Sea Of Clouds–Tignes

Down in the valley the day was miserable because it was beneath the clouds. In contrast we were above the clouds – who says heaven isn’t real? There was still some interesting snow to ski but wind had blown away most of the deep snow at high altitude – except in the protected gullies. I decided to take the opportunity to infiltrate a bit more technique into Haluk’s skiing.

Feet Forward

Haluk made major progress earlier this year when I pushed him strongly towards using the chi-hips. This dramatically freed up his hips and his overall stance. Naturally this is only providing an improved base for building better and unimpaired skills. Yesterday in the deep snow a couple of photographs from the video showed that there was sometimes a distinct problem during the turn transition – when rising up out of the deep snow. The photos show the knees leading into the turn before anything else. I explained to Haluk that it’s important to move the feet further ahead at the very start of the turn to create hip angulation and to free the hip so that the centre of mass can move unimpeded into the new turn ahead of everything else. The knees are only fine tuning. Haluk initially suggested leading with his chin – so I recommend he doesn’t take up boxing! All motion should initiate from the centre and the centre should be the main focus – whether referring to external dynamics (whole body accelerations) or internal dynamics (chi-hips combined with forward motion of the feet). You can avoid getting caught on the backs of the ski boots by flexing the knees and hips as you sink down into the turn. The lowered stance is ideal for deep or tricky snow anyway – so the proportion of flexing should match the proportion of pushing the feet forward in accordance with the snow conditions and terrain. If you feel unsure then increase BOTH.                        

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