Big Man! You don't need legs of steel, you need a MIND of steel, because to enjoy the crud, the bottom line is you simply have to go faster. Not necessarily a lot faster, but at least a tiny bit faster, nonetheless.
When skiing in cruddy snow conditions, it is not desirable to skid the skis, as a wise dude mentioned earlier. The skis must carve with a delicate combination of precision, grace and finesse stirred together with power, punch and sting! To do so asks you to tap into your most powerful source of balance, your friend speed. To carve is to balance upon a razor thin ribbon of steel, trusting that edge to carry you to a favorable place from which to begin your next arc. Without speed, you cannot balance against such a minute brace.
"The faster you go, the smoother the ride gets"
"Movement in Motion" The guiding principle of ski teaching in Canada. Motion: the gravity assisted downhill travel of the skier. Movement: physical actions undertaken by a skier in motion.
The skiing artist who swoops down the gnarliest of runs in big luxuriant carves is the one who recognizes that while the speed of the skier may increase, the movements he makes during his downward travels can become slower, more patiently considered. But darn it, for most of us, when our motion speeds up, our movements become frantic, jerky, illogical, ill-timed and not requisite to the task at hand. There must be meaningful movement within the motion.
Deal with facts: to ski in cruddy snow requires a set of carving edges. More edge angle requires the rider to travel faster in order to avoid falling upon his ass.
Learning to travel faster challenges the skier to remove his gaze from the hallowed textbooks of skiing and look into the power stored in the mind. You see, your BODY already knows how to ski. It is the mind we must train, for it is this supercomputer which sends the messages down to the manual laborers.
How to train the mind? Crud-haters, you need to call upon your powers of discipline, patience and committment to overcome this challenge. The bottom line goal is to become more comfortable in the presence of higher speeds.
This does not mean you ski recklessly and way outside of your ability level. Still, you must venture into some places you've perhaps never gone on purpose! This is a physical fact. Name any sport that involves motion and you will find that that as the game is played at higher levels, the speed of the game goes up. College basketball is not as fast as the NBA. NHL hockey is faster than junior. High school football is a much slower game than the one played by the monsters of the NFL. It is obviously the goal of anyone reading this to constantly improve their skiing. Speed is a critical element in this particular snow condition, and yes, this fact excludes some skiers from the fray by virtue of the athletic prowess required to negotiate the stuff. Hang on though, there's still hope for most of you! After all, we don't have to travel at world cup speeds or anything like that.
Be PATIENT and allow the turns to develop without rushing things. Edge angles sufficient for carving the skis must develop progressively, so the skis will be in or near the fall line throughout more of the turn. Zis makit you go more faster, yah? Not a lot faster, but enough that you have to be PATIENT and DISCIPLINED in your approach. How to practice? Divide that challenging run into sections and challenge your movements to become more patient and disciplined throughout the entire section. If you make a l'il boo-boo along the way, try your hardest to hang in there and recover, rather than giving in to the evil voice that tells you to throw the skis sideways and scrub off that valuable speed. It might be 3 turns, maybe 15 or 25, or maybe 7. Whatever you decide, it must be enough to challenge your skills of patience and discipline. It is your job not to add speed randomly and recklessly, but to add speed in measured doses then learn how to maintain that speed through your turns. The speed you choose to go is obviously relative to your own personal limits. The fact remains: a constant and steady speed generally works better than a "vrooom-errcch" type of skiing. Easier to maintain a rythym.
COMMITTMENT: Earlier, the mind was described as a supercomputer. Because it is. It controls thousands of individual functions simultaneously. In fact, the entire body can be likened to a computer. Muscles, bones, tendons, ligaments... this is the hardware. Be brave and maybe dream a little and boldly assume that this hardware functions perfectly. It already knows how to ski. So, it becomes a matter of running the right software. Naturally, everyone's hardware works a little differently from their neighbors'. This is why skiing at it's highest levels is very much a sensory game, with plenty of room for individual styles. Physics is the baseline. Perfect physics equals perfect skiing. Of course, the current version of homo-sapiens cannot approach the mathematical perfection of physics. All we can do is the best we can with the hardware we came with. (Certainly, we can upgrade our hardware with physical exercise) The smart skier seeks every possible avenue to improve the function of the hardware. Maybe peripherals like custom footbeds or top secret ski tuning techniques. These same skiers realize that we are essentially stuck with the hardware we've got and she's the girl we gotta take to the prom. Or boy. Whatever. So you've got to run the right software. Install DISCIPLINE 2001, PATIENCE 2001 and COMMITTMENT 2001. Always upgrade to the newest version.
Skiin' crud? Easy, if you have a mind of steel. And you do. Just try a little harder and go a little faster.
Thanks. 72 out.