When I think about short turns, rhythm is an objective that immediately comes to mind. But linking turns rhythmically isn’t just about aesthetics... there are some functional spin offs to be had by skiing to the beat.
We’ve discussed the overarching skill of Pressure Control a lot on this blog, and rhythm is a key factor affecting the forces between your skis and the snow. Rhythm often determines the pace at which the ski loads and unloads, affecting the skis grip, steering and how the mass is deflected.
In music, we interpret rhythm through sound. In skiing, you feel it as moments of heaviness exchanged with moments of lightness in a series of linked direction changes.
Sometimes it’s a slow and gradual increase of pressure followed by a progressive release... and sometimes it’s quick and snappy. It all depends on the turn shape you desire and the snow conditions you’re faced with.
Rythym can help time your movements and reduce hesitation, helping you commit to the transition so your turns link fluidly and your mass follows a smooth flowing path.
You can try using your pole swings to keep time, maybe count, use a mental metronome, or play a song in your head. I often catch myself humming through each turn with the pitch changing as the skis load and unload.
Just keep turning and feel the rhythm. Then when things get predictable... change up the tempo!
Spot the rhythm in some of these short turn variations...