Yeh, that first section seems almost as wide as it is long. The bumps were only on the left half, which meant that I could bail out half way down if (when) they got the best of me...
- topicMogul Skiingtagged by System, 6/4/09
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Bump Lesson - Page 2
Whitetail will groom depending on the weather and the list of things to do. Sometimes the groomers are busy as soon as the slopes clear after 10PM closing right up until 8:30 opening, especially if there is a lot of terrain park work to do. Sometimes the groomers need to wait for the snow to set up before they can groom. When we first opened we used to close one intermediate slope and groom it from 4-5 for night skiing. Those days are long gone.
1. Explain the situation and offer some options:
a) Wait for a day when bumps are present
b) Focus on short radius turns
c) Focus on check turns on steep pitches
d) Focus on retraction turns
e) Switch to a terrain park lesson so we can use the sides of features
f) Use the ridges on the edge of the trails (we typically have some wicked double fall line options on the edges of our trails because of the predominance of man made snow - these can be used to practice mogul techniques but they are inherently more dangerous)
g) Pivot slips
h) Focus on skiing with weight centered
i) A combination of above items
2) Make a plan based on the response
All good. As we would expect from therusty.
I would advise caution here. Learn to use the terrain, but do not allow the terrain to dictate. Ultimately, learn to turn anywhere on the bump. Learn where it's easy, learn where it's more difficult, but be able to turn where you want, not where the terrain "dictates."
turn around the pole
Again, I would advise some caution with this advice. Often, this idea will result in a pole that is indeed "planted" - and growing roots! Touch, release the edges, and get your hand, complete with pole, back up in front of you where it belongs. Planting and turning around the pole usually causes the hand to end up behind you and may tend to rotate your shoulders up the hill. You'll end up behind your feet and you'll be late for the next turn. The touch is a trigger to release the edges, not the center point of an arc.
Touch and roll off your uphill edges, just as if you were doing an arc-to-arc on groomed snow. The released skis can then be steered, allowed to "schmear," or you can engage the downhill edges and achieve a near carve around the side and downhill face of the bump. Or any number of other options, combinations, blends.
Often, it works well to steer and schmear, especially at first. Bump beginners and feeble elderly people like me can ski some remarkably nasty bumps with remarkably little effort and not much speed. You learn to touch rather than plant, and you learn to stay over your feet, rather than behind them. Once you can do that, you can dial it up, with adjustments in timing and intensity. You can control and greatly reduce impact - or slam 'em and put the impact to use, if you want.
To get back to bump training with no bumps:
You can start with a pivot slip on groomed snow and explore the spectrum from pivot slip to very short radius with a flat ski, to short radius with more edge, etc. all the way to a full carve. No cheating - the skis have to stay parallel, without a stem or a step or a wedge. Play with other things as well. Can you do a hard edge set, followed by a release without feeling like you have to hop? Can you do an active retraction with a "virtual bump" on groomed snow? Can you release and steer without unweighting, maintaining pressure from the very top of the turn? Can you direct the tips down without feeling like you have to push the tails up?
Fundamentals, useful anywhere. If you are as inept as I, there's always lots to do, everywhere.
Cross country skiing is great...if you live in a small country. - Steven Wright
You're too kind.
I've had success teaching a version of the steer and schmear I call the old man's way to ski bumps. The key trick is to approach the bump from the side/across the rut instead of from the rut/uphill.
I can't teach a student on terrain park features unless they have a helmet and have signed a waiver acknowledging the extra risks of the park features. At my resort this is a different kind of lesson product. That's the switch part.
Many of our terrain park features have very steep side walls. Those are perfect for doing pedal hop turns. Spines are just one very long mogul when you think about it. Anywhere in the park where there's a jump, there is some kind of mound of snow that can be used to practice some kind of mogul movements. As long as the park is not insanely busy, there's bound to be something that can be used without getting killed or being impolite.
If you are suggesting skiing off the side of the features out I respect I ask you to never do that. The guys building and maintaining the park will thank you. I am telling you this as a park builder.
There are plenty of things you can do to train for bumps skiing on the groomers. Practice getting in a good low “ready” position. Hips low, knees in a deep bend, feet together and practice short quick turns with out letting the upper body move, up and down or side to side. You need to be low so when in the bumps you can extend your legs downward to the bottom of the troughs without moving your upper body. It will also give you the range to move your legs side to side as you turn. A first timer working on this will practice just getting the range of motion. Let the skis slide and only edge at the end of the movement. As they gain balance and range of motion start working on carving turns all the while keeping your upper body still and motionless except for pole plants. Once you get this turning technique down moving into the bumps is easy. Once in the bumps you just have to incorporate the absorption and extension as you move through the bumps. Days of bump skiing this is something I work on while cruising the groomers on the way to the bumps. If you cannot do the short quick turns on the groomers you will never get them in the bumps. Also remember your pole plants will seem almost backwards. Instead of planting where you are going to turn and turn around your pole plant your pole on the outside just before you finish your turn. In the bumps you will be pole planting on the mogul you are carving up the face of.
This video even with it being in the summer gives a great example of what the body position should be for practicing on groomers. If you pause the video when his feet are directly below him that is the “ready” position. It also is a great example of the backwards pole planting. You see he plants to the outside of the turn. If he was making a right turn he plants his pole on the left about the time he would be at the apex of the turn and absorbing as his skis would be going up the face of the mogul.
Let me clarify if the tiller from the cat has not made a pass on it it is not a surface to ski on. Something like a spine has no "side" since almost every surface is meant to be used. Dropping off the side of a landing to have something steep to ski on is what I am talking about. So by using the side of a feature you are not using them the way they were intended and could cause harm.
CT brings up a important point. Using the features in ways they are not intended to be used increases the chance of injury exponentially. My personal favorite is the jump is to big so I will turn and jump off the side of the lip and land on flat ground off balance.
You could say I'm a "cross" dresser - I teach both skiing and riding. Cross makes a good point. And it is hard to know how features were not intended to be used without talking to the park staff. Still, it's an instructor's job to manage injury risk regardless of intended use of features. We're supposed to know what's dangerous relative to the abilities of our students.
I resorted to making things blatantly obvious on the design of most features. The big one this year was a step up jump, nothing to big 25' gap with about a 4' step up. When I first built it It looked like a tabletop with a nice large roller towards the end for the step up. After watching people repeatedly land way short at the bottom(uphill side) of the step up and exploding, we decided to change things. We dug out the gap of the jump and the step up became a wall. The top of the step up was about 4' long before the landing started so you could come up a little short and not die. After doing this suddenly people stopped crashing. It made people question if it was a jump they were really ready for. The biggest problem with tabletop style jumps is the "oh I can just go halfway" mentality. These are the scariest people to watch in the park. They are in way over their heads and do not realize it.
I use the name CRoss since it the intial of my first name and my last name.
...it is hard to know how features were not intended to be used without talking to the park staff. Still, it's an instructor's job to manage injury risk regardless of intended use of features. We're supposed to know what's dangerous relative to the abilities of our students.
Often the small-to-flat syndrome is off the side or just at really slow speed straight off of a cheese wedge kicker, as one example. Obviously not good for people who know but visually it looks much safer to do.
For purposes of bump-related movements I think you're talking something quite different, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gEAeSryvudI&feature=fvw like maybe the sides of this toward the "base" of the pyramid. This may be a case where park politics are fundamentally local, i.e. if local park staff and instructor know what's going on and are cool with it then it's not a porblem. But if it's an isntructor taking 8 kids and letting each hit the side of a cheese wedge to flat, then it's a problem.
In terms of grooming practices, if you can talk people into allowing some "rythm section" style whoops to develop those are also great for bumps practice, sort of like a natural absorption tank.
Unless you have the luxury of a really nice mountain, at a local bump the steepest terrain is usually a good place to practice mogul drills, no matter where that is.
Features in the park get hacked by all kinds of other activity. mostly unintentional. I guess treat it lke the golf course and repair your divots when you can.
You generally can't easily repair cumulative damage to a park feature by yourself. Unintentional hacking is not what was being discussed. TheRusty is probably too nice to include a disclaimer when he talks about using park features in "out of the box" ways,no pun intended, that you should know what you're doing, first, so just consider the last few posts that disclaimer.
For summer one of these could also help on the "whoops" point. I've not heard of "official" wintertime features specifically designed with the same focus -- the pump is basically the other side of absoprtion -- though frankly for the park a "pump ladder" where if you lose the pump you don't make it off could be fun for bumpers and park users alike. Pump ladder to down box flowing to wall ride, hmmm.
Visual examples that hopefully bear out the link between pump tracks and bump skiing, if the links actually work (someone had asked off-line for a visual). FIrst link more bike porn, second maybe more accessible level-wise to many people and something many could put in their backyard if they wanted.
"Hacked"? I use the park all the time and never worry about some kind of compliance. My favorite is the half-pipe table, the flat part on either top side. It's very level and no one uses it. You can find run after run of preserved powder, just for me. It looks like the pipe has been eliminated at our hill.
A "park pass" is required to go on that section. It always has the best powder on the mountain since nearly everyone skis the features.
...but what if everyone did it?
Last year during my L2 ski module we had no bumps on the mountain. We were at diamond peak and right before the exam the mountain saw about a foot of for real sierra cement. It remained pretty much un-skied until we got out there. We made our own bumps. 50 candidates plus the entire diamond peak ski school staff (THANKS guys and gals) side stepped a bump run and then skied the run to create the bumps. We had a good teaching bump run in less than an hour.
While this isn't helpful for a single private lesson, it can certainly work in a group lesson. You can MAKE bumps with level 7 and 8 skiers following in your track over several runs on the same section of hill if the snow is at all soft. The beauty of this is that you're going to start on a smoother surface to build the skills to take in to the bumps anyway. You don't have to tell the students they are making their own bumps, it'll just happen.
For skiing a loop design I do not see working as well as a longer design down a very very slight slope...
Edit: great to have someone like Cross posting who's directly involved in this.
Totally, particularly for either bumps or bx/skier x crossover. There are a few potential tangents here. 1) using terrain to intro bump movements, ranging from using as Rusty said existing terrain park features creatively (in an informed, appropriate way), to self-help on bumping up a small section, to talking groomers/management into informally allowing a small flatter section of trail on the side to "washboard" (almost like a gravity travverse, lol), to maybe more purpose-built features, all the way to the absorption tanks (basically, appropriatley spaced rollers on mellow blues) used by bumpers in training.
2. BX/skier-x training, 3. Whether the park world decides this is something they want to go their own way with.
Forr 1) I'd note that there's a lot of room for individual initiative at lots of resorts. Aside from asking having a surprising impact on what you actualy get for formally built structures, there are lots of things that if they happen organically can be allowed to exist even if they can't be part of formal programs.
Edited by CTKook - 7/23/2009 at 12:56 pm GMT
If I had a snow cat half the size of the one I use the park would be insane. I would build smaller transfer lines all over the place, and then rhythm lines of medium sized jumps everywhere.
With Rollers for a pump track the rough shape could be built with a cat. There will still be a lot of hand work to make it work for skis though. I have made several pump tracks for bikes and know what makes one work and one not work. Maintaining the pitch on the rollers needed to get an effective pump will be key. A snow pump track is something I do not see resorts doing unless they have a specific mogul camp or lessons asking for one.
A pump track would be really cool in a terrain park. We've got a spot level enough for one. It would be interesting to present the idea to the park staff.
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