Beginner Skiing Progression – Linked Wedge Turns

Now that a skier can turn both ways... it's time to start linking turns together and exploring the mountain. Most skiers prefer the added stability of a wedge initially, but if parallel magically happens... go with it!

Objectives: 

Link turns together managing speed and turn shape while discovering the new areas of the mountain. Gradually increase challenge with more speed or steeper terrain.

Tactical Considerations:

Experiment with different turn shapes so you can manage speed as the terrain changes.

Letting the skis run to gain speed will may life easier on gentle slopes, however, steering quicly out of the fall line will help control speed as the terrain gets steeper.

A wide corridor is easy for beginers, however a narrow corrideor is typically safer, especially on crowed runs.

Technical Considerations:

  • Use all joints to maintain balance in the middle of the skis
  • Lead the turning effort with the lower body
  • Use seperation and angulation to manage grip
  • Time and coordinate the moves to link turns efficiently and adjust turn shape to terrain and conditions.

Wedge Turn Traverse:

Struggling to link them? Add in a small traverse across the slope to allow time to rebalance between turns. Or perhaps try a ‘Garland’ where you start a turn but then chicken out. As skills build, set the challenge to link them fluidly together.

Caution:

A Wedge is great for adding stability... but BAD for Speed Control!

  • Ensure the focus is on TURN SHAPE to manage speed. Once the terrain gets steeper a wedge becomes USELESS for keeping speed under control and will result in the dreaded run away DEATH WEDGE! Stay in relatviely shallow terrain until turn shape is well controlled.
  • Linked turns in a narrow corridor are typically safest. If a traverse is needed, make sure the slope has low traffic and you leave room to pass. Try to make your turns predicable for other skiers.
  • Stop off to the side where you are visible from above and always look up hill before you go

Suitable Drills:

Suitable Cues:

Trouble Shooting Symptoms:

The big new challenge at this stage is transitioning from one turn to the next. Often this is simply a physiological issue and the skier is afraid to commit. Other times it’s an imbalance from the previous turn. Keep an eye out for the following symptoms.

Too advanced? Head back to...

Too Easy? Move ahead to...

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