Speed Control in PMTS

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Speed Control in PMTS

Postby John Mason » Thu Nov 10, 2005 6:26 am

In PMTS how does a skier control their speed?

In the counter movement discussion I realized that 'skiing into counter' and the need for high amounts of edging past the fall line are both symptoms and non-pmts views of skiing that relate to speed control. Thus, time for a new subject that hasn't been discussed here for some time.

Look at most skiers on the hill and how are they achieving speed control.

Term definition:

Apex of the turn - this is when your turn and your skis are now parallel with the fall line. Your skis are pointing straight down-hill.

Transistion point - this is where your skis are not engaged in a turn but you are in between your edge change. Usually this point of the turn is where you bisect your intersecting turns.

Given the above two terms you can take a turn and divide it into 3rds for purposes of discussion. The top 1/3 is from the transition point to the next 1/3 of the turn that is the Apex or fall line portion of the turn.

The 2nd 1/3 is the Apex of the turn

The bottom 1/3 of the turn is that last third before the next transition point.

When you read things on this forum about the 'high c' part of the turn that's that top 1/3 of the turn.

Speed control - most skiers exhibit the max g-force of the turn in the last 1/3 of the turn. This is also where most skiers control their speed. These max g forces are used to skid and bleed off speed at this portion of the turn. Once these forces have been used up bleeding off speed their is little force left to propell the CM over the skis at the transition point for the next turn thus the top 1/3 of the next turn ends up being started by a stem or push off.

In PMTS, however, we are taught to move the G-force curve 'up the hill'. Max G's occur when the skis are parallel to the fall line - at the sides of the turn - at the Apex of the turn. After the apex of the turn is where we start releasing. So in the bottom 1/3 of the turn where many skiers feel the highest G's of the turn, a PMTS skier is actually feeling more and more weightless.

This is what I absolutly love about PMTS skiing or skiing with the above attributes because you feel like you are flying down the hill.

So, when a flying PMTS skier is skiing this way what is left for speed control?

Turn shape. Turn shape is used by a PMTS skier for speed control. The rounder the turn, the more complete the turn, the less speed you have. Simple as that.

(not saying you can't as a PMTS skier pull from your quiver a skid in the last 1/3 of the turn to avoid that snowboarder, but it's not the normal way we are taught to do it.)(most skiers do not have the ability so ski with max g-forces at the apex of the turn so we have more options than most skiers)
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Postby milesb » Thu Nov 10, 2005 10:29 am

Just a note that when the hill is steep enough and the speed is slow enough, the maximum g's are going to be at the bottom third of the turn, no matter what you do.
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Postby Ron White » Thu Nov 10, 2005 3:32 pm

John M.

I am not shure what you mean by your statement:

In PMTS, however, we are taught to move the G-force curve 'up the hill'. Max G's occur when the skis are parallel to the fall line - at the sides of the turn - at the Apex of the turn.


G forces come into play under two physical conditions. The first, G forces are exerted on an object as a result of resisting centripical force. Such as a centrifuge that is used to simulate acceleration away from a gravational force. The second is anytime a moving abject is moving away from gravity. Such as an jet accelerating out of a dive.

In skiing both conditions exist, resisting centripical force while turning and turning away from the fall line. The G force remains the same in a turn as long as the speed and radius are constant due to centripical force, but the G force repidally increases as soon as the skis are turned past the fall line. The effect on the skier is different depending on how the skier resists the forces. A strong skelital stance with good edge engagement allows the skier to continue the radius of the turn after the fall line, but a weak stance with poor edge engagement causes the ski to flatten more and loose it's edge grip and directionallty.

A good stance may feel like the forces are not building suddenly after the fall line, but they are and no one can change that. I agree that speed control comes with shaping the turn, but not with G forces are at their max at the fall line. Newton's Law.

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G-forces again

Postby John Mason » Thu Nov 10, 2005 4:08 pm

The g forces are simply the amount of force - total pressure - being exerted on the skis. This is not a constant. Most skiers and perhaps yourself based on what you said, experience this max g-force in the last 1/3 of the turn.

Or

Look at it this way - where are the skis most bent? A bending ski is a direct measure of the amount of g's being experienced by the ski and the skier.

Most skiers experience this at the bottom of the turn. A WC skier and what we do here in PMTS experience this at the sides of the turn.

So, yes - I'm indeed saying that this maximum pressure is when the skis are parallel to the fall line. After that point in the turn, that outside ski is started to be retracted which brings your body over the skis by the time you're at the bottom of the turn. As soon as you start the retraction in the bottom 1/3 of the turn the g-forces are removed and that pressure that was bending your ski propells you down the hill and ends your turn. This release moves you into the transition.

If, on the other hand, you are feeling a build up of g-s past the fall line, then you may be skiing with no release at all and using other methods to start your next turn. (stemming, upweight and twist, push-off etc)

Arcmeister - Roger Kane - who posts on Epic was the coach from whom I first recall learning/hearing this phrase of moving the g-forces higher up the turn. This translates for most people from max g's in the bottom 1/3 of the turn to moving them to the middle 1/3 of the turn - the apex fall line portion of the turn. This is a radical change for most people. It's not what most people do. But, that doesn't mean it can't nor should not be done just because most people don't do it or have not conceived of skiing this way.

Ron - your clear statement that

Ron White wrote:A good stance may feel like the forces are not building suddenly after the fall line, but they are and no one can change that.


tells me clearly you don't understand. Yes - you can change that. Retract your downhill leg after the fall line and you'll transform the pressure you feel into lateral movement of your CM over your skis. It's quite easy to change in fact.

The other 1/2 of this apparent confusion I've raised is that most people do not carve the top of their turns either. They only carve the bottom 1/3 of the turn. It's a bit of a catch 22. If you've, to use HH's phrase "lost the turn" because of a lack of release of the last turn making those forces to enter the new turn not available, then you won't be carving the top of your turn past transition. You won't have inclination and g-forces at the sides of your turn. You won't have energy to release.

So, I add to my description of a PMTS turn most people have not experienced. Most people don't carve the top of the turn and most people experience max g's in the bottom 1/3 of the turn.

Newton likes max G's on the sides of the turn - not at the bottom. Newton does not want your momentem down the hill destroyed with a braking carve in the last 1/3 of the turn but wants it to continue and be conserved down the hill.

Ron, I know I'm a noobie here and I know you've skied and taught skiing for years. We are not talking past one another. I understand what you are saying and I actually mean what I'm saying. But, we are describing different ways to ski fundementally.
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Postby RadRab » Thu Nov 10, 2005 4:39 pm

Bs"D
Great thread John.
I'm glad that I didn't stop looking in yet because I want to post this pure question here:
Does a Hop turn ever fit into PMTS - at least on steep very narrow terrain? If so, how exactly would it be executed to a PMTS preference?
And, additionally, if on that steep narrow terrain the snow happenned to be soft, could PMTS then advise or ever condone any partially skidded turn - sometimes there just isn't time or room for a round fully carved turn to control speed? (Either, first third skidded, finishing with a carve, or even check style edge sets at the end for speed control).

Possibly relevant to Hop Turn quote from HH:
"Depending on your skiing ability and the energy and momentum you generate or bring from one turn to the other, you can actually go through transition with skis totally unweighted."
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Postby Ron White » Thu Nov 10, 2005 5:41 pm

John,
I understand that by releasing energy by retracting in the last 1/3 of the turn that additional G forces can't build, but that retraction also ends the turn at that point as your cm moves downward as you describe. On very steep terrain, the turn shape would no longer control speed enough.
)
(
where hanging on to the turn a little longer
C
?
as you also describe would.

This is where I am a little confused, there seems there is a contridiction. If the turn was carved to an uphill stop, anyone would feel the additional G forces building after the fall line and start to decrease as the skier slowed to an eventual stop.

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Postby Ken » Thu Nov 10, 2005 6:57 pm

a PMTS skier is actually feeling more and more weightless.
My wife hit this point a couple of times. She had the biggest grin the first time and said that her feet and legs were working under her like a pendulm. That isn't a good technical expression, but everything was working for her just as you've described.


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PMTS and speed

Postby SkierSynergy » Thu Nov 10, 2005 8:27 pm

RadRab wrote:. . . could PMTS then advise or ever condone any partially skidded turn - sometimes there just isn't time or room for a round fully carved turn to control speed? (Either, first third skidded, finishing with a carve, or even check style edge sets at the end for speed control).


Ron White wrote:John,
This is where I am a little confused, there seems there is a contridiction. If the turn was carved to an uphill stop, anyone would feel the additional G forces building after the fall line and start to decrease as the skier slowed to an eventual stop.
RW



I was going to comment on John's start, and then didn't, but now I will.

1. PMTS is not all about carving. You can do efficient PMTS movements and skid a turn. So there is plenty of room for bleeding off speed through skids. Most beginners and intermediates do this. The mechanism for skidding is different though. This horse has been beaten to death in past threads, so I won't do it again here. However, I will say this: much of the discussion here focuses on high performance fully carved turns and how to get them shorter, etc., that people start to think carving is the only thing in PMTS. I think a lot of people in camps get lured in to this notion also and start being very digital about their skiing (i.e., there are only two modes flat and on maximum edge). They can benefit from doing some of the exercises out of the book adjusting the level of edge abd beginning to emphasize controlling things in a more analog manner. This opens up a lot more control for the steeps and bumps especially

2. Where the high G part of the turn is depends on the turn shape and how long the edge is held. I think, this is part of the point that many like Ron, etc. are making. The turn shape etc. is up to the individual. So If we imagine a "full" carved turn from traverse in one direction to a traverse in the opposite direction -- or even slightly uphill-- of course, the high G part of the turn will be at the bottom. We spend a lot of time doing these kind of turns in teaching because for a lot of things, it's easiest to learn in the last half of the turn first and then apply those things to the top of the turn (move it up the turn). Sometimes these turns are needewd and sometimes they are just fun.

However, efficient short radius turns and many race turns do most of the work in the upper part of the turn and reserve the lower part (maybe the last third of the "full" turn) for getting into the transition. I think this issue of where is the highest G part of the turn may be a bit off. There is no one answer it depends on the turn.

Also many people only learn to do their speed control in the bottom third. This is a big problem in the bumps or gates for example. These people are forced to always do J turns with a big hit at the bottom of the trough.

For this type of person, being introduced to getting a high C for speed control in the top of the turn is really a world view changing concept. Do speed control in the top half and then you will be able to use the bottom half for strategic decisions: keep it cranking to miss that big trough, flatten it out to hit the top of a perfect, big round bump for the transition, etc.
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Postby jclayton » Fri Nov 11, 2005 7:29 am

Radrab,
check out Eric Deslauriers descriptions of turns for very steep pitches . They are a very exaggerated Super Phantom hop turn ( the old downhill ski is clearly lifted and tilted ) , also for the really steep a kind of super hop weighted release actually hopping from the downhill ski . This is shown in his first Extreme team video ( for me quite a revelation in it's day ) . He also performs some beautiful carved Super Phantom turns when talking about transitions etc and these on quite straight skis .
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Postby milesb » Fri Nov 11, 2005 9:10 am

I have found it possible to do high c turns on a 40 degree pitch (with optimum conditions) without going uncomfortably fast. And I'm not that good a skier, so much more should be possible by those with more skills.
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Postby Ott Gangl » Fri Nov 11, 2005 2:23 pm

I have a comment and a couple of questions...my comment: if the skiers legs are quite extended at the apex of the turn and the last third of the turn is done with a sinking motion, it is possible to still have an edge engagement even though there is a feeling of reduced pressure/G-force, Sinking can take as much as as a third of the weight off the skis, depending on how rapidly it is performed.

Jay, when a skier is railing into the fall line the gravity pull is ever increasing and I cannot imagine how you can counter act gravity to control speed. I would appreciate an elaboration to make me understand.

Miles, where do you find 40 degree slopes inbound where you ski? And if you do them confortably you are a very good skier.

....Ott

P.S..... I think jclayton you are referring to the paddle turn, something the ski mountaineers have always done, especially while carrying a heavy pack of untaxed cigarettes while smuggling them into Austria from Italy.

It is basically a diverging turn, at the end of one turn weight is transferred quickly to the uphill ski, the downhill ski is lifted and pointed down the hill as if skating and weight is promptly put on that ski and the other ski is brought parallel. When linked, much of the turn is done on the inside ski.
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disregard

Postby Harald » Fri Nov 11, 2005 6:39 pm

next post
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words and meaning make a big difference to the student

Postby Harald » Fri Nov 11, 2005 6:40 pm

The reason I am answering these questions specifically is because they represent some of the common misconceptions in skiing about releasing, ski engagement and pressure use or management


if the skiers legs are quite extended at the apex of the turn


Skier legs are not extended, the out side leg is extending, the inside leg should be highly flexed.


the last third of the turn is done with a sinking motion,



The last third of the turn is not done with a sinking motion, the outside leg is bending the hips are not sinking, the knees are rising into the chest rather then the hips lowering. There is a huge difference in performance for a skier who perceives movements that contribute to success and get results vs. a skier who has the wrong concept altogether and struggles. There is such a powerful difference between the words that convey accurate results and proper technical concepts from misleading expressions. I don't hesitate to say it, but most of the information out there (world of ski instruction) is misleading, I'll be charitable, let's say confusing.


it is possible to still have an edge engagement even though there is a feeling of reduced pressure/G-force, Sinking
(leg bending or flexing, not sinking, bending conveys the correct message)
can take as much as a third of the weight (pressure) off the skis, depending on how rapidly it is performed.


Edge engagement can be maintained and it is desirable during the release (reducing the tipped angle) and bending of the outside leg. The concept of continuing the ski's arc during release is how you achieve Figure 8 turns, we refer to Figure 8 turns in PMTS, as the hips forward of the feet as the skis describe an arc that comes from behind the skier around in a circle and back down to the falline. This is another High C type approach but more advanced, even higher C. In PMTS we seem to always want to ?get you higher?, or at least something like that, that's a joke for you serious types.

The Figure 8 turn is another topic I am introducing in my new book using photos and explanations.

when a skier is railing
(a good skier is carving, a skier out of control is railing, railing is a run away ski, with the skier in the back seat trying to catch up)

into the fall line the gravity pull is ever increasing and I cannot imagine how you can counter act gravity to control speed.


You can not imagine how to counteract gravity because you are actually trying to counteract gravity if you are railing, (which doesn't work): if you use and learn PMTS movements you are aligning the skeletal structure to the pull of gravity, with the PMTS approach you are carving and you are achieving maximal engagement of the edge, which brings the ski into a round carving arc toward the falline and into the falline, resulting in speed control.

Although I have demonstrated here how important words are to learning and developing skiers, everyone should remember that the TTS group attempts to ski with the words and descriptions expressed by the poser of questions I am quoting, this is their paradim. It is rare that TTS skiers should ask these questions, it is only after they begin to realize what we are doing in PMTS that the more qualified ones do begin to ask questions.

As my friend Dave B. a full certified PSIA instructor would say, "go figure!!!"
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Postby milesb » Fri Nov 11, 2005 6:43 pm

Ott, Mt Baldy. And Mammoth. None of the 40 degree pitches are very long, maybe I can get 5-6 turns in before getting to a more common 30-35 degrees. The thing is, it has to be a nice soft windpack and about 40 feet wide. If it is convex it can be narrower. Make the snow harder or bumpy or the slope much narrower, and no hi c for me.
I think that feeling comfortable on steeps has alot more to do with nerve than skill. I can feel comfortable doing short swing/hop turns to get past a difficult section, but that technique doesn't really require much skill or balance does it?
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Postby Ron White » Fri Nov 11, 2005 6:45 pm

Thank you Jay and Ott,
Both of you make perfect sence to me. John's post would have seemed more logical to me if he stipulated he was talking about short retraction type of turns. I usually relate things to the "defalt" medium radius turn unless otherwise stated.

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