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THE 500th THREAD!

post #1 of 74
Thread Starter 
Wow, I cant beleive I got this, it was sitting at 499 forever....

As the 500th thread, I thought it might be a good time to discuss what seems to be working on this board, what doesnt.

Keeping mind things like...What does "working" mean to you?

Which types of threads generate the most interest?

Anything else you would like to throw out there as food for thought....

PS:  To keep this thread on track posts should be related to what YOU think....not what you think others think/want.
Edited by Skidude72 - 10/4/09 at 5:12pm
post #2 of 74
Wow the 500th thread. How bout that?

What works for me is trying to weed through all the different opinions of what is right and right is wrong about the skiing viewed for MA.

It's uncanny how five different individuals see so many different things while looking at the same thing.

Imagine all the people out here in cyber skiland that might be trying to get something out of that, that they can apply to their own skiing in hopes of improvement.

With that in mind, I'd like to see video of all you instructors showing us yoour best skiing in various conditions and terrain so that we the general public can relate your prowress to your skiing knowledge and terminology. Please include steep, icy moguls and wind blown slab.

And to your PS, that's what I really think and don't care what others want.

P.S. I'll be patiently waiting for the first reply.
post #3 of 74
Nice idea, SkiDude!

What works for me? Threads that focus in on specific areas of skill, experience, knowledge, especially those that open up my mind to new options, new perspectives, and do so without dogma or blindly following the prognostications of absent experts.

I want to know what others think and why, what others experience and how it impacts them, and to generally grow together in both skiing and relationship.

I care deeply about what others think... 
post #4 of 74

Great ide for a thread.

There is and never will be consensus regarding techniqe on this forum and therefore what works the best for me are discussions where people respekt divergence. Just as I have to be patient with my students on snow I need to be patient with fellow epic members here on the forum.

It should be mandatory for posters here to post skiing of themselves. Anything is better than nothing. We give demos on snow to our students, here it should be the same.

post #5 of 74
I think this place is way too damned entertaining. Don't change a thing... everything seems to be working fine.
post #6 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeluvaSkier View Post

I think this place is way too damned entertaining. Don't change a thing... everything seems to be working fine.

Sometimes we get folks with agendas looking for attention and approval elsewhere but otherwise this site is always a work in progress and a little honest criticism can be helpful.
post #7 of 74
This particular forum (under this, and past forum-titles) has always provided the most interesting material on the site.  

However contentious, disrespectful, obnoxious or polarizing this forum gets no one can deny the shear variety of ideas that show up and get discussed in here.  From WaistSteering to Flatboarding, clear mechanics to meta-physics, Biomechanics to Perceived Levitation... it has it all.

I like the topic variety.  I like the diversity of participants, their backgrounds and beliefs.  With a long time interest in writing styles I especially like the structural variety of material posted here when participants are making their case.   I continue to learn more communications techniques (both what works - and what doesn't work) in getting ideas across and possibly accepted.

There may not be many 'new methods' of skiing left in the world but there are always new ways to perceive and describe skiing technique, as well as many new (and more accurate) mechanical analyses readily available for discussion. 

This is probably the only place on the Internet where new ideas can (and do) get posted to receive a rigorous peer review (and/or a rigorous beating).  Even if an idea is trounced when first introduced it often comes back in a refined form that gets accepted (if grudgingly, even secretly...).  


I also like the degree of Moderation as it currently seems to stand.  Anything should go here - except material with malicious intent, personal attacks, endless proselytizing or manipulative forms of heckling and undermining as these things contain no real content - only positioning, maneuvering, 'insisting'  and discrediting.   Such material will always appear (eventually) but I'm always happy to see someone step in and require the unruly to tone it down or face the prospect of material (or participant) deletion.

.ma
post #8 of 74
+1 on MichaelA's opinion.  Well said.
post #9 of 74
I get PMs frequently from people who used to enjoy this forum who wonder what happened to it--one person whose contributions have been missing lately called whatever happened to the technique & instruction forums "going over to the dark side." 

How do we let the people who left know that it's safe to return?
post #10 of 74
Let's have a party !

Some thought and discussion provoking threads like the one BB started last year really jump started the season. Tale of three turns.    This began a great discussion that spawned many other discussions .

This forum is driven by the expertise that comes to play and share here. I think it's time to ramp our teaching up and read, learn,share, make mistakes and become a better skier and teacher because of the experience.
Weem's mindbender of a thread had lots of good discussion. Skidude ,Bud, JASP, Michael and E  have made some good contributions and TDK has always put himself out there to share his work  and learn through collective criticism so it's not a blank chalkboard . We've got great contributors.  Maybe it's the lack of exciting (drama, back biting,name calling) arguments over terminology and teaching sources ?

This is the glass half full analogy. Maybe some find reasonable arguments boring but I learn from them because each party has to explain themselves without rancor and it leads to deeper understandings and possible revelations presented by the dissenting parties.
 
Why is it not what it can be or was ?  That's easy to say . How about what can you do to shape it to your benefit ? We have peace. Will will always have dissent but the  current presentation is more appropriate towards learning through taking chances with your thoughts ,making your point without a beat down coming and opposing views still being aired to mine the truths therein.
Edited by GarryZ - 10/13/09 at 10:06am
post #11 of 74
I agree Garry--it is what we (will) make of it. 
post #12 of 74
I am assuming that some of the terminology from the darkside will be here to stay.  If that is "the dark side", then it will never be "safe to return".

There are no more arguments regarding the efficacy of certain movements, or many questions regarding the precise nature of any movement being described (by anyone).  

Since those questions have vanished, I find myself thinking we've lost some of our critical faculties and will to bring objectivity into this sport.

I'd hate to see the technique forum filled only with talk of intent and the "size of your smile".  That stuff belongs in a different forum.  Technique is about technique.  It's not about will/power etc.. those are coaching notions.
post #13 of 74
I agree that technique is one thing and teaching is another, BigE. That's why we have separate forums. 

It would be nice if we all shared understanding of a common terminology, but we don't. It will always be incumbent on the explainer to define his or her terms to the satisfaction of their audience. In that sense, a term is only as useful as its usage in a sentence is clear. If the term and its usage are only clear to a cadre of insiders, then the term is probably jargon.  

I'm not sure what the term "dark side" means in an absolute sense -- while I understand that its pop origin is in Star Wars, I suspect its cultural roots are in the Dark Ages, when ignorance and dogma reigned supreme. It would be revitalizing if we could be all about open inquiry and not about how well one can advocate a position or argument that would, if adopted, shut down the open inquiry.  
post #14 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by BigE View Post

I'd hate to see the technique forum filled only with talk of intent and the "size of your smile".  That stuff belongs in a different forum.  Technique is about technique.  It's not about will/power etc.. those are coaching notions.
Not sure which you mean: do you think that there should be no talk of intent, will, or, presumably, the other corners of the diamond, here on the "Technique & Analysis" forum? BTW, "Power" in the Diamond is the technical aspects. Which, I argue, is only one component of "Technique & Analysis".

technique |tekˈnēk|nouna way of carrying out a particular task, esp. the execution or performance of an artistic work or a scientific procedure.• skill or ability in a particular field he has excellent technique [in sing. an established athlete with a very good technique.• a skillful or efficient way of doing or achieving something tape recording is a good technique for evaluating our own communications.

analysis |əˈnaləsis|noun ( pl. -ses |-ˌsēz|)detailed examination of the elements or structure of something, typically as a basis for discussion or interpretation statistical analysisan analysis of popular culture.• the process of separating something into its constituent elements. Often contrasted withsynthesis .• the identification and measurement of the chemical constituents of a substance or specimen.• short for psychoanalysis .• Linguistics the use of separate, short words and word order rather than inflection or agglutination to express grammatical structure.• Mathematics the part of mathematics concerned with the theory of functions and the use of limits, continuity, and the operations of calculus.
post #15 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo View Post

I'm not sure what the term "dark side" means in an absolute sense -- while I understand that its pop origin is in Star Wars, I suspect its cultural roots are in the Dark Ages, when ignorance and dogma reigned supreme.

...assigning a meaning that reinforces your beliefs, you are...
post #16 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by ssh View Post



Not sure which you mean: do you think that there should be no talk of intent, will, or, presumably, the other corners of the diamond, here on the "Technique & Analysis" forum? BTW, "Power" in the Diamond is the technical aspects. Which, I argue, is only one component of "Technique & Analysis".

technique |tekˈnÄ“k|nouna way of carrying out a particular task, esp. the execution or performance of an artistic work or a scientific procedure.• skill or ability in a particular field he has excellent technique [in sing. an established athlete with a very good technique.• a skillful or efficient way of doing or achieving something tape recording is a good technique for evaluating our own communications.

analysis |əˈnalÉ™sis|noun ( pl. -ses |-ËŒsÄ“z|)detailed examination of the elements or structure of something, typically as a basis for discussion or interpretation statistical analysisan analysis of popular culture.• the process of separating something into its constituent elements. Often contrasted withsynthesis .• the identification and measurement of the chemical constituents of a substance or specimen.• short for psychoanalysis .• Linguistics the use of separate, short words and word order rather than inflection or agglutination to express grammatical structure.• Mathematics the part of mathematics concerned with the theory of functions and the use of limits, continuity, and the operations of calculus.

Nothing you've posted here changes the fact that technique and analysis are about the technical aspects.

Recognition of what constitutes a defective movement pattern and how to correct said pattern should be what a technique and analysis forum is about.  

Really, smiling and willing things to happen differently ain't gonna change an ingrained defective movement pattern.  The pattern needs to be identified and prescriptive changes need to be made.  When we're talking about a movement pattern, the skier needs to be conscious of what to do.  That doesn't change for swimming, diving, jumping, weightlifting, running etc. etc.  

Sheesh, tell them how to move, what to move, in what sequence to move and then show them!  All the analogies, smiling, cajoling and cheer leading in the world won't help one bit if the teacher lacks a SOLID understanding of how to perform the given movement. That is true if you are teaching a weightlifter how to "clean and jerk" or a skier how to carve.

Student centered TEACHING is supposed to be prescriptive for the student.  It's not about helping someone deal with the disappointment of the drive through messing up their "double-double".
post #17 of 74
My opinion, I think everyone here can assume that the "Dark Side" relates to PMTS followers and Harb as Darth Vader. Basically because he represents veerything contrary to the skiing ideas of PSIA and those members who feel skiers need to know a multitude of movements to be a really good skier. Rather than using a single method of instruction from a self centered person, and an excellent skier, who happens to own a patent on his method.

In my estimation, what has deteriorated the Technique and instruction forums is a lack of inpute from ESA instructors and the top level instructors who reside here. One would think that with the exclusion of PMTS discussion and certain bad boys who constantly badgered Epic's elite, and with the presence of a multitude of moderators carefully guarding the forum, we would see greater participation from some of the instructors who could really help. No offense to anyone, but people might be getting tired of the same old people who dominate the discussions in there.

How about some new blood?
post #18 of 74
I don't think it matters what the dark side means--that's not the point. The point is, how do we get past it to having good discussions again?
post #19 of 74
In other words, where's the credibility?

Why don't any of the ESA instructors participate here?
post #20 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars View Post
 I'd like to see video of all you instructors showing us yoour best skiing in various conditions and terrain so that we the general public can relate your prowress to your skiing knowledge and terminology. Please include steep, icy moguls and wind blown slab.
 
I'm of the opinion that we learn a lot more from watching really excellent skiers than we do from the feedback they provide watching us.  It is the not quite born naturals that make the best instructors.  People that have had to work vary hard to become pretty good skiers make much better teachers than those to whom the sport comes so naturally.

Let's look at a basketball analogy.  Mike Krzyzewski and Phil Jackson weren't stellar players, but Michael Jordan was.  What do you think about their coaching abilities?  Why?

It was Erich Sailer and Martina Sailer, not Toni Sailer, that ended up coaching golden kids like Lindsey Vaughn.

Just my .02
post #21 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo View Post

The point is, how do we get past it to having good discussions again?

Perhaps by not labeling individuals or their contributions as "from the dark side" in the first place? I'd say that probably does a bit to stifle conversation before it even starts... but what do I know.
post #22 of 74
Long ago I was involved in a number of restaurants and became familiar with notion that "People attract people".  That's not quite the whole story as it's the nature of those people already present which determines who else will be attracted to the place.

Bars and restaurants with loud, rambunctious, rowdy patrons tend to attract more such rowdy people.   It doesn't matter how good the food may be so long as it's tolerable since these people are primarily there for the atmosphere anyway.  Connoiseurs primarily seeking quality food over polite conversation are quickly driven away because the food quality is hit or miss, and even when good food is received it's not enjoyed due to the rambunctious environment.

A manager might try improving the quality of food while 86'ing the most unruly patrons in order to establish a more respectable joint - but then, those patrons who were only there for the chaos will probably leave to go find it elsewhere.   If so, the place will remain quiet until previously disappointed connoiseurs accept that the place has changed and find themselves hesitantly willing to try the place again.

Antelope at watering holes have the same problem.  After seeing many buddies devoured by crocodiles and experiencing several personal attacks most competent antelope will avoid that watering hole, even when thirsty.  Only after one or two brave souls dip their snouts in at the bank - and come back safely - will others begin approaching that bank of disaster again.  Simply telling them it's 'OK now' wont do it, after all - you might just be a Croc farmer looking for some fodder...

.ma
post #23 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeluvaSkier View Post




Perhaps by not labeling individuals or their contributions as "from the dark side" in the first place? I'd say that probably does a bit to stifle conversation before it even starts... but what do I know.
 

I may have coined that phrase Greg, originally that is. You know me, it was more in jest than fact during the PMTS-PSIA wars in which my warped mind was placing cyber figures to major players from both groups during that time. The term was fun not fact.

( once you give in to the dark side, you can never come back Luke)

Are there any truths in that?
post #24 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post



I'm of the opinion that we learn a lot more from watching really excellent skiers than we do from the feedback they provide watching us.  It is the not quite born naturals that make the best instructors.  People that have had to work vary hard to become pretty good skiers make much better teachers than those to whom the sport comes so naturally.

Let's look at a basketball analogy.  Mike Krzyzewski and Phil Jackson weren't stellar players, but Michael Jordan was.  What do you think about their coaching abilities?  Why?

It was Erich Sailer and Martina Sailer, not Toni Sailer, that ended up coaching golden kids like Lindsey Vaughn.

Just my .02



 

I can relate to that. Some of the best coachs in sports were never great players, but understood the games they were fond of and more than anything, and here's the key, they were respected as knowing what they were talking about, and people believed in them and respected them enough to follow them right off the bridge if need be. Great motovators.

But, I think skiing is different. If you had the chance to see your instructors ski before you took a lesson, would you not choose the best? I suppose there's always a chance the best skier isn't the best instructors. Some people aren't good people people. But, there are many instructors in this world who shouldn't be giving instructions to anyone. And just because they have the instructor lable here, doesn't meen they are responcible enough or respectable enough to have thousands reading what they are saying.

To me, what I think would bring the most respect to the table here is for the instructors here to show us what they are bringing to the table. I can pick for myself. To date, I've skied with Pierre, Rick, Heluva, Steve, Bud, and a few other who aren't instructors. At least when these guys participate, I can relate them to their words and know in my own mind what I can or can't take from the table.

And for the record, i've never been a big fan of giving diffacult, descriptive terms to simple skiing movements. KISS even in this forum goes a long way for the readers to get anything out of the discussion otherwise, they tune out. Which is what is happening right now. Discussions dominated by a few who aren't even instructors.
post #25 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lars View Post


Are there any truths in that?

I don't think there is any reason (other than the paranoia of a few) that where or how you learn to ski should suddenly exclude you from accurately and truthfully discussing the technical and analytical aspects of the sport. Such a background certainly does not make you immediately less accurate or truthful as some seem to suggest. Furthermore, my thoughts on this forum have always been that regardless of background, anyone who posts information here should be held accountable for the wonderful or horrible information they are posting - however recent history shows that this is not the case.
post #26 of 74
I was quoting a PM I'd received, Heluva. 

I like your analogy, Michael. The problem is, because of the damage done, some think the answer is to establish a private, gated preserve for these discussions. However, I think that there needs to be a critical mass of people engaged in the discussions to keep it from becoming a clique. 

I don't think it needs to be instructors-only either. Instructors tend to be more concerned with teaching people than dissecting World Cup video clips. Like Weems, I learn from the discussions on this forum. I bring more expertise to the teaching forum, because that's what I studied and where I focused my attention during my teaching career. Unlike many who frequent the technique forum, I am not an engineer, I never took courses in calculus or fluid mechanics, so receiving a clear explanation of the underlying mechanics in skiing is much appreciated. 

There actually are a lot of engineers in ski instruction--perhaps because skiing attracts engineering types--I asked one once why he taught. He said, because it enables me to exercise parts of my brain and aspects of my personality that otherwise would be dormant in my engineering job. This reinforces my point, that technical analysis and teaching require two different skill sets and two different mind sets which rarely reside inherently within one individual. Most of us bulge to one side or the other.

The people who contribute to this forum are not just those with the answers. The ones with the good questions are equally important to the health and well-being of this forum. If we have the attitude that there are no stupid questions, the experts here would get more business.
Edited by nolo - 10/14/09 at 7:20am
post #27 of 74
Here's a thought.  I wonder how much of the stagnation is a product of been there, done that syndrome.

A search of any technical topic on this site could supply any student with enough good information to keep him/her busy reading a learning for quite some time.  There's very little under the skiing technique sun that hasn't been covered fully here at Epic already.  I'm only one coach of many who post here, and I now have almost 5000 posts, mostly of in depth technical explanation and discussion, enough to compose many books on ski technique. 

I suppose many of the old timer pros here find it less than motivating to do a redo on things they've already written about at length already.  After all, it does require a major donation of time and effort to write up highly technical information that is easily digested by the masses.  Perhaps, as Lars suggests, as new to Epic pros drift in to the forum they'll be more interested in rebuilding the wheels thats been rolled through here so many times. 

While we wait for their arrival, perhaps going back and bumping some oldy but goody threads could spur a fresh round of learning for new members, or a new chance at review and reconsideration for those who have been around for a while. 
post #28 of 74
I think you hit on some of my feelings Rick. In the 10 years i've been here there have been so many great topics of discussion, and so many great thoughts from some great minds pass through this forum. Topics get beat up. Posters get beat up. The really good minds get lathargic in the discussions that have been gone over again and again. People get bored. Some leave for a while. Some never come back.

As we all wish this forum could come back to it's once thought of greatness, who's not to say it isn't still great? Certainly many new people visit here everyday. What can we do to attract them to ask questions? What can we do to get them to enter into discussions? I know for a fact, some start reading and don't understand the terminology and get scared off. Then there are some who see the arguements and don't participate. Even I get tired of the same old thing. The same people engaged all the time. The same movements all the time. The same arguement all the time. That's why I've been pushing for something new. Tip of the week thing. Ask a pro sort of thing. Get some real instructional video in here some time. Get some ESA instructors sometime.

I learned a long time ago that if you want to get something out of it, you have to put something into it first. So nolo, put something into it. I'm a firm believer that your ESA would double it's participants if your coaches would participate more in your forums. If they can't or  won't, i'd use coaches who will. Even at the sacrifice of knowledge and talent.
post #29 of 74
You point is taken, Lars. My inability to make anyone do anything is extremely disappointing to me too. 

That's an excellent idea to bump some of the old threads with currency, Rick. I agree with your post, it's hard to get reheated leftovers to excite our gourmets.
post #30 of 74
Quote:
Originally Posted by nolo View Post

I agree with your post, it's hard to get reheated leftovers to excite our gourmets.
 


Which is why Epic should explore "The Dark Side".  That's something that actually has not been done without bias.
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