Super-phantom ?

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Super-phantom ?

Postby tommy » Sun Mar 07, 2004 11:38 am

Hi all,

today I tried to practice the Super-phantom move. Now, as far as I'm aware, that move is not explicitly described in the books, but appears in one of Harald's video's (#2, I think). So, I'm somewhat unsure about it's execution.

My understanding of the superphantom is that the key is to transfer balance/weight to the uphill (free) ski's little toe edge, just before finishing the current turn, and to do a "normal" (but early) phantom with the new free ski.

Question #1 for the forum experts: Is this a correct understanding of the superphantom ?

Anyway, this was what I tried to practice today. I had some difficulties initially to remain on the uphill ski's little toe edge while transfering weight to it. It tended to flatten in the process. But after some runs, in order to make the weight/balance transfer more explicit, I started to experiment with a slight "push-off", like when skating, from the downhill (stance) ski, to get the balance & weight clearly over to the little toe edge of the uphill ski. This "move" actually was quite helpful in terms of establishing balance & weight on the little toe edge, allowing me to "stand" a moment on the little toe edge, while tipping the new free ski towards the new turn.

This move felt quite familiar, and I realized that the perceived familiarity came from an inline skating techique called "double push" which is a way in inline skating to extend the stroke length. Double push is descibed with animation in the link below). Basically, the idea is to start the new stroke by placing the skate at the opposite lateral side of CM, and at first riding the outside (little toe) edge, before rolling over to the inside edge. e.g. if my next stroke is with the left leg, in bringing it forward in under my hips, I put it slighty to the right of CM, and lean for a moment to the left.

http://www.skatecentral.com/public/custom/videos/tips/tips.2/dp.tutorial.html

After skiing, I watched video #1, and when looking at the sequences with the racers doing practice runs, particularly Aamodt doing slaloms, it seems to me that they use something similar to the "pushing off" from the stance ski that I experimented with today.

Question #2 for the forum experts: the "pushing off the stance ski" I've tried to describe above, is it in accordance with PMTS, or am I attempting something that is detrimental to my skiing ?

Any input appreciated!

Cheers,
Tommy
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Postby milesb » Sun Mar 07, 2004 4:19 pm

Unless you are trying to unwieght your skis, "pushing" is probably not a good thing. I think that the skis are supposed to flatten when you transfer wieght to the inside ski, as the bent inside leg cannot support the forces of the turn in the same way that the stance foot can. Sounds like you were doing it right the first time!
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Postby Hobbit » Sun Mar 07, 2004 6:55 pm

Hi Tommy,

If you have access to the RealSkiers WEB site member area, look at Harald's series on the Wedge Blocker Turn (WBT). The turn sequence is described in great detail there. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that WBT and Super Phantom is the same thing.

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Try the drill in a traverse first

Postby John Mason » Sun Mar 07, 2004 8:45 pm

rather than try the super phantom right off, what we did in camp (and I'm not actually sure what the strict definition of super phantom is) was as follows:

1. do a traverse on the little toe edge of the upper ski. Make sure you can confortably do this in both directions. This will give you the feel for the rather unnatural (at first) sensation of having all your weight on the uphill ski on the little toe edge. Once you can do this and know what this feels like then:

2. While doing this traverse, tip the in air (you can brush the tip if you'd like) downhill (future inside ski) in the phantom move. Your uphill (future outside stance ski) will flatten and the turn will develop.

This drill is used to unlearn stem entry's to turns. This is where most people are taught to turn by pressing the big toe of their uphill ski. By doing this drill you will unlearn the inefficient steering motions of your uphill ski to initiate turns that you may have been taught at some time and will learn to trust that the free ski movement is all that is needed to easily turn the skis.

If any of this drill is dificult in either direction, this may indicate an alignment issue. In may case I could do this drill one direction easy but the other direction my big toe would engage to soon. My alignment was off, once corrected both directions are easy (and fun!).

Hope that helps. I'm still a newbie on all this, but if I was self coaching that is what I would tell myself. :wink:
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Postby tommy » Mon Mar 08, 2004 2:18 am

Hi all, and thanks for the input so far! Keep it coming!

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe
that WBT and Super Phantom is the same thing.


Hobbit, I don't have access to realskiers from where I'm typing now, but I'll check into that tonight. You might be correct in that the move is basically the same as Superphantom. However, in the video where Harald brings up the Superphantom, the emphasis seems to be on actually riding exclusively on the little toe edge for a slight moment, i.e. finishing the turn with most/all weight on the little toe edge. I can understand the idea, because doing this will enable you to tip the new free foot very early into the new turn, so that the input of the new free ski will "tilt" you very early to the new turn. This would help in achieving the High-C turn.

However, as MilesB points out, it appears that there will be quite a lot of force on the little toe side, and I wonder if it's possible to handle that force for more than a short moment.

1. do a traverse on the little toe edge of the upper ski. Make sure you can confortably do this in both
directions. This will give you the feel for the rather unnatural (at first) sensation of having all your
weight on the uphill ski on the little toe edge. Once you can do this and know what this feels like then:

2. While doing this traverse, tip the in air (you can brush the tip if you'd like) downhill (future inside
ski) in the phantom move. Your uphill (future outside stance ski) will flatten and the turn will develop.


John, I recall this exercise as well, from camp and the video. In the video Harald also mentions the Phantom-Javelin as an exercise to practice the super-phantom. Again, the idea with the excercises you bring up, and the phantom-javelin seem to be to establish balance+weight for a slight moment on the little toe edge, to enable the current stance ski to be lifted and tilted.

The thing that confuses me is that in order to establish balance+weight on the little toe edge while finishing a turn, you really have to counter the force of gravity pulling you down the fall line. In order to counter that force, you will have to do something, like pushing off, to get the balance to the uphill ski...? And this seems detrimental to "using the force" to enter the new turn.

I'm confused.

Cheers,
Tommy
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Postby -- SCSA » Mon Mar 08, 2004 8:10 am

Hi gang,

The Super Phantom move...eh...I think we need to hear it from HH on this one, I think a student can think of it as simply the weighted release.

To be honest (anytime someone sez this I always think to myself; "Hmm. We're they lying before?" winks), I've never really understood what the heck HH was talking about??? :?, when I first came across the term in the "2" video and book. I thought it was some sort of new move. But I think what it is, is the focus of the weighted release.

In "1", we learned to make turns while lifting the tail of the ski -- the Phantom Move. In "2", we learn to make turns while keeping the tail of the ski on the snow -- the Super Phantom move.

Makes sense to me, now that I've typed about it. :!: :)
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Postby tommy » Mon Mar 08, 2004 11:04 am

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that WBT and Super Phantom is the same thing


Hobbit, I've just checked the WBT animation, and it seems that you are correct!

I also watched the #2 video, where the superphantom is described. It indeed appears that all weight + balance should be transfered to the little toe edge. If you are doing this move with some speed, or on steeper terrain, assuming that up to the transfer point most of your weight is on the current stance ski, then you will have to do something, e.g. a slight push-off from the current stance ski to get your weight onto uphill little toe edge. After re-checking Aamodt in video #1, it indeed seems that he's using a "skating move" with the current stance ski. Maybe he does it to transfer weight to the tilted inside ski...?

I think a student can think of it as simply the weighted release.


SCSA, if the super phantom requires complete transfer of balance & weight to the little to edge of the uphill ski, before transition, then I don't think the SF is a version of the weighted release: as far as I have understood it (which obviously might be totally wrong! :-) is that in WR, you don't do the weight+balance transfer until the new turn has started.

To put it in other words, using Harald's "clock arm" model:

in SF, just before reaching 6pm, you transfer weight & balance to the little toe edge of the current free ski.

in WR, you remain on the current stance ski until just after 6pm, and only after having passed 6pm, you transfer weight & balance to the new stance ski.

Harald, I think we need your help here! :-)

Cheers,
Tommy
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Postby Jeff Markham » Mon Mar 08, 2004 11:45 am

I'm 99+% sure that no push from the downhill ski is involved. For me, unless I'm doing a weighted release (which I'm still working on), I just collapse the stance leg and the weight has to shift to the uphill foot. I suspect that the trick here is learning to sense the LTE and staying on that edge as long as possible. I'm still working on gaining that sensation in my skiing.

John Mason mentioned a LTE traverse exercise, which is also described by Harald on realskiers.com.

At the B.S A-M camp, Rich Messer had us doing the following LTE-LTE exercise which *may* be applicable:

While doing a straight-run ULBC exercise, before you decide to switch directions, lift the old outside (stance) foot and set it down *decisively* on its LTE edge. The operative word here is "decisively". You will momentarily be on both LTE edges. I'm still working on this one, but it seemed to be a good exercise for building a sense of LTE-LTE.
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Postby jclayton » Mon Mar 08, 2004 12:10 pm

hI TOMMY ,
I think it is important in the S.F. NOT to push off . For me it works best when linking turns and just relaxing the old stance ski at 12 o'clock and keep the upper body moving down the hill while experiencing that lovely roll from LTE to BTE with the ankle feeling the boot sides as it articulates . This feeling is much clearer for me when only on the uphill ski . I think the key is in linking a number of turns to get the flow and really concentrating on the ankle articulation . I only put the uphill ( new downhill ) ski down when at 6 o'clock just before relaxing the soon to be old downhill ski .

The pushing off you mention I think would tend to promote stepping onto the new DH ski when linking turns , just the movement PMTS is trying to rid us of .

The skate move actually starts on the BTE then moves to the LTE and back again . A closer feeling for me on inlines is just skating out on the LTE and roll over to start in the other direction with the LTE of the other foot .

The weighted release is the oposite of the Super Phantom in my book .

Aamodt does seem to use this stepping , perhaps to gain a little height , but this video is quite old and the younger racers do not seem to do this very much at all , if ever . IMHO .

Jeff Markham seems to have the right idea , though to me collapsing the stance leg seems a bit drastic an image . Also I don't think you should stay too long on the LTE as this could disrupt the fow and rhythm . Again , as always, these things are very personal , sometimes as HH says you have to exaggerate to dial movements into the muscle memory .

In the weighted release I feel it IS important to do it at the very start of the turn . Again you would not feel that lovely roll from one edge to the other ( it becomes quite addictive ) at the start of the High "C" . Further around the turn the G forces would be building up and you would be in danger of skidding . Also the roll is easiest at this point or should I say requires less force .

As you say we could do with clarification from HH

( as the Chinese say , one success is made of a hundred failures )
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Postby Jeff Markham » Mon Mar 08, 2004 12:55 pm

J.C. is right: collapse is probably too drastic a term. "Relax" or "flex" is probably more appropriate.
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Postby Jeff Markham » Mon Mar 08, 2004 1:24 pm

In the "Wedge Blocker 2", Harald says "Keep the upper ski on edge as long as possible."

http://www.ts2003.com/members/editors_pages/harald_2.htm

My guess is that the additional attention paid to standing on the LTE will help ingrain the maneuver. The increased tipping of the free foot will force the eventual rollover to BTE. I don't think that I'm good enough at holding on to the LTE to affect the flow/rhythm.

I agree: It's always informative to hear what Harald has to say regarding our musings. I do know that he encourages this sort of speculation on our part. For my part, it certainly makes me think and sometimes question my understanding. I have really been enjoying everyone's input.
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Postby tommy » Mon Mar 08, 2004 3:29 pm

For my part, it certainly makes me think and sometimes question my understanding. I have really been enjoying everyone's input.


I certainly agree with that! In fact, I'm finding this forum very informative, educational and, most importantly, very helpful for my skiing! Particularly since there's no PMTS cert's in my neighborhood! It's been very valuable for me to hear other people's comments, suggestions and experiences here. Please keep these informative posts coming!

I also agree with JC's comment on the need of exaggerating movements: to me, in order to pick up almost any new physical skill, I have to pick apart the moves involved, think carefully about them, and then pratice (with exaggeration!) each individual bit, and then trying to glue them together. I'm quite amazed that I actually once learned to walk....! ;-)

Cheers,
Tommy
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Postby jclayton » Mon Mar 08, 2004 4:46 pm

Luckily we learnt to walk before we learnt to intellectualize . Tim Galwey has ideas on how to shortcut this but I don't think it's possible to avoid the struggle if we want to reach the higher levels . The important thing ,as mentioned in another thread, is effective practice .

Our attempts at understanding the principles are important and externalizing these attempts helps clear up misconceptions .

I am envious of many of you guys who have only been skiing a few years and are improving well . Spare a thought for those of us who went through years of ineffective instruction and didn't know whether we were coming of going most of the time . It says something for the sport the fact that we were still able to enjoy it despite the frustration .

One thing that comes through in these posts is the realistic way everyone talks about their skiing and is honest about their abilities . For me this is an important contribution to their learning process .

Its late here now anhd I think I'm getting a bit sentimental .
Adios
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Postby -- SCSA » Tue Mar 09, 2004 1:25 am

I'm actually learning, reading this thread. :D
Way cool. 8)
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Postby -- SCSA » Tue Mar 09, 2004 1:44 am

This is truly amazing. I actually went out the other day, thought about/worked on/dinked with "collapsing."

Anyway, I can't make turn to save my life, when I "collapse." I've heard/read HH use "collapse" as well. But rather than confuse myself, which is easily done, :wink: I just stick with flex. It seems to be working for me.

When I "flex", I pull my old stance leg up toward my chest while tipping it over to the LTS, that's the turn I make.

Independent leg action, is what comes to mind here. In the WR, you flex one leg at a time. But then there's the two footed release which I use as well. With the two footed release, you flex both legs.

Anyway, the whole idea we're driving towards here is to get a clean release when making a turn. We want to move from one set of the edges to the other, without going "uphill" first. No slippage (stemming, pushing off, etc.) of the downhill foot, not even one ioda! We want to maintain parallel shins while making turns.

How's that?
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