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TOPIC: How to improve your skiing.

How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 3 months ago #9542

  • BudDavis
  • Today is a gift, so ski. No promise of more.
How to improve your skiing.

If you took two identical skiers, same size, skill and ski, and change only one particular thing, you could see a huge difference in their performance. What particular thing comes to your mind?

It is which foot is weighted. Weighting the back foot, is applying brakes to the ski.

Think about it this way. Take two identical bikers, same size, skill and bike, and change only one particular thing. Add a little bit of brakes. Now, have them pedal for 34 feet and coast for 66 feet. Which one would win the 100 foot race every time? It is less efficient to accelerate and to coast with brakes on.

We should generate speed from the buoy into the center line. We should coast out and around the buoy. Adding brakes to our ski by weighting our back foot hurts both of these aspects.

The problem in studding skiers to learn from their styles, is no two are identical to each other or to us. You can find some strong skiers weighting their back foot and skiing very well. That does not mean we need to ski on our back foot to ski well.

To ski more efficiently, we should be vertical and balanced over our front foot. Most people will have to bend their front ankle and raise their rear heel to get into this position. Most people feel exposed and unprotected when first trying to ski this way. It is a natural and more secure feeling to lean on the back foot adding brakes and protecting ourselves from an OTF (out the front).

If it is security you are looking for, then stay off the water. But if you want to ski better, try what I said above. The more you ski that way, the more natural it will feel.

Good luck.

What are your thoughts?

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 3 months ago #9543

  • Brent
  • Tryin to swerve through life
Good point Bud

If you watch high end skiers that use a RTP ,you'll notice almost all of them pull out their back foot when pulling out to drop ,which helps reenforce the front foot balance point that you are making . A friend has had me go out & cross the wakes for a few passes with the back foot out to make me trust my front foot balance more & it works . I still tend to put too much weight on the back foot when I am tired but when my front foot is my balance point, it pays dividends .

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 3 months ago #9544

Bud, I could not AGREE with you more.

For me the biggest misconceptions out there are 1. You need to keep equal weight on both feet, 2. You need to feel the pull through both arms, 3. you need to pull through both wakes, and 4. You need to be light on the line !! To all these I claim BULL. That does not work with ZO.

The first thing you need to do is be WIDE, so you can take advantage of the down swing from the ball to center-line. Next, as Bud said so accurately, progressive load to the front foot and lead arm, building pressure towards center-line. You have to be ahead of the ski for max acceleration. Then at center-line, you can release the leg pressure, while maintaining the upper body lean (Reverse C) and allow the ski to swing out, while keeping both hands and the handle close, out to the buoy line There you can start feeding the line out, which allows the ski to continue outbound to the apex.

As Bud said, back foot pressure is "Brakes On." So true, you are just plowing water. If you keep that going after center-line, then your now plowing water down course. Remember, at center-line the handle now changes direction to going down course. This is where your acceleration you built up from ball to center-line translated into your "Swing Speed" which you need to propel you up WIDE on the boat again.

Point being, you can't finish wide if you don't start wide.

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 3 months ago #9554

  • DW
Great post, thanks. Humans have a tendency to do the 'safe' thing, and brakes on is a variant of that. In snow skiing, people feel 'safe' when they lean back on a steep hill, the better method is to move the COM forward and actually move your inside shoulder forward and out over the hill to initiate a good turn. In car racing, adding downforce is the 'safe' thing to do, it feels a heck of a lot better, but faster may be with the car trimmed out. Driving a street car, people instinctively hit the brakes when in a tenuous situation when perhaps throttle application or simply steering would avoid the obstacle or successfully navigate the crisis. In other words, great comment but maybe pretty hard for the human brain to digest:) Good practice comments to jump the hurdle.

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 2 months ago #9560

I get the "lift the rear foot out of the toe plate" exercise when crossing the wakes, but with double bindings, what would the suggestion be?

I'm skiing next week in Ft. Myers so I would like to work on this concept. I have a tendency to want to slow down to prevent those OTF's.

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 2 months ago #9561

Rick ... I skied on double bindings since 85, and double hardshells since 95. For a long time, Andy Mapple kept trying to get me to switch to a Reflex Front Shell with the R-Style Rear. The reason being that it would give me much more flexibility with the rear leg and allow me to better move my hips (COM), for a more forward leveraged stacked position. I did so 3 years a go, and it was the single biggest improvement to my skiing ever. I just never realized how restrictive the rear boot really was. The R-Style holds your foot really well and still gives you a lot more movement without having that upper cuff.

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 2 months ago #9562

  • BudDavis
  • Today is a gift, so ski. No promise of more.
I have double hard boots. I have my front shell snug, but on my rear shell, I have my mid and top buckles loose enough to lift my heel but not pull it out.
The following user(s) said Thank You: RickR90s

Re: How to improve your skiing. 2 years, 2 months ago #9563

Hi Ed, I really appreciate that insight. It totally makes sense.

Problem is, I just got a new set of Connelly Sync bindings that I'm going to try out next Tuesday in FL. But I think I'll need to ditch the rear and go back to a toe plate. My skiing has improved dramatically last year, learning to get COM forward, weight off the rear foot, coming out of the turns.

The following user(s) said Thank You: Ed Johnson
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