4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby nickia » Mon Jan 16, 2017 4:21 pm

Hi all,

I took a break from skiing due to injury (metacarpal fracture) and life commitment but I'm back this year with full force.

I have been working on one leg balance, free foot management, and one footed release. The following four videos were shot on the same day. I think the latter two videos were better because I worked on squeezing my hamstrings during turns and changed my pole plants. I felt much more balanced during a turn when I squeeze my hamstrings really hard. Finally, I'm including another video (video #5) from one month ago for comparison.

Questions:

1. In Vid 3 & 4, I don't see wedge entry but I see wedge in the middle of the turn. Is this a problem? Is my stance ski pushing off? Is it because I didn't keep the Uphill ski on LTE? Should I practice weighted release or Super Phantom to cure this?

Image 1: Turn entry
Image

Image 2: Wedge but why?
Image

Image 3: Finishing
Image

GIF Slow-mo :

Image

Image

2. Is my arm position better in Vid 3 & 4? The arm position in Vid 1 & 2 looked strange so I tried to fixed it.
3. In Vid 3 & 4, did I perform any super phantom? I don't see any O-frame but I can't see A-frame either.

These following images seem to show that I had released the LTE before tipping:

Image 1: finishing the last turn; uphill ski on LTE
Image

Image 2: Uphill ski LTE released but new free foot is not tipped yet (error)
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Image 3: Uphill ski LTE released and new free foot lifted and tipped.
Image

What I need to do is to maintain Uphill ski LTE while new free foot is lifted and tipped, correct?

4. Left turn is my weak side, is it evident in the video?
5. How is my fore/aft? Am I sitting back? I feel like my stance is better in Vid 3 & 4.

Image 1: previous turn
Image

Image 2,3,4: lifting stance ski, pullback and tip
Image
Image
Image

Image 5: Entering new turn; my boots are even - this means I'm pulling the free foot back right?
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Image 6: Continuing new turn
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6. What is the number One thing (or more) I should focus on working on?



Video 1:




Video 2:



Video 3: (Improved arm position and squeezed hamstring hard)


Video 4: (Improved arm position and squeezed hamstring hard)


Video 5: One month ago; same slope as Video 3 & 4


Video 6: Angle from Chairlift; same day as Vid 1-4
Last edited by nickia on Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:02 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby sgarrozzo » Tue Jan 17, 2017 9:54 am

I think that if you put down the inside ski in the middle of a turn when you make a phantom move, you disrupt the equlibrium and the inside ski can't carve. So you have a wedge.
But this is only my opinion.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby oggy » Tue Jan 17, 2017 11:18 am

Hi Nickia,

my non-expert MA, but it seems that you have some of the same problems that I've had, so maybe it helps. For some reason, the images you attached don't load for me, but I can see the vids.

First off, the skiing looks a bit stiff to me. Maybe it's your injury and the associated fear, who knows. For me, concieously going in with a more playful and risk-aware approach helped. As in, let's play with gravity, and be ready to take the occasional fall when the movements aren't quite up to the task. Perhaps keep this in mind.

But as this is MA and not psych-help, let me tell you what movement deficiencies I see in the vids. First, your tail lift is sometimes quite massive, and I think actually hindering your skiing. In particular, to get angles, you need to let the skis get away from you. The release by relaxing can help you there (in addition to tipping), by sending your skis on a rounder trajectory, and your butt more downhill. But you need to let the skis go momentarily at the release for this to happen, let them jet, and then pull back. This is the "playing with gravity" part I was referring to above. I stumbled on this last year, prompted by some old comment from Max_501 and leo bloom, and Harald's dolphin turns. Harald has a post on this topic from just a few days ago, I suggest you read it.

Second, your upper body needs to help with the whole thing, otherwise the play will end in a fall. As sgarrozzo points out, you do not develop enough CB in the turn, particularly on your right-footers (to your left). To ensure one-footed balance, keep the inside foot lifted throughout the ENTIRE turn (now it falls down in the middle of the turn), start to finish. This is really important. It's OK to start by just lifting the tail, but the goal is to lift the whole ski (just a bit is enough!). Core exercises such as side planks can help a lot with this. Lastly, you lose the CA completely at the end of the turn, which makes it more difficult to get a good release that sends your body downhill. You need to hold on to the CA longer.

I'd start by working on CB first, until you get solid completely one footed turns. Then I'd focus on the release, getting the CA solid and letting the skis run forward.

Good luck!
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Obrules15 » Tue Jan 17, 2017 12:33 pm

First, I don't think that's exactly a wedge in image 2, what it looks like to me is overlapping tips and the ankles as close together as they can be, so in this case I think if the tips were a little further apart there'd be no "wedge".

The below MA is just on video#2 but I do also want to agree that on the other videos I think you lift your tails much too high, which screws with your turn mechanics.

MA for Video #2

Things to consider for MA (recommended for MA by Max_501 and other PMTSers)

Is the stance width appropriate for the size of the skier?
-I think the stance width is too narrow

Does the release start by flexing the outside leg?
-No, I think there is extension to release

Does LTE tipping lead engagement to the new turn?
-Yes, Big O-Frame

Are the feet pulled back at transition?
-No (Maybe too close to pull back well)

Is the inside foot held back throughout the turn?
-No, and I think the "wedge" would disappear if the foot,were pulled back a little more because that would essentially prevent that foot from dovetailing in.

Is there enough CB and CA and is the timing right?
-No

Is the pelvis included in the CB/CA movement?
-Yes

Strong inside arm?
-Yes

Is the inside leg flexed as the turn progresses?
-No, turn does not progess/finish

Does the outside leg extend naturally (no pushing) as the turn progresses?
-Turn doesn't really progress

Does LTE tipping of the inside foot continue throughout the turn?
-No, I don't think so.

Is the skier balanced over the outside ski?
-Stance is so tight, balance is over both skis.

Is there a pole touch and how is the movement and timing?
-Yes, pretty good.

Alignment - watch the skis and knees carefully - does anything look like it needs go be tipped in or out?
-Unsure, stance so tight I can't really see lower legs.
Last edited by Obrules15 on Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Obrules15 » Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:07 pm

sgarrozzo wrote:I think that if you put down the inside ski in the middle of a turn when you make a phantom move, you disrupt the equlibrium and the inside ski can't carve. So you have a wedge.
But this is only my opinion.



If you watch a bunch of HH's videos he sometimes puts the ski down mid-turn. As long as the ski goes down on the inside edge in a matching trajectory it should be able to continue in the turn without a problem. It's my understanding a wedge results when both skis inside edges are weighted.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby nickia » Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:12 pm

@sogarrozzo

Thanks for the feedback sgarrozzo.


@oggy

Thanks. The left turn is definitely causing issues. I find the feeling CB/CA strange on left turn (which is a sign that I need to practice CB/CA more on left side). I also find that my right stance ski have a heel push tendency which could be causing the wedge mid-turn. How do I fix this?

My old skiing used to be wobbly and out of control so I have been trying to reel that in by making sure every part of my movement is controlled and deliberate. Perhaps I'm overdoing it now. Here is my old skiing:

@Obrules15

Thanks. I have a question about the narrow stance. I understand we shouldn't ski with our feet glued together but this seems contradict the "ball hold" exercise or the "keep free ski touching the stance boot" exercise.

How do we incorporate the movement pattern we learned from these exercise (reeling in free foot) yet make sure the skis are glued together?


I will be having some lessons with John Nelles soon once his schedule frees up in early Feb. In the mean time, what is my SIMM?

CB/CA ? Wider stance (although I don't like the sound of that...) ? More tipping? More flexing during transition? Fix the right stance ski leg rotation during left turn? (How?)
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby mardale » Wed Jan 18, 2017 5:52 am

Good improvement from the last video.

The closer the feet are together, the easier the movements required for the phantom. touching the boot/rivet is a great cue for tipping as well, but instead of lifting in every day skiing, think lightening.

Phantom drag - do you know it? That will answer your stance questions.

There is very minimal CB/CA - so doing some CB and CA drills like dragging the outside pole and angry mothers etc will benefit a lot.

But first, I would slow down the transition and work to embed more flexing into your release. That quick transition is inducing some extension and even twisting the skis a little and a part of that is that you almost stop between turns, with the skis sideways. You should work on the TFR and OFR (two footed and one footed releases) to hone those movements.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Obrules15 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:38 am

nickia wrote:
@Obrules15

Thanks. I have a question about the narrow stance. I understand we shouldn't ski with our feet glued together but this seems contradict the "ball hold" exercise or the "keep free ski touching the stance boot" exercise.

How do we incorporate the movement pattern we learned from these exercise (reeling in free foot) yet make sure the skis are glued together?


I will be having some lessons with John Nelles soon once his schedule frees up in early Feb. In the mean time, what is my SIMM?

CB/CA ? Wider stance (although I don't like the sound of that...) ? More tipping? More flexing during transition? Fix the right stance ski leg rotation during left turn? (How?)


I was hoping others more qualified to to do MA would weigh in, as I just used the template provided to attempt a MA, but let me clarify what I mean and what I think I am seeing.

What I see in your stance is not that is too narrow per se but that you are pulling in everything so tight the ski tips are collapsing inward. In order for skis to be parallel the center line of the skis must be equidistant all of the way down the ski. Because feet and boots are wider than skis, the tightest a stance can get and still be parallel is controlled by the distance the thickest areas *must* be from each other. Go back to the video where you think you are wedging and look. Your wedge happens when the tips keep closing distance between them but your ankles can't get any closer together because they already touch.

An actual wedge turn entry happens because weight is transferred to the BTE before the old stance BTE is released so both BTE edges are weighted on the snow. You are not doing this, that is why the wedge appears midturn. As you turn your stance tries to tighten past what your ankles allow but only the tips are capable of getting any closer together which causes the appearance of a wedge despite being on the correct edges. I do think if that inside foot was pulled back a little more it would prevent collapsing tips.

Definitely listen to your PMTS instructor or other qualifiied coach first.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Max_501 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:55 pm

nickia wrote:I have been working on one leg balance, free foot management, and one footed release.


Your hips are not included as part of the CA/CB movements which is making it difficult to release. There are several things you can do to address this but start by reading HH's detailed explanation of tip lift.

Why the ski "Tip" lift is important, for all skiing levels?
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Obrules15 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 3:06 pm

Max_501 wrote:
nickia wrote:I have been working on one leg balance, free foot management, and one footed release.


Your hips are not included as part of the CA/CB movements which is making it difficult to release. There are several things you can do to address this but start by reading HH's detailed explanation of tip lift.

Why the ski "Tip" lift is important, for all skiing levels?


Max_501, do you think his inside foot pullback is enough?
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Ken » Wed Jan 18, 2017 3:37 pm

Max_501 wrote:
nickia wrote:I have been working on one leg balance, free foot management, and one footed release.


Your hips are not included as part of the CA/CB movements which is making it difficult to release. There are several things you can do to address this but start by reading HH's detailed explanation of tip lift.

Why the ski "Tip" lift is important, for all skiing levels?


Stand with one foot sideways on a stair step or on a thick book. The other leg dangles. Lift the hip on the side you are not standing on. Lift it way up, let it way down, up, down, up, down. Change sides, repeat, repeat. Remember this movement for when you're on the snow. Stand up now, feet together, push one hip forward. Your upper body rotates at the same time. Straighten, rotate from the hip upward, straighten, rotate from the hip upward. Change sides, do it more. This is counteracting. Remember this movement for when you're on the snow.

On the snow, ski like in video 6, slow & easy, everything working well. Add the counteracting by pushing the inside hip forward as you're pulling the inside foot back. Hold the counteracting position all the way through the turn until the release, then immediately counteract the other way as you start the next turn the other way. Add the hip lift as you lighten the inside foot. Repeat, repeat, repeat. More movement is better, but even if you're stiff and can't go very far, give it all you've got. Add counterbalance where you bend a bit in the mid section as you counteract. As the speed & forces increase the amount of counterbalance needs to increase. Add one new movement at a time, practice that until you have a good handle on it, then add another new movement. Learn these on terrain that is not challenging.

For your one foot drill, try lifting the inside ski tail just an inch or two off the snow. Tip it, tip it more, tip it more and more and more as you lighten and flex the leg more and more (suitable for the angles you're developing), that little toe edge of the shovel just lightly sliding along the snow. Add the maximum counteracting and hip lift, and suitable counterbalance, as you drill.

I'll try the ski tip lift this weekend. Something new for me...it'll be interesting to find the movement and timing.
Rooster today
Feather duster tomorrow

VIDEO OF NOT ME
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Icanski » Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:37 pm

Hi Nick,
Thanks for posting some good video. I see improvement from the first vid where you are lifting the ski quite high. It just needs to come up off the snow a bit, it's the tipping that's important. More tipping will help keep it from crossing over your stance tip.
On your left turns just at or before you release the old stance leg and lift it, you are extending and standing up with the new stance leg. This makes it hard to develop angles and get CB, CA happening.
Phantom drag is good for getting awareness in the feet of tipping, then lift/lighten and tip. Just go up as high as the mid boot, if that.
At the transition, keep both legs flexed, no extension in there.
And relax a bit, it will help you balance and absorb little terrain differences.
We'll work on this when I see you, but you are making progress.
see you soon,
John
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby Max_501 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 7:52 pm

Nickia, try starting the lift with the tip lift as described by Harald in the post I linked above.

There are more ideas for learning CA on dryland here -

Hip/Pelvis position awareness

Obrules15 wrote:Max_501, do you think his inside foot pullback is enough?


See this - Inside foot pullback
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby nickia » Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:12 pm

@mardale,

Thanks. I haven't the phantom drag drill but will revisit book 1.

@Max,

Thanks for the link to the CA/CB and hip. I practiced the dryland exercises you wrote and practiced Angry Mother CA on snow today. I'm not sure if I'm doing everything correctly but my waist is sore from all the body turning.

I have so much trouble with my left turn even doing the shallow railroad tipping drill. My right turn feels very natural and I can initiate turns by tipping easily but left turn feels extremely strange. I've tried in the past two days to replicate the feeling I have on my right turn and apply to my left turn but the result is still inconclusive. I have few ideas of why my left turn is so weak and wonder if they are correct:

1. I started learning to ski on a hill that was more "right turn friendly"
2. #1 resulted lack of practice on left turn
3. Wrong hip position and lack of CA on left turn compare to right. I could feel my right hip naturally rotates forward on right turn when I initiate tipping. However, on left turn, the movement feels very contrived. I practiced Diana's sideslip drill in the brush turn video yesterday. When I'm sideslipping in a left turn position (left foot uphill ski), the stance ski would pivot with the heel pushing out and right stance leg rotating inward. I think this is related to my wedge described in my post above. When I tried to push my left hip forward and apply CA, the stance ski pivot and leg rotation was greatly minimized. I will be doing more Angry Mother drill and focus exclusively on left turn in the next week to see if my turn improves.
4. My left foot has overpronation but right foot is slightly underpronated. I don't have any alignment done yet (hopefully I can attend the camp next year). Left foot tipping was always extremely difficult. Applying the same tipping pressure, the right ski will be at a greater angle than the left ski. Today, I spent 30 mins and examined my tipping angle both on stationary ski and on dry land, my left foot has to apply more tipping force to achieve same edge angle as right foot. I think this is the result of the left ankle has less inversion flexibility than right ankle due to overpronation. Applying my experience in playing the violin where manually stretching the space between each finger will gradually improve the flexibility and reach of each finger, I started to do some ankle inversion stretching to increase flexibility so eventually, I can inverse the ankle with less pressure due to increased flexibility.

Here is my stretch routine:
1. Stand barefoot on both feet on the ground
2. On the target foot, inverse the ankle as if you are almost going to sprain it.
3. Stand on the inversed ankle. You will feel some discomfort

Second routine:
1. Wear a shoe or ski boot
2. Tip the foot to the maximum you can do until you feel discomfort (important! this means you're stretching your ligament) and hold it there for few second.
3. Relax and repeat

I already noticed a great increase in ankle tipping dexterity on my first day. Before I started my stretching today, my left foot lacks behind in tipping speed compare to right foot. Now, I can almost match the right foot feet. I will continue this stretching and see if it improves my on snow tipping performance.


5. My last suspicion is my right stance ski BTE does not match LTE ankle and causes skidding or leg rotation or ski pivot.



Max, about the tip lift drill, I read the forum topic and Harold's blogpost few days ago before this MA but didn't have a clear understanding of this movement. From what I read, tip lift has two benefits: 1)Help to slide the hip from one side to another during transition, 2)helps with fore/aft . Here is my understanding of the movement:

1. at release, use ankle dorsiflexion to lift the ski tip
2. Immediately after #1, pull that foot back and thus increase the tip pressure

I can see how this movement will help with fore/aft by ankle dorsiflexion but how will tip lift help the hip move? I'm just trying to get a better understanding of this movement.

Lastly, how to practice this movement? Can I simply just add a tip lift movement to any release such as OFR/TFR or this movement can only be done during a high speed/high energy carving release?
Last edited by nickia on Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:58 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: 4 Years breaks - MA for Nickia

Postby nickia » Thu Jan 19, 2017 10:14 pm

@John

Thanks for the feedback John. I look forward to ski with you and will be forever grateful if we could troubleshoot my left turn :D

Meanwhile, I will add Phantom drag to the list of items to study.
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