I've just spent a bit of time reading all the above discussion. Very good stuff, for sure. You guys have had a big day. I was out cleacning my shed as we've had a change in the weather! Winter is coming maybe as much as a foot of snow by Tuesday! I'm ready.
Anyway, I met HH a about four or five years ago through Skiing Magazine. We had powwow and I ended up doing some work with HH in his early days of splitting from PSIA. I had been coaching advanced ski clinics for awhile working with skiers on off-piste skiing. My brother and I (and three partners) had been doing our thing, since 1991) basically outside the normall bubble of ski instruction and had our own way of thinking about things(teaching models). When my brother and I got to discussing skiing with HH it was truly uncanny how a couple key elements of PMTS thinking fit into, like, EVRYTHING we had ben doing to date; the actual techniques of skiing AND teaching. The two key concepts were: relax to release and lead the edge change with that same newly unweighted foot. The evolution in my personal skiing and in our teaching models was, to me, a truly amazing thing.
Up to that point (which was just as shaped skis were coming out), I was still talking a lot about extension based release patterns (although we always recognized a relaxation phase in transition which was key to the similarity). The exceptions were deep powder and soft snow, but even here there was still extension in the vernacular (there still IS to a very limited extent). What was missing, and I sense the same missing link in ATS, is the TRIGGER to get the CM smoothly down into the next turn.
Well...the missing link was in the relaxation move. The key here is this: (Bob...you mentioned the forces in the turn) the turning forces of the turn come from us standing on our skis through the body/belly of each turn, it is not some random gravitational influence which pushes against us. It is us resisting the G's until we release these G's. By relaxing or giving in to these forces it starts the edge change AND at the same time pulls the CM into the next turn. Without having to push against the forces which is a lot more effort.
Then the smooth continuation is to simply lead the edge change with the same foot coming in nice and light as the new inside ski. This is the LINK which came up a couple days ago.
The only other really important point (for this note) is that the upper body(CM) always faces in your direction of travel. This is especially important when finishing a turn to have it already facing the middle of the next turn. This upper/lower body seperation provides all the rotation force needed to facilitate the skis natural tendency to seek the falline through the neutral phase of transition. So that as the skis change edges and, simultaneously, the CM flows into the new turn and skis are passing through nuetral and flat on or above the snow surface, the skis draw into the falline and then you are in the turn and G's build again. Just this little bit of rotary loading combined with the shape of modern skis and the cutting of the skis through the snow, makes the turn happens SO much more easily then with old skis. In addittion, in other words, you do not need to steer the skis for linked, parrallel skiing.
This is basically the basis for PMTS and for my own teaching and for the training models that I do with my own small band of prefessional merry men and women. Further, the models that HH outlines in his book are just that: models. Yes, they are very good progressions which works well in very ordered steps for skill development. Good. But, like people have said above, good coaching and getting effective results are only in part due to sound MODELS. It is still up to the Pros to fine tune a lesson plan for each individual student and to vary it according to circumstance and learning and individual learning patterns.
BUT I still believe that the evolution in ski design has evolved skiing technique and, additionally, that it is up to all of us to evolve ski teaching too. I would suggest that we, as Ski Pros, owe it to our clients and the ski industry which we all work in to put petty differences aside and take a good, honest look at all the various "methods", make some judgement calls as to what really works and evolve Professional Ski Instruction in America. This may mean that YOU actually go out and teach a new progression and see what happens. Talking about it only goes so far. Reality goes farther.
Ok...that's the end of my whatever. Hope everybody has a good week coming up and I look forward to more lively discussion. Pray for snow and world peace. See you.
P.S. Sorry about any typos or misspellings. I'm not really proff-reading this too much. Off the top of the head for sure.