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Help - MA for intermediate skier

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hi guys,

Hoping you can give me a bit of an assessment of my skiing as it stands and some stuff to work on to get better. What i'd love is for some specific drills to practice arising from what you see needs work in my current skiing.

Some info on me - first skied 6 years ago at aged 22 and been hooked ever since. Lived in UK so was a one week a year skier, but have just moved to Vancouver so will be skiing a lot more than usual this year.

The video's are of me skiing a couple of groomers in Big White last weekend. Conditions were good, snow was nice, groomed runs neither of them particularly steep, and the video is just of me skiing the way I normally ski around the mountain, not working on anything just having fun!

Thanks for any insights/tips you can offer!



post #2 of 9
DIfficult to give some advice without knowing what you want to achieve in you skiing. Those turn will take you down the hill in a safe way. Two obvious notes that will improve no matter what you want to develop is that you need to work on better upper/lower body separation, try to have the shoulders/chest pointing down the fall line. The other is to get more forward with your hands.
post #3 of 9
Hi DrEski and wellcome to epic. I did not read the previous posting so my feedback is unbiassed. Nice skiing. Nice wide symmetric arcs and good rhythm. You seem to be able to controll your speed well and the overall impression is you are a good skier.

Now to my thaughts. You start all your turns with an up-unweighting movement followed by a skidd. Your turns are all skidded/brushed so for you to ramp up your skiing you would need to start carving. TipsGoInFirst consept is just that. Search the forum and the net for some more info. In short, put your skis on edge and let them lead your way into the turn. Dont try to turn your legs or unweight your skis. Just tip and wait. Do this on a very easy groomer because you are now depending on the brushing feature of your skiing to turn while in carving there is no friction between scraping edge of ski and snow to slow you down. You must depend on turning more across the hill to slow down or just get used to more speed. Start out on a very easy gromer with no other people and put/tip your skis on edge as you move forwards. Behind you you should leave two sharp trax in the snow. If you are not then you are not doing it correctly. Best way to tip is to use the movement that is called angulation. That and pointing your knees into the direction you want to turn. Check out my tutorial in the bad rotation thread from last fall.

So you are now depending on the up-unweighting movement. That and a few other things. First of all you are depending on hip rotation (check out my video). You are now letting your hips drift out in the direction away from center of turn. Your hips drift out over your skis and your edge angles are lessened. You will be even more prone to skidding but that is exactly what you want when you initiate your turns like that. Hip rotation plays a major role. When you carve you want the exact opposit. Since you need to be able to do both you will be forced to learn to separate the two from each other. And use many combinations of both depending on situation. And learn other techiques as well. Secondly you do not use any rebound from previous turn. Try to start feeling the pressure build up and think about how to make use of it for the next turn.

Whats up with your pole plant? Turning right I se one but not turning left or was it the other way arround. Think about it.
post #4 of 9

Welcome to Epic Doc E!

(sigh) Defintely need deeper snow there Doc!

 

That looks to be a fairly steep groomer. I like the rhythm of these turns and the way you take movements of one turn right into the next. As Jam has noted these turns can work well at getting you around the mountain. My guess is that you're getting into a little trouble in bumps, powder and super steep runs.

I agree that you start your turns with an up movement. My variation of TDK's drill is to start with an uphill traverse to a stop. Start with a very shallow traverse so that you can focus on just tipping the skis into the hill so that they carve and leave those thin tracks we want to see. As you move up to steeper starts to your traverse and more speed going across the hill, you'll need to add "counter" (i.e. facing down the hill with your hips and shoulder) to stay balanced. If you find a wide enough trail (e.g. the one you're on, but that's too steep), you can carve your traverses so that they have almost as much uphill component as downhill component. Then instead of coming to a complete stop going uphill, roll your skis over to change edges while you are still moving uphill. That's when you can be patient and learn how to make a full turn via letting the skis do all of the work. When you roll your skis onto their new edges this way, you'll find it very easy to move through the transition instead of having to go "up and over". Once you've got this down, start moving the rolling point more down the arc so that you can make normal turns (i.e. where the transition point is more across the fall line instead of up the fall line). This gets harder to do, but if you have counter you'll be able to do it without having to go up and over.

One of the things going on with those lazy hands is upper body rotation. You swing your shoulders around to help your turns and that conveniently puts your downhill hand in a great position for the next pole swing.  As you swing your shoulders, you're also pivoting your skis. After you do the above drill, you'll find that you won't be swinging your shoulders around (or pivoting the skis) any more and that you'll need to shift your hands more forward to be ready for your pole swings. The pole swing should be done with the fist held vertically and the pinky swinging up and the thumbnail being pulled up and back.

post #5 of 9
Hi DrEski.  To get a better idea of what tdk is talking about with the up move and skid thing, have a look at the video of a pivot in this link.  It's in the glossary at my website. Look under Pivoting.

http://www.yourskicoach.com/YourSkiCoach/P.html



Now,  as contrast,  look at the clean initiation video here.  This is what you should be shooting for: 

http://www.yourskicoach.com/YourSkiCoach/C.html


Here's a video I put together that shows a progression from up move and pivot, to clean initiation carving with no up move. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Fs2jkOA74o
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the MA guys, much appreciated and very insightful too.

Looks like a really basic thing I need to be working on is upper/lower body separation, any other specific drills to help me work on this?

In terms of carving, this is something I have tried on very easy slopes and I can achieve the sharp tracks in the snow that I'm looking for (although i'm sure there are many things that need correcting about the way i'm achieving these sharp tracks!).

The problem is that when I do it I find that I pick up far too much speed even on relatively shallow terrain. Because I find it very difficult to control the speed it puts me off really working hard on this skill. I have no problem pushing myself and falling but i'd prefer not to fall going mach schnell which I seem to quickly get to when trying this!

I have a feeling this may be linked in to the upper/lower body separation thing, maybe if I could get my skis carving more across the slope it would help me keep the speed down to something I find manageable (I think when I try and carve I don't finish the turns properly which is probably why I pick up so much speed)? Does any of this sound likely/make sense? I'll try and get a video of me attempting to carve at some point as this would be much more useful than me trying to describe it!

As for what i'm looking to achieve in my skiing, I want to look like i'm good! Seriously though there's nothing better than watching a great skier coming down the slope, poetry in motion. That's all I want to achieve, poetry in motion, not too much to ask is it!!?

I would also like to be able to ski anything on the mountain, including bumps (you are exactly right therusty, i do struggle when it comes to bumps and powder, although i'm trying and have also started enjoying trying it which I didn't before so I must be going in the right direction at least!).

Thanks again for the help guys, I see you all on here spending time helping people with their skiing and it is much appreciated, great advice and insights!

Hopefully going to Baker on Friday so will put in some practice on all of these things then - can't wait!
post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick View Post

Hi DrEski.  To get a better idea of what tdk is talking about with the up move and skid thing, have a look at the video of a pivot in this link.  It's in the glossary at my website. Look under Pivoting.

http://www.yourskicoach.com/YourSkiCoach/P.html



Now,  as contrast,  look at the clean initiation video here.  This is what you should be shooting for: 

http://www.yourskicoach.com/YourSkiCoach/C.html


Here's a video I put together that shows a progression from up move and pivot, to clean initiation carving with no up move. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Fs2jkOA74o

Excellent videos by the way Rick, really sets it out well.
post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by DrEski View Post


The problem is that when I do it I find that I pick up far too much speed even on relatively shallow terrain. Because I find it very difficult to control the speed it puts me off really working hard on this skill. I have no problem pushing myself and falling but i'd prefer not to fall going mach schnell which I seem to quickly get to when trying this!

I have a feeling this may be linked in to the upper/lower body separation thing, maybe if I could get my skis carving more across the slope it would help me keep the speed down to something I find manageable (I think when I try and carve I don't finish the turns properly which is probably why I pick up so much speed)? Does any of this sound likely/make sense? 
 

Getting a pair of short turn radius skis with a strong edge hold does make a huge difference.
You are completely right in that you can keep the speed down by carving across the slope. Here's a video I did for my MA where I'm doing just that.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ey0PqeQ8B_c
The 11m sidecut really helps to keep the speed down.

Btw, I think your skiing looks really god. You look relaxed in a good way.
post #9 of 9
You're not a bad skier. I'd work on keeping shoulders facing downhill and planitng poles by your ski tip more precisely to initiate your turns. Maybe: Bend your knees more, keep weight forward for more aggressive stance.
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