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leading with the inside hip?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Just a quick question about the hip on the inside of a turn.


I was listening to one of the trainers a couple weeks ago speaking about trying to lead into a turn with the inside hip and decided to experiment a little.

I focused on keeping my inside hip forward during turn initiation while executing short radius turns at a controlled speed on steeper blue/easier black terrain and felt that it helped in a few aspects.


First, it seemed to help keep my upper body quiet and actually promoted counter rotation. I wasn't struggling as much to keep my upper body facing down the fall line and my hands forward.


Secondly, it seemed even easier to control the radius of the turn. I am aware of using the inside ski to control the radius. This seemed to help even more.


Finally, I often struggle with falling into the 'back seat' and the attendant adjustments to get forward into the next turn. I'll pop-up or stem or just ride the end of the turn a little too long to get forward. This seemed to help me keep on top of my skiis.


So, my question is… as this was mostly self discovery, am I on-track or off-base?



post #2 of 16

I'ma bump this up, this has me curious.

post #3 of 16

It depends on what you mean. It seems totally odd to us instructor types to initiate a new turn with the new inside hip ahead of the new outside hip. That certainly is not starting from a countered position because for a countered position we want the hips pointing more down the hill than the skis and this position has them pointing more up the hill. But when some people first try this drill the result is an OMG experience. This is because it's the first time they have experienced having their weight flow downhill and draw the skis onto a new edge so early in the turn.


Now if you are talking about moving the old inside hip ahead, this does create a countered position. From a countered position it's easy to let both hips flow forward into the inside of the new turn and get the same effect as above, but get it in a more balanced and more efficient position.


But this is still not the most efficient way to get the job done. You see we want the legs to turn underneath the hips to get into this countered position, not for the hips to turn into this countered position. But for a drill, either way is not necessarily bad.

post #4 of 16

TheRusty. Wouldn't using your hips to turn be like throwing your weight in a sence?

post #5 of 16

I think it is a good thing skiprob, and your post makes sense to me. My view of counter of the pelvis and upper body is that it is more relative to the direction of travel, rather than always being tied to the fall line.


Focusing on the inside hip moving forward (don't forget the inside hip moving up as it moves forward) does several things for you. First it allows the counter to develope by rotation of the pelvis around the outside hip/leg (like in walking), as opposed to the counter developing by both legs rotating under the pelvis. Having both legs turn equally under a fixed pelvis orientation would be more like what you see and feel when doing pivot slips. Moving the rotational focus to the outside hip socket can help free up the inside leg and foot to be more active by steering, shortening, and tipping into the turn, and creates a balance focus to the outside foot. The inside hip moving forward progressively through the turn also allows effective fore and aft pressure control on the outside ski coupled with balancing to the forces as well.


I think it is good to distinguish and feel the difference between developing counter by steering both legs equally while maintaining a fixed pelvis orientation and having the outside hip be the primary focus for rotation of the pelvis around the outside leg as the pelvis opens to the outside of turn as the turn developes. By exploring both extremes you now have the ability to blend them both together in varying amounts bringing you greater versatility in turn shape, pressure and balance control.


A strong inside half is a cornerstone of good skiing. A big part of a strong inside half is the inside hip leading, by varying degrees, through the turn. A good thing to play with IMO.


Edited by RicB - Mon, 02 Feb 09 20:59:57 GMT
post #6 of 16

I am with RicB.  When initiating a turn I would just as soon be in neutral with neither hip forward.  I want to lead the new turn with my inside hip high and ahead.  In the last third of the turn I move progressively from high edges towards a neutral position.  My feet catch each other right at turn initiation.


In really short radius turns that are not highly carved I may still have some counter at turn initiation but only to build anticipation into the turn.  I still want my new inside hip ahead as soon as possible.

post #7 of 16

You guys are saying to keep your hips from rotating into the hill, you want to keep them out in front of you facing down the fall line?


But to make sure that inside hip is leading your turn as well?

post #8 of 16

I'm going to modify the advocacy I used to express for inside hip involvement in turn initiation.  I'm adding a caveat to employ that famous Arcmeisterism, ALLOW.  I've come to  believe too much focus on advancing/raising the inside hip can result in overpressuring the inside ski to the detriment of outside ski performance. 


I think inside ankle flexing into the turn should lead to the inside hip's forward/lateral movement as necessary to get the edge performance intended,  rather than setting up the legs to push the hip.  The hip should be ALLOWED to move rather than MADE to move.

post #9 of 16

I have never felt my inside ski being overpressured by raising my inside hip nor have I had a student have trouble with this either. In fact just the opposite from my experience, but I do agree with Knealle's idea of allowing things to happen. To quote from the book titled "The Centered Skier" written in the late 70's by Denise McCluggage, "It is an action in which certain things are caused to happen and certain things are allowed to happen. Faults arise in trying to cause what should be allowed.


The trouble with just allowing, is that the road to allowing quite often starts by traveling down the path of causing for awhile.

post #10 of 16
Originally Posted by Talyn View Post

You guys are saying to keep your hips from rotating into the hill, you want to keep them out in front of you facing down the fall line?


But to make sure that inside hip is leading your turn as well?




I'm saying that the inside hip, and upper body should lead through the turn generally speaking. The direction that the pelvis faces is determined by the size of the turn and the direction of travel. Short fall line turns will keep the pelvis facing more down the hill, but as we lengthen the turns out we will find the pelvis facing more away from the fall line but still facing to the outside of the turn to varying degrees.


post #11 of 16

I think it is a bit beyond my undrestanding. Perhaps I do understand.
One of those things. I cannot picture it in my mind.

the thoughts involved in the thread I'm sure will be in my mind allowing me to be more natural instead of forced in my hip movements.
I hope at least.

Thank you.

post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 

I think RicB's latest post was closest to the mark. 


Please excuse my lack of clarity.  I didn't really lead with the inside hip as the title states (I just thought it sounded cool).


I was more focused on keeping the inside hip forward during turn initiation, not leading with it.  More specifically, I was trying to keep the hips pointed down the fall line... which lead to the items I pointed out above.


Thanks for your comments.  They were very insightful once you decoded my description.

post #13 of 16
Originally Posted by skiprob View Post

I think RicB's latest post was closest to the mark. 


Please excuse my lack of clarity.  I didn't really lead with the inside hip as the title states (I just thought it sounded cool).



That's OK.   I do it all the time for kicks when I'm on skis that are really too soft for me.

post #14 of 16

skiprob, yes, it was good advice, and you did discover on your own some of the reasons why.  It' provides a nice flow to your skiing, quickly re-centers you fore/aft, produces early counter, pronates the new outside foot early, allows for more effective angulation and outside ski balance early in the turn in slower speed turns,





post #15 of 16

"Hip to Tip" is a fairly common contemporary drill. You press your hip forward to engage the direction that you want to turn (e.g., left hip towards the left ski tip to turn left). The idea is to generate forward pressure on the left ski by bending the left boot. The danger is that you do not want to advance the left boot more than marginally or you dissipate that pressure. So then, there should be left hip pressure forward but not too much left boot advancement.


Leading with the inside half is always good - without too much inside boot lead that is...

post #16 of 16

Another simple way to achieve good hip angulation and stay balanced throughout the turn is to focus on tipping your inside ankle into the hill.  Press on the little pinky toe and feel the outside of your ankle bone press on your boot.


1) Start by standing on a moderate slope with your feet in an athletic skiing position.  Feel the front of the boot and stand comfortably (not too far back not too far forward).  Tip both skis simultaneously on edge.  Make sure your knees are parallel and moving in unison.  Keep your trunk and hip relaxed.  You should feel your hip move into the hill slightly. 


2) Slowly traverse on a moderate slope.  Again find the athletic skiing position and again tip your skis on edge.  You should feel your hip naturally angulate.


Continue to progress on more difficult terrain.  Make sure to keep it simple throughout and focus on feeling the inside ski tip on edge.  This will put you in a strong, atheltic body positon and allow you the reach the angulation you desire more naturally.  Note the focus should be on tipping and feeling the inside edge on the snow, but the pressure should still be over the downhill ski.


Check out the picture of Thomas Grandi below.  This is what you desire. 

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