behavior resulting in body behavior that is balanced.
post #18 of 24


For some reason this picture is stuck in my mind. But I am not sure how it fits here.

Ten Toes: It looks like you are hammering your edges after having missed the turn earlier. You have bottomed out and now your are too hard on the edge. Without seeing the earlier part of the turn, it's tough to analyse, but what is shown here is crisisis managment. Bend the ski earlier in the turn.

Finesse with a soft touch.

Still great skiing. More pics please.
post #19 of 24
Second shot is more like what I said earlier. The left arm is out in front and it looks like it is setting up for the pole plant too early. Big rotation coming. Look at the position of Bob's hands.

ONE more thing, I am not really qualified to do MA.

bz
post #20 of 24
I'm with Big E on both pics with a little addition.

photo 1, you are trying to make a long straight ski fit into a turn that the ski/snow interface doesn't agree with. it comes back to that forced idea, magnified by the tool/toy.

photo 2, lower body and turn look fun/clean and are working for you, you shoulders and eyes aren't TOO rotated, you just have that lazy hand syndrom that we see often in ski patrollers. bring that hand back to where Bob's hand is and the upper body is more ready for the next move. Also, i can't tell here, but sometimes that extra arm/hand rotation is used to help finish off turns when the ski has finished it's arc tooo early and the skier feels they need a bit more rotary input. once again, that's me beating up your long, pretty straight, stiff skis. you may have felt you had to add something here since the ski wasn't finishing off the shape you had in mind...

great skiing, ty shoe.

cheers,
holiday
post #21 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Holiday View Post
you may have felt you had to add something here since the ski wasn't finishing off the shape you had in mind...
Thanks Holiday and others.

Regarding your comment above, I think that's true. The snow conditions in Photo #2 are (were) REALLY funky. It was rapidly warming suncups...so very uneven and bumpy, with a very slow glue-like heavy conistency to them. I recall the turn transitions being VERY difficult and it taking a lot of effort to transition from one turn to the next as oppossed to your average smooth groomer at a resort.

What I was doing to transition from turn to turn was plant my downhill pole, unweight that downhill ski and shift nearly all of it to the uphill ski for a brief instance, then literally jump off the uphill ski like a well, a jump turn, and initiate the next turn by repositioning the skis in the air, and basically landing at what would be the top of the next turn. I think in Photo #2 part of what I may have been doing was 'winding up' at the end of this last turn to make that big weight shift and forceful transition to the next turn as the conditions demanded.

I wish I had more of the sequences from this for you guys...but even in the absence of that you guys are still doing a great job dissecting my technique with such limited visuals.

Overalll......I'm pretty sure I always have had a habit of dropping my uphill shoulder a bit too far back, even on groomers. Not sure where this habit came from, but recently I've been thinking about it more and trying to make a more concious effort to drive it down the hill a bit more. I might be able to get my hands on some video of me skiing a variety of conditions that probably show this shoulder dropping thing quite plainly to you guys...and perhaps bring out some other issues in my turns. Maybe I'll post it up here if I can get my hands on it.
post #22 of 24
Thanks for posting this. For me it's easy to miss the steepness of photo 1, even though it's right there. Most of the MA at Epic is done on blue or moderate black slope.

Sitting here there is no sense of snow conditions for the most part.

Epic is full of technical precision and theory. I like seeing application and that is one area where this site can grow. Hope to see some more, TS.

bz
post #23 of 24
I wish i could turn like the guy in post #18
post #24 of 24
[quote=Paul Jones;761784]


::Thanks, Thats' what I meant. Skill blending.
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