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Any Thoughts - Video

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
skisimon skiing

Any thoughts on this clip would be much appreciated. I've been busy over the last few months, and finally got to the slopes last week in Wengen. I haven't had any instruction since the start of September, so want to know the bad habits that are creeping back in...
post #2 of 22
Simon,

Overall, pretty good skiing. Your turns appear steered (not cleanly carved), but the steering is narrow and consistent, and the turn entries are fairly clean (not grossly tail tossed/pivoted). That's good,,, it shows a degree of edging skill development.

My critiques would be:

1) More angulation. Your inside shoulder is dropping quite a bit, resulting in a rather inclinated position. Not a problem with the turns you're doing in the video, but it could restrict more dynamic skiing later down the road. Attempt to level your shoulders to the snow more throughout the turn.

2) Try to assume a more fore balance state, especially at the start of your turns. Your CM now appears to be lagging, and your skis running away from under you. Try moving forward more on your skis and engaging the shovels more positively. You'll feel more control of your skis, line, turn shape, and balance,,, and your initiations will be more powerful. You'll be leading the show, instead of trying to play catch-up.

3) You have a bit of an excessive up move during your transition. It represents unnecessary movement that reduces your efficiency and creates a momentary disconnect with the snow during the transition. The disconnect is not always bad, in fact sometimes it can be fun, but for the clean arc to arc skiing you may want to eventually aspire to, it can prove detrimental. Try making your transitional motion more lateral/forward across your skis, and less UP.

Hope that's helpful.
post #3 of 22
My first question is why on earth were you in Wengen and not Whistler

Very much as Rick has said, fore-aft looks OK for the terrain, but for lateral balance, you need to start angulating after inclination to remain balanced over the outside ski.

Also: work on a little more separation so that the turning effort comes from the legs.
post #4 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thank you both, some good things to try and work on next time out (either Soldeu for CSCF I, if I can find the cash, or Val T in April - roll on the slush...).

veeeight - was in Wengen not Whistler as I wasn't able to scrape together the cash for a second trip this season. However, after dithering about, I am now 99.99% certain to be heading out next season, save some exceptional change in my circumstances.
post #5 of 22

Here's my 2 cents

Simon,

Freeze the video at 11 seconds as you pass by the camera.



The viewing angle is not quite square to the camera, but it's close enough. The red lines should be drawn at the front of your toes and the back of your heels. You have some tip lead so I put the front line in between and took a guess on the back line. Can you see how much body mass is outside of the red lines? When you're not moving your hips to stay with the skis, a common compensation is to bend forward from the waist to get some mass into the red zone. The yellow line shows this angle. This is the fore/aft problem that Rick is talking about.




This frame is from the beginning of the turn before the 11 second frame. At this point you have already started your up move that Rick has pointed out. Your shoulders are facing along the green arrow while your skis are pointed along the blue lines. The exact angles are a shade off, but the point here is that forward movement of the center of mass along the green line will do little to draw the skis onto their new edge.



If you would finish your old turn with more turning of the skis across the fall line (yellow curved arrow) and less turning of the shoulders (red curved arrow), you'd be able to start your turn with center of mass movement along the line of the straight red arrow. This would draw your skis onto their new edge and allow you to add to that with tipping movements. Compare the difference in the angle between the green and blue lines to the difference in the angle between the red and yellow lines.

Instead of doing the up move with both legs, you could collapse the new inside leg while extending the old outside leg. This is what allows the hips to travel across the skis with popping vertically up. You can get the same end result with Rick's suggestion to level the shoulders to the angle of the slope. With the new hip movement, you will get more body mass in the red zone, a straighter back, better balance and more dynamic turns. But if you do this move from your current turn finishing position, you won't get any results. You need to finish your turns in a more countered position in order to get results from this move.
post #6 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thank you Rusty, nice to see the images alongside the analysis.

So, as I read it...

Reduce the extending movement (less exagerration), perhaps try different levels of extension in each leg.

Angulate more - get a larger angle between upper/lower body.

Get my weight further forward (feet, knees and shoulders in a line).
Quote:
Originally Posted by therusty View Post
If you would finish your old turn with more turning of the skis across the fall line (yellow curved arrow) and less turning of the shoulders (red curved arrow), you'd be able to start your turn with center of mass movement along the line of the straight red arrow.
To clarify, is this to say that I should get my skis further round in the turn and leave my upper body 'as-is' to create the same angle between upper/lower body as I am currently making by twisting the upper body whilst not rounding off the turn?
post #7 of 22
Simon,

Not exactly.

First I'd like to introduce you to my good friend Tony. He actually spells his name ToeKnee. He's actually a very smart guy, but his spelling is awful. You could say "Tony knows how to ski", but he would write "ToeKnee Nose how to ski". The moral of the story here is that having your toes, knees and nose in vertical alignment is a good thing for skiing. But this is a reference, or average alignment position. During skiing, we don't just hold one fore/aft position. We move back and forth a little during a turn. The key factor is that we need to be moving forward as we start a turn. The problem with your reference position is not your shoulders. It's your belly button. Expose it to the wind more. If you do this, you'll be in a better position to move forward at the beginning of the turn.

With respect to extension, you can think of it as reducing extension of the new inside leg. How I think of it though is the opposite of extension. Instead of getting both legs longer to start your turn, I want you to keep getting your new outside leg longer, but start making your inside leg shorter (instead of making it less longer). To see what I'm talking about here, try the indoor drill I was talking about (oh rats - that's a different thread). What you'll find most helpful is another variation of this drill. Instead of moving the hips forward, start with a movement that just lifts the outside ankle up (stand on your toes only on your outside foot). This will cause you tilt laterally. Now try just bending the new inside knee. This causes you to rotate your inside hips and shoulders forward. Now do both movements together. The hips and shoulder stay level but move forward into the new turn. When you do this right, you'll need to catch yourself against the wall. When you do this on snow, your skis will catch you as they accelerate into the new turn. When you don't do this on snow, your skis will get ahead of you.

Angulation refers to when the line from between your feet to your belt buckle points in a different direction than a line from your belt buckle to your chin. What I'm referring to is called counter. This is when your feet are pointing in a direction different from where your shoulders and hips are facing. We look for separation between the upper and lower body in 2 different ways when we ski. Angulation is when we tilt at the hips to get the upper body to be vertical over the snow when our legs are at an angle. Counter is when we twist at the hips to get the lower body traveling in a different direction than the upper body. Together, the two of these things allow us to stay in balance while the skis do their thing. I want you to use more counter (i.e. get more difference in the direction your feet point versus the direction your shoulders point before you start your next turn) in your skiing.
post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
Oops, I think I muddled up responses between the other posts and yours (the first couple of things, e.g. the angulation issue, were to do with Rick/veeeight's comments). Thanks for the claification on your other points though, very helpful, I'm going to give the drills a go when I get the chance. I'm definitely going to do some visualisation on counter to get it stuck in my mind.

The thing that's getting me though is the belly thing. (Now it would be great if veeeight could correct me if I've remembered wrong, which is always a possibility), but I remember being told on my CSIA LI to ski almost as though someone had punched me in the stomach, drawing the naval area of the belly back and getting into that lower stance - of course I might not be fully compensating for it though with my upper-upper body, which is always something I could look at. Are you and Rick saying not to draw it back slightly, or more of a don't draw it back quite as much as I am at the moment?
post #9 of 22
Ah those crazy Canucks!

Yes that is a signature thing they do that is different from what we do. Although we'd rather not see that, it's not a big deal if properly done. That aspect of CSIA "style" is more a shoulders hunched over or rounded whereas yours is more of a bent at the waist position. Even in the CSIA style you can draw the red lines and see most of their body mass in the red zone. The big issue here is that if you are focusing on getting punched in the gut, you're pulling your hips back. If you're doing that at turn initiation (when you need to be moving forward), then you're performance is going to suffer. If you try the indoor drills with the different punched in the gut, not punched in the gut positions, you're feet will tell you if there's any difference.
post #10 of 22

I just gave some similar advice to another MA requestor...

...which is, turn up the volume a little bit. It's okay skiing, it just seems a little too laid back for what I think you're capable of. Put some energy into what you're doing, stick your nose in the fall line, and crank off some World Cup SL turns. Technical changes are required, of course, but a lot of times you can break through a level or two just by jacking up the tempo and skiing on the edge...
post #11 of 22


From a CSIA perspective:

1. Bring your hips up and forward so that it is in line with the rear red line.
2. Round your shoulders until your nose is in line with the front red line.

That'll fix the fore-aft stance/balance.
post #12 of 22
Good Video
post #13 of 22
Great ski-in-ski-out accommodation
post #14 of 22
skisimon,

Rick, and tr have picked out some good things to work on. Skiracer55 sees things the way I do. Your skiing is not bad, in fact, quite comfortable. I see most of your movement happening only during the transition and the rest of the time, you are smoking a cigarette, meaning that not much but some maintenance. Keep the turn developing and keep moving with the skis, this may allow more dynamics (fun) in your skiing.

Hope this makes sense to you.

RW
post #15 of 22

Late comment...

One thing I noticed is that you're leaving your outside (non-pole-planting) arm behind on your turns. I did this for a long time myself and was amazed at the difference it made once I corrected it. When you leave that arm behind it makes it harder to initiate your next turn and pulls you back on to the tails of your skis. At speed, especially with tired legs, this can cause you real problems.
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by veeeight View Post


From a CSIA perspective:

1. Bring your hips up and forward so that it is in line with the rear red line.
2. Round your shoulders until your nose is in line with the front red line.

That'll fix the fore-aft stance/balance.
If you look at the angles of the ankles, knees and hip joints you will see the major discrepancy of the ankles at 90 degrees while the knees and hips are at 30-45 degrees. The lack of flexion at the ankles is what has moved the hips and torso back. A general rule is to match the angles of the ankles, knees and hip joints. The ankle is probably the most important of the 3 joints in question and should be allowed adequate fore/aft movement.
Forward flexion of the ankles will bring your "hips up and forward". The problem may be with your boots being too stiff to allow adequate ankle flexion and should be checked by a competent boot fitter.
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by gcarlson View Post
If you look at the angles of the ankles, knees and hip joints you will see the major discrepancy of the ankles at 90 degrees while the knees and hips are at 30-45 degrees. The lack of flexion at the ankles is what has moved the hips and torso back. A general rule is to match the angles of the ankles, knees and hip joints. The ankle is probably the most important of the 3 joints in question and should be allowed adequate fore/aft movement.
Forward flexion of the ankles will bring your "hips up and forward". The problem may be with your boots being too stiff to allow adequate ankle flexion and should be checked by a competent boot fitter.
Good call on the joints of the lower leg needing to work together! Too bad you abandoned that idea in your corrective advice once you identified that the the angles were "wrong" in the ankles, hips and knees. While I agree with you about changing how he uses his ankles, what about the other joints? How would you advise him to move the hips and knees to correct the flex problems you identified? The idea of specific angles in each joint isn't a bad thing but it really is a static stance idea. Once we start moving that idea gets hard to put into practice since all three of those angles will be changing to compensate for terrain variations. If I may offer a suggestion, there is an easier way to address using the joints more effectively.
To me the easiest way to bring about that change would be to tell him to stand up taller. The concept of staying taller is much easier to digest and put into practice for most students. It would open the knees and hips which would also bring the hips back up over the feet, making the dorsiflexion of the ankle a more effective movement. Don't fall into the trap of thinking all fore/aft issues can be addressed by changing how we flex or extend one joint. If all three need to change, our advice needs to produce a change in all three...
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by justanotherskipro View Post
Good call on the joints of the lower leg needing to work together! Too bad you abandoned that idea in your corrective advice once you identified that the the angles were "wrong" in the ankles, hips and knees. While I agree with you about changing how he uses his ankles, what about the other joints? How would you advise him to move the hips and knees to correct the flex problems you identified? The idea of specific angles in each joint isn't a bad thing but it really is a static stance idea. Once we start moving that idea gets hard to put into practice since all three of those angles will be changing to compensate for terrain variations. If I may offer a suggestion, there is an easier way to address using the joints more effectively.
To me the easiest way to bring about that change would be to tell him to stand up taller. The concept of staying taller is much easier to digest and put into practice for most students. It would open the knees and hips which would also bring the hips back up over the feet, making the dorsiflexion of the ankle a more effective movement. Don't fall into the trap of thinking all fore/aft issues can be addressed by changing how we flex or extend one joint. If all three need to change, our advice needs to produce a change in all three...
It is my "Too bad" that I didn't expand on my brief statement regarding the image in question. I didn't mean to infer that the ankle was the only joint involved in a turn. When referring to equal angles of the ankles, knees and hips this includes a general focus on trying to equally flex and extend these joints throughout the dynamics of a turn and in response to terrain changes. It also should include the "4th joint" of the pelvis/abdominal-thoracic spine and shoulders.
It is often misleading to judge an entire turn on a single frame of a video which leads to suggesting a static stance when in fact it is just a fleeting moment of a continuous process. If we view the original video in question in this thread however we can see that there is a fairly consistent lack of dorsiflexion of the ankle throughout the turn, especially at the apex where we would expect maximum flexion of the inside ankle (and knee and hip). I have found this to be common in many beginning to intermediate skiers. In this stance with the lower leg at 90 degrees to the ski the only means of bringing the COM forward is through the knees and hips in a more upright position instead of equally flexing/extending at the ankles, knees and hips throughout the turn. I'm always surprised by how many students have never felt cuff pressure in their skiing.
So, in suggesting to a student that they stand taller I would also address the dorsiflexion/plantarflexion of the ankle as an integral part of the dynamics happening somewhat equally at each of the joints.
post #19 of 22
actually the taller stance combined with dorsiflexion doesn't follow the equal angles regimine like we did just a few years ago.
post #20 of 22
Hey Skisimon,

I think you have a good foundation... You just need to continue moving to remain in balance.

Rick's first post was correct.

1) You need to increase your edge angle at the end of the turn with more "angulation." This will help your skis steer back underneath your body. You can acheive this by thinking about keeping your chin over your downhill toe piece or reaching further down the hill for your pole plant as you finish the turn.

2)In order to maintain fore/aft balance as you go into the next turn you need to extend less in the hip joint and more in the knees to move your hips forward. If you keep the "punch in the gut" or "tight core" feeling as mentioned before it should actually stop this over extension in the hips... which is the biggest reason you are getting in the back seat at turn initiation.

3)The excessive up movement is related to your hip extension but also the timing of your moves. Try to think about extending a little later into the start of the new turn rather than into the transition.

A super simple exercise to would be to drag your pole baskets in the snow (lined up with your toepieces) throughout the entire turn. This should help keep your shoulders over your knees by limiting you hip extension at the start of the turn and if done properly will force you into a more angulated position at the end of the turn. Keep in mind though, that you MUST KEEP YOUR HANDS HIGH, WIDE AND OUT IN FRONT for this to work properly. Any cheating and it will be useless.

If you master this and need a further challenge... you could try some retraction turns WHILE DRAGGING YOUR POLES. Pull your legs up so the tails of your skis come off the ground as your upper body crosses over into the new turn. Try to keep the tips of the skis on the snow (to help get you further forward).

You will be a skiing machine!
post #21 of 22
Upon a second look at your video, I noticed that your poles are pretty long. You may want to choke up on them a bit to exagerate the sensations while trying the above mentioned excercise. (eg. hold them a couple inches below the grips.)
post #22 of 22
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the further pointers.

Very similar to what got picked up on my CSCF course at the end of last season. I had a bit of a moment half way through the course and it seemed to become a lot better - more active, both in the upper and lower body. Interesting you mention angulation skinerd - a huge weakness as I entered my course, was on the verge of failing until it seemed to click on day three and it improved enough through day six to pick up a pass.

A very productive six days it was, when I've got some video to compare I'll post it up.
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