Thursday, April 5, 2018

Saturday, March 24, 2018

2nd in the "Skiing System Comparison". Transitions.

           The Transition comes from a great Release! 

For many skiers, this is where the trouble begins the way the release is structured. However, when the transition is approached with "certain movements", success and balance are achieved. Here again, we will compare between a PSIA Demo Team skier and a PMTS demonstrator.

(below photo The PMTS skier flexes and retracts the stance leg, and while doing so lifts the ski tip to free the leg and ski from the snow. This allows a transition movement.  This movement also changes the balance from the previous outside ski on the big toe edge to the new stance ski on the little toe edge. Now the free ski can begin tipping before the new stance ski. This creates a transition with parallel skis and parallel leg shafts.

Here is the result of this transition, a balanced stance on the new outside ski and a transition where the little toe edge is tipping and the big toe edge ski is already engaged, high in the arc and before the falline.

In contrast, we see the PSIA method where the uphill ski is flat and the tail of the ski is pushed uphill as in a Wedge Christie. Also, there is no energy from the previous stance ski to help transition or releasing due to the squaring of the hips. There is no evident balance transfer to the new ski from these movements. The skier is virtually stuck between his skis.

In the next frame below, we see the big toe edge engagement at the top of the arc, and no angles with the body going to the downhill side of both skis. Notice the knees are together and feet apart, demonstrating no balance is created for the new turn on the new ski, yet. There is also no little toe edge tipping to establish angles at the top of the arc.

This methodology is a result of the leg steering principles held so dearly by the PSIA system.
 In contrast, the PMTS System uses no leg steering, instead preferring to get the skis on an angle by tipping the feet and counteracting the hips and using the arms, hands, and torso as the external cues for this to be accomplished.

In the photo below (PMTS System) it's obvious what the two different systems produce. These are not happenstance or anomalies, the photos you see here in comparison are based on movement differences taught by two separate and totally different teaching systems. 
Below we see the PMTS method with the free foot tipping toward the new little toe edge, before either ski changes direction.

The result here is very obvious,  early angles, balance and both skis parallel on their
 new edges for the arc.

When you get the hang of PMTS there is no stopping you. (below photo) These are the movements used by world cup skiers. Notice that below is a complete edge and body change from one side to the other,  without a direction change of the skis, that is an expert skier using the best movements.

Differences in ski technique between PSIA and PMTS!

PMTS Skiing

In the below photo, the Essentials of PMTS skiing are obvious. Hip and upper body counteracting are set to the same degree. The inside arm and shoulder continue to counteract. This means they move forward and stay high (level) to keep strong counterbalance. The inside leg flexes and tips to the angles desired, while the outside leg is skeletally strong and stacked with the hip.

The differences aren't subtle and they originate from the approach to skiing and therefore the differences in the photo body position.

                                                                       PSIA Sking
Here a PSIA Demo Team skier shows a totally different approach and body alignment. The upper body shoulders and arms are in conflict with the hip. The shoulders are rotating and the inside arm is dropping and back. The hip is dumping inside. The outside knee is driven hard toward the inside leg. This is very weak skeletally alignment wise and will eventually wear on the knees. The difference in head position tells the complete story between the two skiers. The PMTS skier's head is lined up with the counteracting body, while the PSIA skier's head is turning with the body, creating part of the rotating result and also following the body rotation.

This skier also shows an extreme "A Frame" on the left knee, which is a weak alignment.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Quick Tip! Upper body relative to flexing to release.

One of my athletes holding his counter-acting.
PMTS Counter-acting is a function of the hips and upper body. The poles and arms are clear indicators as to how well it's done or how easy it is to lose counter-acting.

In this case, the practice of pole and hand use is helping the skier to prepare for a perfect release. Also, notice how the inside foot is back, this makes the transition to the new stance ski easy and quick. If you read my previous article it explains how the transition is created.

In both photos the inisde hand and ski pole tips are forward and ahead of the inisde ski boot. The ski pole on the lower side is prepared for a pole tap.  You want to think of the outside leg flexing or bending moving toward your chest whcih should be facing the outisde ski boot.

Marcel Hircher is the master of counter-acting and holding it at the release.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

The transition of PMTS Skiing.

Angles at the Apex of the arc.

The angles of the skis increase through tipping and bending of the inside leg. The upper body's roll is to counter-act the rotation created by strong edge angles, and quick sharp turn radi.

The outside leg has already begun to flex or bend to increase lower body angles, while the upper body come back to the falline.

Now the transitions begins in earnest as the outside leg retracts and the upper body moves toward the falline.

The knees are sucked up to the chest and the skis come flat to the snow.

The momentum of the releasing movements and gravity combine to make the edge change. The feet and legs relax to allow for this movement. The feet and legs still aid in the process managing the speed of the transition.

Tipping to the new angles with the legs requires that the upper body stays as verticle as possible helping with counter balance. 
 Balance is establsihed on the outside ski, increased angles of the skis is facilitated by inisde leg flexing and foot pull back.

 The focus should be on the inside foot, and the inisde leg bending. The outside leg followes the tipping of the inisde foot and ski.

The topics that are not covered in this post are still extensive and they are just as important as the retraction and tipping movements that are described. The actions with the upper body for counter acting and pole management are all there. As a teaser notice that the inisde pole never lags behind the boots.  Upper body and pole manaement is a topic for another post and article.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Counter acting and counter balance can be practiced with flexing.

The exercise is on youtube. This is one clip that shows how the poles can tell you if you are counterbalanced "poles are level, and counteracting poles are diagonal relative to the skis.

Shiny side down!

Maybe I should have said, "shiny side down", rather than "black side uphill", for people to undertand early tipping.

Friday, February 16, 2018

Classic slightly over cuffed and over canted alignment!

Notice the space between the knees and the right knee outside the forceline.

Very good effort to increase angles and tipping, however, no leg tipping occurred.  The hip dropped in further and CB increased. All of this is excellent management, however not the ideal result was achieved.
 In the frame above the right boot is further outside than the shin, this is classic cuff too strong against the lag. The boot sole could probably use 1/2 to 1 degree of inward tipping.

In the frame above notice the lifting of the outside hand, compare that to my right hand and arm.

 My transition shows upside down angles in the  High C. Our skis are pointed at in the same direction, however, the ski and body angles are not similar.

Compare the outside leg flex, knee bend, and fore/aft position, I am achieving my more forward balance because of the early upside down angles I created in transition.

Compare the extension movement from the first photo to the lower one.
You can really see it if you focus on the arm and pole lift you create in this phase. This is where the ski tails do go uphill and stay flat. The extension, although not huge interrupts and delays the new angles from developing. PMTS golden rule, "You can't tip your skis if you are extending"!

The last two photos I included to demonstrate the inside leg flexing and tipping needed to create bigger angles. The outside ski, foot, and ankle are also creating matching tipping movements to the inside ski.

A post that will help regular skiers relate to World Cup movements!

I often point out in my analysis of world cup skiers that some hold their hip counteracting, to release, better than others. Marcel Hirscher for example and Stefano Gross are two of the best at this.

The skier below is about to transition, however, there is no release of the stance foot or ski yet. The transfer of balance should be toward the LTE of the uphill ski in this photo. The reason this is difficult for this skier is that the hips have squared up and therefore there can not be a balance transfer to the uphill ski's LTE (little toe edge). You can't hold your balance well on the LTE if you have squared up the hips and are in a rotating hip phase near the end of the turn.

Here in the next photo, we see the outcome. The uphill ski is pushed away to get the turn started. The old stance ski has yet to move toward the LTE.
The formula for correction is easy and straightforward, we teach it to thousands of skiers, and I've written about it in numerous previous posts in this Blog site. In my previous posts, I describe how the world cup skiers do this. Which is, increase the hip counteracting before the releases and hold it while the feet, boots, skis and legs tip to the new direction.

      In both photos Hirscher holds his CA so he can transfer to the LTE of the uphill ski. Notice the torso is turned facing toward the next gate, not to the ski tips or side of the slope.

Here we see Stefano Gross performing the perfect PMTS "Super Phantom". After he established his balance on the new ski, and released his old stance ski, he is already starting his CA for the next arc early. The new inside hand and arm are already moving forward to create the CA for the next arc. I don't recommend this CA movement be done this early for recreational skiers. Gross is doing 30mph, and changing angles with high energy and at high speeds, he knows he has to prepare immediately. For regular recreational turns wait until the new inside ski is tipping toward it's LTE to start CA.
Gross balance transfer by retraction and tip lift.

To acheive a dynamic transition create counteracting through the arc and hold it as you let the legs release under your hips. Transfer to the uphill LTE and tip the old stance ski to flat and further to the LTE at the high C point of the arc. Any disturbance of this, like extending the leg or rotating the hip will reduce or eliminate the effiency of the transition.

Friday, February 2, 2018

Boot and stance comparison and fore/aft movements of World Cup Skiers!

The photo selections for this article are not one off to prove a point. They are consistent with the skiing methods and stance of the racers shown.

I have written and shown many aspects of Marcel Hirscher's great skiing on this Blog.  He defies analyst belief's about skiing. Two year's ago I did an article about Hirscher's reentering ability. In a fore/aft sense, Hirscher dominates all other racers except possibly Micheal Matt. This involves numerous movements and techniques he employs. In this article I'll point some of them out.

(below) No one is better at keeping fore/aft balance to pressure the tip of the ski at precisely the right time and moment then Hirscher.

Notice in the above photo, not only is Hirscher's inside hip more forward which constitutes counter-acting., but his inside boot is back under his hips relative to almost all others at this point in the arc. 

(Below) Sebastian Foss Solevag, Conpare his shin angles to Hirscher. His inside boot is much farther forward and his hips are more square and further back. This isn't trivial it's a huge disadvantage.

Compare the next two photos below, Hirscher flexes rather than extending out of the arc. Solevag stands and loses ground to the next gate.

Hirscher keeps his feet more together in both lateral distance and in a fore/aft relationship. This ability and his movements that make it happen, give him a cleaner carve and a shorter radius.

Kristofferson (below) splits his feet to get more forward pressure on the front of the outside ski. This brings his balance toward the inside ski reducing pressure and creating a bigger arc.

Here we see Kristofferson at the gate (above photo) and after the gate (below photo). He has big separations front to back and side to side of his skis and boots. Hirscher holds a much narrower stance throughout. He does this with strong inside foot pullback,  inside leg flexing/bending and tipping.

Angle Comparisons
From the frames below we can see that the shin angles vary tremendously from skier to skier.  Because Hirscher gets more foot pullback in transitions he's able to drop his hips into the falline earlier and further. The amazing thing about Hirscher is he doesn't back off by allowing his inside foot to move forward. He keeps the pullback tension with his hamstring, on the that leg to keep the foot back. 
Looking at the Blue arrows (above) the biggest difference is the arrow comparing the inisde ski boot and shin angle. Since there is less weight on this ski and boot, it's much more difficult to hold it back and flex. If the boots are too upright or there is a gas peddle lift in the toe, this is often the result.  If the inide foot moves forward too much, as with this skier, it puts the skier more in the back seat and the skis are less capable from there to slice a clean carve and they end up doing more scrubbing.

In summary, what are the key observations and movements that create the amazingly quick transitions, recoveries and angles of a skier like Marcel Hirscher? He uses and creates most of his balancing activities with the inside foot. He has the handle on ultimate inside foot management.

He also stays more compact, with his inside foot moving first and creating angles so the outside foot can match, and his upper body and his outside hip stays closer and more over the outside ski, his hip angles are closer,  relative to his outside foot. He almost always has the ability to bring his inclination back to traditional angulation, always after the gate leading to transition and even before he comes under the gate. This can be achieved only if the inside ski stays close to the outside ski, without scissoring or spreading. Vertical separation due to slope is fine. Below photos, we see Hirscher coming back to classic angulation and counter acting to release.

All the below photo frames demonstrate how Hirscher comes back to Counter acting and Counter balance like no one else. This is very difficult if your feet are spread and the outside ski is running away from you. Very few can close the radius under the gate as Hirscher does it. He never stops increasing his flexing, tipping and CB, until the release. He rarely if ever has to step out of his arc.

This frame demonstrates his upper body coming back toward his outside ski, he never stops creating and increasing angles. If the ski is running in an arc, it's bending, therefore it's never slow.