Sally, Julia, Kat, Stanly, Billy 2

Some remedial work was required today after everyone had ventured onto the blue slopes yesterday afternoon. Amazingly, La Plagne has no green slopes for beginners to develop their skills safely and securely.

The best scenario was to refocus on the basics again and strengthen them on the little beginner’s area. Good questions were asked and different explanations given so that gradually the principles became clearer to everyone and individual issues could be more directly addressed.

The only new thing we looked at today was the “pivot” which was just to get the ball rolling with this. What we really need is a steeper slope now where sideslipping can be worked on – then the relevance of the pivot will start to become obvious. The main purpose of the exercise at this stage is to develop the “pulling inwards” laterally of the outside ski, into the turn. It’s actually the muscle coordination that counts here regardless of whether there is pivoting or not. The centre of mass goes into the turn and and support leg pulls the ski into the turn (opposite to pushing it outwards as seen in a snowplough).

Progress was definitely made again despite the constraints of the terrain. Billy was being held back due to twisting his upper body into the turn when he was worried about stopping – or standing a long time on his left leg. I explained to pull the hip backwards on the supporting leg to help with this – it prevents upper body rotation.

Julia managed to overcome her stemming and start to move her centre of mass in the right direction. Kat improved a lot when she understood better how skating related to moving the centre of mass. Sally was doing well anyway and picking things up all the time. Stanley, due to his expeditions off piste and multiple falls was now anchoring himself firmly into the backs of his ski boots. I understand his impatience and exuberance – but if he was a skater he’d be finding this much more natural – so patience is required!

Please use the links at the top of the page – to “Pivot“, “Beginners” and “Dynamics” to explore and better understand the subjects.

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