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MA request

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
Feel free to critique.  A few things I see after watching it: not using enough of a weighted release to draw my skis flat (which means I am forcing the transition), not enough retraction when I needed it in those bumps, and keeping my torso facing the hill.  Perhaps slowing down the pole plant and drawing out the transition more would be helpful.  Anything else that stands out?  I definitely look more tentative when moving to my left (left leg/new inside leg on a left turn is my bad leg from fracture 18 months ago).

I would like a couple of drills to work on that will help accomplish this.  Conditions were pretty lousy that day (few inches of heavy snow over ice) and that definitely contributed to tentative skiing. Thanks in advance.

post #2 of 27
Dawg, I'll first say your skiing has some good qualities.  You roll onto a new edge very cleanly, with no push or pivot happening, and you have decent angulation, especially strong on your left turns.

Now for my suggestion.  First, I'm guessing you may not mean weighted release.   In weighted release you transition completely on your old outside (downhill) ski, and the new outside ski doesn't see any significant weighting until you reach the falline of the new turn.  I think you're probably just talking about relaxing the old outside leg more, as it sounds like you're shooting for a retraction type of transition.

The retraction variety of transition is a fine one, but it's currently creating an issue for you.  It's very common when people are trying to retract their transitions that they never get long in the outside leg between transitions, as they're always anticipating that next coming retraction.  The result is the skier always has their hips trailing their feet, and they ski in a consistently crouched stance.  It's a weak stance that leaves the outside leg compromised for handling big G forces associated with larger edge angle carving.  

It's something I see happening to you.  Look at the following points in your video; 17-18, 42-43, 59, 1:17.  At each of those points the camera is catching you from the side, it's mid turn, and you can see the extra flexion in your outside leg, and how your hips are trailing behind your feet because of it.  

Now have a look at the retraction turns I do in this video.  Starts around 6:30, but be sure to watch the slo-mo of them that follow.  See how my new outside leg extends very quickly after my Center of Mass crosses my skis, and I enter the top of the turn long, strong and fore.  

You need to work on getting your new outside leg quickly extended as you tip into the new turn.  When you do that you'll feel a much more powerful top of your turns, and you'll feel much more in command of your skis and your turn shape.  

My suggestion for getting there would be to step back to the variety of ILE transitions I demonstrate starting around 6:15 in the above video.  That will acquaint you with the feeling and movement pattern of getting long in the new outside leg early, and give you a taste of what doing that does for the top of your turns, and for your balance and sense of control.  Once you get those sensations in your head and muscles, go back to your retraction turns, but this time try to duplicated those same stance and balance sensations you experienced in ILE transitions as early in the turn as you can.  Do it by pulling back your feet, and extending your new outside leg, as soon as your CM has finished transitioning across your skis, and has begun tipping into the new turn.

Have fun!
post #3 of 27
Hi dawgcatching. I did not read Ricks review so you will get my unbieassed short MA. Nice skiing and Blizzard of all skis. A while back I thaught I was the only one. Anyway, nice skiing. I see some of what you are dooing to be somewhat resemblant of my own skiing. Im refering to the flex to relese movement.

First clip is smooth nice carving. I like it. Nice flex to relese and nice flow. Nice arm movements and noting directly to critisize. One thing you could work on is inside leg tipping and also better use of momentum. Now it looks to me you are aggressively relesing your outside ski to early. Some sloppyness in your legs. Maybe you sometimes have the feeling that you are not able to extend your outside leg enough during the turn. If this is the case then you need to relese later. Be patient at transition. Make the float a bit longer. Now you are rushing things. Your pole plant is IMO too much forward but that is only a style thing in your case. Try to ski without and then try to plant more with a swing and down hill.

Second clip. Visiability is bad. That can really set you back. Ruin the whole thing. If we pretend you can see ok and you are skiing without too much hesitation then my conclusion is that your hard earned technique on a gromer is starting to show some flaws. The clip is really too short but IMO you are still trying to flex too aggressively to relese. In bumps you dont have to do it. Use the bumps to fuel your transitions. Now you are skiing the ruts and the icy sides of the moguls.

Off Pist
Not much offpist IMO. It looks like you are carving and that the base is very hard. Not much snow on top. Anyway, you are carving here. Or brushing your carves . Your technique is very eycatching. You do not unweight to turn. You simply just relese and tip. Very quickly. I dont see much use of momentum here eather. That could be a problem for you in steeper terrain with more bad snow. Can be that you get away with it with wide skis but I would like to see some more momentum and rebound. You have a tendency of going too fast I think.

Cruddy Groomer
What Ive said here above. Same issues. This kind of skiing will work better if you approach it from the other side. More momentum and unweighting going. More dynamic work with the legs. Then try to limit your movements to your legs and calm down your upper body. Thats how good skiers do it. Might be something to consider. Now you are kind of park and riding a bit. You are quick on your edges and you angulate and tip very abbruptly and then hold it for the entire turn.

Do you have any older material as well it would be very interesting to see. Where you have been taking your skiing. End.
post #4 of 27

Generally a well balanced skier has his heels behind his hips.  Look where yours are.

Is your arm motion upsetting your skiing?  Especially the right; look and see if the upward throw of your hand for a pole plant is causing your body to move inadvertently.  I'd prefer to see the inside pole/hand/arm/shoulder/hip higher & more forward, and the outside pole/hand/arm/shoulder/hip lower and farther back.  Keep the outside pole tip by your boot, no farther back, and make the pole planting motion down the fall line with just a twitch of your wrist.  It may be a help if your hands are held wider than your elbows.  Try this and see if your body movements are closer to what you want.
post #5 of 27

Nice to see you back on skis.  Overall good skiing! 

To get you to the next level, it is a little hard to know where to start.  Your pressure control skills could use some improvements.  Your overall stance seems inconsistant (somewhat contrived), the abstem type A-frame at the end of your turns is a result of pressing your knees forward into the boots and not balancing from the ankles, and the transition is rushed to the point where you never really recenter.

Some drills for bump skiing I can suggest are pivot slips, and for groomers, stem steps.

post #6 of 27
Originally Posted by SoftSnowGuy View Post


Generally a well balanced skier has his heels behind his hips.  Look where yours are.

Is your arm motion upsetting your skiing?  Especially the right; look and see if the upward throw of your hand for a pole plant is causing your body to move inadvertently.  I'd prefer to see the inside pole/hand/arm/shoulder/hip higher & more forward, and the outside pole/hand/arm/shoulder/hip lower and farther back.  Keep the outside pole tip by your boot, no farther back, and make the pole planting motion down the fall line with just a twitch of your wrist.  It may be a help if your hands are held wider than your elbows.  Try this and see if your body movements are closer to what you want.

I thought this was the most upsetting move in your skiing. The pole plants didn't aid your movement but at times block it by pushing you extended arm against the shoulders. It jolts you and causes corrections in balance you would rather avoid. Keep your hands in a quieter motion . Use your wrist more to flick the pole instead of stabbing at fish in a barrel. Sometimes you got it and other times you look to be shopping for a turn using a big stab blocking move. Awareness of hand position can be enforced by making it a focus and then check yourself to see if you are following a better position instead of going back to lessor habits. I think it showed you are aware of it when you move it into your view in your turns in what looks like an after thoght of recognizing your hand position so you are probably onto this one yourself.
Do different radius turns  off piste and in bumps while ignoring the terrain and maintaining your turn shape to allow  smoother turning and  shaping with pole plants.

Work with short leg /long leg in your finishes to allow a more outside dominant balance and try to use that nice tipping early in your groomer skiing  into other terrain. Work on centering in your finish and allowing the skiis to move you at the top of your turns . Patience, like in your groomer skiing.
Edited by GarryZ - 12/25/09 at 8:11pm
post #7 of 27
I'd like to see you practice some patience.  You're rolling almost instantaneously from one set of edges to the other.  Make the same motions with a slower, smoother approach.  Make a pole touch, as opposed to a plant, as you release the edges.

The flexing and extending Rick mentioned should have some life to them, not be just sudden movements.
post #8 of 27
Like Rick, I see your balance on the outside ski getting disrupted and pressure management of that ski is one possible root cause. A more progressive application of flexing and extending movements of that leg would be the advice I would follow. You should be extending it, or flexing it but not moving it quickly to a set length then holding it at that length. While there are times that move works well, you are showing why too much haste getting from position to position can be a problem. Another way to say this is you are using a move/stop/move tactic. Think constant motion instead. Start the transition earlier in the current turn and extend it later into the new turn. Hasty, all at once moves rarely work well in sports. Rush your golf swing, or tennis swing and poor results happen since the room for error is so small. Same holds true for the transition from turn to turn in skiing. Be patient (less rushed) and your accuracy will increase. 
post #9 of 27
hi scott,
 as you noted (and jasp as well), the transition is (waaay) rushed, and it seems to get close to banking. It looks a bit like you are throwing your mass across the skis instead of _allowing_ it to flow across the skis. the quick hands / quick transitions are tied together.

next groomer day i'd suggest some medium radius turns where both skis run flat for 1-2 ski lengths, no pole plants.

in the bumps more retraction will help, and dont hold on to the pole plant too long.  once the skis pass a fixed pole plant, that shoulder has to open up and the flow is disrupted.  ideally the pole plant is on the backside of the mogul, and serves as a trigger for the next turn.

good luck
post #10 of 27
 Dawg, my youtube link above became broken.  If you want to review what I was explaining in my post, here's the new one:

Edited by Rick - 12/28/09 at 10:01am
post #11 of 27
You've got some good moves but it looks like there are a few timing issues. Easiest way to fix that is find a buddy who rips (or perhaps an instructor) and do some slow motion syncro skiing. Focus on their pole plants and and try to time yours with theirs. Hopefully this will also bring the movements in you legs in concert... and if you make the right moves at the right time your balance will be much improved. Just don't do the syncro under the chair cause people will make fun of you!
post #12 of 27
 Dawg, here's a WC montage that displays the early new outside leg extension that takes place coming out of a retraction transition;

As you can see, that extended outside leg pulls his hips forward, and puts Rocca in a powerful position to execute an aggressive fore balanced initiation of the new turn.   Check out LeMaster's site.  This early extension movement pattern is a constant theme, for good reason.  
post #13 of 27

Rocca needs to have his outside leg extended in time when pressure builds up in order to stay upright and not be caught in the back seat. That is the down side with flexing through the transition. Not being able to extend that outside leg quickly enough. Note that there is noting in the high C part of the turn before apex to push against so its merely just hooking the skis up and maintaining snow contact. Pressure kicks in a bit later at the gate or slightly after like Rocca in frame 1. 

One main difference between OP skiing and the montage of Rocca is the lack of momentum and rebound in OP skiing. I think I commented on that alredy. OP uses a very abrupt and aggressive flex to relese movement that is just a movement without any reason. Maybe it will be of some reason later on when all the peaces come together, part of a bigger plan. IMO OP kills the turn rebound.

post #14 of 27
I like the upper/lower body seperation in Rocca's skiing. Image 2.
post #15 of 27
Thats how you start your turns anticipated. Its kind of like apex to apex skiing. Square (3), Countered (1) and Anticipated (2).
post #16 of 27
\Rocca looks bullet proof.

Originally Posted by tdk6 View Post

Thats how you start your turns anticipated. Its kind of like apex to apex skiing. Square (3), Countered (1) and Anticipated (2).

Edited by slider - 12/29/09 at 2:05pm
post #17 of 27
Slider, here's a still someone pulled out of my video for use in another thread.  You can see the similarity in body position to what Rocca is doing in image 2. We both have our upper body facing downhill while our skis are still pointing across the hill. As TDk explains, it's called anticipation.  

I'm using just slightly less anticipation than he, because my transition is going to be arc to arc, where Rocca's has a slight redirection before engagement.  But we both execute a quick new outside leg extension after the retraction, that puts us in a fore balance state in the top of the new turn.  

Skiing with this type of anticipation carries specific advantages and challenges.  It's an efficient way to power a redirection (pivot) during a transition, which Rocca does.  Upon release the skis and legs auto rotate downhill to match the directional orientation of the upper body, powered simply by the torque in the mid section that anticipated position creates.  

It also simplifies movements, and keeps energy and momentum directed down the falline, reducing the rotational momentum created when the upper body follows the skis.  

But that anticipation creates challenges too.  When you want to ski arc to arc, as I'm doing, it takes a skilled effort to not allow the skis to pivot downhill during the transition, as they naturally want to do.  This is why a tad less anticipation needs to be employed when arc to arc is the goal, than when a pivot entry is desired.  

post #18 of 27
Originally Posted by slider View Post

\Rocca looks bullet proof.



Skiing into counter.
post #19 of 27
 TDK, good posts. 
post #20 of 27
Here's a comparison montage.  This is an arc to arc transition.  You can see the lesser amount of anticipation Bode is using at edge angle neutral during the transition (image 4).  It's still there in a small amount, but he's much squarer to his skis than Rocca is above.  This squarer stance imposes less torque on the skis at edge release, and makes a clean arc to arc initiation easier to do.  

In many of LeMaster's montages of arc to arc skiing you will see no anticipation at all at edge angle neutral, but I wanted to bring this one over for you to see a comparison of a WC racer using some, but a lesser amount.

Also note how much extension of the old inside (uphill) leg there is at edge angle neutral in image 4.  This is very common in WC arc to arc skiing, as it bring the racer into a powerful fore stance for the initiation of the new turn.  Pure retraction transitions are used most commonly for pivoted turn entries, where engagement comes later, and the pivot itself does much to create the fore recovery.

One last thing.  Notice the A-frame in image 4?  It's called a sequential edge change.  The new outside (uphill) ski is getting tipped up on edge before the new inside (downhill) ski.  it's currently very popular to frown on sequential edge changes, but in reality it's not such a big deal, and it can be seen in many of these WC images.  The problem comes if the downhill leg actually blocks the tipping of the Center of Mass into the new turn.  As long as it's not, a little sequentialness (I love making up words) is not to be worried about.  When the new inside leg actually is blocking the tipping action, then striving fore parallel shin tipping is a good way to overcome it.   

post #21 of 27
Thanks both of you for the info.  
post #22 of 27
Slider, pritty nice weather you guys have... we too have a dump going on.... ruining our SL practice LOL....
post #23 of 27
Thread Starter 
So, that extension move is in conjunction with the release at the end of the turn? I can definitely do an extension-type turn: what bothers me is that it isn't good in bumps or soft snow, as I need a platform to extend off of. The extension we are talking about here is after the retraction/relaxation at the end of the turn, the virtual bump, correct?  So, not extending in the transition (which, I can do) but the extension to get long into the belly of the turn and keep in the front seat on the back side of a bump.  How does one specifically work on that extension move?   Just try to get long and draw out the turns as much as possible, on medium terrain?  It has to be steep enough to allow the flex and following extension to happen, but not so steep as to be challenging, I would assume.
post #24 of 27
The extention move is just extending your outside leg as you start your turn. The reason you do this is to recenter over the new outside ski and provide for a for/aft stable platform. If you are skiing arc to arc on a easy groomer without flexing through the transition, ILE transition we call it, you have your outside leg extended all the time. Also through transition. Try to pinpoint that feeling you have in the belly of the turn. That outside leg resisting the forces. Next try to flex through the transition and get that same feeling in the belly of the turn.
post #25 of 27
On skis diagonal downhill strides (downhill herringbones) help you feel the sensation of extending through the first half of a turn. It also allows you to feel momentum and gravity take over as motive forces so you don't need to use as much active muscle power to extend the legs. Eventually you will change the inside leg use to a parallel slide instead of a diagonal step.
Off the snow try skating uphill and work towards parallel uphill skating movements.
To do either effectively the focus needs to shift away from the legs and to moving the body in a way that exploits momentum to keep you moving in the direction you want to go. Not that the legs become static or passive though, it just allows external motive forces like gravity and our own inertial momentum to contribute more to keeping us moving in the right direction.

Hope that helps,
post #26 of 27
Thread Starter 
Updated MA video (originally posted as a ski review, sorry about that)  More stuff I would like to work on: 

1)hands forward and planting more down the hill,

2) pulling the old outside foot back (especially necessary on turns to the right, as it looks as if my hips are unnecessarily countered when turning right)

3) being patient and tipping the new inside foot.  You can see how much smoother the turn is when I let it come to me, rather than forcing it, which results in a stem and somewhat backseat position. 

4) getting the inside foot pulled up and under my hips, to increase angulation into the belly of the turn. 

post #27 of 27
Originally Posted by dawgcatching View Post

4) getting the inside foot pulled up and under my hips, to increase angulation into the belly of the turn. 

An idea that has been very helpful for me lately is thinking of flexing the inside leg not to pull my foot up under me, but to pull by body into the arc of the turn. Not sucking the foot up, sucking the body down. It's the same movement really but sometimes just changing the framing helps. 
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