|Originally posted by nolo:
Recently we have had some opportunities to do movement analysis on advanced skiers. As I recall, a number of the skiers showed a common movement pattern in their skiing: in the last third of the turn the body falls back and in towards the hill.
Questions: Is this a problem? What are the likely causes? What is your prescription for change?
My first overall impression of the skier in the sequence is that, he's a pretty good skier, but there is little skeletal alignment. He's rigidly holding his position through muscle power. He's folded at the waist throughout the turn, his hips seem locked. When I draw a center line through his upper bodies rotational axis it finds the snow somewhere back by his inside heel. When I make a triangle from his angulation it finds the snow somewhere behind his out side foot. As has been pointed out by just about everyone, his weight is inside and back. Because he's "holding" his position strictly with his big muscles, he's lost the ability to fine tune his edge and finese the pressure. Which leads to his countering his hips and too much angulation to try to accomplish edge and pressure control. Are his boots too stiff? Ending his turn he really has nowhere to go to release the pressure at the end of his turn into his next because he's already over flexed and behind. Maybe that's why I envision his hips kinda swinging back and forth slightly behind his feet.
I want to help this skier get better structural allignment. Help him get longer between inside shoulder and outside foot. Direct the forces to his outside foot structuraly. Find his root, so to speak. This should help his inside foot and leg get into the program by staying back and intiating and controling the turn and turn shape, and staying more with his feet hip width, or even a little less than hip width. The feet and legs can then begin to control the hips and upperbody, instead of the hips and upperbody controling the legs and feet. This hopefully will help him find his edge earlier and control his edges, pressure, and direction with much less effort, leaving him in a position to easily and effectively move through neutral and into the next turn.
Oh,,,how do we get him longer with better skeletal alignment? I think I would start at the top of his legs, at his hips. Kinda come at it from 180%. Have him initiate turns on easy groomed terrain strictly by raising his new inside hip, leaving him long legged, with early edge change. Then draw awareness down to the feet and what movements are happening in his feet when the hips are initiating the turn. Now change the focus and intial movements to the feet. Same movements just starting them at the snow end, with all other body areas staying the same. Keeping this long stance we might go into varying terrain and see how this works in shaping turns and fine tuning his movements with his smaller muscle groups, in particular his ankles and knees, with directed awareness at how this allows for smoother transition from one turn to the next. This is just one way I might help him work this out. With better sructural awareness and allignment, there would be little to hold this strong skier back.
Where do I want to be at the end of my turn? I want to be in a position to start the next turn with the least amount of movement.
Thanks for the exercise Nolo.[ October 31, 2002, 08:12 AM: Message edited by: Ric B ]