My blog is about downhill skiing. My site is for beginners to learn quickly and safely and for intermediates to update their technique or teach a friend. It highlights AlanR Ski Method, a user friendly, safe, effective learning process for a beginner skier. Included are a video and manual. Included also are enhancements, observations, thoughts and tips, etc.
Sunday, 12 January 2020
Beginner Skiers and The Snowplow
Taken From the Manual
of the first things that you will be taught at a ski school is how to snowplow
down a small hill. This is an excellent place to start if it is used properly.
It uses all the primary skills;
or Counter Rotation,
allows you to move slowly down the hill. It can be used to stop and turn. It
can be used as a way of skiing. Also, by keeping your legs wide you keep your
balance bending slightly forward you prevent falling. There is a but. It can be
habit-forming if overused and becomes a way of skiing.
A snowplow is
a powerful tool for learning the primary skills
required to ski. You start by
forming a wedge or V shape with your skis. Leaning forward at the waist so you
free pressure on the ball of your foot and if your feet are wide enough, you
will feel pressure concentrated just at the base of your big toe.This is an important pressure point because
this is the pressure required to make skis turn. If you lean to the right, your
right ski will tilt and bend. When moving your ski will turn left. This
pressure can be enhanced by tilting the knee to the left.
start moving down-hill the first time, you should form a small wedge. If you
increase the V angle really wide, then you will stop. Or you can keep going
making small and large wedges to speed up or slow down.This is accomplished more by applying
pressure to your heels, heel pressure control.Also what enhances the effect of slowing and speeding up is that the
angle of your ski changes.The wider
your heels move the greater the angle and the greater the ski edges grip the
snow with the result to slow your motion forward. Performing this simple
exercise you are teaching both legs pressure and edge control plus pivoting or
is turning your leg in the direction you wish to go.In a snowplow position, both your skis are
pointing in opposite directions, so unless you enhance one or the other you
will move in a straight line down the hill. Enhancing toe pressure on the right
ski, you will turn left.
The above is
all you need to know to ski down beginner and intermediate hills. It is also a
very tiring way to ski. Your legs are under stress continuously.This is one reason beginners lose energy
of the Skills
skiing easier and less stressful is to enhance these skills with 2 more
exercises.One is the one-foot stop
exercise and the other is initiating small turns. These are lessons 3 and 4 in
In lesson 3
you start down the hill skis side by side, then make a wedge and then push one
foot out in front so that it lies across your line of motion. Kids find this is
an easy body move, often using this to stop automatically. You use pressure on
your heel to make this happen.As you
get older it becomes more difficult. This is a tough one for me to demo, as I
am really old now.
this is where we first started with pressure on the ball of the foot and a
slight tilting of the knee in the direction you want to go. With pressure
applied to the front inside edge of one ski, the ski will turn.Again the motion is down-hill in a straight
line turning left and right in small turns. These are not real turns, they are just
the beginning of turns.
Transition to Parallel Skiing
In lesson 5,
you use a modified snowplow. It is called a stem christy turn, a mini turn and
a one-foot stop without the stop combination. This is the start of the
transition from snowplow skiing to parallel skiing.If you have practiced the previous lessons
diligently you will be able to combine lessons 3 and 4 and add parallel
skiing.It works like this. You start
across a gentle hill at about walking speed with your skis side-by-side, spread
about shoulder width, and at a 45-degree angle to the right of straight down
the hill. Move about 5 meters (about 17') then lean forward and push out your
right ski in a snowplow and turn 90 degrees. Bring your skis parallel and
repeat.It is best to see the video for
this movement.This is a progression
where you gradually increase your speed and applying more pressure to the
outside ski making the turn. You will find that eventually most of your weight
will be on the outside or turning ski and the other ski can stay beside the
process by reducing the straight length, and you just shift your weight left to
right making a series of turns. There you are effortlessly parallel skiing.
Maybe 2-4 hours. Maybe a faster run (steeper hill) to feel a little speed.Maybe a better hill with a bit of a challenge.
Maybe adding a little more pressure on the turns at the start and finish, for
speed control. Maybe work the skis a little harder.
here is that there is no reason that a person can’t be parallel skiing in a few
hours. The last 3 parts make the difference. Nobody should be stuck in a
snowplow skiing position. To Improve start at the top and repeat the process