Why teaching the wedge doesn't work

PMTS Forum

Postby piggyslayer » Fri Oct 01, 2004 1:15 pm

And when I get real tired, which in my advanced age comes sooner in the day, I go from simultanious (dynamic) edge change to sequential edge change and then a stem or wedge slips in momentarily. It happens because I change edges on the new turning ski before I let go with the old one and it looks kind of one-two real fast. In order to do this you have to separate your stance somewhat and what it usually end up being is that the tails separate more than the tips, looking like a wedge.


Ott,
Thanks for your supporting reply.

I would classify this as a wedge. If BTE comes before LTE that is a wedge for me (this is not a proper PMTS move, but obviously you know that).
And LTE is logically and practically far less tiring way to ski ? the minimum impact on kinetic chain.

Would you now agree with John statement that expert PTMS skiers "look" and ski differently than non-PMTS experts such as yourself!!
You see, I am a recreational PMTS skier, when I get tired on skis or get late (late as in trouble) in gates skating my ducttape slalom I will try LTE much more. PMTS experts will do that more vividly than me.

Caught youh! :D

What is interesting that doing LTE before BTE can, in cases, result in a converged tips, and that is not wedge for me.

PS. I like reading your posts.
Piggy Slayer
let the piggy breathe
piggyslayer
 
Posts: 320
Joined: Tue Nov 04, 2003 9:27 pm
Location: New Jersey

Postby BigE » Fri Oct 01, 2004 1:36 pm

In the interest of skier unity, I humbly suggest that since there are no folks in any camp that believe that "teaching the wedge" is OK(see BB's extensive explanation of this matter on epic) that the notion that PSIA=wedge=>PSIA bad and PMTS=no wedge=> PMTS good should be safely dropped.

It is enough that skiers can't get along with boarders; we don't need even more divisiveness in the sliding community....

As for instructors that teach on hills -- there is no requirement for any accreditation of the instructor by any organization. I recently read in Ski Canada Magazine of the troubles resorts have filling jobs. At least one B.C. resort does a recruitment drive in New Zealand for their staff!

Consequently, it's not hard to see that if there is such a huge demand for resort workers, including instructors I would think, that sub-standard instructors will get hired. And yes, by substandard, I mean those that teach negative movements like the stem turn to beginners. That is again something that both camps agree is a negative movement.

thanks for reading this.
BigE
 
Posts: 1519
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2004 11:42 am
Location: Toronto, Canada

Postby Ott Gangl » Fri Oct 01, 2004 2:24 pm

I think it was SCSA (what happened to him, no posts) who said a couple of years ago that when he looked down from the chair at skiers on blue and green slopes who were not in class, the majority were wedging.

A new skier, left to his own devices trying to figure out how to get down that bunny hill will on his own ski in the wedge. Initially, trying to copy good skiers whom he sees banking or agulating he will start down the fall line, lean to the side and fall down. Thereafter its the wedge.

And 80-90% of first time skiers do not take a lesson. They may after spending a fruitless day on the slope.

....Ott
Ott Gangl
 
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 3:16 pm
Location: Ohio, USA via Bavaria

I was one of those 80%

Postby John Mason » Fri Oct 01, 2004 2:39 pm

I was one of those 80% that didn't take a lesson at first.

My friends were going to show me.

Ha! They could do it, but they could not express to me what they were doing.

2 hours later I got down the quicksilver green at Breckenridge.

I promptly signed up for a lesson and got one of the most experienced instructors at Breckenridge (a client recommened him).

I got the standard wedge - press the grape under the big toe of the outside foot - steer that lower leg - knee down - no hips .. etc lesson. This was March 2003. So, it isn't just the new uncert people teaching this stuff. (300 dollars too!)

It's nice to see progress though. It was refreshing to see that the PSIA big chiefs over on Epic also hate that type of first lesson.
Last edited by John Mason on Fri Oct 01, 2004 8:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.
John Mason
 
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby Ott Gangl » Fri Oct 01, 2004 2:41 pm

BigE, it's the chicken and the egg story. Hire only experienced instructors, where and how do they get experience? To be and instructor worth his salt he must teach a season or two. Ski schools have pre-season clinics, written material and often ski on a lubricated mat spread on the hill. Inside the lodge they are taught how to teach which is the harder part, skiing is the easy part and should be a prerequisite before anyone is considered as instructor material.

At best they are supervised by experienced instructors and that is why most of them start by teachig a group of kids where there are two or three seasoned instructors with the group.

Then, without getting paid for it, they shadow certified instructors who are teaching students. That instructor may ask the shadowing teacher what he would suggest for a particular student, that's how they learn.

Unfortunately some ski area schools do not pay enough to attract quality instructors so you get kids and part timers who are in it for the free skiing and they may teach a substandard class (or not). The average length of a ski instructor staying in the game is 3-4 years, sadly. Hardly enough time to become a realy good instructor.

I stayed for 25 years.

....Ott
Ott Gangl
 
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 3:16 pm
Location: Ohio, USA via Bavaria

My hat's off to you Ott

Postby John Mason » Fri Oct 01, 2004 3:04 pm

I salute you Ott. You are a brave lot that will take a hoard of kids down the hill on their first lesson. (and a patient lot)
John Mason
 
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby mechanic » Fri Oct 01, 2004 4:43 pm

John,

Taking a group of kids out for their first experience on skis is one of the most rewarding things an instructor can do. As long as it isn't what you have to everyday for the whole season in which case it would probably get old.

In line with the topic of this thread childrens lessons are where you will really see the wedge 'taught' rather than a wedge stance used as a platform to introduce the movements of good skiing. I have never seen or heard of dtp being applied to childrens lessons. Has anyone here ever heard of such a thing. There are sound developmental reasons for this (starting children in a breaking wedge) although I think that the most childrens programs emphasize it too much and could move the kids into making good skiing movements that result in parallel turns much sooner than they do, if they ever do. My motto is "Pizza, frenchfries!! We don't need no stinkin' pizza, frenchfries".

m

PS. We haven't heard back from eddy about whether he had ever seen bb ski so assuming that he hasn't we can dismiss his comments about the relative skiing abilities of bb and hh. As we can dismiss the comments made by anyone about the skiing of someone they have never observed.
mechanic
 

DTP for kids

Postby John Mason » Fri Oct 01, 2004 5:12 pm

Good question Mechanic.

I used PMTS DTP with my 8 year old nephew and it worked quite well. You need some width so you can do the traverses and garlands in saftey. Some beginner slopes will not work for this (they could, but not with all the other wedgies going more straight line down the hill).

Not sure why there would be any reasons not to do this. I would imagine the same inherent instability the wedge makes adults feel would be present in kids too.

Also, aren't younger people more prone to certain lower limb rotational fractures? I would think a DTP method that puts no torque on the lower limb would be safer in this regard as well.

Little kids are taught snowboarding and they can't wedge on a snowboard but must learn edge control first like a DTP method.

Why would it not work?

A direct answer, I suppose, would come from Solvista. How do they do their group kid lessons?
John Mason
 
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby Ott Gangl » Fri Oct 01, 2004 5:24 pm

>>>> we can dismiss his comments about the relative skiing abilities of bb and hh.<<<

Actually, this kind of judgment is a waste of time and good forum space. You never know when you observe a skier if s/he is skiing their best or just moseying along or if they are working on a particular skill or what.

Lets just say that someone of the caliber of these two gentlemen and D-team members and racers, current and ex, is beyond reproach, they all ski super and don't we wish we could do even near as much.

Comparing serves no purpose. It's a "my dad can beat up your dad" kind of exercise.

The contribution these two guys made to skiing is in their understanding and communicating of the underlying mechanics of the sport (or recreation).

That they also can ski good is a bonus. Professor Kruckenhauser of Austria devised and taught the Austrian team to win in the 50s with technique that was super fast in the race course even though he himself could only ski a stem christie at best. And then there was Bob Beattie.

....Ott
Ott Gangl
 
Posts: 451
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 3:16 pm
Location: Ohio, USA via Bavaria

excellent observation

Postby richk » Sat Oct 02, 2004 11:34 am

engages the LTE of the new stance foot which makes it carve, creates a fulcrum (think pole vaulting if you like) for the body to cross over into the new turn


I've understood that LTE tipping continues all the way through the turn and that the edge to edge transition occurs over 1 ski length.

Nonetheless, the concept of the fulcrum is new to me and helpful.

Thanks!
User avatar
richk
 
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2003 5:02 pm
Location: San Diego CA

Postby Eddy » Sat Oct 02, 2004 1:01 pm

Mechanic,

It comes back to comparing skiers. I am trying to make a point, which is at the heart and center of many of the arguments and often the source of confusion on the forum. John has come closest to understanding this point. Given the way Harald describes skiing (fundamentally different from BB and PSIA) and how BB insists that you have to steer the legs or skis to make turns, they cannot be skiing the same way or look the same. Many instructors don?t recognize the difference between racers, instructors and their movements. I only bring this up because some insist that they ski the same, but they don?t.

WW wrote it years ago in his book, ?How the racers ski?. Racers will ski differently and they will always ski differently from instructors. Because as Harald states with great emphasis, skiing with leg steering is not good skiing!! If you want the exact details read Harald?s books or let him explain it.

Personally, I don?t care how BB skis, but I will guarantee it is not close to Harald?s way. This is not a comment of quality or skill, but a comment about methodology.

The only explanation for those not recognizing the difference between BB and Harald?s skiing is that you have never skied with Harald? I have skied with him, I have seen him race. I have seen him rip the big mountains.

I ski with many ski instructors, not just fully certified instructors, the best ones, the Demo Team and such. It may appear to the untrained that BB or his like, can ski or look like Harald on Blue smooth terrain. But even on blue terrain no ski instructors, I ski with, can generate the energy and angles he does. I ski in the Tahoe area. We have great skiers, many ex-ski team members. When it comes to evaluating skill and ability, anyone who has experienced the entire range of the skiing skill spectrum, grants that there is no comparison between ski instructors and ex-world cup racers?

Harald competed at the international level in skiing and in World Cup races. He can without training, ski as fast as the best racers on the Masters circuit, regardless of age. I saw him do it at Telluride. I don?t think there is anyone on the Demo that has his background. I don?t know if BB has been on the demo team, it doesn?t matter. Harald skis like a racer. I'll leave it to you, to classify how the rest ski.
Eddy
 

yep - but we are talking the other LTE.

Postby John Mason » Sat Oct 02, 2004 2:36 pm

richk wrote:
engages the LTE of the new stance foot which makes it carve, creates a fulcrum (think pole vaulting if you like) for the body to cross over into the new turn


I've understood that LTE tipping continues all the way through the turn and that the edge to edge transition occurs over 1 ski length.

Nonetheless, the concept of the fulcrum is new to me and helpful.

Thanks!


It does, but that's a different LTE. In the superphantom turn, as your starting to end your last turn, rather than simply flatten the skis then tip, you hold on your LTE of your uphill ski so your inside ski has an edge. When you lift/remove pressure from your downhill ski and tip it to it's LTE to start the turn, people often are not paying attention to what the uphill ski is doing. When you remove the pressure from your downhill ski, obviously your weight will be supported by your inside ski. By focusing on feeling the LTE engage and then continuing your transition, your transition will be much crisper. This also will ensure that your new stance ski is already pressured so it will carve the moment it's over on it's BTE. If you don't have this LTE focus, you can end up sliding and pivoting that ski at the upper part of the turn instead of setting up an early carve becuase without any focus or habits in place a skier will tend to just let it go flat early instead of when the body is directly over the skis in transition.
Last edited by John Mason on Sat Oct 02, 2004 2:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
John Mason
 
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

You could be right

Postby John Mason » Sat Oct 02, 2004 2:46 pm

Eddy wrote:Mechanic,

It comes back to comparing skiers. I am trying to make a point, which is at the heart and center of many of the arguments and often the source of confusion on the forum. John has come closest to understanding this point. Given the way Harald describes skiing (fundamentally different from BB and PSIA) and how BB insists that you have to steer the legs or skis to make turns, they cannot be skiing the same way or look the same. Many instructors don?t recognize the difference between racers, instructors and their movements. I only bring this up because some insist that they ski the same, but they don?t.


You might be right. But it sounds like you haven't actually seen BB ski. Your generalizations, however, I agree with.

In BB's description of the SP back to me on Epic, I'm still not sure he really gets it. His own Perfect Turn has active steering at the top and a late transition and steering to shape the turn. All of this would be a natural result of what you would do in a turn without understanding or using the super phantom (which I clarified a bit with the post one up from this one). He still seems to equate the super phantom with a step, as in the old racer's step to change angles. But as my post just before this one shows, it's more of a mental hook to make sure when you release pressure from the downhill ski, you properly hook up the new stance ski instantly so it's edging on it's LTE. You don't want it floppy flat at that point. In BB's perfect turn, at this same point in transition he would have the skis flat to the snow and not start the tipping till after the fall line transition point. This is way too late, and would require the leg steering actions he talks about to keep from falling. It's a subtle but still stemmed turn. If that's how he skis, it would certainly show up on the hill.

But I certainly have not seen BB ski. His point of view on Epic is that he understands this turn and can use it if he wants but chooses not to. I'm still not sure about that since he still sees it as a negative movement rather than a key to making the most efficient type of turn that is generated by balance instead of foot steering/pointing.
John Mason
 
Posts: 1050
Joined: Wed Feb 18, 2004 10:52 pm
Location: Lafayette, Indiana, USA

Postby mechanic » Sat Oct 02, 2004 9:36 pm

John,

Which is more efficent the sp or the weighted release? Which is more versitle? Why do you like the sp over the weighted release?

m
mechanic
 

Postby mechanic » Sat Oct 02, 2004 9:48 pm

Forgot this in my last post.

Beginning board lessons I have observed are based on heel and toe side sideslips and forward side slips, the tendency of a flat board to seek the fall line and board specific rotary movements. Not much in common with the Ideas of PMTS and edge use.

m
mechanic
 

PreviousNext

Return to Primary Movements Teaching System

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests

cron