PMTS Forum


Postby Harald » Thu Apr 08, 2004 12:02 pm

I am impressed by the depth of understanding and the commitment to accuracy in your discussions. If most ski instructors could hold this level of discussion, the understanding of skiing and application of efficient movements in skiing would increase over night. That said, I will attempt to answer some of the questions that ensued during my absence.

My participation lately in the forum has been limited, as I have been occupied with other business needs. I have so much to announce, but that must wait until after I catch up. Harb Ski Systems is having an enormous growth spurt. I have to attend to business at many different levels.

Back to skiing:
We must always remember to keep the PMTS movement progression in context with the level of skier and the movement needs at that level. This is where the instructor community has largely misinterpreted and misleads itself, regarding the PMTS system. They often state that the Phantom Move is the whole system or that PMTS is too, edge carve oriented. As you all know, this is only ignorance and this level of ignorance only serves to baffle and perpetuate misinformation to the greater instructor community. Skiers who read my books and try PMTS don?t seem to fall into this trap (maybe misinformation is self inflicted). PMTS is a complete system, and holistic system. Movement progression and the ability to achieve movements in PMTS require that you build on the previous movement. But PMTS movements can branch in many directions for specific refinement. All the PMTS movements increase skiing ease, and provide balance required to make efficient turns.

The Phantom Move or Phantom Turn, for example, recruits a series of movements that consolidates an early parallel turn. The Super Phantom refines and increases versatility with higher balance requirements. As balance with PMTS movements? increases, wider ranges of skiing are available to the skier. In the early stages of PMTS we clearly stand on one ski and transfer balance from one foot to the other. Tipping and tilting are the basic movements we teach in our many and varied progressions and exercises. Later as a skier refines balance through PMTS, versatility becomes more available. To gain higher levels of skiing quickly, demands you experiment with your balance. Supplemental balance activities can also shorten the learning curve.

I must comment here that the PSIA ski schools and the organization itself, have incorporated tipping and tilting into their programs. If you review PSIA literature before my first book there are no references to tipping in the movements describing how to make turns. They list ?Edging? as a skill, but they never were able to tie it to their movements. In other words the ?how? was not in their teaching. Their progression was so focused on the maneuvers rather than necessary movements, that skiing versatility was rarely achieved.

Although tipping now is acceptable in PSIA, they still refuse to discard the most detrimental element in their understanding, the rotary components. Students are still subjected to leg steering, foot turning. When you do this all benefits and effectiveness of tipping and tilting are lost. Therefore there is no net gain or advantage to adding tipping. Remember our all mountain camps especially, at Big Sky? What would have happened to your skiing, and your body, if had been trying rotary movements on some of those steep slopes or bumps? I can?t even conceive of rotary movements in those critical situations. I know one thing, you never would attempt advanced skiing if you had rotary movement as your focus. The response from the PSIA side will be, ?How come we have instructors who can ski that terrain.? My answer is the one that I hear from all the PSIA certification candidates. ?My examiner told me to ski with my feet apart and to use rotary movements, but when it came down to his skiing, when he needed performance, he closed his stance and tipped his skis.? The good PSIA trainers use tipping and pressure. I know that ?good to great skiers? use only tipping and pressure. Years and generations of national and world class racers have proved it. That?s just the way good skiers ski. The ones who are relegated to the groomers ski the wide stance and focus on the rotary leg approach. This is limiting technique.

But the question you asked was, do we twist or pivot in the PMTS System? Answer, NO!!! The reference in the ongoing thread was about bump skiing at the top of the bump or mogul.

When I designed PMTS, I worked through ever conceivable input and resultant of actions. After I narrowed the skiing movements down to only the efficient movements; I tested the movements with students of all levels below experts, including beginners (remember I had a life time of coaching expert skiers, so I didn?t need to research their movements). I found that you could teach skiing without referring to or teaching movements like pivoting, steering, or turning, parts of the body below the hips.

Now, as you all know, that doesn?t mean we only achieve locked carved turns when using the PMTS system. In fact, at the early levels, PMTS is a very skidded progression. Brushed carves or skidded turns are achieved in PMTS by changing the duration and intensity of tipping. If I have speed and momentum, I can choose to carve or brush my turn, by how quickly and how much I tip my skis. If I tilt my skis to only 25% of what is necessary to achieve lock carve and I don?t extend the legs to create pressure; I get skidded turns. I don?t have to add rotary movements to achieve a skidded or as TTS call them, ?guided turns?.

Rotary movements are actually limiting, and they impose lower skiing quality, turn standards, with reduced control. That method also increases balance disruption. Anyone who tells you different does not understand their (own) skiing and is spewing dogma.

I have yet to see a student appear at our door complaining that they are carving too much and can?t get out of a locked carved turn. I wish we could have that problem, as it is much easier to fix that situation, then the one where the student is steering as their primary movement function. We teach PMTS carving movements because that is what the client wants and needs to achieve higher levels of skiing.

Now back to ?the top of a bump?, you tip the skis with and from a bent or flexed leg situation. We do not spin our skis. They already do that too much on their own. We try to angle them to achieve a ?high C? turn gaining speed control. If you go down the other road you are lost in a quagmire of inefficiency, confusion, frustration and in some cases denial. We are trying to edge or grip on the down side, or front face of the bump before you land in the trough. John Clendenin teaches this in his bump camps. He uses the inside tipping of the free foot to control edge angles. Free foot tipping as in the Phantom Move contains and includes many of the secrets of advanced skiing.

The Super Phantom does not have a movement that lifts the Center of Gravity up to the little toe edge. The transfer of balance is made with the lower leg or old outside leg bending or collapsing and the body naturally transfers to the little toe edge. The inside leg takes over stance from a flexed position. The free foot either weighted or un-weighted tips downhill toward the falline.

Once-and-for-all, the actions of tipping and tilting pull the femurs into passive rotation, to follow the tipping action of the skis, boots and skis. This is not taught in PMTS, it is part of the kinetic chain in action. Teaching active steering disrupts tipping and balancing so important to PMTS efficiency. In many advanced situations tipping with body inclination and body counter can reduce leg rotation almost completely and in this case there is no passive or active rotation of the legs. It always continues to amaze me that otherwise intelligent people can tell me that you can?t make ski turns with out rotary leg movements. It is very easy to prove that turning can be achieved without leg steering of any kind. Skis can also be turned without active tipping or rotary movements, but this is a flat ski turn. These are discoveries available only to skiers who are able to get out of their paradigm comfort zone.

Congrats on the growth!

Postby John Mason » Thu Apr 08, 2004 1:23 pm

Congratulations on the growth!

So, to paraphrase, when the stance ski is left flat and the free ski is tipped, this - by itself - passively creates the rotation.

Whereas, if you allow the free ski tipping to move your body that direction and the stance ski tips as a result, you get less of a rotation effect and do a more classic carve just riding the skis.

You can stand with your skis flat and just lift the inside ski and tip on a gentle slope and you will create a skidded turn easily right then. Tip a lot and you can turn in place. This turn is much shorter than the turning radius of the skis. Yet you feel no pressure on the knees and no active steernig was done.

This sounds like what some people mentioned in the other thread - that if the stance ski is left flat it must rotate or tip to equalize the effect if the inside ski tipping. If left flat it rotates, if tipped and your body tips to, you carve.

Or to put it another way - if the two legs - stance and free - are equally tipped there is no passive rotary force created. The skis are simply rode in a carve.

But, if the amount of tipping is different, ie. more tip on the free ski as compared to the stance ski, this will tighten a carve and introduce passive rotary movement of the stance ski. The more the free ski tips and the bigger the tipping difference from the stance ski the more rotary force is created - all with no steering inputs at all.

Is this a good paraphrase of what's going on? The above matches what I'm experiencing. I can turn as tight as I want and I'm not doing any steering either inside or outside leg that I'm aware of even though you can generate strong rotary forces with ease and as needed by just tipping the free foot.

I think if this component of PMTS can be properly understood and communicated a major obstacle to people's understanding and or resistance to PMTS as a method of skiing can be solved to the benefit of the inquiring student of skiing.
John Mason
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby milesb » Thu Apr 08, 2004 2:19 pm

See, I told you guys that Harb and Barnes teach very different things!
User avatar
Posts: 981
Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2004 10:17 am
Location: Los Angeles

Very different? Yep, in some key points.

Postby John Mason » Thu Apr 08, 2004 3:39 pm

Reading Bob Barnes posts on epic, they are quite different in regard to steering. Yet in Bob Barnes "perfect turn" piece he actually describes a pretty good phantom move turn initiation, but then diverges from PMTS when he inserts steering to shape the turn. But, when I read other posts of Bob's other than the perfect turn post, there is also a difference of opinion on stance width, one ski balance and the importance of same to the development of expert skiing, and steering in general (point where you want to go). Bob also looks at the LTE of the uphill ski at transition as being associated with a step uphill which it is not.

I have also seen people say PMTS is the same and is just a marketing thing. But, as you have pointed out - milesb, the focus on tipping to turn and focusing this tipping on the free foot is not what is normally taught.
John Mason
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby piggyslayer » Thu Apr 08, 2004 4:08 pm

Harald, big thanks for this clarifying post and for defending the lateral movements.

John, Harald wrote
?Once-and-for-all, the actions of tipping and tilting pull the femurs into passive rotation, to follow the tipping action of the skis, boots and skis. This is not taught in PMTS, it is part of the kinetic chain in action.?

passive as in: femur rotates but the rotation does not transfer to the stance foot,
or as in: this is rotation can be ?ignored? when analyzing ski movements and is internal to how our body works (Harald please correct me if I am misinterpreting)
And not:
?the free ski is tipped, this - by itself - passively creates the rotation?

I think the post is clear: correctly executed PMTS turns do not generate any rotary torque on the stance foot. There is not ?passively created rotation? rather SEE ABOVE the rotation is passive.
Piggy Slayer
let the piggy breathe
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 9:27 pm
Location: New Jersey

Aren't forums fun and frustrating?

Postby John Mason » Thu Apr 08, 2004 11:52 pm

This is a challenge trying to discuss verbally what is a demonstratable action.

The phrase passive rotation is an example. Passively created rotation vs passive rotation is not that different sounding to most people reading this I would think.

When I do inside foot tipping off the top of a mogul the skis can come around in a matter of one foot. People that ski want to turn on a dime when needed. Most people describe a steering action to do this, yet with PMTS you can do it by tipping. HH's says PMTS does not describe this but its part of the kenetic chain. That's the point. I think PMTS does need to open that black box a bit to describe to people exactly what is happening within the kenetic chain otherwise people will think that there is pointing and steering going on no matter what is said on this forum.

I will attempt to get some illustrative video and link to it from here so people can describe what is being done to turn 90 degrees in 3 feet of forward movement using free foot tipping actions.
John Mason
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby Harald » Fri Apr 09, 2004 12:04 am

Pivoting a flat ski is not the, or one of the intents or outcomes of PMTS or a Phantom Move. If you are pivoting the stance ski you are not making PMTS movements as they are taught, written or designed. If you are using this approach you will pay for it when you are in situations when this approach has negative consequences. Especially if it is the way you shorten an arc. Pivoting the stance ski keeps the (center of gravity) CG over the stance ski and therefore does not create angles until the ski is moved away (skidded, pushed) from the CG. If you use this approach and develop it as a default movement, you will have great difficulty controlling speed on steeps, bumps and powder or crud.

A rotary force is not needed to move a flat ski into a skid or a pivot, gravity (if you start static) will pull the ski into the falline. Many different movements can assist in accelerating the pivot, such as leg rotation, fulcrum from the pole in the snow, counter rotation with leg steering. None are advocated by the PMTS system, but they do exist in skiing. You maybe using non-PMTS movements to create quick, shortened, twisting direction changes. If you feel strong rotation of the ski, you are most likely using hip rotation and or leg/foot steering.

A tilting of the free foot, boot and ski to create an angle for the new turn does not constitute steering. It only externally rotates that femur and moves the knee out board of the ski. This is passive rotation of the femur and it is easily absorbed in the hip and doesn?t transfer rotation to the stance leg. In PMTS the stance ski /foot follows the tipping of the free foot and creates angles of the ski and body to the surface very early in the arc. If you do this slowly and are able to stay balanced you will achieve a very short yet controlled turn or radius. It may not be carved however.

I don?t know what Bob Barnes teaches and it doesn?t really matter. What matters is how good do you want to be and are your movements achieving the turn that will get you to becoming the skier you want to be? If you are confusing what TTS teach or what BB is saying with PMTS, I hope this has cleared up some of the confusion. Remember the descriptions of TTS movements can be very misleading. If you interpret what they mean, you can almost always come up with vague enough meanings that they can be applied anywhere and to any system. You have to ask yourself if they mean what you want to do and what you want to end up like as a skier.

Postby -- SCSA » Fri Apr 09, 2004 8:07 am

Harald is on fire!

What time is it?
It's Harb carver time! :D
You got my carvers ordered?
I'll be checking you out in about a month, eh?

Be cool gang

Postby -- SCSA » Fri Apr 09, 2004 8:13 am

You gotta admit.

What HH just put up is the best ski stuff we've seen on the net in how long?

Since Harald's last post!

That's what (well, one of lots of thangs)'s so cool about PMTS. HH just posts some terminology, and boom! We're all like, "yeah, that's what I'm talkin about." 8)

Then our turnz are better.

This is big.

Postby HH » Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:39 am

SCSA, thanks, this stuff is black and white. You can't leave it to interpretation or you end up with a mess.

The Pro Carvers are in, but most are spoken for, we will have 500 all models by May 10th. The Austrain and Italian Ski Team wants these pronto. I am attending a number of events in Europe in May to demonstrate the Carvers and set up orders and manufacturing in Europe.

Postby jclayton » Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:52 am

how lucky was I to pick up a couple of Harb Carvers from the window in Harald`s shop in December they seem to be like rocking horse s**t now .
skinut ,among other things
User avatar
Posts: 1019
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2003 12:37 pm
Location: mallorca ,spain

Postby -- SCSA » Fri Apr 09, 2004 12:47 pm


You gotta have my Carvers there by mid May.
Jonezin for summer turns!

Postby piggyslayer » Fri Apr 09, 2004 12:47 pm

The Pro Carvers are in, but most are spoken for

:D :D :D :!: one has piggy name on it!
Piggy Slayer
let the piggy breathe
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 9:27 pm
Location: New Jersey

Eureka - I think I get it now

Postby John Mason » Fri Apr 09, 2004 9:48 pm

Ok, my premise was wrong. Given my premise, there was probably some inside leg steering going on the way I was trying to do moguls.

On this site, my confusion was cleared up.

1. I thought you didn't phantom move until you were at the top of the mogul. This did not give enough time to carve and turn down the face of the bump.

2. Because of this, I was pivoting to accomplish this by combining some inside leg steering with the phantom move.

Now, review the link above from the online pmts learning site.

You'll see that my premise and thus my whole question isn't very relevant because using PMTS on the bumps doesn't work the way I was surmising in the first place. You start your phantom turn before you are the top of the bump so that by the time you are at the top you are already turning and ready to carve down the face of the bump.

So, in PMTS we laterally tip and that tips the other ski and that's all we do. And, if done as the above links description, this works fine even in the bumps.

I was looking for a pivot type turn, when I didn't need to if I only realized where I needed to start my phantom turn. It must be ahead of the top of the bump - or - a pivot or gross steering action will be required which is not a good way to do the bumps in the first place.

Things are getting a bit mushy here at Nubs Nob, but they got 1 bump run left. I'll try this in the morning.
John Mason
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby piggyslayer » Sat Apr 10, 2004 10:22 am

During the heated debate about ?hidden? rotary aspects of PMTS there was also talk about ?closing ankles?.
There is also a Jeff question posted about that subject earlier.

Harald, could you comment on this aspect of skiing?
The name itself is a bit confusing and, as I understand it, closing ankles means flexing (dorsiflexing) the foot all the way.

My understanding is that ?closing ankles? amplifies the impact of the phantom move and, thus, is beneficial.

I would appreciate more information about how, to what extend and when ?closing ankles? should be incorporated into skiing.

Some people have more flexibility in the ankle joint, so that they can dorsifex more than others and potentially more than a ski boot will allow them to. I always thought more flexibility is good. How can one close ankles if the ski boot does not allow enough room for the full flex? Or the closure is achieved after some dorsiflexion and skier does not need to go all the way?

Harald, I know you have a very busy period. I will be happy with an answer: ?I will get back to you on this later?.

Have a good Easter everybody.
Piggy Slayer
let the piggy breathe
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 9:27 pm
Location: New Jersey


Return to Primary Movements Teaching System

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests