or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Racing and Big Mountain Competitions › Slalom turns--- for the racecourse (VK, Shefftz, Woody)
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Slalom turns--- for the racecourse (VK, Shefftz, Woody)

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
I have a heckuva time holding an edge on my slalom skis. it could be the skis (year and a half old 9s 9.9's, first gen shorty slaloms), and i'd like to believe this because my friend, who is a better slalom skier than i am, tried them and found he had a tough time too. However, i don't really want to blame them and i have a feeling it's probably my fault, anyway. I have trouble engaging and getting off of my edges quickly enough to make relatively carved slalom turns, but at the same time having the turns pure carve- enough to hold an edge. this is not an issue of edge-sharpness... they're usually pretty much razors. I can engage the edges for longer GS-type turns and they'll hold fine, but when i ski slalom on hard snow, i slide out every turn. i throw the skis out a bit, engage edges, and on softer snow they come around fine, but on harder snow i sliiide out. i have a decent amount of pressure on my shins, i'm sure i could have more but i'm not sure that's necessary. ACK.

part of my problem is stemming from a lot of all mt lessons that concentrated on short turns that worked on steeps and in soft snow, resulting in a rounder, more complete turn away from the fall line than i want or can use for a racing setting. i'm working on engaging my edges and getting off of them earlier than i would with a survival turn on true steeps... but having a rough time with relearning how to ski. in any case, i'd appreciate any advice.

It's not bragging if it's true - Mohammed Ali

There are two reasons for everything, the good reason and the real reason
-J. Pierpont Morgan

If life was easy everyone would be successful.
post #2 of 35
I'd like to help, but I have enough difficultly providing in-person feedback, and providing feedback via the internet is beyond by limits.

But for some technique ideas, try: http://www.shapeski.com/pages/qtme1slalomdiff.html

For equipment, although your edges might be sharp, and your bases flat, the base relief of your edges might have become excessively beveled just through all that skiing on hard ice. A few passes over the stonegrinder might help.
post #3 of 35

How much base bevel do you have? You might want to make sure your bases are dead flat and get rid of the base bevel if there is one. Too much will make a ski feel sluggish. Also make sure that the edges are consistant tip to tail. The other equipment thing you might want to check, is to make sure the skies haven't died. If they have lost their life, they will be slo and not hold well.

As your technique. I ain't no racer, but if you've had a lot of all mountain lessons, your general style may have moved toward the free-skiing side. Try lowering your stance. Start in a lower position, and try working some quick cross-under action, rather than big, cruising, up and over movements.

Those are just some thoughts. Maybe there are some hard core gate bashers out there that could help more.
post #4 of 35
Jonathan S, What do you think of Hobart's GS training info, tape& booklet? Would it be a good start for masters ski racing (GS only)?
post #5 of 35
Here is what I think of Hobart:

"Carving Turns Made Easy" should be renamed "GS Racing Vastly Oversimplified." His web site, booklet, and video teach the single-minded goal of achieving elementary hip angulation. (Absolutely nothing about pressure or balance.) But since getting hip is an incredibly important aspect of GS racing and carving in general, and since about 99.9% of the skiing public exhibits zilch hip angulation, I think his materials are excellent!

The sequel, "Carving Quick Turns Made Easy" should be renamed "SL Racing Made Rather Confusing and Possibly Too Old-Schoolish." I'm not sure all of his drills are really necessary, and I think SL in some situations might be more arc-to-arc than he acknowledges. (And once again, forget about pressure and balance.) But his materials still have lots of excellent drills, illustrations, explanations, etc., so another big thumbs-up on this one too!
post #6 of 35
Thanks Jonathan,

Now I just have to find a spot to practice where no one can see me. Some of the beginning drills look pretty weird.
post #7 of 35
Speaking of Al Hobart, has anyone tried his offer for a free book on his website (under "Free Stuff")?

I sent an email for the book over 2 weeks ago and I've gotten neither the book or a response.
post #8 of 35
anybody notice on Hobarts website one of the short radius turns picture sequence, the skier has the skis on the wrong feet? just curious. http://www.shapeski.com/slalom%20dri...OneSkiFLAT.jpg <FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by dchan (edited February 27, 2001).]</FONT>
post #9 of 35
Thread Starter 
i'm running a 1 base bevel and 2 edge. it's not an issue of edge-edge quickness, persay, but an issue of edge-edge quickness while applying pressure smoothly and gently enough to hold an edge... sort of complicated... thanks for any feedback.

It's not bragging if it's true - Mohammed Ali

There are two reasons for everything, the good reason and the real reason
-J. Pierpont Morgan

If life was easy everyone would be successful.
post #10 of 35
A couple of things. Assuming the skis are flat, the loss of tortional rigidity is one possible contributing reason the ski won’t hold when pressured. Two-year-old slalom skis with lots of gates will get soft tortionally, but still feel stiff when flexed. Secondly, you could be pressuring the ski late in the turn. Short slaloms require a more rounded technique than jam at the gate. The third is that there may not be enough edge angle with too much downward pressure. Think side to side, not up and down. Remember in general, max pressure is at or before the gate, not afterward. Think about carving at the top of the turn, not the bottom. One last factor these skis want to have lots of forward or tip pressure. Have someone make sure your hips are ahead of your heels from the top of the turn through the fall line. When pressure is released, your hips will come back a bit.

Buy the way, Holbert’s GS stuff is a bit elementary and static, but as Jonathan says most people can’t do it, so every little bit helps. There are better drills around. The SL stuff is okay, when not everything is carved, but we put much more emphasis on carving slalom turns as micro GS ones. I’m sure the demo person would switch his skis if he were running gates. I do this all the time.
post #11 of 35
Hey Ed, I thought your name sounded familiar, and when I saw the reference to Loveland in your profile I remembered: http://www.stockli.com/asked/

Hope you don't mind my publicizing the link, but I really enjoyed them at the time, and sure would like some updates!
post #12 of 35
I think Ed summed up all the SL turn dos and donts pretty good.

Just couple things I'd like to add (sorry Ed if I repeat you in some way).

1. Think about staying high with your stance. I desagree with JohnH's advice about getting low. Here is why. As Ed said, it is important to have your hips ahead of your feet. When one tries to "get low" it is usually accomplished by bending in knees and waist. That basically means "back-seat". Even though your legs work side to side (waist/hips down), your body is straight and outside leg is extended. http://www.fis-ski.com/mediaworld/image.sps?id=2005046

2. When in gates do not think about cross-blocking. More often than not when you start thinking about cross-blocking a gate you visually concentrate on that gate. It also sends you back when you wait for this gate to hit your pole. Once you cross-blocked and you lift your eyes, you are past the place for initiating next turn. Wear chin protector and enough padding (so you do not
have to worry about gates) and look where you want to initiate your next turn. Learn to ignore the gates and look through them thinking about the line you want to ski. That will help you stay forward on your skis. If being in a back-seat is your problem..... try this. When making a turn think about hitting the gate with your belly-button. This will make you straighten your knee and waist, getting your weight forward.

dchan, there was only one ski ever made (I am aware off) that could be put on a wrong foot. That was Atomic BR 9.28 with differential sidecut. Skis with assymetrical tips/gate deflectors have symmetrical profile and can be skied on any foot. It is a common practice among racers (I lost count how many times I was told on a lift: "Dude, you got your skis wrong") to free ski and sometimes train with tips/gate deflectors facing out. The reason is simple - keeps racing edge on the outside thus reducing chance of dinging it and keeping it sharp.
Another common practice is to unbuckle boots on the ride up. So next time you ride a chair with a person who has racing boots unbuckled, do not embarass yourself saying "Do you know that your boots are unbuckled" (I get that quite often as well).


Speed does not kill, the difference in it does...
<FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by VK (edited February 27, 2001).]</FONT>
post #13 of 35
Thread Starter 
LOL i have gotten the wrong foot things 1001 times, and i was on the lift when my mom told someone his boots were unbuckled. she's also told me many, many times. i just think it's hilarious. "Excuse me sir, your boots are unbuckled" "yes, i know". hehehe
post #14 of 35
He he he... I knew about the symetric skis stuff. I just thought it was funny that in what looked like a posed sequence they would use the gate deflectors in the "backwards" position. I swapped my Prolink Equips and e9000 Equips all the time to keep the edges even. Thanks for letting people know about the boot thing too. I don't usually need to release my buckles but I watch my buddies do it all the time. The funny one for me is these boots with the heel lock down/walking position knob. Seeing someone try to ski after turning it to the walk position and then forgetting to reset back to the ski position and wondering why they can't turn for the first few turns... Ha!
post #15 of 35

I have other stuff that Stockli never published, but this forum seems more about basic ski instruction. Having put on a
Super Series (basically a World Cup) this year, seeing all the tech teams train here and interacting with the racers and coaches, and our program director just returning from St. Anton, there is lots of stuff we could talk about, but I'm not sure if this is a good place. Not many people are interested in upper end ski racing.

post #16 of 35
Thread Starter 
i am, i am
post #17 of 35
post #18 of 35

What makes you think we aren't interested? I'm incredibly interested, even if I have nothing to add other than a few peanut-gallery comments. How else am I going to learn what goes on in the racing world?

If you take your conversation somewhere else, let us know where, so that others can look in or participate!!!!
post #19 of 35
I read everything at your site already. Hell yes I'm interested. Maybe we need the category for it. Racing and related, AC?
post #20 of 35
I second the idea, AC.
post #21 of 35

We need to talk now. We can't wait any longer especially after your link was posted. Let's start there.

What are your current length recommendations for junior racers?

For your ramp angle/canting article what is your current thinking and what are some good excercises people can do to determine these angles?

Is it true on the world cup (as it was stated here somewhere) that canting errors of 1/8 degree can mean the difference between 1st and tenth?

How exactly do w.c. skis differ from consumer models? How do they vary from racer to racer? Do some like stiffer etc.?

What type of base/edge bevels are they using in slalom,gs,sg,downhill and do they vary the bevel from tip to tail at all or is it consistent? Do they change edge angle setups or do they always use the same for each discipline?

How many pairs of boots does a w.c. racer use? Are they different stiffnesses or what? Do they use foam liners? Do they actually relate to consumer models or are the shells thicker, different plastics etc.?

What exactly is the snow surface like? Is it always water injected?

Do they consistently use high fluoro waxes and how (if needed )do they clean them out when it is very dry and cold. Do they hot wax and scrape immediately? or chemicals?
While were on waxing? I've heard people are no longer scraping wax off but are using stainless steel brushes to brush it off and into the structure.

How have courses changed with new slalom skis? Or have they not changed and they just ski them differently. A fundamental change in coursed would mean it's a different sport now- kind of like changing the shape of a tennis court.

How do the coaches feel about the new slalom style? Do they miss the rythm of old slalom technique?

How do the racers train? Do they ski very slowly and gradually build speed? What are the differences in the way the Austrians train versus Americans or whomever? How do the coaching styles vary?

If you think no one here is interested than you've walked into a mine field!

So, I definitely look forward to your posts and maybe you can link to the articles that Stockli didn't publish.

post #22 of 35

Don't assume that your posts will only be read by racers here. The people in this community are hungry from all kinds of skiing knowledge. I don't race but do understand that having a knowledge of racing technique is useful to all skiers. Besides it seems that you already have a following. I look forward to reading your posts.


post #23 of 35
Ed: I will never be at the racing level described. BUT.... As a fitness instructor in the Boston area, I work with many college ski racers. Understanding the biomechanics of their sport is essential to me. The clarity of your posts has indicated you would be a valuable resource for us.

Okay! have we convinced you yet?

Be Braver in your body, or your luck will leave you. DH Lawrence
post #24 of 35
What do you propose be the category for this new forum? "Racing Technique"? "Racing Technique and Competition Results"? An all encompassing "Competitive Skiing" forum?

It seems to me that racing technique falls squarely in the area of this "Ski Technique and Instruction" forum, and race competition results are not discussed very often, so the general forum covers it sufficiently. Let me know what kind of forum you propose and we'll post a thread inquiring about interest level.
post #25 of 35

Maybe just "Racing", or "Anything to do with Racing", or.......
post #26 of 35
If you don’t already subscribe to Ski Racing, you should.

What are your current length recommendations for junior racers?

SL—Women, not to exceed 160 cm. Most 150, My daughter a 100 pound FIS J2, 142 jr gs. Men, 160 or less, not to exceed 170. FIS next year may force the 150 minimum issue. This year minimums were not enforced. GS—Women not over 180. Many on a 170. Men, 180 to 190. All this is for J2 and up. When is doubt ski short. SG& DH too variable to talk about.

For your ramp angle/canting article what is your current thinking and what are some good exercises people can do to determine these angles?

We want the hips ahead of the heels. Tall people who ski squatty, take out ramp. We don’t use heel lifts on women racers unless we can’t get them to stand tall. We will often move the binding forward for more tip pressure. FYI I just got a pair on next years slaloms. The binding is to be placed 4 cm ahead of mid chord. This is huge.

Is it true on the world cup (as it was stated here somewhere) that canting errors of 1/8 degree can mean the difference between 1st and tenth?

That would be less than 1 mm. movement of the knee. Not likely. However, as boots pack out over the year, small changes do occur. I check mine two or three times a year and make small changes in boot cant (by grinding the sole). My daughter needs over 3 degrees of cant modification. Incidentally, any boot out of the box will be warped. You can’t cant a boot that has any warp.

How exactly do w.c. skis differ from consumer models? How do they vary from racer to racer? Do some like stiffer etc.?

It’s all over the map. Kilian Albrecht actually liked the production Head better than the wc ski, so they made him a hand made version. Most had more side cut. Almost all are laminates. Exceptions are Atomic and Salomon. Its easier to make one offs than with caps. Juri Kosier, however, likes caps. The sizes are different. Men were mostly on a 174. Suspect we will see many men on 168’s. A few may move to the lower 160’s. Women were on 155’s to 163. I’m betting many will go down to FIS minimums. People are using different skis (construction, geometry, etc.) for different courses and conditions, even slalom. Sounds like golf clubs. We will know more next fall.

I’ll talk about slalom sets in a later post. Incidentally, any coach not skiing on current technology, is hurting their athletes.
post #27 of 35
Glytch, this might be a little late but I'm skiing alot more lately and am not on the computer as much. It is kind of hard to say with out seeing you ski so I'll just throw out a few ideas, and you can use it if you think it applies. It is all stuff that you should be applying to your skiing one way or another.

If your problem happens in the course it might be that you are too far away from the gates and there fore reaching for them. By reaching for the gates you are rotating your body (following your skis), and unweighting your outside ski. That could account for your trouble with edge hold.

To fix this try holding your poles horrizontally in front of you. Keep your poles in line with the fall line (bottem of the hill). This should keep your shoulders over your outside ski, also bringing your weight over your outside ski thus creating beter edge hold.

As for getting off your edges you could be a little too low in your turns (ie squating). This is really easy to do with the new school SL skis. Make an effort to have a long leg in your turns. If you look at the best skiers all they are doing are a series of extensions. Try to think of extention to extention. Or long leg to long leg.

Hope this helps. I'd like to hear how things turn out or if you use any of my advice.
post #28 of 35
Thread Starter 
Thx, woody. man i havent been on snow in a week and a half.. i hate this! i might hike up a nearby hill tomorrow and stay up late with work... i WANT TO SKI. anyway. Woody, i'm not reaching... i did the first day of the season, spent 30 minutes in stubbies and got rid of that ASAP. i think after 35 days or so, my rossi slaloms might be shot, remembering that they are first generation and rossis... they still have plenty of kick, but they might be lacking in the torsional department. hell, my energyrails hold a better edge in short turns. which reminds me, has anyone tried volkl's shorty slaloms this year? i've heard mixed results about them and i was wondering if anyone had used them, here. nix that. i'll post it up seperately. thx for the advice, and if you have any more, keep it coming, i'd be glad to have it.

It's not bragging if it's true - Mohammed Ali

There are two reasons for everything, the good reason and the real reason
-J. Pierpont Morgan

If life was easy everyone would be successful.
post #29 of 35
Regarding top level slalom ski lengths I know that some of the faster men on the Europa Cup Circuit used the Atomic women's WC ski in 163 cm. length. As far as the Atomic 173 cm. WC men's ski, this ski is softer and wider than the 9.16 170 cm. ski which is supplied to the racers in the US.
post #30 of 35
Well Glytch, there seems to be a glitch with the skis. Maybe, maybe not.

While much of the advice given so far has been excellent, I don't believe anyone mentioned alignment. Have you had it checked out within the last couple of years? Do you buy or get new boots every year, if so, alignment must be rechecked each time. Do your footbeds change each year, again alignment must be checked each time you change your skis, and/or bindings, boots, footbeds but NOT each time you change your socks, though it seems as often.

So if the skis are are at fault, the new ones will need to be aligned.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › Ski Training and Pro Forums › Racing and Big Mountain Competitions › Slalom turns--- for the racecourse (VK, Shefftz, Woody)