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Do you unweight on the steeps? - Page 3

post #61 of 87
I very much disagree with Bob, Nolo, Fastman that changes in ski technology have lead to a different kind of plateau/stagnation but a plateua never the less.

IMHO, the feedback received from modern skis (not only the shape but tuned mechanical characteristics) are a tremendous teaching aid that allow skiers to learn much more than they ever could before. While instruction can certainly enhance this learning I believe that even without, a skier can learn much more on their own than they ever could with older technologies. I would say that this learning effect is enhanced with increasing skill levels but is present throughout the cycle.

Finally, my observation (gross generalization) of "average" skiers on new ski technology is that they still do not adequately utilize "tip and turn" and thus loose out on much of the benefits new ski technology has to offer.
post #62 of 87
True wealth is knowing that you have enough!

CalG
post #63 of 87
Quote:
Everybody can "rip even more" on a low angle groomer. You can "rip even more" on shaped skis? So what?
ok so mm admits that shape skis are easier to ski...

So here's your main point and one that was pretty common when shape skis were first coming out:

Quote:
I for one, do not want my skiing to get easier. I want to be a better skier. I want to do it on my own.
So far no one's come out with an autopilot for any ski straight or shaped. Usually when I'm going downhill I have to put in some sort of input or I'll just go straight till I hit a tree. Of course I don't "do it on my own" since I don't ski naked without boots or any equipment. Since it is skiing, it involves skis at least. Since there's skis there's boots involved too, which means there's bindings also. Then since it's cold and my body just can't protect itself on its own there's clothing that I deem necessary to put on.

We can become better skiers on any equipment. Personally I think one can become a -much- better skier on shaped skis even if you go back to straight.

Why can't you do railroad tracks with straight skis? Just because you go a lot straighter and faster doesn't mean you can't do them.
post #64 of 87
Si,

If the skis are such a tremendous teaching aid, and use of new technologies is widespread, then why do we see so few skiers in harmony with their skis and so many hackers?

MM,

You be the Ted Nugent of skiing. I salute you and your loincloth! [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
post #65 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by Tog:
Why does he refuse to use shape skis?
He said he refuses to use shape skis, for the same reason I use a bow to go hunting with instead of a rifle.

I know that all skis are shaped to one extent or the other, but one of the reasons I use the newer shaped skis is because most of the students these days use them. I feel that I should be able to ski and demonstrate to my students, on the same equipment that they are using. However, some people still use straight skis. Does that mean as instructors that we should all also have a pair of straight skis, and be able to ski well on them too? Just curious, how many instructors out there still have straight skis, and can still ski well on them?
post #66 of 87
[quote]Originally posted by Tog:
Personally I think one can become a -much- better skier on shaped skis even if you go back to straight.

FASTMAN:
Tog, you might want to expand on this. Better in what way?

Shape skis allow pure arc to arc carving to be employed in a vastly greater percentage of our skiing than straights do. This can result in a reduction in the degree of utilization of auxiliary skills such as pivoting, steering and stepping so I would think in the area of skill repertoire refinement the shape skier would be at a disadvantage.

And just because a shape ski allows a wider range of turn shapes to be created does not necessarily mean that the driver of those skis is any more proficient at executing the movements that are require to produce a high quality carved turn. Body positions to establish balance for similar edge angles will be different of course, but not better. Good balance is good balance.

I can think of one area the shape ski would enhance skill development but I'll leave it for you to bring out.

TOG:
Why can't you do railroad tracks with straight skis? Just because you go a lot straighter and faster doesn't mean you can't do them.

FASTMAN:
I'm glad you said that. Saves me having to do it. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

[ April 29, 2003, 04:53 PM: Message edited by: FastMan ]
post #67 of 87
MM:

Could you enlighten us a little bit on your choices in vehicles, computers, and medical care?

I have this mental image of you driving a '53 Buick, typing on a 1987-model PC, and treating a torn acl with leeches and bloodletting.

When you say that you don't want skiing to be any "easier" for you, I can't help but think that you're unaware of how much better you could be. Trust me, no matter *how* good you think you are, there are a boatload of skiers in the world who can blow your doors off.

Every one of them *could* do it on the same kind of skis you're on, but almost universally they choose modern skis because they've personally experienced how much more performance there is. Modern skis open up new possibilities and allow a true expert to ski even better.

Of course, it's entirely possible your whole online attitude is an elaborate troll. If so, you're a master (might I say a "true" expert, not just "recreational"?) at throwing just enough boneheaded obstinacy and goofy confidence into your pronouncements that I can't imagine anyone actually making that stuff up instead of truly believing it. If that's what's going on here, my hat's off to you.

Bob
post #68 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by jimbo:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Tog:
Why does he refuse to use shape skis?
He said he refuses to use shape skis, for the same reason I use a bow to go hunting with instead of a rifle. </font>[/quote]===============================

Alright, now I'm confused. I like hunting with a bow better than a gun, but I like shapes better than straights.

What's wrong with me!!! :
post #69 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by Bob.Peters:
Modern skis open up new possibilities and allow a true expert to ski even better.

Bob[/QB]
OK then Bob, I'll pose the same question to you that I posed to Tog: How are you defineing better skiing.

You must just be referring to the turn shapes the skis allow, not driver skill. Am I right? :
post #70 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by FastMan:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Bob.Peters:
Modern skis open up new possibilities and allow a true expert to ski even better.

Bob
OK then Bob, I'll pose the same question to you that I posed to Tog: How are you defineing better skiing.

You must just be referring to the turn shapes the skis allow, not driver skill. Am I right? : [/QB]</font>[/quote]Actually, I think both, although it's not just shape. The new skis also incorporate light-year improvements in the ability to tweak flex patterns, torsional rigidity, widths, etc.

Now keep in mind I'm speaking from observation rather than personal experience...

It's a given that new skis make possible more radical turn shapes. The very best skiers then develop incrementally higher skill levels that allow them to better take advantage of the turns the skis are capable of.

My example would be in the racing world. As *highly* skilled as Stenmark was, I suspect that if you could fire up the time machine and plop Stenmark in his physical prime - but with the skiing skills he developed on traditional skis - onto a modern World Cup GS course *and* with modern skis on his feet, he'd get his butt kicked. Not because he's a poor skier, but only because he wouldn't have developed the skills necessary to fully utilize the skis. He would learn very quickly, but he would have to develop the skills to put his body in the right positions to bend the new skis the way they *can* today.

To me, that's "better" skiing.

Bob

Then again, I could be all wet.
post #71 of 87
Speaking about Stenmark, I looked the other day at the oft-mentioned Joubert's Art book, and at the end there are some photo sequences of Stenmark among other outstanding racers. Two things I noticed at once: I cannot name how, but I could tell where it was Stenmark and where it was anybody else. (Phil Mahre's photo sequence got me tricked though - same style, but taller, more aggressive, and darker hair.)

And the other thing is that there was nothing in his technique that is not applicable to today's racing. He wouldn't be as spectacular to watch as Bode of course, but I think he would be as hard to beat as he was in his time. That is, provided that the entire race line of Elan factory were available to him .

Stenmark's technique was characterized by a relatively wide stance; quiet upper body; good ski-snow contact; use of the edged ski's reverse camber to make it turn rather than pivoting - and he did impossible things to avoid pivoting and skidding; being ready for the next turn where others were just regrouping after the previous turn, and turn initiation with a good pole plant. Not to mention surgical precision, zen calm, and perfectionism. Aren't these the basics of "better" skiing today?

Oh, and he did unweight on the steeps

[ April 29, 2003, 07:15 PM: Message edited by: AlexG ]
post #72 of 87
[/QB][/quote]===============================

Alright, now I'm confused. I like hunting with a bow better than a gun, but I like shapes better than straights.

What's wrong with me!!! : [/QB][/quote]

The same thing that is wrong with me . I choose these options of enjoyment, because I want to.
post #73 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by nolo:
Si,

If the skis are such a tremendous teaching aid, and use of new technologies is widespread, then why do we see so few skiers in harmony with their skis and so many hackers?
I said teaching aid not teacher so I'm not sure I am in conflict with your contention. In more direct response to your question my general observation is that they haven't learned the very basic effectiveness of (proper) "tip and turn" movements with modern skis. That's not to say that it's the only thing they need to learn, only that it is a very basic skill that they have not discovered the utility of. Perhaps, for a few, the feedback from ski technology will allow them to discover this for themselves, some perhaps can figure it out from books and articles, but many will need some personal guidance. I believe the biggest barriers relate to the perceptual fears a skier experiences in giving up the "big toe edge" (not unlike some of the issues raised in anotherskidad's post). Thus, for many, it takes an appropriate progression to gain confidence in the movements and avoid those fears which can so readily inhibit and prevent good movements. As I said before, I believe the effectiveness of feedback and responsivity of modern skis becomes more useful as skill level increases. Attaining the ability to feel for yourself the effectiveness of tip and turn with modern skis is a big jump in this respect.

I will say that all the discussion about the limitations of "tip and turn" seem off base when my observations tell me otherwise. I see very few skiers who can tip and turn who cannot or do not quickly learn to mix in other skills into their skiing. As you have described I think we see so many people out of harmony with their skis because they lack the very basic ability to tip and turn.
post #74 of 87
Quote:
I believe that even without [instruction], a skier can learn much more on their own than they ever could with older technologies. I would say that this learning effect is enhanced with increasing skill levels but is present throughout the cycle.

Finally, my observation (gross generalization) of "average" skiers on new ski technology is that they still do not adequately utilize "tip and turn" and thus loose out on much of the benefits new ski technology has to offer.
Si--aren't those two statements pretty much contradictory?

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #75 of 87
[quote]Originally posted by Bob.Peters:
It's a given that new skis make possible more radical turn shapes. The very best skiers then develop incrementally higher skill levels that allow them to better take advantage of the turns the skis are capable of.

FASTMAN:
Thanks for the clarification Bob. Perhaps but for semantics we are not so far apart in our positions. Where you say a great skier must develop higher skill levels I say the great skier just adapts with the skills he already possesses to meet the new task.


BOB SAYS:
My example would be in the racing world. As *highly* skilled as Stenmark was, I suspect that if you could fire up the time machine and plop Stenmark in his physical prime but with the skiing skills he developed on traditional skis - onto a modern World Cup GS course *and* with modern skis on his feet, he'd get his butt kicked. Not because he's a poor skier, but only because he wouldn't have developed the skills necessary to fully utilize the skis. He would learn very quickly, but he would have to develop the skills to put his body in the right positions to bend the new skis the way they *can* today.

FASTMAN:
This is a very good example to use Bob. I agree that if you were to quantum leap Stenmark into a present day race with shapes on his feet he would get initially dusted. But as you say, watch out, because in a very short time he would quickly adapt and be right back on the podium.

Now heres a question to chew on. Reverse the scenario. Wait about 10 years until the top guy on the WC is someone who never had anything but shapes on his feet from day one. Now quantum leap that guy back to Stenmarks day and put him on straight boards. Would he adapt as quickly as Stenmark did in his leap?

My theory is no, and here's why.

Carving has always been the fastest and most efficient race technique, it is and has always been what all racers strive for. Even in Stenmarks day they were masters at it. The problem was ski dimensions did not allow for complete turn (arc to arc) carves, so they had to perfect multiple redirection of skis before carve initiation skills, feathering into carve skills, and step turn completion skills just to allow the usage of carving for a portion of the direction change. Stenmark and his buddies were masters at these supplemental skills, but their focus was always on maximizing carve time.

When shape skis hit the race slopes the top quys latched on to them with glee and adapted almost instantly. They adapted quickly because the strength of the skis, carving, was and had always been the prime focus in their skiing. Now these skis allowed them to make most turns arc to arc carves and they no longer had to depend so on the supplemental skills. Happy days had arrived.

So what happens when a guy who has never been on straight skis and has never had to develop and depend on many of those supplemental to carving skills gets quantumed into a 1979 bamboo SL coarse on 204 straight boards, or into a much tighter than today's GS on 207's and has to compete with quys who have been on those boards all their life. Do you think he will adapt as quickly as Stenmark did on his quantum leap.

If not, then which era really produced the better skiers? :
post #76 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by Bob Barnes/Colorado:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr /> I believe that even without [instruction], a skier can learn much more on their own than they ever could with older technologies. I would say that this learning effect is enhanced with increasing skill levels but is present throughout the cycle.

Finally, my observation (gross generalization) of "average" skiers on new ski technology is that they still do not adequately utilize "tip and turn" and thus loose out on much of the benefits new ski technology has to offer.
Si--aren't those two statements pretty much contradictory?

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
</font>[/quote]Yes, but this is the internet!!!

I remember one of my elementary teachers telling me "say what you mean don't mean what you say," however, looks like I never learned the lesson.

If you can forgive me my lack of clarity in a hasty post I will amend the "instruction" in brackets to "ongoing instruction." My point continues to be the new ski technology allows much greater potential for self learning. I readily agree, however, that a proper basis starting with "tip and turn" (there's obviously more involved here in terms of balance and weight transfer for effective ski movements) is pretty important. While a skier can discover this for themsleves through body genius or from reading, I also readily agree that it is to be most simply found through quality instruction.

I am not at all trying to negate the advantages of formal instruction here, I just thought things were getting carried away along the lines of things in skiing haven't changed that much with the advent of new ski technology. When you said "Now we have a mass of equally unskilled skiers who can do nothing BUT tip 'em and carve--can't shape a turn, can't feather a skid, can't adjust their lines, can't control their speed" (and others said similar things) it just didn't match my personal observations very well. I've seen a couple of instances where this appeared to be true (one group of European skiers I observed onece comes to mind) but I don't see evidence of this very often.

The learning that can occur through feedback I think is greatly enhanced with increasing skill level. That's why I said "Attaining the ability to feel for yourself the effectiveness of tip and turn with modern skis is a big jump in this respect."
post #77 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by Si:


I readily agree, however, that a proper basis starting with "tip and turn" (there's obviously more involved here in terms of balance and weight transfer for effective ski movements) is pretty important. While a skier can discover this for themsleves through body genius or from reading, I also readily agree that it is to be most simply found through quality instruction.

[/QB]
Si,

There isn't more involved and therein lies the beauty. It IS as simple as "right tip right to go right". The only thing that can screw it up is an attempt to involve anything "more involved".

Bob is fond of quoting Albert Einstein who said, "Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler."
post #78 of 87
Would Tiger Woods have been able to use Hickory and/or persimmon?

I don't think it's the arrow. It's the archer.
post #79 of 87
Originally posted by Tog:
Personally I think one can become a -much- better skier on shaped skis even if you go back to straight.

FASTMAN:
Tog, you might want to expand on this. Better in what way?

Let's start with fore/aft balance. With modern skis you're skiing on something that's 20-40cm shorter than what you used to ski so I think pretty quickly you have to adapt to being much more subtle and precise with you're fore aft input. Even on shapes, going from say a 190 or mid 180's to a 170 or 160 is a real big difference. Then you learn to ski something that short in -all- conditions and I think it really represents quite an improvement. It really requires subtle and rapid fore/aft pressure control. Plus it requires you to be two footed and manage the turn transition very well(deep snow). Ok, so you can't fly through deep stuff as fast as something longer but you can really ski it well.

Slower speed round arcs. Doing those fluidly requires you to really move your mass forward into the turn. Sure, you can do this on straight skis but I think usually you're going faster to do this and making larger radius turns. The shorter radius on shapes forces you to make these movements faster. Plus doing this at a slower speed let's you practice it more.

The upshot is shapes really help you develop that "falling into the future" or what Mermeer Blakeslee calls "moving you center forward and balancing on your momentum" as opposed to relying soleley on the outside foot.

Sure, all of these things can be done on straights but I think the development is quicker on shorter shapes.

As for Stenmark, I think he'd very quickly blow doors. I do think modern racers are probably in much better shape though then they used to be but that can easily be caught up with.

si will do anything to try to show instruction is a waste?
got to go...

[ April 30, 2003, 06:00 PM: Message edited by: Tog ]
post #80 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by Tog:
Originally posted by Tog:
si will do anything to try to show instruction is a waste?
Tog, If I come off this way I apologize it is not my intent. I always try to include comments like "I also readily agree that it is to be most simply found through quality instruction" to show due respect for the role of instruction (which I believe in). Perhaps you interpret my position as such because I feel compelled to respond when the trend in a thread implies to me that formal instruction is the only (or perhaps the most important component of a) path to improvement. My general feeling is that good instruction can be an important component of the learning experience. I am motivated, however, by the concept of a more "complete" learning environment which might include so many more components than group or even private lessons.
post #81 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by FastMan:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by jimbo:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Tog:
Why does he refuse to use shape skis?
He said he refuses to use shape skis, for the same reason I use a bow to go hunting with instead of a rifle. </font>[/quote]===============================

Alright, now I'm confused. I like hunting with a bow better than a gun, but I like shapes better than straights.

What's wrong with me!!! :
</font>[/quote]Speaking of Ted Nugent, those radical turn shapes and forces do feel kinda primal, dontcha think?
In some ways with the advent of shapes we don't "create" physics as much as "let go" to its full unadulterated power with movements that intrinsically feel less biomechanically contrived. We experience a certain skiing possibility in one part of the movement spectrum as it strips down and approaches its essence - : - a purity wholly out of time realized from technological advancement...
Bow hunting vs. hunting with a gun: the former both historic and timeless, pure as well in its own kinesthetically enhanced participatory sense with nature...
Like Ted says, on shaped skis your face is a Maserati so let's Wango ze Tango!!!!!

[ April 30, 2003, 10:34 PM: Message edited by: vera ]
post #82 of 87
Quote:
I feel compelled to respond when the trend in a thread implies to me that formal instruction is the only (or perhaps the most important component of a path to improvement. -si
I'v never seen any thread where formal instruction is touted as the only way to improvement. Since instruction involves well...instruction should we talk about bowling?

I don't accept this bow hunting analogy since they're two different activities. Perhaps bow hunting done with a modern compound bow versus bow hunting with a bow similar to those used by 19th century indians or those used for thousands of years might be more apt. (But where do you stop in that? No modern fibers used, no laminated wood bows, no steel etc.)

Of course with hunting there's a specific goal one ends with. In skiing is there really a specific goal if we eliminate competition? To get down the hill? Is that really the goal? I think what people are getting at is they prefer the experience of the hunt with a bow to that of a rifle.

In golf no one seems to be using bamboo shafts on old irons and woods that are only made out of wood just to prove they can "handle it" and show how pathetic others are. Since the only thing that really counts is the score most people will use whatever is more efficient. So since golf is almost completely goal oriented the experience of using the tool is much less important to not important at all.

In ski racing, the goal is the only thing that matters so people will use whatever works the best. There people have to be forced to use less shape and longer skis in order to reduce injuries.

In general skiing if what matters is the experience of actually skiing than people will use what makes for a better experience. In my view shape skis just provide a far richer experience. You can vary the turn shape more readily and go from carving trenches to skidding turns. You can carve round turns at slow speeds without taking up the whole hill. Why do people like to carve? Because it feels good. They like the experience of it.

About the only thing I really miss from straight skis is their stability in a straight line when you want to tuck.

The usual proponents of straight skis promote a "I'm better than you" philosophy that's why I use them. I don't think I've ever heard anyone other than bumpers say they use them because they prefer the experience of skiing them over shapes. I suspect even "Mr. Bowhunter" who rips on his straight skis does it more to prove something than he really prefers the experience of them.

On the technical front I think a shorter shape ski develops an active inside foot much more readily than a straight ski or even a long shaped ski. This leads to better skiing.
post #83 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by nolo:
When someone asks, "Do you beat your wife?" we can expect some debate over what constitutes a beating and who qualifies as a wife, but surely what the question seeks to establish is some ongoing pattern of use or abuse. I believe we have a similar situation here. The question is not "have you ever unweighted in the steeps?" which asks for familiarity with the concept. I am sure everyone on this thread can unequivocally say YES to that uqestion. But when the question is phrased, "Do you?" is asks if unweighting in steeps is a recurrent thing that is pretty much elected. To answer in the negative is not to say NEVER, but NOT USUALLY. At least that's how I understand the question.

I find a hop initiation disruptive and feel most stable using a softer retraction movement to initiate.

I ski steep terrain all the time, and can assure you that balls are not strictly necessary to do this. To cover the rare event, the adjectival form of "balls" was created for use in sentences like, "Lookee at the line that ballsy chick set down!"
So have you NEVER or do you NOT USUALLY beat your wife??
post #84 of 87
nolo's analogys are original...
post #85 of 87
:
post #86 of 87
Quote:
Originally posted by Roto:
So have you NEVER or do you NOT USUALLY beat your wife??
How 'bout your husband??

[ May 01, 2003, 07:37 PM: Message edited by: Roto ]
post #87 of 87
Roto,

I almost always beat him at chess. I used to beat him at golf but now he beats me. I am going to take golf lessons so I can begin beating him again.

P.S. Thanks to my secret pals for the golf lessons! [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img] I hope to beat you on a ski slope soon.
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