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Back seat driving

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 
Today I went to Mt. Creek, great conditions. I tried very hard to follow Larry W's advice in another post and what I have read in H. Harb's book. In my effort to do this, I discovered I am a back seat driver, I have much more confidence making left turns since I can step onto the right ski which seems to understand pretty well, and get myself in trouble with the left, which, even after a good turn on the other leg, seems to be lagging behind, resulting in catching an edge or slamming on the 'stem brake."
Any ideas? (please don't flame me for using Harb's book!)
Chas [img]tongue.gif[/img]
post #2 of 29
Take a lesson with a good instructor [img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img]
post #3 of 29
Disski is right ... the money could have gone to a lesson and the time you spent reading the book should have been spent on the snow. If you only ski three to five times a year, well, you will probably "plateau" at an intermediate level.
post #4 of 29
Yuki - does "step onto the right ski" make you wince like it does me?
I read that bit & went "argh - lesson required"

Even when I skate it doesn't feel at all like stepping (Ok I skate really badly but still) - I try HARD to feel the outside edge before putting any weight on the ski & then roll... I have the most trouble with the "glide" part - because of my balance - same problem with the inline skates...
post #5 of 29
Nothing substitutes a good coach advice. But with all due respect, what's wrong with reading the books? There are good books on PSIA approved techniques and on PMTS. The customer is always right, so let them shop around and choose what they prefer. I think this is especially right if the guy skis only five days a year and wants to know better before he buys a lesson. After all, books are cheap compared to a private lesson with the good coach.

My advise is stick with one system only and don't mix various approaches which may contradict each other.

The PMTS related questions may be easily posted on PMTS forum at http://realskiers.com/pmtsforum/ .
post #6 of 29
chasboy I certainly will not fault you for buying Harb's book. I think it has a lot of good things in it.

You have not adequately described what is going on in you're skiing for me to give you much feedback. I will say that there are pitfalls to every exercise and method of skiing out there and Harb's book is not different. If you are not practicing the right thing you will get good at the wrong thing. I would echo the others and say spend a little time with a pro and go over some of the things that you are doing and make sure you are practicing the right things.
post #7 of 29
I agree that you've not provided a lot to go on and when you do, instructors like Pierre will provide you some great insight into your skiing. In the meantime, I'll give you some thoughts based my learning experience. I'll tell you up front that I'm no instructor, and have no bias for or against any system. I just want to ski well and have been working hard at it for a little while now. My advice is to quit actively stepping on one ski or another in an effort to turn.

When I started skiing and had an early lesson my instructor actively instructed us to shift our weight from one ski to another to initiate turns. As I progressed somewhat I continued this thinking this was correct, and had read in various instructional books (including HH's and Tito's) that this was correct. The result for me was the harder I tried, the more sequential my movements were, the more problems I discovered, and I was just not progressing. I now look at active weight shifts as "big" movements, which in my opinion and experience lead to bad habits and bad skiing. When I started to relax, make subtle movements, initiate turns by tipping the inside foot from a neutral position, I started progressing at a pretty decent rate. Your weight shift will happen...just let it and don't force it with big movements. I don't know if this makes any sense to you or anyone else, but it has helped me. Good luck!!

PS. I didn't solve my initial problems on my own. I got plenty of help here and with on the snow instruction from a PSIA level III instructor.

[ February 02, 2004, 08:48 PM: Message edited by: Coach13 ]
post #8 of 29
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by disski:
[QB]Yuki - does "step onto the right ski" make you wince like it does me?
I read that bit & went "argh - lesson required"

Lets just say I used an unfortunate way of describing what I do. I basically meant that I have better balance and control with the right ski over the left. I find myself 'behind' the left ski much more than the right.

In addition, I find that the more subtle my movements, the better I feel, but sometimes it results in catching an inside edge, largely from being out of balance, I would guess fore & aft.
Chas
post #9 of 29
Aaarrgghhh - this "catching an inside edge" bit again - who plays catch with all these edges all the time & why? I do not juggle my skis very often....

Are you trying to say you struggle with simultaneity of edge release/engagement?
post #10 of 29
Thread Starter 
[ I do not juggle my skis very often....

Are you trying to say you struggle with simultaneity of edge release/engagement?[/QB][/quote]

Ski juggling. Very tough, I tried cat juggling after seeing "The Jerk" but couldn't get that to work either.

Anyway, your second quote is right on. I can blame both 'incidents' on trying to 'catch up' and be on center on my left ski.
Chas

Basketball cheer for MENSA members: "harass them, harass them! Make them relinquish the sphere!!"
post #11 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally posted by yuki:
Disski is right ... the money could have gone to a lesson and the time you spent reading the book should have been spent on the snow. If you only ski three to five times a year, well, you will probably "plateau" at an intermediate level.
I really don't want to get into an argument here, but I started skiing before some of you were born, and learned different lessons AND becoming a true parallel skier in those days was much harder than it is now. I took lots of lessons, and did the best I could. A 15 year hiatus from the sport does not negate the fact that muscle memory will cause one to follow techniques they once had 'down'. Hence my reversion to the stem christie, which, in the parlance of many experienced skiers "will get you down from anywhere".

I have had good lessons and bad. I did not want to take the chance on a lesson that did not "speak" to me. Instead I bought a book and video that did. I did not want to take another lesson where I'm told to 'roll my knees in the direction of the turn'. That never made sense to me and still doesn't.

I really appreciate all of the sincere advice from all on this forum.
Chas
post #12 of 29
Quote:
Originally posted by Hobbit:
Nothing substitutes a good coach advice. But with all due respect, what's wrong with reading the books? There are good books on PSIA approved techniques and on PMTS. The customer is always right, so let them shop around and choose what they prefer. I think this is especially right if the guy skis only five days a year and wants to know better before he buys a lesson. After all, books are cheap compared to a private lesson with the good coach.

My advise is stick with one system only and don't mix various approaches which may contradict each other.

The PMTS related questions may be easily posted on PMTS forum at http://realskiers.com/pmtsforum/ .
What ever happened to "Check for understanding?" And isn't this forum like reading a book? : ----------Wigs
post #13 of 29
This forum is like reading a book for the lurkers, and like a somewhat clumsy conversation for those willing to post!
post #14 of 29
[quote]Originally posted by Wigs:
Quote:
What ever happened to "Check for understanding?" And isn't this forum like reading a book? : ----------Wigs
Yep, except that you can't ask a book questions like you can here. And...in a book you get one point of view. That's what's so great about this forum. [img]smile.gif[/img]

PS. I'm not knocking the books or tapes, I own most of them. In my humble opinion, however, I get better info/advice/clarification here.
post #15 of 29
Chasboy - I tell the ski school what I want from the lesson up front....

eg "I do NOT want a lesson where I am told to roll my knees to the hill - it does NOT work for me"
"I want an instructor who can teach technical stuff - I can't copy movement patterns"

whatever....
THEN if the instructor says anything I don't get - I ask questions - lots of questions .... If they don't get answered - I go back to ski school & tell them it was an unsatisfactory lesson.
If the lesson does not meet my lesson requirements - I go back to ski school & tell them it was not what I had requested.

They QUICKLY improve at finding you a well qualified & hopefully well matched instructor - they hate giving away freebies.

Better still - take one of those week long group ones with guarantee of improvement & tell them up front what your goal is from the lesson.
post #16 of 29
Chasboy
Let me know next time you head up to Mt Creek. I'm there every weekend and occasionally at night. I'd be glad to take a couple of runs with you when I'm not working.
Bill
post #17 of 29
Thread Starter 
Disski, thanks for the info. I am very encouraged. I will definitely follow your advice. I realize that a professional's view of what I am doing (notice I left out right and wrong, cause who knows right now!?) will be helpful, and you have given me the method of getting the right professional!!

BillA, thanks for the invite. I've been warned away from Mt. Creek on the weekend tho'. Its a 90 minute drive from my house, so nites are kinda cumbersome. Ever there during the week, daytime?

Thanks guys,
Chas
post #18 of 29
Chasboy
I'll be there this Friday (2/6).
post #19 of 29
Quote:
Originally posted by chasboy:
Disski, thanks for the info. I am very encouraged. I will definitely follow your advice. I realize that a professional's view of what I am doing (notice I left out right and wrong, cause who knows right now!?) will be helpful, and you have given me the method of getting the right professional!!

I'm a professional lesson taker - means I have had LOTS of practice [img]smile.gif[/img]

(Combine that with tricky learning needs - so I need to be tough)

I am sure I hold the ski school record for most private lessons in a season for a single student. My limit so far was 70 private lessons in 1 short Australian season.

I tend to take in all the info I can from every instructor - mush it all around for a while - then spit it all back at my regular instructor with a "when so & so says such & such that is trying to do the same as when so & so says such & such isn't it?" kind of take .... If I put enough bits together sometimes they solve my puzzles for me - make the hard stuff easier...
post #20 of 29
When taking all of those lessons down under did you ever run into a Bob Irwin (One of the all time greatest in the US< Europe, or Falls creek). I skied with Bob when he was in the states for years. The neat thing was Bob never sugarcoated his feedback. When the movements were not there he told you. The reason I am enclosing this here is that chasboy is herring way to much. At this time a coach is needed and one voice will probably be better than a weekly list of changes. If this book is helping keep reading it, the more you know the better for you! When you take a lesson you will have an idea of what is being said. Be a sponge, but make sure that the information you are absorbing is correct. This is my worry here with you reading all of this feed back on your skiing. I also agree that your weight transfer turns are not great and have consoled you in prior posts. Remember that most skiers do not use bio mechanics in there skiing. This is what makes the movements so hard. The road to change can be slow with ups and downs but things will change. Look at the progress you have made already, you are becoming more aware of balance or the lack of balance. Also dismiss the silly thought that if you only ski a few times annually that you will never improve. Who ever thinks this is foolish. Skiing at your level is constantly winning small battles that in the end will win the war. When find something that works take the rest of the day to practice it until the move becomes second nature. The next time you ski practice the move and then try something else. Remember just because you read something in one of these posts doesn’t mean it will work for you or even correct. I would also suggest that you try a trip to the Colorado or any other resort in the west. I feel the coaching is by far better than what I found in the Mid-west. A full time certified instructor will help you more than all of the posting s you are reading here. Again best of luck
LW
post #21 of 29
Quote:
Originally posted by Larry W:
When taking all of those lessons down under did you ever run into a Bob Irwin (One of the all time greatest in the US< Europe, or Falls creek). I skied with Bob when he was in the states for years. The neat thing was Bob never sugarcoated his feedback. When the movements were not there he told you. LW
Ah yes I know Bob & Mrs Bob & Baby Bob (not so baby now)

SnoKarver knows Bob too. (Come back SnoKarver)

Bob's nick name is Satan - given to him by a student snokarver sent to have lessons with him in Oz. Apparently this lady would start lessons with "If you blow sunshine up my arse you're fired"

My regular instructor is a total charmer - known for such pieces of wisdom as "That is not skiing that is CRAP" - actually it went on a lot longer than that but you get the picture.

[img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img]

Note - I offered no wisdom on skiiing - only on how to increase the odds of finding a good instructor.
I am a total sponge - but I only take info & slurp it aound from books/internet etc. The stuff I learn on snow is what fixes the bits in the information tree I build.

RE: LESS DAYS ON SNOW
So inline skate a lot - again take lessons ocassionally so you are working on GOOD technical skating. Join a speed skating group(they like technique for some reason -sorta like ski racers do)
post #22 of 29
Thread Starter 
Inline skating?
Does that really help? I have been interested in that for awhile, especially some that I have seen with ski poles. I ride a recumbent bike in the warm weather (a real one, not inside a gym) but when I get home from work my first thought is my 2 mini schnauzers who are so happy to see me. Since they also love exercise, we go on walks or mini hikes during the week. I just don't have the heart to come home, get changed and then leave them for an hour or 2 after work. Inline skating would keep me closer to the neighborhood and maybe I wouldn't have to go as long, especially after my wife comes home to be with the girls. What about those 'skates' I see that your ski boots mount to?
Thanks!!
chas
btw, Larry W. I thank you for your kind honest answer. I am wondering, what is the typo for 'herring'??
post #23 of 29
Sorry for my poor spelling. The word should have been "Hearing".

Good to know Bob I has not lost his charm! My favorite quotes

Skiing is like masterbation, we don't want to watch

A MA session where the trainer didin't get the correct movement pattern "thats dummer than dog shit"

If you see Bob in NZ, please tell Bob,claire, and Rorie hello from Larry !!!!!
post #24 of 29
Quote:
Originally posted by chasboy:
Inline skating?
Does that really help?
Short answer YES

I'm a disabled skier with a REAL balance problem - as in without being "taught" to balance I CAN'T.
I was sent inline skating to help the balance.
Took me a while to learn to do it well enough to go solo

The summer I first learnt to skate alone I was made to skate 3 times a week by my skate instructor - for most of the summer.
One ski instructor was so happy with how much my skiing improved over summer he started telling other ski students to go skating. Another friend who was an Oz level 1 instructor decided SHE was skating the next summer - because she could not believe the change in my movement patterns over the summer. (primarily edging skills)

Note - skate instructor is a IISA qualified instructor & all early lessons were designed to aid my skiing (ie he did NOT teach me the upper body rotation into the turn) My skiing is now strong enough that my skate lessons ignore my skiing. (I have very few as it is hard for me to get to them)
post #25 of 29
Quote:
Originally posted by Larry W:
Good to know Bob I has not lost his charm! My favorite quotes

If you see Bob in NZ, please tell Bob,claire, and Rorie hello from Larry !!!!!
Unlikely in the near future - but sure [img]smile.gif[/img]
post #26 of 29
Thread Starter 
[quote]Originally posted by disski:
Quote:
Originally posted by chasboy:
[qb]Inline skating?
Does that really help?
Short answer YES

Disski, I don't have to be told twice about a good idea. What type of skates should I get? Do I need high end skates or high speed ones?

what about those boards with skate wheels that hold your boot into a binding?
Chas
post #27 of 29
Ummm - I went & talked to the skate shop.... they had a ski instructor (buddy of my instructor) who teaches skate to ski classes. So maybe they were more useful than normal - but I think any good skate shop should know its stuff.

They told me not to get really high end skates - the extra money is in FAST bearings. Wheels & bearings can all be replaced later in good quality skates. They told me to get good(not cheap) skates with boots that fitted REALLY well. We tried lots on & I took the ones that fitted best.

If you are really into stuff like jibing or want to play skate hockey etc you may make different choices than not (wheels can be rockered for instance)

I am not keen on the ski boot ones. Would you try to race an alpine race on some tele skis? Would you snow board on a skate board with strap on boots? etc. Horses for courses.

If you learn to skate well (REALLY well - as in technically very proficient) some of the movements will NOT transfer to skiing. That is something you will have to decide at the time - are you having 2 complementary sporting interests(my choice) or just skating to ski. I am still accused of skating like a skier - I don't put body into turns enough because I am used to still upper body. Oh well.
The skating still provides great ski fitness training & the foot & balance skills are similar - as you strengthen in 1 the other also improves.

The shop I bought skates from gave free beginner lessons(group) & takes recreational group skates on weekends that tour the city.
So check that all out. Try IISA - see if they have stuff near you.
post #28 of 29
Quote:
Originally posted by Larry W:
When find something that works take the rest of the day to practice it until the move becomes second nature. The next time you ski practice the move and then try something else. LW
Now that reminds me - I am unsure of the numbers - but my instructor says it takes something like 5000 repetitions of a NEW movement for it to become a learnt movement (natural).

If at any time during those 5000 you go back to the OLD movement for any time you have to start the count again.
he says this is why so many people get "stuck" at an intermediate level. OLD movements feel 'right' because we have done them so long. This means NEW movements will feel WRONG for a long time (to the body's internal system). We usually need the regular feedback to make the change. For this reason he likes to have at least 2 students in a private lesson - he sends them off to be each others feedback.

Nolo, Pierre, Arc - can you comment on this stuff?
post #29 of 29
Not Nolo or Pierre, but I can comment. Believe it or not, the theory originates from dog training. WOOF! Depending on who you are speaking to, the numbers change. I heard 1,000,but why quibble, the theory remains the same.

Both Bob Barnes, and ToddM. like to quote the Maher brothers: "If it did not feeel strange, you did not change!"
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