[Sticky] I'm on a mission to try every drill
@adrian_hamilton Could you elaborate on the "decider rider" drill for when your short tunrs aren't working so well? What exactly are you doing in this drill?
Basically the inside leg softens and shortens to control the rate at which edging is increased and pressure builds to the outside ski, so the inside ski is the decider. The outside ski receives pressure and becomes the rider.
Thinking of it this way helps to reduce focus on the outside and the chance of becoming blocked by trying to increase pressure instead of setting yourself up with a long outside leg and being well stacked to allow pressure to build.
I like to do a little progression starting with decider rider hockey stops to a complete stop, then stopping just momentarily and moving into a new one, then starting to link them until I'm making very rounded turns.
@geepers It's just important to keep it light. A good cue for this, I find, is to think about releasing the camber of the inside ski.
As with every exercise, concept, drill, however, some things just don't resonate sometimes. In my opinion, as the exercise is not a fundamental part of skiing, though the technical element it's addressing is, if after trying it it's just not working, use a different approach.
Think I'll come back to this one after a couple of weeks on snow - about mid Feb. There's something here but it's not yet working for me.
@geepers JF explains the exercise way better than I can in his series of 3 videos from his website. It's in video 2. I used the concept on my L3 teaching exam and it worked pretty well.
I love javelin turns too - great warm up, or useful for salvaging a session when things feel a little "off"
Reilly McGlashan has a good one in Project Kitz he calls outriggers (not to be confused with the pole drag drill of the same name). In his version he rolls the outside ski on edge and then just lets that leg relax and really lengthen, letting the ski's sidecut engage and ultimately bring that leg back under him for the transition. I found it really useful (to use the terminology in Adrian's JF example, it highlights the "rider" ski).
For angulation I have been playing around this season with ditching the poles for a few runs and doing the classic hand on outside hip drill, trying to feel my rib cage move down to meet my hip (I incorporated Tobin's lifting the inside butt cheek advice too, which I found effective- and amusing because any opportunity you can use "butt cheek" in a technical setting is not to be missed).
Not so much a drill, more of a cue/remedy: if my fore aft feels off (in bumps e.g.) i often find that if I turn my wrists inward (fists pointing at each other rather than down the hill) that has the very subtle effect of bringing my COM slightly forward which can help a lot (also useful in low visibility or crud conditions where you might find yourself a bit in the back seat). This is one I think I may have invented (or forgot where i plagiarized it) and in all likelihood is complete BS and operates only on a psychological level, but it seems to help me so I'll throw it out there.
Roller blade turns on cat tracks incorporating some fore aft movement (tip to tail/rail to rail) is a warm up favourite to get the ankles mobile and develop general COM position awareness first thing in the morning.
I like these Davea. I always get some positive reaction with Tobin’s butt cheek lift.
I’m not sure how the hand position works but just sitting in a chair there’s a curious different feeling in the core when I change my hand position, or am I imagining it. There may be some mileage in it: it’s always good to try things.
@adrian_hamilton for me it feels like it has the effect of bringing my COM forward about an inch...maybe that is enough to impact things (?) -or maybe i’m imagining it too! Anyway, it helps me « reset » when things are off for some reason.
Those new Dynastar MasterSpeed SLs have helped massively with AP. They are responsive but stable and I've felt comfortable laying them over. Also skiing with P2P V3 thoughts in mind. Balance in the middle of the outside ski, edge angle, separate and angulate for grip.
And now the rider/decider makes sense. An analogy would be the feel of the rudder in a well trimmed boat. It should only take light pressure on the rudder to point the boat. If it feels heavy then the trim - balance - is off.
Not being a sailor, I don't quite get the rudder analogy. One of the major benefits of decider/ rider for me is that it helps me to allow pressure to build on the outside ski, rather than trying to pressurise. As JF says receeeeeeive the pressure.
That's the issue with using analogies - no use if the audience hasn't shared the same experience!
Can't come up with a better one so back to actual skiing...
Inside ski (as decider) helps fine tune turn shape. And a tighter turn means more pressure to resist.
There's a great deal more performance to be had in my current turns. Grip is not the limit. Leg strength is ok. Not sure how to get the next few degrees of inclination.
It sounds like you've found a ski that really suits you there geepers.
As for the need for more inclination, do you have any recent video of your APs? Having passed your Level 3 tech they are clearly of a really high standard but there may be something we, or more accurately skinerd can spot to help.
Back to drills and a question here. For learning/ teaching TR2, turning is led by the lower body and the ski design, how effective does anyone think braquage is in this? My thinking is that the kind of lower body turning involved in braquage is not really functional for advanced skiing (or any other come to that) I think it has a place in fore aft balance, release at transition etc., but I'm not sure it's helping with TR2.
Functionally, the move we're trying to make would describe an arc in the snow rather than a bow. Since motor skills are patterned on purposeful practice and repetition, might braquage be patterning potentially detrimental pathways?
I know it's a very widely used drill and part of the Level 4 tech exam but I am also always wary of doing things a certain way because that's how they've always been done. (Incidentally I have a great story, not ski related, about repeating things for the sake of it, which I think illustrates the point brilliantly. I will relate it if anyone is interested.)
It's something I have been thinking about for a while. I know that performing a good braquage requires a high level of skill but are there not far better and more functionally relevant ways of doing the same thing?
AP... don't want to oversell it. Was just good enough last year, feels a tad better this year. Still a long way short of Reilly, Paul or Tobin. The new skis help, as much mentally as anything else, as I know they are up for the job. The next "tad better" eludes me - is it a case of try harder or is there something in technique that needs addressing?
Rode motorcycles way back and one of my early goals was to lean the things over far enough to have the footpegs scrape on the road. Feel that the situation is similar although the angulation is different - on a road bike tend to move the body further inside and lower to keep the bike more upright. Turned out the way to achieve that goal was enough experience in handling the bike to be able to set up the required inclination entering the turn. On say, a quick 90 degree bend, the turn is over too quickly to have more than one attempt to set the inclination and you've either touched the footpeg or not.
There's the drills in P2P V3 and another round of CSIA courses next week.
The vid by Dr Ken posted re the MA question has a bit on this around 26 minute.
Another separation drill that I've found useful is traversing with a sideslip at increasing speed. Align upper body with and travel towards a point on the side of the run with skis offset 20-30 degrees to the direction of travel. Turn and repeat to opposite side of run. Increase speed in successive runs to a good intermediate speed. We did it on a course for some hours and it made a big difference to the skiing of all the attendees.
Further to my last post Fred illustrates the idea of directing the outside ski in this video.