Sally, Julia, Kat, Stanly, Billy 4

Today we worked on being more active with the legs and on angulation. Dynamics and sideslipping were used in context. The following feedback is focused on points that need work and development – so should not be seen as criticism. Everyone has done well.

Quite a forceful exercise was used to show how angulation is created correctly and safely with a counter rotating of the pelvis (counter to the direction of the turn) – and how this is applied in turn transitions. Although this is an advanced aspect of skiing it’s probably the only way really to stop people from rotating the upper body through their turns – and surprisingly everyone in the group improved directly. Everyone in the group has been suffering from the effects of inappropriate body rotation – but all in different ways.

Billy improved dramatically immediately following the exercise. However – it’s important to know that the snowplough – even a narrow one – actually makes it very difficult to counter rotate the pelvis – so the sooner that plough is lost the better!!!

Sally made clear progress with tighter turns, more confidence and control – with both the early leg extension and the angulation being visible. Prior to this the legs were permanently (and tiringly ) flexed and there was a lot of rotation in the second half of the turn – where the forces build up. This tends to cause “spinning” on ice because you can’t keep any pressure on the fronts of the skis – and one rotation leads to another. Sally is probably getting the best dynamic range of the whole group.

Where Sally (right) clearly throws her body into the turn and angulates, Julia stands up straight, hands by her side and actually tilted backwards at the hips instead of forwards (not so visible here) and although there are a certain amount of dynamics there is too much rotation (especially late in the turn), no angulation and consequently a big skid sideways at the end of each turn.

Kat tends to be in the backs of the ski boots and uses a big body rotation to try to start the turns – especially when turning to the right. Those two things combined are causing her stem (wedge) and to get stuck on the inside ski during the turns. Work on the early leg extension (uphill ski) and angulation!

Stanley has mainly to get off the backs of his ski boots and stand up. He has some postural issues but that’s something we didn’t have time to get into. For lower back protection this is something that should be addressed. Holding the arms and hands a bit higher – standing up – might be enough to correct that. This is linked to his overall tendency to get in the back of the boots.

Basically – there’s a lot of work to be done – but everybody was getting around the mountain and equipped to do so safely. With standard teaching methods people expect to spend several years – if not many years before skiing parallel – so when you see a complete beginner like Stanley already skiing perfectly parallel that puts things into perspective! Well done everyone!

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