Natalie, Darcy, Zak, Damon

Very constructive morning for Natalie. Sometimes we take two steps forward one day and then one backward the next. That was the case today but it allowed us to go into greater depth and clarify some key issues.

Skiing is an individualist sport – we each get something personal out of it and it’s important to do this at our own pace. Natalie today became clearer on several points:

  • the separation of the edge of the foot and the edge of the ski
  • using the inside edge of both feet all the time (and adductor muscles of both legs)
  • how the “push” for dynamics uses muscles that extend the leg while with the same leg the simultaneous “pull” inwards uses the adductor muscles (two separate actions – same leg – same time)
  • how the motion across the skis of the body at turn initiation flattens the inside ski of the turn – but it remains important to stay on the inside edge of that foot
  • how standing up on the balls of the feet and putting some weight on the front of the ski boots can activate the fronts of the skis
  • how it’s important to be perpendicular to the mountain (as a base reference) when sliding downhill

Darcy was encouraged to jump in the air at the start of her turns – but the main purpose of this exercise was to make the legs work in a way that would reduce her leaning on the backs of her ski boots. Otherwise, Darcy is doing fine and developing naturally through feeling – due to her use of dynamics. Darcy’s awareness of control and the skiing environment around her is rapidly increasing. Her choice of line and changes of direction when skiing in front for filming were safe and effective.

Zak was given exercises in jumping (straightening the legs in the air and getting the body high) and swinging the fronts of the skis in the air. We also did sideslipping and he managed his first pivot on his own. We tried “stomping” the uphill leg ito the snow to initiate solid stance and pressure on that ski for the turn and we tried lifting the inside ski off the ground 3 times in each turn to get pressure on the outside ski.

Zak was rewarded for all this work with two runs in the snowpark!

Damon was still in a life or death struggle with the inside ski in the turn despite joining in most of the exercises that Zak was doing.

Normally I would only look at “end of turn” dynamics with parallel skiers but the thought occurred to me (over a coffee) that exiting the turn over the top of the downhill ski might actually work even in a plough. The video clip of Damon proves that this works – a totally different skier!

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