Off piste - technique and tactics

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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby Max_501 » Sat Mar 19, 2016 4:57 pm

If one of your goals is skiing well off-piste skiing this thread should help. Start reading from the first post and read all of HH's comments at least 2x!
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby oggy » Mon Mar 21, 2016 3:08 pm

Thanks for bumping up this thread, some good info! I'm curious about the clip HighAngles' posted, and the differences to the clips of Harald and Diana skiing. Here's a few things I see, it'd be great if somebody more experienced could give feedback on my MA:
  • the traverse in the first turn seems a tad long - a more aggressive turn would provide an easier turn initiation. Easier said than done on that pitch though, especially on your first turn.
  • pole plant. Right after planting the pole, HA's hand falls behind his body. HH's goes up and over the pole, and it gets in front of his body much more quickly. This difference is there in pretty much every turn. Helps HH get earlier and more CA.
  • HH shows more CA at the bottom of the arc, and keeps it longer than HA does; in some transitions, he's practically facing downhill. Kinda reminds me of an instructional video by Hisaya Sato somebody showed me a few weeks back, where he shows ridiculous CA angles at transitions in bumps.
  • HA does seem to get a bit in the back seat in a couple of turns
Thanks for any feedback!
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby Max_501 » Mon Mar 21, 2016 5:20 pm

oggy wrote: I'm curious about the clip HighAngles' posted, and the differences to the clips of Harald and Diana skiing


HA did a good job of covering the main differences in his follow up post.

HighAngles wrote:Well my take is that when conditions are trickier (steeper, deeper, cruddy, etc.) your focus on the essentials must be sufficiently strong with a concentration of "more" for everything. I don't specifically recall if there was a particular "focus" requested for this run, but clearly I could have benefited from stronger tipping (exhausting the tipping range with the lower body first), more flexion (especially important in steeper terrain & deeper conditions), developing and holding the CA (it definitely get's away from me), and clearly my fore/aft was challenged a few times - so a stronger pull back move at each transition.


To ski off piste well ALL the Essentials much be cranked up to the max.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby B.Mulligan » Tue Mar 22, 2016 8:23 am

h.harb wrote:
The last time we had that a couple of weeks ago I thought my feet were about to be torn off my ankles!


I've skied at Alpine and Squaw in those very conditions, first you need speed and you can't use upper body rotation (forces) in that stuff or you are dead. Many all mountain skiers follow with upper body rotation in cement, but they use flexing and angles to generate the arc, so don't be fooled. If you want to see it, from a PMTS technical point of view, the best all mountain skier is Seth Morrison.


I just read this entire thread, it's an incredible resource. I really liked the use of High Angles skiing and the comparison shots to illustrate the topiC and Max501's stop action photos. I pulled the quote above because i've been saying this about Seth Morrison for over 20 years and it's nice to have your opinions validated by the best technical ski coach in the business.

I think it's a safe bet that any top line big mountain ski star who lives into his 40s and still gets featured roles must be a technically excellent skier, and not merely an athletic, acrobatic daredevil, like so many are.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby oggy » Thu Mar 24, 2016 6:17 am

Max_501 wrote:To ski off piste well ALL the Essentials much be cranked up to the max.


Got it - but is there a single essential that's most lacking in the video? E.g., had you been there with him, what would you suggest as the focus for the next run?
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby h.harb » Thu Mar 24, 2016 11:17 am

Great skiing by Max, are these 2016 photos? Too bad the PSIA Demo Team doesn't aspire to these levels.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby Max_501 » Thu Mar 24, 2016 7:05 pm

oggy wrote: E.g., had you been there with him, what would you suggest as the focus for the next run?


I skied with him just a couple of weeks later. His SMIM was CA at the time but that's an individual thing. Someone else could have CB, Pullback, or one of the other Essentials as their SMIM. The take away from this thread is that all of the Essentials need to be dialed to ski well in off piste terrain, especially when the conditions are challenging.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby Max_501 » Mon Mar 28, 2016 7:40 am

Great HH blog post from 2015 that fits with this thread - Skiing powder
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby Max_501 » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:24 pm

With all this snow its time to bounce the Off Piste thread. If you haven't already, read it from the beginning and watch for the gems from HH buried within!
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby h.harb » Sun Jan 08, 2017 11:14 am

We now have at least 7 skiers (all accredited except Reilly) skiing PMTS that can ski on any Demo Team, on any slope, and most with better technique, except for the Koreans and some Japanese. Many more PMTS skiers who are not accredited yet, but who have better technique, ski with cleaner movements than most of the US Demo Team.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby NoCleverName » Mon Jan 09, 2017 2:30 pm

... so last week had a 12 or so inches of wind blown (30-40mph) powder filling the troughs between icy tops ... themselves defended by death cookies frozen to the surface. Fairly ugly results. I think the main problem here is no chance to maintain good balance because of the ice and cookies thus throwing you off when entering the windblown. Not that I'm in command of pure windblown slopes, by the way. Yup, sometimes you really think you are getting this down and then you go and raise the bar by getting into something worse and you're really lucky no one else is in there to witness the hackery. :?

We've been through two or three snow-warm-up melt-rain/freeze/snow-warm-up-melt/etc. cycles in the last three weeks. 50-degree temp swings. But at least there's coverage this year.

Again, I'm going to plug Diana's indoor training vid ... especially the tipping section ... which has helped greatly.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby jbotti » Mon Jan 09, 2017 5:20 pm

BTW, I re-read this entire thread yesterday on a plane. Everyone should do the same. Great stuff. Maybe someone would like to reduce the essence of a 10 page thread into 4 sentences for Speedcontol so he can save the time.
Balance: Essential in skiing and in life!
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby semnoz » Tue Jan 10, 2017 3:18 am

Max_501 wrote:With all this snow ...


That very much depends on where in the world you are located...

Glad to see the West Coast getting hammered after so many dry years.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby semnoz » Tue Jan 10, 2017 3:21 am

Max_501 wrote:Great HH blog post from 2015 that fits with this thread - Skiing powder


Indeed, great post. I, too, find skiing untracked powder easy and almost effortless.
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Re: Off piste - technique and tactics

Postby DougD » Thu Jan 12, 2017 6:50 am

Thanks, Max, for bumping this thread again. I read it cover to cover every season (more than once).

The more I dial the Essentials into my own skiing, the better I understand the insights offered here by HH, you, Geoffda, jbotti & others.

I've been an avid all-conditions skier for 25 years, but only began PMTS 3-4 years ago. My movements have a long way to go, but every time I nail a drill on the groomed (more or less), the effect when next skiing something less groomed is obvious.
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