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Harald Harb Letter to EpicSki Community - Page 2

post #31 of 206
Arc - I for one have my doubts about that.. when I tried to follow the online lessons I didn't "fit the mold"... so I sent of the email question thingy... Diana kindly responded - but I didn't find any of the answers very situation specific... seemed that they were DETERMINED I would fit the PMTS recipe if it killed me ....

I would love to see Harald come & try to discuss problem solving - because people keep telling me he is good at it (SnoKarver for instance - hey Karver where are you?)... but my experience tells me to expect otherwise...
post #32 of 206
Skiing is not talking
post #33 of 206
posted by Harald (through AC):

Seems some of my friendlies are persuasive enough to draw me into a discussion on the forum to establish some clarification of erroneous comments by posters
Last I looked, a discussion started by an individual involved more than a speech and then silence.

Why post HH's diatribe in the first place? I feel like it was a hit and run posting. :

[ October 23, 2003, 06:43 AM: Message edited by: Bonni ]
post #34 of 206

I'll freely admit the sample of skiers that I have seen is so small that it is inherently flawed.

I'm a proponent of two footed skiing.

I also alluded to the fact that I had a mind opening discussion a couple of weeks ago with momski about "release" and the role the entire leg plays as opposed to merely the foot. That is what I am dieing to explore.

It's interesting to note how much of this comes full circle and is intertwined. HH was involved in training with momski for many years and Diana lived with momski and her husband.

I only mention this for one reason. HH says he garnered nothing from PSIA and said something about a wholesale rejection of ideas. I don't want to put words in his mouth, however, that seemed to be the gist of it.

So am I to assume in all the years he was with other PSIA members there was nothing gleaned from others, no osmosis of any sort, it was merely a one way exchange of ideas based upon all those years of ski racing?
post #35 of 206

With all due respect, I don't think you're going to see Harold Harb posting here anytime soon whether invited to answer/debate specific issues/questions or not. He's active on Peter Keelty's site, which requires you to pay a fee to join, and allows members to ask HH, and others, skiing related questions ranging from equipment to instruction to technique. According to Peter's site they are going to launch a PMTS forum sometime in October. Whether or not people here like HH's approach to instruction or not, the one issue that no one can argue is the he's an accomplished businessman who can get his message out. I think if people want to ask him specific questions, my guess is that they're going to have to pony up the $$, and join Keelty's site.

My hope is, of course, that I'm wrong about this, and that Mr. Harb becomes an active poster in our forum. I think he'd be a great addition and if he gave it a shot I think he'd enjoy another avenue to get his message/concepts/methods out to the general skiing public.
post #36 of 206

I've come to respect your ideas over the course of the summer, have found you at times to be a voice of reason, and appreciate how succinct you can be. In response to your previous post I can only say three things;

1. It's 80 degrees in Boulder right now so talk is all we've got.

2. Skiing may not be talking, however, ski teaching MAY involve talking.

3. Talk is cheap and ski lessons should be as well.
post #37 of 206
Originally posted by sportscoach13:
I think if people want to ask him specific questions, my guess is that they're going to have to pony up the $$, and join Keelty's site.
There you have it......the good old fashioned profit motive.

Last year I could read ski reviews for free. This year I have to pay. I don't think so.
post #38 of 206
Originally posted by Rusty Guy:

I can't wait. It won't be five minutes until I get a semi-lucid e-mail from "the big show".[/QB]
Got it this morning!

I have to give the guy credit, it was very well written and exceedingly nice. I must say in direct contrast to earlier correspondence.
post #39 of 206
Originally posted by Rusty Guy:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Rusty Guy:

I can't wait. It won't be five minutes until I get a semi-lucid e-mail from "the big show".
Got it this morning!

I have to give the guy credit, it was very well written and exceedingly nice. I must say in direct contrast to earlier correspondence.[/QB]</font>[/quote]Boy Rusty

For a guy that doesn't post here, he sure keeps a close eye on things, huh? You can tell Winter's around the corner, nuts are falling everywhere.
post #40 of 206
With squirrels scurrying hurriedly after them.
post #41 of 206
When the hoopla on this board got me curious, I purchased Harb's first book, was somewhat put off by his PSIA bashing but then went out and skied all of his maneuvers and they worked fine, maybe because I have skied all those years and have no problem skiing in a locked stance, a close stance or a wider stance.

Boston Mills/Brandiwine, the bump in the earth in Ohio, according to the ski area association, I'm told, was in fourth place in the USA in lesson/hours tought, and that with a three month season.

Even though there are about 500 instructors, the students in the one-hour lessons averaged about 16, sometimes less, often more. Many of these are never-evers in school programs, the hills are crowded from 3-9 PM with a straight line of about twenty feet width assigned to an instructor to teach his lesson, the lessons but up to each other, tail to tail.

I would like to ask Harald how we could teach a direct-parallel as he advocates without teaching the wedge for speed control and stopping, even PSIA does not advocate a gliding wedge anymore. Or should we just teach it and call it by his name, lift line control.

What works on a wide open teaching hill does not necesarrily work in the situation I described. But if it does, I'd like to know how.

post #42 of 206
I have read this thread with great interest. I have known HH for at least six years. He has been quite personable, most of the time, but not always. His skiing is flawless. He has developed a teaching system that is complete. I have been a PMTS Green cert for four years. Some of it is quite difficult to learn and understand. I refer to Student Directed Ski Instruction. Some of the movements are easily transposed into the wrong sequence. But teaching the system to beginners is a dream. The dreaded wedge is not present. A never-ever can be skiing a rough parallel in two and a half hours. If that same person has a five hour class, he/she will be skiing easy blues by the end of the day.

There can be confusion caused by a person taking a second lesson at another ski area. This happens frequently. Sol Vista and Winter Park are quite close. Should a person start at Sol Vista one day and Winter Park the next, they are learning two completely different teaching methods. Hence, some real confusion. I am not saying either system is right or wrong; just different.

Rusty, I suspect that the "skidders" you refer to are not engaging their new stance ski properly. Just because they ski on one ski should not induce a skid. I leave most of my weight on the new inside ski (weighted release) through the top half of the turn and it does not skid. So much so that I can lift the tail of my outside ski off the snow.

My suggestion is to respect HH for having developed an alternative teaching system. As for him personally, you have to make your own decision.
post #43 of 206

I have to agree that it would be a challenge to teach PMTS under the circumstances you describe. It would be difficult to getto linked stepping turns in that period of time and that size class. It has been my contention that there should be no less than two hours for a ski lesson. A one hour lesson gives you the opportunity to introduce yourself and get everybody's skis on and do a little bit of walking. Perhaps you MIGHT get in a little substantive learning.
post #44 of 206
In my experience, truth will stand up to the most intense scrutiny. If an idea has validity, its proponent has nothing to fear from questions, challenges, or requests for clarification. HH has built a good business on trashing principles of ski teaching that, in the hands of competent instructors (and let's accept that there are less-competent people teaching all systems), work well. He has distorted, and continues to distort, the teaching principles of PSIA. For the hundredth time, PSIA does NOT advocate tail-push skidding as the proper way to turn, either in a wedge or parallel. Continuing to set this up as the opposing system, and then tearing it down in the name of your superior system, is just plain deceitful.

I cannot respect someone who hits and runs. If HH has something to contribute to furthering ski instruction, let him open himself to questions. No one on this forum is such a bully that he will be damaged. Some of the edge perceived by some may be just frustration that HH attacks, then runs away.

Along with Rusty, I would welcome a good, honest, spirited examination and debate.

How about a videotaped and/or internet-broadcast debate between HH and Bob Barnes. THAT would fun!! What do you say, Harald? If Bob accepts, will you show up? Nothing would serve us, or you, better.

[ October 23, 2003, 11:08 AM: Message edited by: mike_m ]
post #45 of 206
Precedent indicates that Harb will not be engaging in any give-and-take here.
post #46 of 206
posted by ryan:

Precedent indicates that Harb will not be engaging in any give-and-take here.
Then what a waste of time it is to even entertain a discussion, because now I'm curious...What the hell have I been learning???

I don't respect anyone who drops a bomb and runs away.
post #47 of 206
Don't sweat it. SNOWBOARDER!!!
post #48 of 206
My, he is full of himself isn't he?

No offence to any of our residents, but not too far off from many PSIA top dogs.

I like Oboe's comments and A.C.'s wisdom on his post, for whatever reason he decided to post here in the first place, Harb has me wondering if the real reason, was to let our talented forum members know that we are all miniscule in the realm of ski world knowledge.

My guess is, he will lurk about for a while reading what the forum has to say about the letter, and chime in eventually. If he doesn't, it's not the end of the world.

Although, it would be a plus to have his knowledgeable input. for sure.
post #49 of 206
All right, ryan, gloves off, c'mon, let's duke it out right here....I'll be glad to knock your
**** in the dirt in the name of SKIING...... :
post #50 of 206
post #51 of 206
UH O!!

Cat fight?

Skidding turns not good?

Carving the only way to ski?

Tell that to someone skiing a 50 degree chute.
post #52 of 206

in seriousness, if this is your first encounter with this subject, you're simply coming in mid-stream, missing a little context. personally, i don't think you're missing much. if you are curious about harb's "stuff," there's a website, with tapes, etc.
i found the tapes and premise to be very helpful. where what came first, and who did or didn't, etc., i know nothing about, nor do i care all that much.
post #53 of 206
Rick H,

What you say makes perfect sense to me. I will be the first to say if something works for you it's a good thing. I'll add that if it puts smiles on the faces of beginners its a better thing. I'd love to make a few turns with you this winter and explore/share ideas.

I will also say it's nice to talk to someone about these concepts in a friendly civil matter sans venom.
post #54 of 206
In the capatilistic world somebody already owns the mountains, now we have 'patented' ski moves. That's right just turn it all into a business, money is far more important than fun afterall. :
Come on AC if Harald isn't gonna talk at least let the sock puppet back in. I'm gonna patent the phantom fall or maybe the phantom fart.
post #55 of 206
Sounds good to me, ryan. This is just another Pissin Contest.

Say, I have an idea.....let's go ski and have FUN. :
post #56 of 206
Ski, water ski?
post #57 of 206
If I was Harald, it would be hard for me to imagine what I would gain by engaging in a debate on this forum.

Don't take this wrong, folks, but the overwhelming majority of you are PSIA wonks and Harald has effectively declared outright war on your organization. As near as I can tell, he has only one instructor and maybe a small handful of not-very-vocal students as supporters.

From my very sideline view, it seems to me that Harald has compiled and developed a pretty comprehensive program that has a very specific focus. He has articulated a method of learning to ski that appears to me to be organized and repeatable, although I'm the first to admit that talking about ski technique instruction glazes me over.

You all keep saying that what he's doing is nothing different from what many of you do. If you all did it before, where is the easy-to-follow manual that lays it all out? Where are the ski schools that adhere to a very specific, PSIA-influenced series of steps to teach skiers? I've never seen *any* uniformity from ski school to ski school with respect to the methods many PSIA-certified instructors use to teach. Within ski schools, methods and movements of individual instructors seem to be all over the map.

Now, you may argue that's necessary and healthy because we're all individuals and don't fit neatly into little packages. From the viewpoint of a *prospective student*, however, I have absolutely no idea what kind of product I'm going to get when I fork over my limited time and my hard-earned $$$ for a lesson when I go to almost any ski area in the country - unless I've done some homework and solicited referrals from people I trust. At least with Harald, some photos from the manual would show me what to expect from my lessons.

Personally, I suspect Harald's program is doomed. Ski area management seems to care only about the dollars coming in from their ski school, not about the quality of the experience or the welfare of the customer. What input they get on ski schools tends to come from the existing director(s), whose interests seem to lie in preserving the way things are. Few businesses seem so resistant to radical change as ski areas.

Why is that? Does anyone here argue seriously that skiing, as a BUSINESS, is healthy and growing? Does anyone look into the crystal ball and see masses of new participants joining this sport?

Instead of dissing Harald, maybe the PSIA should be spending a bit more energy trying to understand why too few customers seem to come back for its product.

Last but not least, I would love to take a day or two of instruction from Harald and judge for myself.

post #58 of 206
Originally posted by Bob.Peters:

Last but not least, I would love to take a day or two of instruction from Harald and judge for myself.

Me too
post #59 of 206
Funny thing! I have gone through this same chicken or the egg crap in martial arts.


The Kung Fu guys stole this from the Hindi under Bodi Harma ... blah, blah, blah. The Okinawans came first with kata X and the Shotokan boys ripped it off and the Koreans ripped it from the Sui Lum school of South China .... ad naseum!

It's old.


And .............. Harald, where did you get the most original idea of GREEN, BROWN and BLACK .... er .... belts?

BTW, I am PSIA but I kinda ski with my feet a bit close together, but I got that through the Natur Technique in the 60's from Ernie Mulbauer who got that from ......?

[ October 23, 2003, 02:40 PM: Message edited by: yuki ]
post #60 of 206

I second Bob.Peters' motion...

However, we may all have to wait till 2004-2005 season. He
is probably all booked up till then teaching people to ski!
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