Two Footed Release MA please

Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Wed Oct 23, 2013 9:26 am

I have managed to get a little bit of video footage of some of my TFR practice - its not ideal, but better than nothing…

I have spent the summer going right back to the beginning, working my way through book 1 and the instructors manual. i managed to tear my lateral meniscus in my right knee doing tipping exercises in july, which halted progress beyond the TFR….Anyway, I am on a dry ski slope, not the best surface as it feels grabby and rutted. Please take a look for me - comments much appreciated.

There is something going on with my right turns. Either i am guarding my right knee injury or my alignment is not quite set - (i have been self-adjusting both lateral and fore/aft…) I don't think that it is lack of flexing + tipping during the release, might be a slight hesitation during the transfer as its not consistent …this stuff hurts like hell when you fall..



will try and get some better footage of more drills….difficult when you are the only one there..
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby geoffda » Wed Oct 23, 2013 10:34 am

GLOGH,

First, for MA video have your camera person stand about halfway down the run so you get video of both front and back. Also, they need to zoom in so that we can see what is going on with your feet. It is hard to see your release movements with the video provided, but you aren't being patient enough and it looks like you are trying to help the skis come around. Don't do that! Don't push with your poles, don't twist your body or your legs, just let go of your edges and let gravity pull the tips into the turn.

The idea is to flatten the old stance ski by tipping towards LTE and that movement should result in the flattening of both skis. If you are properly forward, as the skis flatten, you should end up in a forward sideslip (if you don't, pull your feet back). Ride this sideslip on flat skis and allow the tips to seek the fall line. As this is happening, transfer balance to the new stance foot. Once the tips are pointed down the hill, finish with a Phantom Move and come to a complete stop. Coming to a stop is very important for two reasons. First, it allows you to check your finishing position. Second, it ensures that you don't introduce any extra forces in the equation that will mask balance issues or poor footwork. Do a bunch of these, stopping every time. Only when you can do a bunch of these perfectly to a stop should you try linking them.

Eventually, you can shorten the amount of time that you are riding flat skis and begin tipping to engage much higher in the arc. That will give you the kind of quick brushed carves that you are trying to show. However, you can't make these kinds of turns without the ability to fully release to completely flat skis. By slowing down the transition and actually forcing yourself to ride a flat ski, you can confirm that you are fully releasing. Don't try to build a brushed carve turn until you have verified your releasing skills. It won't work and you will be wasting your time.

The most common problem with TFRs is not fully flattening the old stance ski. By spending some time riding a flat ski out of the release, you'll develop the ability to recognize when your skis are flat. Being able to accurately distinguish between when your ski is on edge versus when it is flat is a critical skill to develop if you haven't already.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Wed Oct 23, 2013 10:57 am

Geoff,
Thanks for the tips….my camera man is a tripod….will try and get some proper camera action later. (Kids at school and wife working means no camera slave/ operator..)

I am striving for a flat ski in the release, but the problem is that i think i am having to force the skis slightly to get them going. This is an unfortunate byproduct of the surface. Its grabby, and very uneven. You need to have a fairly steep gradient - (probably too steep to learn these movements if on snow) just to get the skis moving. I found that i had to exaggerate my flex and flattening or the skis wouldn't budge and be patient. Much easier when the skis had a little forward movement, but i wanted a stationary release…this surface holds no prisoners. Not enough flattening = no release. Too much and you trip over the stuck edge….I had a pretty good OFR, but i tweaked my knee a couple of times, so i backed off..

I will definitely work on letting the skis release in to the fall line a little more before recovering. Thanks..
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby Max_501 » Wed Oct 23, 2013 11:56 am

Try to increase the hip CA before you start the release. Are one footed releases a lot easier on this surface?
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby nipper » Wed Oct 23, 2013 12:25 pm

I find it very difficult to do this exercise on a dry slope. The bristles tend to grab the skis and make it difficult to get a smooth release.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Wed Oct 23, 2013 12:49 pm

Hi Max,
Thanks for that tip. A couple of days later (after watching this clip) i made a conscious effort to work on my CB+CA before i started the release - it made a big difference….Re-watching HH's TFR youtube video was a great help..especially with the pole position set up.

As for the OFR on this surface - very difficult when stationary because of the surface. Imagine the icy rutted concrete that you get in the mornings early and late in the season….then add a load of friction. However, once moving it was no problem. My weakened knee didn't like it when i tipped past flat too soon from stationary, so i worked on variations of the Super Phantom. I have definitely highlighted a weakness in my transfer, particularly turns to the right. Back to the drawing board - might re-visit the alignment on my right leg as it appears that i am struggling to tip it over enough. Your advice about adding a foreward lean spoiler made a big difference…again, all done after this video…

I hit the snow in about 3 weeks, so will try and post something a little more interesting next time..hopefully not me wrapped around a tree…..
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Wed Oct 23, 2013 12:53 pm

nipper,
i am glad that it is not just me…..i get some very strange looks from the instructors and students alike. Especially when i spend 20 mins warming up by walking the S line down the shallow slope and practicing the flexing to release from the wall.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby polecat » Wed Oct 23, 2013 1:26 pm

go-large,

If the surface is truly too grabby and you absolutely must cheat to get started, don't stem. It just starts out everything wrong, pushing off, extending up, hips back, poor balance transfer, etc.

If you have to cheat, use a PMTS technique, a step turn. Step turns may seem basic, but they reinforce the fundamentals.

(Of course, any cheating, even a PMTS cheat, removes the most important part of the drill, the actual release, from the activity. So make really, really sure you can't release by flexing and flattening before you resort to cheating.)


pc
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby geoffda » Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:08 pm

polecat wrote:go-large,
If you have to cheat, use a PMTS technique, a step turn. Step turns may seem basic, but they reinforce the fundamentals.
pc


Good idea PC. The one caution with stepping turns on edge in the high C is that you do need quite a bit of balance to pull it off and the margin for error is fairly low. If you screw up, you'll get punished. Rather than trying to step on edge, I'd suggest stepping flat skis until they start to slide. Alternatively, you may be able just shuffle your skis backward and forward once they are flat to break them loose. Try to hold your counter while you do this. Either way, once you start sliding, make sure you pull your feet back.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Wed Oct 23, 2013 2:57 pm

All good advice. I have tried a little shuffling, especially when the slope shallows out.

Does it look like I am cheating? I am pretty confident that I can get the skis to release with not too many problems or effort - it took a lot of practice. I do, however, feel that I am having to over exaggerate my flex and tipping to start things off. Some portions of the matting is much easier that others - something to do with how it is laid down - probably accounts a little bit for some inconsistency between turns.

Where I do feel a little weak is sometimes during the transfer phase. Not helped by dropping my hips back. Max's tip about adding some rear spoilers helped my fore/aft balance. I also think that I was holding on too long to my downhill pole, which caused my upper body to rotate with the turn.

I will try and get some close up footage of my actual release..

Thanks guys, all good stuff.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby geoffda » Wed Oct 23, 2013 3:36 pm

go_large_or_go_home wrote:Does it look like I am cheating? I am pretty confident that I can get the skis to release with not too many problems or effort - it took a lot of practice.

I don't think you are cheating on the release (though I can't see your feet well enough to say that with 100% confidence), but I think you are fighting the surface to get the skis moving once they are flat. For example, on the release right before you lose your balance, you clearly push with the uphill pole to start the skis turning. Other times it looks like you might be adding just a bit of upper body rotation to get things started. Your tipping looks really good, and your flexion is good as well so you are on the right track. As far as your pole plant, it isn't necessary to try to keep the pole stationary so you can turn around it. It is fine to let it drag as you go by. Balance transfer can be tough if you aren't forward. Pulling both feet back once you have flattened both skis will help with this. The turn to the right that you make immediately after stumbling is showing great fore-aft management. If you could apply what you did there to all of the previous turns (where you are slipping back), it would take your skiing up a notch.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby polecat » Wed Oct 23, 2013 4:56 pm

go_large_or_go_home wrote:...Does it look like I am cheating? ....

Well, it looked like you were pushing off with your poles on most of the turns and there was definitely a small stem on a couple of them.

Like geoffda said, you were fighting the surface. But how much was fighting and how much was still working on the technique is impossible to say. It's a very difficult technique to learn, even on good snow, so you can bet there's a lot of room for improvement there. (And I should know, I really suck at TFR's.)


geoffda wrote:... The one caution with stepping turns on edge in the high C is that you do need quite a bit of balance to pull it off and the margin for error is fairly low. If you screw up, you'll get punished. ...

Yeah, I think there's a tendency to try to treat step turns like skating, taking big steps, pushing off and putting them on edge. You need to just turn, no pushing at all, in very small increments and very flat. (I've tried them on a groomed black run and they work surprisingly well.)


geoffda wrote:... I'd suggest stepping flat skis until they start to slide. Alternatively, you may be able just shuffle your skis backward and forward once they are flat to break them loose. Try to hold your counter while you do this. Either way, once you start sliding, make sure you pull your feet back.

Excellent suggestions.



One thing I just noticed, while the amount of flexing is good, you seem to be weighting the inside ski (old stance foot, new free foot) too much as you flex, which forces you to interrupt your rhythm and push off of it to transfer balance. That's probably why you had better luck with the OFR's, where you're transferred from the start.

Flexing should release the old stance foot, transfer balance to the new stance leg while unweighting the old stance foot then allow you to tip the old stance foot (now the free foot) to the little tow edge all in a continuous flow. That's a lot going on at once so it's no surprise it takes a lot of practice to work up to it.

I find it helpful to imagine that I'm flexing down onto the new stance leg.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby Hobbit » Wed Oct 23, 2013 9:50 pm

Maybe it's a stupid idea, but how do the reverse cumber skis behave on this surface? Same question for the ski blades.
Is it possible that those will be easier for starting the side slipping motion?
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Thu Oct 24, 2013 12:53 am

Thanks guys. All good stuff for me to concentrate on...I think that on the shallower slope I was helping the release a little by pushing on my uphill pole....dammit...

I have tried a couple of different skis with these exercises...the club ones, which have no edges whatsoever, and my factory slalom skis - the ones that I am on in the vid..although the slalom skis have great edge grip and replicate more the feeling of 'snow', they are a little less forgiving during the release (on this surface anyway..). The club skis make the surface feel like sheet ice (grip wise) so your feet have got to be under you at all times...

It's heartening to know that I am not the only one that has to 'focus the mind' on this exercise...at the end of this session, when I free skied down, for the first time I actually felt a proper high C with my short turns...it only lasted a couple of turns, but nonetheless thrilling....

If I can go someway to nail these movements on this surface without overcompensation, I will be happy.
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Re: Two Footed Release MA please

Postby go_large_or_go_home » Thu Oct 24, 2013 3:30 am

polecat wrote:One thing I just noticed, while the amount of flexing is good, you seem to be weighting the inside ski (old stance foot, new free foot) too much as you flex, which forces you to interrupt your rhythm and push off of it to transfer balance. That's probably why you had better luck with the OFR's, where you're transferred from the start.

Flexing should release the old stance foot, transfer balance to the new stance leg while unweighting the old stance foot then allow you to tip the old stance foot (now the free foot) to the little tow edge all in a continuous flow. That's a lot going on at once so it's no surprise it takes a lot of practice to work up to it.

I find it helpful to imagine that I'm flexing down onto the new stance leg.


Great spot...for some reason, I was actively thinking about keeping both skis grounded during the initial release as opposed to the obvious lift during the OFR...I think that I may have been protecting my knee on this surface. As a result, I felt my transfers were not smooth....

Geoff - I think that I was conciously striving for turning around my pole... And if I didn't - like HH was achieving, it was a fail....will go for the pole drag option..
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