or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › From HH on alignment and steering
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

From HH on alignment and steering - Page 2

post #31 of 68
TomB I almost get the idea that you think a tall stance means damn near knee locked with the shin off the tongue of the boot. Would You define your definition of tall for us. I don't think that we are all on the same page.
post #32 of 68
SCSA...I know this will probably be futile, but...

Why does everything with you have to be couched in terms of confrontation? Why this compulsion to try to force people into opposing and competing camps? Why the efforts to put labels on people ("the Cult", "the Gang") which are arbitrary and inaccurate? Why is it that everytime someone responds to your incorrect and inflammatory assertions with historical fact and reasoned argument that you can't refute, you simply disappear for a few days, only to reappear with another attacking salvo soon after? Why can't you accept that most of us on this forum love the free exchange of idaes and enjoy trying new things (including many of the well-thought-out and orgamized theories and skiing progressions advocated by HH). I'm a PSIA instructor and was introduced to the "relax and tip" ideas of this post four years ago in a PSIA clinic. This concept was presented (as were different concepts at other clinics), as "Here's something that makes sense. Try it. What results? Can we incorporate this into our lessons?" No dogma. No need to claim ownership or put down alternate approaches. That seems to be one of the things you resolutely REFUSE to accept: that PSIA is not a "system" dedicated to propagating a particular viewpoint or prescribed learning progression, but an organization of dedicated professionals who are willing to accept ANY new idea or progrssion that will benefit the students/clients who are under our care. WE ARE NOT COMPETING WITH HH, OR YOU, OR ANYONE ELSE FOR THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF ANYONE. Is there ANY possibility that you can exchange ideas and concepts with us without making it into some kind of war scenario? Just because HH's concepts are not original does not diminish them! We use what works. Most of us admire his marketing skills. At times we do resent his attempts to claim ownership of concepts that existed before he incorporated them into his progression (and wish he didn't need to distort PSIA concepts to advance his case), but that doesn't diminish his success.

Oh, by the way, something that has been bugging me for months... Are you familiar with the concept of setting up a "straw man" in an argument? It's the technique of presenting an argument, supposedly advocated by your opponent, which is easily discredited, but which, in reality, was never advocated. You (and, you claim, HH) continually diparage PSIA's insistance on teaching skidding as being good skiing. I can't speak for anyone else, but I have NEVER been taught such a thing. I have never seen anyone suggest such a thing in any PSIA lesson I have shadowed or any PSIA clinic I have attended. You will FAIL your certification exams if you initiate or finish your turns with skidding and, as a matter of fact, in my PSIA Region, you must demonstrate that you can leave unskiddded "railroad tracks" in the snow and perform pure carved turns with no, or at least minimal, skidding. So PLEASE stop tearing PSIA down for teaching something that we actually discourage!

So... what do you think? Is there any chance you can talk with us as a friend interested in imparting new and helpful ideas (and allowing new ideas to touch you as well) insteading of imagining enemies where there are none?

post #33 of 68
As promised here are specific quotes from the materials cited in my previous post supporting the position that PSIA has in fact distinguished tipping (edge change) and steering for at least 25 years.

From "An Instructor's Guide to Ski Mechanics"

Pg 32: "Leg steering, or control of the rotation and inclination of the flexed leg by the strong muscles in the upper and lower leg and the pelvis, is used at all levels of skiing to control the radius of the turn."

Pg 36: "Reduced to it's simplest terms, the skier must adopt a balanced position over the skis from which he can readily adjust the angle between the skis and snow."

Pg 42: "The skis are unweighted (or un-edged) at the same time the strong rotor muscles are contracted to twist the skis under them to the other side of the body."

Pg 43: I can't replicate the diagrans showing a turn utilizing anticipation/release but here are the descriptions of the turn sequence, 1, "Skis edged" 2, "Anticipated upper body stabilized by pole plant" 3, Skis unweighted and flattened" 4, "Rotor muscles twist lower body in direction of new turn", 5 "Body reassumes angulated position"

The American Teaching Method-Part 1.

Pg 8: Definition of Edge Control, "Is the adjustment of the angle between the skis running surface and the snow."

Pg 10: Defintion of Steering, "Is the action of guiding the legs together or seperately to turn the skis."

PSIA Trainer's Study and Resource Manual

Pg 31: In an article by H. Abraham entitled the Evolution of ATM, "We feel that anything that happens in skiing can be discussed in terms of turning-edging-pressure control. ... Third, "Turning", Edging", and "Pressure Control" are kinesthetically viable concepts."

The American Teaching System:Alpine Skiing.

Appendix 1, Pg 125:

"Balancing Movements are the movements required to keep the body in equilibrium."

"Rotary Movements are movements involving rotation, or a tendancy toward rotation, of either the entire body as a whole or of one part of the relative to another."

"Edge control movements are movements that affect the way the skis contact the snow."

"Pressure Control" movements are movements used to adjust the pressure the skis exert on the snow as they move on or through the snow."Appendix 2, Pg 132:

"Thus we understand the fundamental skills to be *balancing movements*rotary movements*edge-control movements*pressure control movements."

Alpine Study Guides, Level 1,2 and 3,

Without replicating all three manuals in this post, if you have access to these manuals, look, for example, at the Level 2 study guide, Pg's 44 & 45 dealing with the transition from Wedge Christie to Beginning Parallel. Under the "Technical Aspects of Skill deelopment" we finds speific pargraphs discussing-Balancing Movements-Rotary Movements-Edge Control Movements and Pressure Control Movements. This approach is utilized across all levels.

Again, while the original post has some really relavent and interesting information the quote "They "the PSIA" faction thinks tipping is the same as steering." is factually unsupported.
post #34 of 68
Holy Moly, I just got back from a week of exploring St. Louis and what do I see? A new cover page and layout for EpicSki.com and HH actually speaks up!

I did not see the HH article before SCSA edited it, but I presume it was an attack on Bob Barnes. Oh well.... [img]smile.gif[/img]

Of what's left of the article, besides a few minor things, I can't disagree with what was said. But what HH advocates is a total, all inclusive approach which analyses a skier, fixes his boots and bindings with footbeds and alignment and then goes about teaching him to carve turns. All that is possible BUT TOTALLY UNREALISTIC IN MOST OF TODAY SKI TEACHING ENVIRONMENT where a student goes to the ski school counter and asks when the next lesson starts, buys a ticket and gets instruction for an hour or two.

It would work only if anyone wanting to ski would have to go through analysis, get correctly aligned and equipped and then have to take mandatory lessons in using that equipment, "and no one allowed on the slopes unless they go through this training".

Not unrealistic if one wanted to be a pilot or rock climber, but for skiing?

Skiing is great fun, even when done badly...

post #35 of 68
This post that SCSA was a personal letter to three people, myself included. I think it is unfortunate that SCSA posted it unedited. There has been a lot of bashing as a result. Thank you Ski&Golf for your citations.

One thing about PMTS that everyone overlooks, is every movement starts at the feet. Release from the old turn is accomplished by relaxing the thigh muscles and transfer weight to the new stance ski. At the same time the new free foot is lifted slightly and tipped to engage the new stance ski. The amount of engagement is a function of free foot tipping. Engagement also brings into play the design of the ski, ie, flex and sidecut.

Nowhere are the gross muscles used to control the shape of the turn. Nowhere is there active steering of the feet. Nowhere is there pressure control, except by regulating the amount of tipping by the free foot. The CM is controled by the tipping of the free foot; the more tipping, the further into the turn goes the CM.

There other, secondary movements, that go into pruducing a turn, such as counter, angulation and arm/poleplant position. Thank you Ski&Golf for point out the differences between ATS and PMTS. As much as a lot of folks on this forum would like to say the systems are the same, they are far different. Rather than beat each other up over this, why not just acknowedge that there is differences, and let it go? You teach your way and I will teach my way.

I will say this: Take two 60+ year old people with arthritis who have never skied. One is taught ATS and one is taught PMTS. I will guarantee the PMTS student will be around for a while. I doubt that the ATS student will get past Level 3. Why? It hurts, physically, to wedge. Even a narrow gliding wedge is quite painful. How do I know this? I am almost 67 and both knees are running bone on bone. And I still ski 100+ days a year.
post #36 of 68
Mike-m: I think you want to differentiate between "expert" skiing demos and what PSIA or any other system uses for beginning movements. Skidding is very much a part of developing skiing skills.
post #37 of 68
Rick H, you said:
>>One thing about PMTS that everyone overlooks, is every movement starts at the feet. Release from the old turn is accomplished by relaxing the thigh muscles and transfer weight to the new stance ski. At the same time the new free foot is lifted slightly and tipped to engage the new stance ski. The amount of engagement is a function of free foot tipping. Engagement also brings into play the design of the ski, ie, flex and sidecut.<<
On this statement I could not agree with you more. I will say that you could also substitue PSIA for PMTS in your statement. Mind you this is entirely different from substituting traditional teaching systems ie; something that I think has evolved within ski schools to be synomomous with PSIA but isn't.
I will break down your next paragraph a bit more as I don't agree with all of it.

>>Nowhere are the gross muscles used to control the shape of the turn.<<
I agree.
>>Nowhere is there active steering of the feet.<<
I would agree that there is no gross rotary but I would agrue that there is active steering. Active steering is a combination of movements, the least of which involves rotary movements. Rotary and steering are not synomomous. Steering is everything you have to do to guide the skis on their curved path including thinking with your brain and seeing with your eyes. You have acknowleged that what I call "steering" is most effectively done with the inside ski. Something Ydanr said, stuck with me like glue. The outside ski, stance, is you're "ride ski" and the inside ski is you're "guide ski".
>> Nowhere is there pressure control, except by regulating the amount of tipping by the free foot.<<
There is always fore/aft pressure control in turns. Unless the CM moves into the direction of the turn (forward and lateral) the turn will not be effectively initiated, thats pressure control.
>> The CM is controled by the tipping of the free foot; the more tipping, the further into the turn goes the CM.<<
Yah know I do agree with this one but was told by an examiner that if I said that line in an exam I would flunk. He said the CM is controlled by gravity. I finally gave up arguing and said ahh huh and discounted him. Not all are up to speed.
The more I look the less differences I really see. Its hard to differentiate truely good skiing.
I will say though that far less emphasis is placed on rotary and fore/aft movement in the PMTS philosophy and that is a definite plus when working with less athletic and flexible skiers. As for teaching my way, well no, I will teach according to the ski school philosophy and real estate constraints I am bound to work within.

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 12, 2001 07:06 PM: Message edited 1 time, by Pierre eh! ]</font>
post #38 of 68
There has been a lot of work within the industry, totally outside of PMTS, using "direct to parallel" teaching systems. Most experienced instructors are able to spot candidates for different mechanical focuses and then impliment them. I've certainly had many students over the years who because of injuries, skills they already have and such . . . don't need to spend time in a wedge. At the same time, some do. Even the best skiers in the world have a wedge as one of the tools in their 'bag of tricks', there is nothing inherently bad about a wedge - though clearly it is harder on the body over the long run and uses more energy, which is why it is best to only use it as required.
post #39 of 68
SCSA, I did want to pick on one thing Harb said:
>>I did come across some misinformation on the posts. They "the PSIA" faction
thinks tipping is the same as steering. Again, (they don't get it) they
don't understand their own terminology or biomechanics. If they could "read"
(without PSIA glasses on), the PMTS manual, it explains the difference
clearly. Beginning by relaxing, then tipping, these movements direct the
center of mass into the next turn and put the new inside ski on an edge
before the new downhill ski. In contrast, inside leg steering creates a flat
ski and it remains flat while increasing the skidding of both skis. The body
begins to pivot around it center axis. Steering also uses the external
rotators of the thigh, which naturally causes the skier to flex, putting
them in a more crouched position and blocking the movement of the center of
mass into the next turn.<<
I learned from PSIA gurus and did not learn steering as Harald Harb has suggested PSIA's official position would teach me and I also did not learn from PMTS. So if PSIA does not represent steering as tipping, relaxing and CM movement into the turn then how could I learn just that from PSIA???? Remember I didn't have formal instruction prior to becoming a PSIA intructor, I have not been an instructor for long and had no other outside influences.
Who is mis-representing here. Did PSIA mis-represent its teachings to me or is HH mis-representing PSIA?


<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 12, 2001 08:00 PM: Message edited 1 time, by Pierre eh! ]</font>
post #40 of 68
Folks - we all know that logic and reason are completely wasted here. I suggest a completely new tactic instead of running in circles. Here we go:

Hey, hows the weather guys/gals?! Its great here, cool and dry -- I'm enjoying it! Great weather eh!? Hey, how is your *weather*?

post #41 of 68
The weather here is better than 97% of the weather in the rest of the world.
post #42 of 68
Is there no room for pivoting in the PMTS system as is implied from the HH post? If so, then how does one maneuver in really tight short turns, which can occur in steeps, moguls and gates?
post #43 of 68

Maaattteee !!!!

Another sking nobody...bugger I thought I was alone out here.

Mate how are you. Weathers great, offshore with a 3-4ft swell and some nice crystal beachies. Big peace march in town today.

Hey in passing I taught skiing in Japan, Switzerland, Australia and USA. Stopped talking about the mechanics after level II exam. I was just confusing the clients and we all know confused clients don't tip.

Analogies with FEELING is my motto.

"we only hear what we want to hear"
post #44 of 68

I concur it's time to move on.

It's cold and snowy here in the Colorado High Country-we'll be making turns at Keystone and Loveland within two weeks. Even if it is on the early season "Ribbon of Death" we'll be there.
post #45 of 68
OK, we're moving on, but, to be polite, I just wanted to answer to Pierre eh!'s question about what I consider tall stance.

Here is my "definition" of comfortable stance when skiing: I like to have my knees bent forward right above my toes (front of the boot). SCSA's pictures showed his knees close to this imaginary point and everyone wanted to get his cuffs more upright. That is my mental image of tall stance vs more dynamic stance. Of course, I could be wrong.

I know that different skiers need different positions, but I am talking in general terms.
post #46 of 68
I will respond to HarveyD and then I agree that we move on.

There is no "pivot" turn in PMTS. In order to get a high edge angle requires a "reaching" pole plant that aligns with the heel binding. This puts the CM well into the new turn, and results in a very high edge angle and a very flexed ski.

Let's move on.... [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #47 of 68
I am the only one entitled to use "nobody"
here! (go see my first registration in this site)
Stop using it or I'll have to ask a fee from all of you!

Seriously speaking, I find the debates very interesting, particularly because there is not such a thing like this in Europe,
the debates are always between National school of thought, i.e the French, the Italian the Swiss and the Austrian, let's
call it, skiing philosophy...
I.E. the teaching done in the schools has as
a final goal the race. Then, in the Europa
cup or directly in the World cup, the ideas are confronted...and cascaded to the
everyday Joe-skier by the means of the

But I also find very strange that SCSA always begins a thread
with: "I've spoken to HH and what he said...."
I'd rather like Mr. HH to post his own thoughts, like Bob and Todd and all the others, in "first person" instead of through an ambassador.
THAT would add much more value to his words.
The 2 cents (euro) from the real Nobody.
post #48 of 68
Ha! You guys have just made it certain the HH will NEVER post here. Rick H, I don't really understand your answer about the pivot turns. In HH's new book, he clearly describes and pictures a short turn that starts by unwinding from an anticipated position on flattened skis.
post #49 of 68
Nice move, Todd. The weather in SD is cold and snowy. Just perfect.

SCSA. You've admittedly been a "skier" for what? Ten Minutes now? Try reading with your eyes open from now on. I had previously thought of you as a Long-time skier before your post about how you are still a rookie. (three years? You havn't even cut your teeth! There is so much more to learn than "Skiing Systems" and "Movement Patterns" and "Terminology") A little humility would be in order for you.

Yes everyone, I know... wasted breath.

post #50 of 68
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Todd Murchison:
Folks - we all know that logic and reason are completely wasted here. I suggest a completely new tactic instead of running in circles. Here we go:

Hey, hows the weather guys/gals?! Its great here, cool and dry -- I'm enjoying it! Great weather eh!? Hey, how is your *weather*?


Weather is beautiful. Cloudy & windy, driving rain in the streets. I'm about to take a walk with my dog, go to the park and dream of skiing while I run down anything with a pitch and around anything that looks like a fun line. :
post #51 of 68
Thread Starter 
Just trying to get some discussion going and you guys have a cow.

What do you really want to do? Sit around and talk about the same old stuff all the time? I can't just sit around here all the time talking about some examination or something like that - it's not my world.

Hey. If you don't want to engage, blow it off - go on to the next post. It's not like your being dragged into the thread.

Sorry. Old stuff is old because history never changes.
post #52 of 68
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SCSA:
Sorry. Old stuff is old because history never changes.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

"Exactly...Don't forget you are a part of Epicski history.
post #53 of 68

The short radius turn starts from flat skis, ie, two footed release. Because of the reaching/blocking pole plant, the CM is really into the turn and the stance ski has no place to go but on edge. I used this turn at Mammoth's Cornice Bowl late last Spring. A little spooky planting that far down hill, but I got over it and had a great run.
post #54 of 68
<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 13, 2001 05:37 PM: Message edited 1 time, by SLATZ ]</font>
post #55 of 68
Thread Starter 
Look for new pictures tomorrow.
post #56 of 68
Thread Starter 
I posted new pictures in the "Assesing fore/aft balance" thread.
post #57 of 68
I've been gone for a bit however I think I have something fairly salient to point out.

I was exposed to PSIA for the first time last year. I HAVE NEVER BEEN TOLD/TAUGHT TO STEER MY INSIDE SKI!

Where does HH see or suggest this is advocated in any PSIA material or teaching.

post #58 of 68

It is all the same movement applied to suit the terrain and speed.

I knew a guy called Joel Munn once and he could do short swing parallel turns on the almost flat at almost zero speed. His feet steering skills where very advanced but it was the subtle (and invisible) weight transfers and centered body core that made his "static turns" possible.

Leave the mechanical discussion alone and get out on the hill and try every exercise in the book with as little speed as possible (standing start)on a very gentle slope (no poles) and see what you can FEEL.

Centered body with subtle movements from the feet should be the goal. Try and feel your toes, mid foot and heel through the turn.

I believe all else flows from that place.

This post is for advanced skiers and teachers as a basic means of FEELING what is happening in the turn.

After a full season of personal FEELING discuss your findings, then work back to the manual.

Wedge or parallel it should all be in your bag of tricks.

If you are really game and have a buddy do these slow movements blind folded.

"the humble skier" [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #59 of 68
Try every exercise with as little speed possible. I have no problem with that!

One of the problems is that people are incredibly out of touch with their feet, that's why this exercise is a good idea. I just had my very first footbed appointment. I learned some very interesting things about what 28 years in the aerobic industry does to the feet.

With the recent popularity of Yoga and Pilates, in fitness, we are getting the shoes off people, and finally seeing what horrors were lurking within. Do you realize that many people stand with their toes clenched, giving them a too narrow base of support for balance?

I am not yet a savy enough skier to see a SIGNIFICANT difference in what I've learned from PSIA instructors and what Harb is advocating. I will, however, give Harb at least some credit for making the skiing public more aware of where the Kinetic Chain of events begin.
post #60 of 68
Never mind I was mistaken

<FONT COLOR="#800080" SIZE="1">[ October 15, 2001 09:35 PM: Message edited 1 time, by Powdigger ]</font>
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Instruction & Coaching
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Ski Instruction & Coaching › From HH on alignment and steering