Monday, December 25, 2023

Learn the PMTS "Phantom Move" from Marcel Hirscher!

The brilliance of Marcel Hirscher has never been in question!

In this sequence of photos, I'll explain one of the many technical movement patterns that served Hirscher well during his racing dominance.
This is a typical Hirscher turn with lower body tipping angles.

Hirscher's release of the turn began with his bending and retracting of the stance leg. This is the exact movement I describe in my first book as the "Phantom Move". I wrote my book well before, Hirscher appeared on the scene. before I knew Hirscher existed or saw him ski. He is the perfect PMTS skier. My book was a best-seller, but highly criticized by PSIA and instructors, for this radical approach and description of how you could learn to ski. My book gave regular skiers access to learning World Cup skier movements. These movements are totally contrary to what is taught in traditional ski instruction.

Here he lifts the tip of the stance ski and the transfer to the new ski is completed. Notice how the old stance leg knee (the new inside knee) is lifted higher than the new stance leg knee. When recreational skiers achieve this movement, it creates a huge breakthrough in their skiing.

The lifted ski then becomes the ski that is aggressively tipping first toward the little toe edge side of the ski. This is pure PMTS, from the "Anyone Can Be an Expert Skier", book.

Tipping the new inside ski continues to lead the angle development for the new turn. He has completed the float phase of the transition.

The knees show which foot and ankle Hirscher is focused on tipping to prepare for the forces and load coming up to the outside ski in this turn.


Monday, December 18, 2023

The World Cup Season is in Full swing. What is big and what isn't, misconceptions already abound!

Misconceptions I've already read and heard from analysts in the 2023 season. 

"Odermatt extends in his GS skiing." This is one of the biggest misconceptions out there in ski technique. He never pushes off to extend, and just using that wrong terminology can set back a development skier for years.

If you look at this release and think it's an extension you better go back and change your instructor manual.

                                                  This is just before he releases. 

                      Here again, Odermatt uses the classic retraction, bend, flex, release. 

Sure there is an extension in skiing and one leg gets longer than the other, but not by pushing into the snow, against the snow, therefore lengthening the leg. The most important thing people should have learned from Hirscher is to transition without pressuring the skis (the float). That is why we call the transition a float across and a change of edges with no pressure on the skis. A retraction release is the GOLD Standard in performance skiing. Odermatt accomplishes this by using a strong retraction of the legs using the energy he created from the forces of the turn and the bend of the ski.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Skiing dynamically means limit folding at the waist even for expert skiers.

Hip Collapsing robs angles, ski bend, and tip engagement!

Even expert skiers can be seen collapsing their hips to reduce pressure. When the timing and correct movements of leg retraction and counteracting aren't coordinated or are miss-timed that's the result.

This is an expert skier, however, this skier is giving up fore-aft balance and power because the timing of collapsing the hips is too early. This reduces tip pressure and also moves the hips back on the skis. 


If you look at the outside right hip it is open and there is no folding or lowering from the hip. The hip is driving forward to keep the tip leading the arc.

Here you can see the change in hips more extended to hips more collapsed. This results from a lack of counteracting of the hips or staying too square to the skis.

The comparison shows the obvious benefits of keeping the hip and torso up and driving forward. The result is more power in the ski, more tips leading the turn, and higher angles.

Again notice the left hip Counteracted, this gives you more control of the turn and more versatility for a change of angle and turn size without skidding.

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Different turns by Odermatt in GS.

This turn by Odermatt shows a strong retraction release. Many analysts would like to point out that Odermatt uses an extension to exit his turns. Nothing could be more false in their analysis. It is incorrect and he doesn't use an extension to exit his turns. That kind of incorrect analysis is pervasive in ski coaching, ski instruction, and teaching. This turn clearly demonstrates a decrease in leg length (bend the legs to release) to access the new angles for the next turn.

Here Odermatt is well positioned coming under the gate ready to begin his movements to start the next arc.

Using a full bending of the legs to absorb the turn angles and forces, Odermatt uses retraction and absorption to put his skis flat on the surface in transition. A retraction or leg bending release reduces the pressure on the skis, making them light often both skis are pulled off the snow when the retraction movement isn't forceful or timed fast enough to keep snow contact. During this period in a transition changing ski angles and engagement is much enhanced due to the lack of resistance of the skis to the snow.
The transition is comprised of a leg bending movement to release pressure and edge angles from the previous arc, while the skis are light the feet can be tipped to the new angles for the next turn. This is a typical flexing retraction release and is most effective for steep slopes and tight turns.

Thursday, February 23, 2023

You can't cheat in "Pure Carved Turns" if you know this simple rule!

I often show my students how to determine if they are pivoting, hip thrusting, or extending too much into the new turn by showing them this very simple "tell".

This is a completion of the turn at the bottom of the arc that requires bending and or retraction of the feet and knees to link pure carved turns.

In this frame, the transition to the new edges has begun; the retraction is not yet complete of the lower or outside leg to match the knee bend of the upper leg.

Now the retraction is complete and during that process, the skis go flat to the snow.

Now we are at the "CRUX" of the matter. This frame tells you if you are truly carving or faking. If the tails of the skis go uphill at this point you pushed yourself out of the previous turn. Other reasons for the tails of the skis going uphill are, you used too much hip thrust to counter or you pivoted your feet while the skis were flat. If the tails follow the tips without a spray coming off the tails you have tipped your lower body properly into the next turn with your skis set on new edges and you have angles for the new turn.

The result is a purely carved turn with only two circular edge lines showing an arc in the snow.