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Which comes first?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
We seem to be dealing a lot with turns, so here is an ongoing discussion I have with clinicians. The sequence in a turn... is it rotate, edge, pressure?(USSA-racing) ... or is it pressure(change), rotate, edge?(PSIA-public) Rotate is either pivoting or steering.

To make this different from an earlier thread, let us agree that were are using the C-shape turn, not the S-shape.

So "who is right"? Or do we agree that racing style is different from recreational style?
post #2 of 9
Um-m--YES! It's whatever you need, whenever you need it. It's a continuous, harmonious blend of all three, all the time. We can control edge angle, control pressure, and steer all at the same time!

I steer whenever I don't like the direction my skis are pointing, or whenever I just want to hold them in any particular direction (in other words, "all the time"). I constantly control my edge angles--tipping more when I need more, less when I need less. And I deal with pressure too, all the time! Sometimes I reduce it, sometimes I increase it; sometimes I move it around, from foot to foot or from front to back. But I never just "let it happen to me."

The problem, as I see it, is thinking of any sort of linear sequence of the three in the first place. The three skills/movements are so interlinked and interdependent, and the need for skillful manipulation of all three so constant that this question really "does not compute"!


But then, you knew you were asking for trouble with this one, didn't you, KeeTov?

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Yes, all of our skills need to be blended at all times to ski smoothly and effectively. This justs happens to be one of those tricky "test questions".

Racers seem to like the idea of having to point their skiis quickly to maintain their line, so they stress rotating first.

Me-I get confused with the words, because in order to rotate, you have to vary the pressure!!!
post #4 of 9
I'm thinking about begginners (just spent a season in Oz teaching mainly level 1s, oh joy)...if they edge before they rotate, they end up with the ski buried in the snow but still heading in the original direction!
I emphasise steering/pointing and then adjusting pressure and edging when teaching this level.

Racers are going too darn fast to be thinking about that stuff! although I suspect pressure is where all the action is with them. They steer with pressure...
post #5 of 9
For a while there were many coaches and race types that were saying that rotation or steering was gone from skiing.

One point about steering and racing. There is actualy a lot of steering but idealy in racing the skid is obviously slow. racing is carving. Skidding is definatly a sign of slowing or defensive or reactionary moves. All ov which are slow. Racing is arc to arc when you watch the best ones. Not to say that there is no skidding but it is not sompthing that is promoted by coaches.
post #6 of 9

Ain't words just grand. Your comment about not letting these things (pressure, edge, steering) just happen to you put me through an interesting train of thought.

My first reaction is that I do let these things happen because they are the natural outcomes of what I am doing. For example, only after knowing how much edge I am going to get naturally will I be able to adjust or fine tune the edge angle. But, I'm setting up the creation of this natural edge when I control the paths of my feet and CM so I know what to expect. So, after carefully setting up what's going to happen I then let it happen so that I can make adjustments to what happened.

Have I mentioned that I'm really bored and want to ski,
post #7 of 9
Well said, Ydnar. The key word in my description is "just"--I never "just" let pressure happen to me. The reality, as you suggest, is that we really don't have much control over pressure, except momentarily. Pressure happens to us--it is the force that actually causes us to change direction. Ski technique could be viewed largely as how we set things up so that pressure acts on us the way we want it to. It is a myth that I can simply "pressure" my skis at will, except again, momentarily.

Bill Sloatman--"Slotcar"--of Keystone said it memorably: pressure doesn't come from pushing on our skis; it comes from our skis pushing on us!

And of course, in keeping with this thread, pressure is largely the result of how and when we steer and edge our skis.

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #8 of 9
I like your answer Bob. I don't think that was a very fair test question.
post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Slatz-your'e right it isn't a "fair" question. Relating to a different thread on becoming an instructor, it is important to know how to teach, and what to teach. However, when you are trying for Level 3(for example) you need to know what is correct according to the "bible". At the higher levels of skiing, it is neseccary to have a higher level of understanding...or bullshit, whichever is easier.

I think we would all agree that balance, pressure, edging and rotation(whatever you call it) all have to combine just in the right amount to get the turn you want. Well...which do you do first...according to the "bible" you are teaching from?

Bob's answer is a nice one, but some learners can only think and move linearly. In a progression, you introduce one skill at a time, and then combine them for the "WOW" look. Afterwards it feels that it is all done at the same time. Think of when you were taught how to drive a standard transmission. Clutch/gas feet took awhile to work smoothly together. Didn't you start in a linear fashion?

Taking a piece from the AASI Snowboarding text. "tidbit" is a new way to look at movement on the snow. I'll try it here on turning. T=timing of what you are doing. I=intensity of what you are doing. D=duration of what it is you are doing.

I feel that a C shape turn starts with more pressure, or lack of, to initiate movement. You can't change edges for the new turn (you are finishing the old turn)unless you change the amount of pressure on your skiis. You can't rotate, because the edges prevent you from going from the old turn into the new one.

So...for the future outside ski..T=for increased pressure at the beginning of the turn. I=smooth transition..getting more pressure through the turn. D=Until you are ready to turn in the other direction.

Then...for the inside ski..T=decreased pressure(collapse?) at the beginning of the turn. I=smooth transition..getting less pressure through the turn. D=Until you are ready to turn in the other direction.

We could come up with TIDBITS for edging, rotation and balance. Yes Bob, they all happen at the same time, and yes, this is too much to try to explain to a student. So...we break it down (linear?)into manageable pieces.

At some point, all come together...and you have a smooth turn..according to the "bible" that you are teaching from.

SO...if this makes sense(bullshit?), why do many coaches stress rotating(direction of your line)first? This was as recent as the 1999 ski season.

So...who's "bible" is right. Or do we all turn atheists and take up knitting???
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