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Upperbody movement

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
First, let me apologize because I know this has been discussed in other threads, but I'm still not comfortable with the concept. I have both read and been told contradictory statements on this issue.
First school of thought: the upperbody should stay pointing straight down the fallline (as much as possible) and remain as quiet as possible while the legs swing back and forth beneath.

Second school of thought: The upper body should remain in alignment with the skis and carve throught he arc along with them moving only for angulation/balance but not in a rotary manner.
post #2 of 7
Thread Starter 
Sorry I hit the button before I finshed...So the question obviously is Which is true/right?---The answer is oalso obvious--both are right...it depends...so lets be a bit more practicle. What are the situations where one will favor one technique over another. My uneducated guess is that the quiet straigh-down the fall line body might be better in short/quick turns on steeper terrain and the face the ski tips body might be more natural in longer cruising arcs? Is this reasonable? or way to simplified? or just plain wrong?

post #3 of 7
The short answer is, in Short radius turns, your torso should be aligned more down the hill. In longer radius turns it should be aligned more with your skis. Your guess was right, Way to GO !
post #4 of 7
I like to think of it as you just said. Short turns on steeps or even more so, in the bumps I like to have my upper body (read hips to shoulders operating as one "block" unit) aligned straight down the hill in a strong upper body position.

When opening up and ripping the bigger turns it's more of taking that upper body "unit" (hips and shoulders aligned) and leading into the new turn direction with it. This should not be confused with rotary movement at the waist to initiate a turn like we see so many intermediates doing. It's more of a subtle crossover move of our CM going to the direction of the new turn.
post #5 of 7
Modern skis don't need to be pivoted very much (or at all) to make very short turns, so the extra unwinding effect that you get from facing down the hill is usually not necessarry, and can hinder smooth transitions.
However, it is important to learn to ski turns with the upper body facing straight down the hill, as it is useful or crucial depending upon where you ski.
post #6 of 7
I thought I remembered being told to simply "look where you are heading"

that means if I am doing shorter turns I am looking more down the hill - but in longer turns I am looking more down & across.....

then again I don't really have much memory of having done much work on this the last year or so - more "hip" comments than anything .... when I get the dodgy hip right the rest sort of works out better....
post #7 of 7
In considering this issue it helps to determine what is to be considered the upper body and what is considered the lower body. More to the point, to which should the hips belong?

A traditional view might assign them as part of the upper body, reflecting any countering (movement, motion or acquired position) aligned more with the shoulders, with the legs working around underneath (winding and un-winding).

I like to allow the hips to play a stronger roll working with and supporting the intent of the feet/skis. This perspective creates a parallelogram (of power) with the base of support from foot to foot at one end and the hip sockets at the other, connected by both legs. This offers very flexible and agile suspension system as well as a very powerful structure providing symmetry of each leg's stance in relation to the engaged edge of each ski.

The concept of a parallel stance now can extend beyond simply the alignment of the skis. Parallel symmetry of the lower and upper legs up into hips more square to the feet/skis reduces unnecessary or excess tip lead and enables more balanced and efficient role sharing between both legs/skis. This truely parallel stance enables both skis to be skied through their sweet spot.

Flexibility and separation between hips-lower body and torso-upper body orientations allows each to maintain a 'go there' attitude aligned appropriately to each of their separate, but holistically inter-related, constantly diverging and converging paths around and down the mountain.


[ January 14, 2004, 09:26 PM: Message edited by: Arcmeister ]
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