PMTS Forum


Postby Ski Enthusiast » Wed May 05, 2004 6:40 pm

Mr. Harb,

I know you stated you were enroute out of the country. There is no rush to reply.

I have read your posts with interest and have two questions.

#1 If PMTS is better than traditional teaching why aren't ski corporations and/or the CEO's of these corporations clammoring for you to come to their resorts and make their ski schools more profitable?

#2 Why aren't you coaching a national team and teaching some group of athletes how to dominate the world of ski racing?
Ski Enthusiast

HH is out of town, but here is some stuff to ponder

Postby John Mason » Wed May 05, 2004 10:06 pm

This first link is to a description of Levels that the normal TTS progression takes people through. You'll see that there is a focus on rotary steering inputs at all levels and that parallel skiing is not introduced till level 6. So the first 5 levels, compared to a PMTS approach is, at least from this student's point of view, a waste of time, effort and energy. ... ion05.html

This second link is to a very insightful discussion between Lito and Harold about the rather broken state of ski instruction. Harold is not the only one "bucking" the status quo out there. In both cases, because of who knows what reason, these fresh thinkers have had to go their own way running private camps and writing books and doing videos. In this they are both very successful.

Two other authors have also taken this approach. Eric and Rob's book ski the whole mountain is also a PMTS approach and very successful. They run their x-clinic series of camps.

Craig McNeil also has his little pocket book which is also a PMTS approach.

I went to a PSIA ran race camp on Mt Hood last year and all we were taught was stuff that matched PMTS.

None of the above matches the first links 9 levels of progressions the TTS style of teaching moves students through.

Over on Epic there is much dicussion of the sorry state of ski schools and ski instruction in general. They quote a stat that only 15% of people whoose first experience in skiing is a lesson ever ski again. That is an astounding statistic. I would be out of business if my client retention rate was like that. I have 2 family members that are in that 85% statistic all because of a "wedge tts" lesson at Breckenridge. They found the wedge to be unsafe, hard on their knees. Since it has little to do with skiing why place that barrier there.

So you have asked an excellent question. While I was in Harold's shop getting my boots worked on a young masters racer was brought in by his mom. The whole family races. She went on and on about all she had heard about Harold in the racing community. This was their son's 3rd boot fitting that year and everyone she sought out in frustration to get things right told her seek out Harold. Erik Schlopy, a world ranked world cup skier, gets his foot beds from Harold.

Harolds own story summerized is that he came out of years of racing and working in the racing community to teach. He really loves teaching. He was on the top national demo team. He tried to change things from within. But as you can see people don't want to change things. So, like Lito, Eric and Rob, and others he works outside the mainstream.

What I find interesting is that in a discussion or back and forth on the value of PMTS or not, many dismiss it right off because they do not even agree with the concept "anyone can be an expert skier". It goes deeper than that. Many don't believe there is a best way to ski or that a goal like that is appropriate to teach. Bottom line is that in this country the resort schools are run as if they are a monopoly in that no competition is tolorated. Any monopoly will, by its very nature, not feel compelled to improve or compete. This is all to the detriment of the consumer of ski instruction.

If I ran my business with this attitude or with these type of retention rates, I would be out of business. But, there is no monopoly in my business so I do not have to do weird things to compete.

Really - if you haven't go back and read the Lito link. Good questions. But, your probably asking the wrong person. You should ask your buddy the ski resort owner. If I was an owner, I'd clean house immediatly.

I find it fascinating that there are two worlds of ski instruction:

The level 1 through 9 TTS approach on the first link:


PMTS, Lito's, Eric and Rob, Craig McNeil, most of the race camps on the planet. The movements taught in PMTS are not unique, but a highly organized and user obtainable progression of ski skills and a set of defined terms to describe skiing. In that tight progression and organization and ski vocabulary PMTS is unique.

PMTS and the revolution in ski instruction will be a bottom up, from the frustrated students of TTS 1 through 9 instruction demanding a better ski instruction product, and not top down from PSIA.

There are other methods PSIA has endorsed and some are similar or based on PMTS. (the Elan method and the centerline method if my memory is correct) But these methods have not changed the cert requirements which follow the older TTS stuff or what the majority of ski schools teach.

What would be nice is if the PSIA AGAIN would do objective studies to see what works. Throw out the stuff that doesn't and redo the cert and the levels to match what works and what gives great retention rates.

So review, study the history, become aware of the current situation. Understand it's not just HH and PMTS that have had to go their own way, but the most popular books and videos out there that people are buying have all been done outside of the dogma of the PSIA skier level and cert approach. So the question to ask is why hasn't the PSIA redefined their TTS approach? If they have other methods internally that they feel are more effiecient why is the old stuff retained?

I wish I had my money and time back from the TTS approach. I'm one of the lucky ones. Many of the people I met at the PMTS camps had spent and wasted much more time and money than I had.
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Postby tommy » Wed May 05, 2004 10:48 pm

#1 If PMTS is better than traditional teaching why aren't ski corporations and/or the CEO's of these corporations clammoring for you to come to their resorts and make their ski schools more profitable?

Why did VHS become the dominating standard for video players ?
Why do people use Microsoft Windows ?
Why do so many large corporations use IBM technology ?
Why do so many software development organisations use C++ ?
Why doesn't everyone drive a BMW ?
Why do so many people watch soap operas on TV ?

That something is popular and mainstream does not necessarily imply that there aren't much better alternatives available. Business decisions are rarely primarily based on "quality of technology".

"Billions of flies can't be wrong: poop tastes good!"

#2 Why aren't you coaching a national team and teaching some group of athletes how to dominate the world of ski racing?

I think he's already been there, done that.

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Postby Ott Gangl » Thu May 06, 2004 1:14 pm

>>>>#1 If PMTS is better than traditional teaching why aren't ski corporations and/or the CEO's of these corporations clammoring for you to come to their resorts and make their ski schools more profitable?<<<<

Maybe the more pertinent question would be:"Why didn't PMTS last more than one or two seasons in the areas where it was tried? Some small areas like SolVista keep it on but it would be interesting to find out about Aspen, etc. Did it not work in that environment?

I'll email Weems to find out.

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one possible reason

Postby John Mason » Thu May 06, 2004 2:40 pm

if PMTS was more effiecient ski school profits would drop

but if retention was up, the skiers sking on the slopes would go up

I've heard the stories of what happened at Tellerude, but have no knowledge of Aspen.

In any case, I'll let the rumors of the whys come from the horses mouth.
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Postby Ski Enthusiast » Thu May 06, 2004 3:18 pm

Why isn't HH coaching a national team?
Ski Enthusiast

Postby *SCSA » Fri May 07, 2004 8:05 am

Why isn't he coaching a National Team? Same reason why I don't run for President -- there's no money in it.

I think we need to right some wrongs before we go forward.

No one, should be reading this stuff and think that it's easy. It isn't. Matter of fact, it's downright difficult. Getting to ski great is not an easy task. It's quite the opposite.

But that being said, if a skier isn't practicing the right stuff, they'll spin their wheels and never get to what we feel are great turns. We believe, PMTS is the right stuff.

So can we please leave the Internet examinations out of this? We're a few skiers who are following PMTS and finding it successful. It's working for us. Please don't try to tell us we're not having any fun or that we're not successful. If you're here to argue, take it somewhere else. We been arguing for years and we're sick of it. Finally, if you really want to find out about PMTS, show up tomorrow. I'll be happy to explain and demonstrate all I know. That is if you can catch me before I start drinking. :wink:

Postby jbotti » Fri May 07, 2004 12:21 pm

Well said SCSA!!
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Postby Bluey » Fri May 07, 2004 12:41 pm

My take on all of the above is that the 2 questions are, at best, indicating the questioner is a lazy thinker and has given little thought to the subjects/issues that he/she is raising or, at worst, is just being mischievous and bad mannered ...........and this forum's various threads are littered with questions of this nature.............

The right of free speech is one thing....but good manners and respect is something which seems lacking in some of these type of questions.......

The 2 questions are directly addressed to HH...........he's a big boy and I believe its inappropriate for others, irrespective of their good intentions, to attempt a responce on his behalf.

I suspect the reason HH hasn't responded is the same reason as if the 2 questions were asked of me..............If I was HH I'd be weary of these types of questions and would think the best strategy is to ignore them and get on with his life's work...........let the dogs yap......they'll soon get bored and go away...........

I suggest this type of questioning of HH and his personality is mostly about creating a bushfire and then sitting back and watching the thread ignite........its mischievous..........its a waste of time and as I've suggested before....its best if we ignore them...........and as someone else suggested ....its end of season for most and the loonies are out and the "idiot/lacking in originality" type of questions keep cropping up............

If HH wants to respond, he can. If he doesn't, then I think any sensible person would understand............

That's my 2 cents.

However and upon further reflection.........

I suggest we convert the overs "50's + Forum" to a General Q&A gets very little activity anyway........ and this "PMTS Forum" should be renamed to "PMTS Instruction Forum"..........

This could have the advantage of allowing non-ski technique type of questions to be quarantined and kept away from the more instructive threads which I generally enjoy here in this Forum........


By the way, the first good snow fall has started in Oz last week/ weekend so, fingers crossed, it looks promising for a good start to the season.........
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