Holy moly & sassafras sweetness! The snow conditions are now entering into the epic category! I hope you’ve been out enjoy it, and most of the preseason acclimations have now phased out. While much of what I work this time of year is a helpful and a refreshing reminder, many of these fundamentals will never lose their new car smell. Hard to believe, but it’s a true story. You simply can’t work on them enough.
We’ve delved into the proper stance and posture many times in the past, but it just can’t be stressed enough. How you stack your body and arrange your posture is crucial on how the skis perform. Mainly because it is the framework that dictates how weight is translated onto the skis. Without the proper pressure on the skis, and the timing of that pressure, you are built to spill. If you maintain the optimal stacking and posture, you will achieve the ultimate control and effortlessness. This session I wanted to share with you a couple sensations that will allow you to find enhanced balance and stability in your stance.
This enhanced balance and stability on your skis is directed related to your posture. So the first component here is to double check your setup. Remember, the shorter the turn the squarer the upper body (chest / shoulders) needs to be to the fall line (directly down the hill).
The longer the turn, the upper body has to still point downhill but can favor the tip of the downhill ski. Hands where you can see them and arms should be close to full extension. No chicken wing action, slightly to the side and out in front. Only from this position can you blend in a rhythmical pole plant. Once you have this position, you will then have a much easier time keeping your chins against the tongue of the boot. The more you lean back and rotate (following the skis), the less control and effortlessness your will experience. This is when the legs are burning more than they should and most of the control goes out the window.
Once you’re in the backseat you lose the ability to extend the body and lighten the skis at the end of the turn. This lightening and placing weight on the skis is truly how you bend the ski properly and also release the energy. This is where you can let the skis do all the work. This is a magical experience when you do it correctly. I personally strive to find this effortless constantly. Its hard work to strive to stay in the key posture, but I promise you that it is a heck of a lot easier than sitting on the back of your skis forcing you to over work your legs.
Not to mention you don’t have control and the fun factor dwindles. I love being there when someone experiences this effortless for the first time. Can you say “game changer”!
Once you have the stack and posture dialed, I want you to work on a new sensation. This sensation will enhance the pressuring of the shovel of the ski (front half), and allow for the boots to be squarer through the entire turn. When the boots get too separated, your ability to translate pressure in a timely fashion is hindered. The most common mistake is letting the inside boot edge ahead of the outside boot (aka the outside ski). This means you have less weight on the downhills ski. The sensation that I want to share with you starts at the top of the turn when you have established the early pressure on the downhill ski. At this moment, feel as if you are delicately pulling the inside boot directly back up the hill. This will give you the sensation that the outside boot (downhill ski) is now equal with and or slightly more down the hill than the inside boot. This new found “squareness” will enable you to place more weight on the outside ski and also allow you to more easily let the upper body drive down the fall line. The blended result here is enhanced balance and quickness on your feet. If you have any questions – send me an email. Happy New Year everyone, enjoy the champagne powder, and ski hard! firstname.lastname@example.org