Thanks to all my PMTS friends - 1 year and 1 week

PMTS Forum

Postby -- SCSA » Wed Mar 24, 2004 1:50 pm

Oh that Guest! What a devil, he/she/it is. :lol:

Hi Guest!

I think Guest is a skier that I'd love to make turns with. Anyone who rips and goes everywhere is my kinda he/she/it.

Guest says some good stuff, no doubt about it. I see so many great skiers like Guest, how often talk about being bored with skiing because they can ski everywhere (not that Guest ever said he/she/it is bored).

It's like my buddy up at the ranch. He's been skiing since he was a youngin. He tells me, "I'm bored with skiing." But when I made turns with him, while he's great, he could use some work on his skills. He doesn't keep parallel shins and his carving, he has none. He skids most all his turns.

So Guest. All I'm saying is look at your turnz -- there's always room for improvement, ya know. Myself, I judge skiers by one thing -- parallel shins. If a skier can keep parallel shins while making short turns on steep runs or bump runs, that's a great skier.

PMTS is all about parallel shins. Because if your shins aren't parallel while making a turn, you're not getting a clean release. If you're happy with your turns Guest, good for you. But if not, I'd encourage you to try some of the PMTS stuff. You'll be a better skier as a result, I promise.

Off to Vail now, heading up Valley to pick up a pair or skis and watch the friggin snow melt. :cry:


Re: Guest - this didn't start out as any type of PSIA bash

Postby Guest » Wed Mar 24, 2004 2:46 pm

John Mason wrote:but degraded into it after others comments. The phrase PMTS friends doesn't mean "bash" PSIA but is just a reflection and comment about people I've met going to PMTS camps.

When people make their "only 108 members" etc etc - or John can only ski greens etc, that's when this post was hijacked a negative direction.


I'm not the guest who made those comments and I certainly have never bashed the PMTS approach. I did say your post was idiotic and if I misinterpreted it, I'm sorry. I am critical of anyone bashing an organization, or those who are not part of an organization, as a whole. No system or approach is perfect whether you believe it or not.

As to your PSIA instructor, he may have been just a lousy instructor. No two instructors are identical. My reference was to a good instructor and a willing student. I wasn't praising your instructor or questioning your commitment.

As to Bob Barnes, I've seen him ski. Regardless of your opinion of what he says, he's one of the top skiers you'll ever meet. He may well have forgotten more about this sport than you or I will ever know. If your going to bash PSIA, have at it, but being critical of Bob makes you look foolish in the eyes of all of those who have skied with him. He may represent something that you don't agree with, but he's quite a skier. Keep in mind that your opinions of PSIA instruction are just that. People, including myself sometimes, often have a way of confusing strong opinions with facts.

SCSA, you're right I can improve. I've never meet anyone worth knowing that couldn't acknowledge that fact.

Postby -- SCSA » Wed Mar 24, 2004 6:00 pm

Barnes is my boy -- the guy flat out rips. I never seen someone, ski like he does on those shorties, which I've come to find out is more difficult than I once thought. :!:

The only time I ever skied with him when there was any snow to speak of was last year at the Basin. So of course I have a few beers and ride up the lift. The snow was mush and he was on the shorties. I thought fer sure, I had him!

:arrow: ....Not so fast, boot locked breath. :wink:

We get off the chair on Pali and he flies right by me in the bumps. I can't remember the last time that happened. From there, he made real nice turns, all day long, skiing Pali in the mush.

You gotta give it up -- I'm talking mad props -- for Barnes. The guy loves what he does and anyone who takes a lesson from him is sure to benefit.

I heard gossip, that a ski camp he was part of didn't turn out the way he wanted. That's too bad, because I really wanted him to put his stamp on it.

I can count on one hand, others that I'd pay to ski with besides HH. Doug Combs, Eric D. and Barnes. I still got 2 fingers left, but can't think of the other 2.

Barnes talks a lot about the "Go there" moves, which I think, is the weighted release???

Postby milesb » Wed Mar 24, 2004 7:23 pm

Barnes talks a lot about the "Go there" moves, which I think, is the weighted release???
Wrong there my friend. To oversimplify, it is about pointing the tips where you want to go. It MAY involve the weighted release, but there is usually some element of inside ski steering involved, which disqualifies it from being a real PMTS turn. At the level that Barnes skis, you may not be able to see the difference, but I'm sure that the higher certified PMTS instructors can. But anyone can certainly FEEL the difference. But please note, I'm not in any way saying one way is better, so don't anyone go there. But be assured, there is a big difference in what Barnes' media teaches vs what Harb's media teaches. Barnes has said this repeatedly, and so has Harb. Pay attention! :P
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Postby Enemy » Thu Mar 25, 2004 4:30 am

I can count on one hand, others that I'd pay to ski with besides HH. Doug Combs, Eric D. and Barnes. I still got 2 fingers left, but can't think of the other 2.

Do you have 6 fingers? I should have known that you must always find the way to differentiate yourself from the crowd.

You meant Doug Coombs, right?


Postby piggyslayer » Thu Mar 25, 2004 8:22 am

Thanks for your civil reply (or replies). I wrote my post (the one without ?grammer?) hoping that you will open up ? and so you did. The digest of you post, as I understand it, is that you want this forum to stop criticizing PSIA methods.

The point is that a positive message such as
1. ?PMTS effectively eliminates wedge and problems caused by wedge?
is better public relations than negative statements such as
2. ?PSIA teaching wedge sucks?.
I agree with that statement.
I have seen posts on epic (entire thread) talking about how PMTS folks are arrogant and negative. Nobody wants to be perceived this way.

The problem is, however, that part of what PMTS student has to do is: unlearn bad habits taught in traditional instruction. Here, I said it: ?bad habits? and this probably offended many instructors (some great skiers among them I am sure). So how do we become more positive in conveying the message?
That is not trivial.

Guest wrote:

?As to being envious of PMTS, that's a joke. I can rip on any terrain and in any condition.?

If you point is that the ?end product? of PMTS and PSIA teaching is the same you are in error. A slight wedge at the beginning of the turn demonstrated by many experienced skiers is only one example of a difference (I am not claiming you exhibit a wedge, I just state the fact that many experienced educated skiers do). The other example is the PMTS and PSIA position on A-frame. A-Frame is viewed as a no-no in PMTS and is acknowledged as valuable in some situations by PSIA. If you ever watch Ski TV (I think this was the TV program name - I do not remember) you will most likely see a lot of ?ripping? experts with A-frame. You will not see PMTS graduate with A-Frame. These are just some example differences the complete list would go on and on?.

It is just my $ .02 to what SCSA pointed out already.

PS. If you can rip all terrain with skis backwards, then I am truly impressed :wink:
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Postby Guest » Thu Mar 25, 2004 8:27 am


We all to pimp SCSA, but 3 plus 2 still equals five in part of the world. How about yours?


Postby Enemy » Thu Mar 25, 2004 9:16 am

I wanted to see if you or SCSA were paying attention. In my parts we do not use fingers to count anymore.

Postby Guest » Thu Mar 25, 2004 9:27 am


I get your points and I agree that over at Epic many bash PMTS. I don't think that's any fairer than PMTS people bashing PSIA as a whole. I contibute that to 3 factors: a) they don't understand PMTS, b) they are responding to PMTS bashing themselves, and c) they take serious offense to HH's position and his personal criticism of PSIA as a whole. I don't get to upset about the 3rd point because I attribute that to marketing. I do believe, however, that more PSIA people would be receptive if HH had taken, or took, a different approach. That's not meant to offend, that's just my opinion. And...I think he would win more PSIA people over with a different attitude. Maybe not the organization, but the people and that's what counts.

As to the 2 approaches, common sense tells me that there are good and bad skiers emerging from both camps. No instructors or students are created equal regardless of the system. Again, I think a good instructor coupled with a dedicated skier equals a good skier. I refuse to get hung up on an approach or system.

I'll try switching my skis facing forward and might even try buckling my boots. See, I'm not that hard to get along with. 8)

Postby -- SCSA » Thu Mar 25, 2004 9:38 am

Yeah, what Guest sez! :)
3 and 2 is 5!

Enemy had me worried that I had lost the rest of my marbles. :wink: You he/she/its should have seen me, staring at the computer screen, going.

"Okay. Coombs is 1, Eric D. is 2, Barnes is 3. ....4, 5."

Postby -- SCSA » Thu Mar 25, 2004 11:30 am

5 years later.

I think I was Harald's first "highly vocal" customer. I found Harald and him and I instantly bonded. He was just like me, an entrepreneur who started with nothing. He was an old hippie just like me and he was changing an industry, as I was. I like to think HH took me under his wing. He'd send me email at 2 in the morning and get a response minutes later. I'd write him about the successes I was having. We went bike riding.

So I showed up on epic full of attitude and bravado. I had a chip on my shoulder which has since been transplanted to my skis. : wink:

Anybody who was there who claimed to have any knowledge of skiing; I basically told them they were full of it. Some of these people were/are PSIA members. Then, once I found out about the PMTS sentiment, which in truth was probably only held hard by 4 or 5 of members there, the gloves really came off. That's when I pronounced the infamous, "I can ski better than 97% of all skiers." I then challenged anyone there to show up, to a ski off. I think Todd M. was the first one I challenged, or maybe it was Barnes. Oh. I called Todd M's writings crapola. That didn't help matters either.

Then, to pour more gas on the fire, I anointed Bob Barnes the CEO of epic, then proceeded to tear into the guy, and his beliefs. What's crazy is that I had no idea who Barnes was or WTF an Examiner was. I just thought he was dumb bunny ski instructor. Then, I come to find out he trains ski instructors! These he/she/its buy his book and rely on his advice!

Uh, oh.

I instantly became the enemy of every ski instructor on epic, then some. Why? Because I was basically telling them they don't know squat, their leader didn't know squat and the organization they were all members of, needed a complete makeover. That's when I pronounced that it couldn't be an organization, because there was none. So I called it a Gang.

Then AC had had it and booted me.

So it's no wonder, the anti-feelings about PMTS over there. For those of you who've wondered where "97%" came from (some of my slang is still in use over there, i'm kinda proud of that), there ya go.

My fantasy is that all the ranting and raving I did turned into something positive. I'd like to think that by slapping ski instructors in the face that motivated them to hone their craft. I'd like to think a few changes have taken place somewhere that allows ski instructors to succeed, not fail. *One note here. I was contacted by more than a few, and they'll forever remain he/she/it, that I was right. That the system really does need a makeover and that's the reason why so many have left. I ski with a guy now who in my opinion is the best technical skier I've ever seen besides HH. He taught for years, then left, for these same reasons. He'd never go back under the current model. I've always like to fantasize that my ranting and raving lead to somebody, getting a great ski lesson.

So 5+ years later, what are the facts? Tipping is now where it's at. More skiers are starting to think about skiing with their feet and alternative ski instruction books/videos rule the roost. They're the #1 seller's. Skiers are starting to see that great skiing really is within their sites, because teaching and equipment have come so far. More skiers and teachers are starting to think outside the box. It's all good.

What hasn't changed? I think it's terrible that the Forest service only allows one ski school at an area. It stifles competition and competition is what creates great products and services! It is doing the paying customer no good. I'd like to see this rule gone before I leave this mountain and go out of bounds. Everywhere we go in life as a consumer, we are faced with choices for products, goods and services. Just go to 7-11 and look how many different bottled water choices there are. But when we go to a ski area, we get just one choice. This rule should be changed so competition can be allowed and so paying customers can have some choices. It is beyond the pale.

I also see far too many personal feelings, not enough business decisions. Ski or Skiing hasn't written about PMTS -- not even to slam it. The reason why in my opinion is that the editors come from the old school -- and HH has peed on their school colors. I understand that these mags have complete control over their editorial content. But I also feel that not reporting to their readers about the #1 ski instruction product (according to book sales) is not in their reader's best interest.

Skiers pay what I feel are exorbitant prices for lessons, yet don't leave the hill with anything to study from. To charge someone $500 bucks for a lesson then not send them home with study materials goes completely against how humans learn. Yet, this is what happens.

Then, there's no continuity, which also goes against how humans learn. A customer can pay for a lesson at ski area A, go to ski area B, pay for another lesson and be taught something that completely contradicts what they paid for at ski area A. A McDonalds burger tastes exactly the same in Detroit as it does in Vail. Order a Dominos pizza, no matter where, and it tastes the same every time. While this analogy may not be tit for tat, successful businesses operate pretty much all the same. Therefore, I think it makes sense from a business point of view, to teach skiers 1 through 9 from a manual. Provide them with books and videos, or at least, an interactive website. I think it makes complete sense to standardize lessons for all skiers across the board, levels 1 to 9.

I know if I was in charge of a ski area, the first thing I'd do is license the PMTS product and brand it the "Vail Ski School System." I'd make the ski school a priority. I'd fire the laggards and recruit the pros. I'd convince my pal to come back to work. I'd work with instructors every day, because they spend so much time with my customer. This past season, I bet I rode up with 20 ski instructors. Only 2 of them spoke a word to me. Most of the other 18 were flat out snobbish (have uniform and hair, aint I cool). I'd immediately fire the other 18.

I'll let you guys dissect this, have at it. But you'll never convince me otherwise. I know a little too, and what I've seen in these past 5 years or so, well, I'd never run my business that way.

So I hope I've put some stuff to rest. I've done my best to post something that's based on facts and findings. I've not attacked anyone and if readers of this post still feel ill, or are offended, quit whining and get over it. We've all admitted to our mistakes and I think it's time the other side does too. I think it's time to focus on the customer and putting forth the best possible product @ the best possible price.

Customers are starting to speak out fer cryin out loud! Matter of fact, if book sales are an indication, they've already spoken. How much longer can their feelings be ignored? There's nothing wrong with admitting to faults, trashing a model and starting over. Leaders of successful companies like Microsoft and Macromedia do it all the time! Remember "Bob", the OS that Gates wife had dreams for? Millions were spent on development, yet the product never went into production. A great company is a culture of employees that are entrepreneurial, nimble and lean. Non-profit means just that. No risk is too great if the risk is being driven by customers. Always, do what's best for the customer.

So it's 5+ years later. What have you done for your customer today?

Postby Ott Gangl » Thu Mar 25, 2004 12:09 pm

Epicski is not limited to PSIA types in it's instructor forum as those of you here who also post there know. There are Austrians and Australian, French and Italiens, etc. and each has learned or taught under different systems.

I was there when the first salvo was fired against PMTS and it was when SCSA "Wacko" claimed he skied better than 97% of skiers on the hill because of PMTS and in subsecquent posts by him and many others it was discussed that HH considered PSIA trained and certified instructors unqualified to teach skiing and said so in his first book.

That broad brush approach insulted thousands of instructors in this country and their natural response was to fire back with mostly uncoplimentary posts. It got to the point (and still is) to nit picking even the slightest moves taught by either system.

I think both sides are inconsiderate in doing so and would really like if it stopped. HH renamed some common moves in all systems and that was rediculed by many, after all lifting or lightening the uphill/inside ski results in weighting the downhill/outside ski. One system calls for shifting weight to the downill ski, the other will call for lightening the uphill ski, same result, though the method of doing it may vary.

I think the silliest debate is over stance width. Stance width should be wherever it falls considering the terrain, conditions and expertese of the skier. Stance width is actually only introduced to novice skiers, experienced skiers can ski either close, locked, wide or very wide stances, but forcing a stance width while skiing to please a system without considering the circumstances is counter productive. Most of the way we ski is equipment driven anyway.

We taught the Austrian system when I first started teaching in this country, counter shoulder in the comma position and locked skis, then teaching in the US was modfied to take into account that not all students were athletic teenagers but many were overweight housewives who could not keep balance with skis locked nor do the other contortions required to turn the skis at the time. One footed skiing, or at least 90/10 distribution was needed to make the outside ski bite, much less bend.

I'll put some links to a few shots shots of me over the years. First in about 1963, next in the early 70s, my wife and I around 1996 and the wedeln sequence without edge set in 2002 near my 70th birthday. You can readily see the difference in style, not so much system driven as equipment driven, whatever the equipment allowed us to do, though wedeln was done fifty years ago and is still done on new short shaped skis. With the new shaped skis one can still do all the old stuff and some new stuff not possible or hard to do with the old equipment.

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I figured you had to be at the magic age number

Postby John Mason » Thu Mar 25, 2004 8:23 pm

I figured you had to be at the magic age number from some other comments about lift fee prices.

I wish I got into skiing earlier. I started at 48. The thought of skiing always scared me, but my son (21) got me to try it last March.

I think there are functional differences between what is taught. But, if a person is happy with their results, why should I get them to change. I have not been exposed to that many teachers, but I have talked to a lot of friends that ski and skied with them this year and some of these friends have have skied for years. Some of these friends are "terminal intermediates". They ski and wear their knees out because they were taught and do turn mainly with outside leg steering actions. On the other hand some of my ski friends are not "terminal intermediates" and use some variation of ski tipping to turn.

I do think that not all teaching systems or methods are the same or as productive. Technique has changed over the years. The ones that use tipping to turn from any source seem the most effective on the new ski designs.

I have two family members that will take a lot of convincing to ski again because of their discomfort and impression that skiing is hard work. They were taught what in this country is most common at the resort based schools to wedge and turn by pressing the big toe of their outside ski. When I brought this up at Epic lots of people, PSIA people, said that was a bad instructor. But this is normal first instruction from what I have seen.

What HH has brought to the table, and I don't know how unique it is, is a way of going direct to parallel from the very first turns in a safe and easy way. I was skeptical of this till I went skiing with a client friend of mine that is not that athletic (at all) and has big alignment issues and not much in the way of balancing skills. HH had him doing his first parallel turns in the first 1/2 hour. It would have been easier if my friend didn't have so many counter productive habits to unlearn.

I think this acceptance of a wedge based progression by most of the schools in this country is what drives HH batty. I'm not sure its not a legitimate critisizm. Perhaps HH can relate the story in his own words about how the national demo team was split up and they did comparisons with real 1st time students following what he recommened vs what is normally taught. After the first of this where the HH side of the fence group was doing far better, they swapped students. Basically this objective test showed the strength of a PMTS style approach even back then with new students. Even though this was effective and demonstrated as such, PSIA still does not endorse a methodology. Yet even though they don't endorse a methodology, the bad, less effective methodology is the one most taught and at many resort based schools PMTS instructors or PSIA direct to parallel instructors can not follow those methods in a group lesson without being in trouble. I think all these things are what creates the "conflict".

As you have said and HH says to, he did not invent the movements being taught. What HH teaches is very similar to what Lito teaches in his book. It's very similar to what I was taught at Race Camp last summer. In all three cases, we were taught to tip to turn. All three places emphsize a narrow stance and alternate leg skiing. Bob Barnes is very similar in what he teaches to PMTS in his "perfect turn" description. He differs in views on stance and recommends outside leg steering to "shape" the turn.

It's the approach to beginners where everything has big differences from what I have seen. At the higher levels there is more overlap then people on either side would like to think. In HH's methods he focuses strongly on the philosophical idea of what is the best "external cue" to give the student. By having good external cues people can better self coach themselves when they are out practicing on their own as well as pick up the movement easier. While put your weight on the outside ski, vs lift and tip the inside ski may result in the same movement, both Bob Barnes and HH and Lito come down on the lift and tip being better as that encourages the body to fall towards that side. The idea of putting weight on the outside ski may make many people actual move the body towards that outside ski, which results in the CM moving up the hill.

But for some people, in their place in their turns, maybe they are collapsing both legs so need the thought stand on that outside leg more.

So, I agree with much of your post, but I do still see some problems with how the majority of ski instruction appears to be taught in this country. It does not get people to parallel until after many levels and leaves many habits to unlearn. If it's not the majority then I'm misinformed. It just seems like the majority from what I have been exposed to. But I've only done this for just over a year. So, what do I know.

I'm getting the impression this gap in ski instruction is not just here in the USA.

I picked up an English ski magazine a few months ago. It had a feature article about the value of ski instruction by interviewing progressing students and summerizing their lesson experience. In one gal's case, she went over some things she was taught mainly about body position in relation to turns. The gal spoke a lot of using leg steering to initiate turns. She ended her writeup with a comment about "now if my knees just didn't hurt so much after a few hours I could ski more". I guess the idea of tipping to turn is not universal yet.

Oh, that 3% comment got me in trouble too. But it's interesting, a recent Epic ski post sites a study that only 3 % of people on the hill actually even EVER carve their turns. That pretty much matches what I see on the hill. Most people are not students of skiing trying to improve. The vast majority are casual skiers that have not even had a lesson of any kind. Doesn't take that much work to get to the upper echolons of skiing.

Now within that top few percent, the range of skiing and room for improvement is still enormous. So when a SCSA says they are in the top 3% they are being accurate, but that still doesn't mean they are good or have arrived or anything like that. I know I'm my worst critic. I'm very hard on myself. So even if I'm better than most of the mediocroty I see on the hill, I still have years of improvement to go.

That's why I'm so sad all the snow is melting :cry: (but that's what carvers are for - but I don't have 3000 foot verticals around my neighborhood to play in)

Well - there is a long and rambling post - but Ott..

Those are very interesting shots and illustrative of how things have changed. It looks like in the earlier ones you really have to be extreme to get an edge. You aren't working near as hard by the last one. (I like that animated gif)

I hope this post explains better my own opinions on the subject and defines the controversy as I understand it at this point.
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Postby Ott Gangl » Fri Mar 26, 2004 10:28 am

Oh my! John, where to start? I'll try to address some of your concerns.

First, let me congratulate you on your skiing enthusiasm. As a new skier you are in the learning phase. Please realise that teaching skiing is infinately harder than learning to ski. In learning you deal only with yourself and your strength and shortcomings, in teaching one deals with individuals, often given to the instructors in herds of 15-20 student for just one hour, the norm in most Midwest and Eastern ski areas, some will go an hour and a half.

You ski at Perfect North sometimes I gather, just watch at five p.m when there are about a thousand student taking lessons on the limited real estate. In many areas intermediate and black slopes will be closed down during that time because the beginner classes are taught on the outruns and the classes, usually two rows of ten per instructor is given a twenty foot space between the rows to teach in and the students ski tails are interlaced with the ski tails of the class next to them and they trampe all over while sidestepping up the hill.

In the one hour, each student gets about three trips down the incline, that is if the instructor is lucky and doesn't spend too much time picking up student who fall down. Just as the terrain flattens out after the 50ft descent there is the lift line going right across the bottom and the concern is to have the students stop before they 'plow' into the line.

Now I'm going to make you the Instructor of this class of 20 never-ever skiers, tell me what you would do. Remember, 20 students, on ill-fitting rental equipment, 20 ft wide terrain, 1 hour, trying to avoid accidents and keep them safe.

Please don't tell me that management should limit class size, etc. etc., they are in the money making business, the more the merrier. Despite all that, good instructors manage to let the class have fun, smiling and giving positive reinforcement, while inside cringing to have to pawn this off on a paying public.

BTW, there are many ski schools going to the direct parallel approach with small classes or privates, Aspen is one. PMTS works in a controlled environment with reasonable class size and students who wont sit down on their butt every ten feet.

Next, by far, maybe 80% of terminal intermediates have never had instruction or only instruction by an unqualified friend or with trial and error, often mostly error with compensating movemnents, but they would go nowhere near a ski school and are mostly satisfied with how they ski. What may surprise you is that many, if not the majority of hot expert skiers, cliff jumpers and extreme skiers also have never taken a formal lesson but usually have grown up in a skiing environment.

You mention that skiers pick up many habits in certain progressions which are hard to unlearn. True, but hose steps are excercises which should not be persued enough to become habits, it is only when skiers stop taking more lessons that excercises from the previous lesson can become habit.

And that is true in any system, after lesson one they can negotiate a green slope and are happy as a lark, then they try a steeper slope and make up technique as they go. And 97% of skiers look at skiing as a recreation not a sport, as they should, because skiing 5-10 days a year does not a sport make, they are there to have a good time any which old way and don't want to put the effort ,time or money into it, after all there is bowling, golf and poker to consider, all of that takes time and money.

The last thing I'm going to address is that you say you are very hard on yourself, which must be character trait. Why do you feel you have to be a better skier than the next guy, why can't you be satisfyed with competency and call it good enough. After all you are out on th eslopes to have fun.

We should let the so-called controvery play itself out. It may be that PMTS will dominate or at least give a broad opportunity for skiers to choose a system. Or it may come to where the technique of PMTS is absorbed into PSIA and just given another name. Or, as all of us hope, there will be multiple ski schools which are accredited by the state as in France and Austria teaching at many mountains. Or,or,or...who knows, and we shouldn't sweat it, just hope that with all the discussions going on a better system will evolve.

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Postby -- SCSA » Fri Mar 26, 2004 3:04 pm

Ott and John Mason really have it goin. Good work guys!

I'll say this. Being better than 97% of the skiers wasn't really all that much of an accomplishment. :wink: Because, 97% of all skiers could probably careless about their turn. They simply want to go out and have fun, ski their 10 or so days a year and call it good.

I once heard that what the ski biz considers "the motivated skier crowd", makes up less than 10% of the total. HH, Lito, AMSP, camps like this, focus on the motivated skier crowd. Boards like this one and epic, certainly are full of motivated skiers.

But Ott. Getting back to my post with the terrible reference, how can we in our right minds excuse instructors for teaching the wedge out here in CO? There's certainly enough room on the slopes, if that's a problem. The wedge and teaching the wedge will live on until some ski school director takes a risk. When that's going to happen is anyone's guess.

The fact that it hasn't happened, I just don't think anyone can be proud of that. No one appears to be taking any risks whatsoever. Given the facts that alternative ski instruction is #1 and that it really can be proven that the wedge needs to go away, I just can't see why. I wish a ski school director from a big area would chime in and offer their explanation.

I'm with John Mason. Ski instruction seems to be kicking and screaming at any kind of innovation. Doesn't seem like they're paying attention to customer demand.

Sure, it's easy to say, "Most of our customers only ski 10 days a year, they're not looking to ski double blacks." I'll go with that. But I talk to those customers too. I've talked to plenty on the chair. They may only ski a few days a year, but they want to have as much fun as possible (read: ski well), in those few days, that's why so many of them (talking about guests) hire a ski instructor. If I'm paying for a ski lesson, I want the most bang for my buck. PMTS has proven to do so.

If these are the facts, why so much resistance? If there's a product out there that's proven, why aren't customers experiencing it? Heck, in some cases, information about PMTS is purposely withheld! I've talked to instructors who teach PMTS, but they do it unofficially. Some areas fire instructors for teaching it. Others, don't mind anyone teaching it, as long as they don't call it PMTS. Is this really something you can be proud of? I can't see how.

You know what's really odd? PMTS is strongest in the Mid-West! In Colorado or Utah, skiing meca's, no one knows about it. How ironic it would be, if Mid-West ski areas were the bellweather sites.

Here's a scary thought.

I have PMTS stickers on my skis and boots. If I ride up the chair and someone asks me about it, I tell 'em. But what if? What if, after talking with me about PMTS, they then cancel their ski lesson the next day? I think I know what the answer is. That my online friends, is really sad.


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