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How to deal with high forces best?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Took up racing again this weekend. First time I raced for 15 years. It was tremendeous fun.
I was very nervous at the first slalom run but it went just fine. The second run I pushed all that I could and I felt totally forward and in control until I suddenly without warning was riding with the inner feet high up in the air and weight far far back. It all went well and I improved the time despite the mishap. Dunno what happened, if you know please tell me.
For the GS i felt totally relaxed about the course, but very nervous about performing. There was no real problems either run but I felt I could improve quite a bit in the steep open turns.

Here's the deal, I'm using my B5i and I've decided to keep them for the 3 remaining local races I can attend. The courses are set for non adult racers, so they are rounder than what a >27 ski could perform well in.
My problem is when it gets steep and I want to do a longer radius turn. If I edge less, it's difficult to really get the edge to stick on the ice. If I edge more (this is at a higher speed section) then I'll do a quite high g short turn, and I'm unsure of how to do that the best way. I feel that to deal with the force I either need to use both legs, or going very low with an almost straight outer leg.
What's the best way to deal with that kind of turn using the current setup?

I don't want to be too long-winded so I hope this covers my question. I'll try to explain again if my english is bad.
post #2 of 17
In the second run it sounds like your skis hooked up and out ran your COM taking you from forward to back in a flash.

What is the radius of a B5i?

To deal with what is going on, at least for now as you are presumably on small radius skis: maintain the edge angle to keep from sliding out of the course. That leads to your turn radius being smaller than what would be optimal given the speed you are travelling and you'll build up high Gs. You need exceptional strength in your body to deal with the forces that will build up.

Too short of a radius will cause you to make sharper, quicker turns so you will end up pointing more directly at the next gate than if on a larger radius ski because you need less space to make your turns. You are basically doing SL turns in a GS set. It isn't easy.

In the long run the right skis would make a huge difference.
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
11m. The skis were on rails all the time. Arc to arc. So yes they are way short radius.
post #4 of 17
The problem is that to hold the speed in the turns, you have to hold edge angle. Holding edge angle on an 11 m ski is going to create huge forces. Additionally, at the size of turn that those skis make, you are going to have to ride a flat ski between turns. It is very hard (not impossible, to the literalists) to make those carve the size arcs you require in a race course.
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
Yes I understand, but I'm saving the cash for fins and sails. ;)

I do however want to know how to deal with it the best way for the rematches.
post #6 of 17
Learn to make 18 - 21 m radius turns on the 11 m radius ski. It is possible, but if you need more edge angle to make the turns hold when the hill gets steeper, you are simply going to end up with smaller turns than you want. 

At which point it is probably easier is to make a SL turn at the gate, let the ski go flat and run across the hill then make another SL turn at the next gate. So you would end up with arced turns, that hold and are dictated in size by the side cut of the ski and traverses between them.
post #7 of 17
Thread Starter 

Longer turns is no problem when it's not steep, icy and going very fast in combination. I am already practicing doing short turns at high speed. My problem I tried to describe in the first post is that I'm not sure of how to deal with the forces best. Should I:

* Spread the forces between both legs?
* Go low with an almost straight outer leg?

post #8 of 17
Carl, you should ski with stretched outer leg. When the leg would be bent, it is very dificult to withstand high forces during the turn. But on stretched leg you are able to carry much higher forces.
post #9 of 17
I agree, on the outside leg, but keep the inside ski engaged so it tracks, too. A long outside leg will give you the best ability to handle the Gs as you will use more skeletal support than muscular, but you also need to be able to flex the leg so that you can deal with terrain and chatter. If you lock your outside leg straight and hit a little bump, the ski will engage/decamber more and you will end up high siding or worse. Skis hooking up unexpectedly, especially short radius ones, are a significant cause of injury in racing. What happens is your skis turn up the hill, while your COM continues to move down the hill.

I appreciate your desire to improve, but you really need the right gear to succeed safely. There are reasons racers use GS skis for GS.
post #10 of 17
MR's suggestion for GS skis is still the best answer.

However, here's something you might try to stretch the range of your 11m skis a little bit:

The normal advice in GS is to stand on the outside ski, because you want as much force as you can get on one ski to bend it in a clean arc.

In your case, standing on the outside ski is going to over-bend and over-turn your 11m ski.

Try distributing weigh a bit more evenly so that both skis track in the largest radius possible for that ski.  Distributing loads to both legs will also be a little easier on your joints.
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks guys!

Very valuable input. :)

post #12 of 17

When I bought my first 165cm true SL race department vertical sidewall skis I was convinced I could carve any club GS course and that there was no need for GS skis. Turned out I was wrong. It is offcourse possible to ski a GS course with SL skis and even to win at club level but normally you will be better off with a bigger radius ski. The thing is that you need to be able to match the turn radius with your speed. That means that you need to have just the right ammount of tipping and gross projection into the turn. CoM offset into the turn. If you are too upright on too short radius skis then you skid like mentioned previously. If you tip enough your turn radius will be too tight and skis too aggressive.

A long leg is better for stacking up against the turn forces. A slightly bent leg is better for keeping snow contact.

post #13 of 17
You could always pick up an old pair of P50 F1s and slap some new bindings on 'em for a few shekels.  It's cheaper than medical bills from having your 11 m ski hook into a pile of snow or rut at 50 mph.
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
In the local hills I'm skiing straightlining will get one up to 40 mph tops. There's one hill where 60 mph might be possible straight down in a suit, but I'm not racing there anything this season (what's left of it).

As I've been thinking about GS skis, I've come to the conclusion that I want to try some different models before deciding on anything. There are so many good options so I want to see which skis feels most inspiring. The feeling is what's worth most to me.
post #15 of 17
If you are skiing a slalom ski over 30 mph, you will love the feeling of a gs ski at that speed.  You just have to tip them over on edge a bit more.
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
The GPS showed 38mph through the GS course practicing 2 weeks ago. It was a rough ride because we made big ruts due to the above zero temperature. Was a very straight GS course thou, and the guy who set it was on FIS legal skis.
post #17 of 17

Try doing the opposite of what gives you a tight radius:


Less shin pressure

Less angulation, use inclination instead.

More pressure on inner ski.

Less speed (just kidding:))

You can find pretty cheap skis from ex-racers at the end of the season (try blocket). I picked up a pair of FIS skis for less than 300$.
A friend of mine picked up a pair of GS skis for 80$. Very little steel edge on them, but he uses them occasionally so they should last a couple of seasons.

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