PMTS, we ski World Cup technique.

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PMTS, we ski World Cup technique.

Postby h.harb » Fri Mar 11, 2022 6:01 pm

http://harbskisysems.blogspot.com/2022/03/learning-to-apply-world-cup-skiing.html

I watched his dad Felix grow up skiing. I knew his grandfather, Bob, from skiing and coaching back east, and I skied with his uncle Bill for a season at Telluride. Great ski family.
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Re: PMTS, we ski World Cup technique.

Postby geoffda » Tue Oct 11, 2022 9:52 am

The title of this post, pithy though it might be, is the key to understanding what PMTS is all about. World Cup technique is the standard by which we evaluate "good" skiing. Most importantly, we can do this because we understand exactly what is required to build that level of skiing. Good PMTS skiers (at any level) show the same fundamental movements in their own skiing as the best skiers in the world. The best PMTS skiers understand what World-Cup skiers are doing because though they may be recreational skiers, they understand how to fully utilize the performance built into the ski. As a result, high-level PMTS skiers demonstrate the same type of balance and dynamism in their skiing as the best in the world.

This is completely different from the the vast majority of the skiing world, including most, if not all ski instruction. The vast majority of skiers--and this includes even ski racers, coaches, and ski instructors--don't understand the fundamental movements necessary to build world-class skiing, let alone the equipment adjustments necessary to support such movements. While many of these skiers may hold up World Cup racers (or more likely, ex-World Cup racers who are now skiing in ski movies) as their ideal, without the corresponding level of understanding of how elite skiing works, and without having a solid foundation of movement, most skiers are doomed not only to stop improving, but to also forever have a false impression of their own abilities. Such skiers often follow false idols because they lack the expertise to distinguish between skiing that merely looks good and skiing that actually is good.

Watching some of the comments on Harald's facebook feed it is clear that many experienced "advanced" skiers assume an ability and understanding of skiing that they do not have. This is reinforced by the general population of skiers that are willing to hand out accolades for what we would consider "bad" skiing, simply because they lack the understanding and means of objective evaluation. Many skiers are too willing to accept praise without considering the source and, as a result, develop a false belief in their own abilities. They don't know what they don't know. For most of these skiers, the analogy is climbing up through the clouds on a long mountain slog. Upon reaching the sunshine, the summit can be seen just a bit higher, and tantalizingly close, but with a descent back down through the clouds in between. However, what the clouds are hiding is that the wrong mountain has been climbed. The route to the the higher summit goes all the way back down through the clouds to bottom of the valley--which is the same elevation from which they started. Many "advanced" skiers think that they just need a few tips or maybe a little bit more work to obtain their dreams of expert skiing. What they don't understand, is like the climbers, they are on the wrong mountain and need to start over from the very beginning if they want to reach the level they desire.

For those who are considering PMTS for the first time, understand that we are about teaching skiers the same fundamentals that produce World-Cup skiers. For "advanced" skiers who want to become what we define as expert, that is likely going to mean learning how to ski all over again. For many of us who started out in PMTS as "advanced" skiers, that journey turned out to be immensely rewarding. However, the journey is neither short nor does it have a defined ending point. It requires humility, practice, and dedication. As Harald is so fond of saying, "there are no shortcuts to expert skiing."
Last edited by geoffda on Tue Oct 11, 2022 5:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: PMTS, we ski World Cup technique.

Postby h.harb » Tue Oct 11, 2022 4:08 pm

Well pointed out Geoff. What you are saying has been a frustration for me since I was about 12 years old. I saw a few good skiers, I followed any good ones I noticed. However, the information was so bad it was a mystery as to how you become an expert or great. I was my own coach all my life because whenever someone tried to give me advice it never made sense or it wasn't what I knew would work or what I wanted. Things have not changed that much in the teaching and coaching world since then.

However, there is one major difference, the amount of wrong information going out has increased dramatically with social media and YouTube. The horrible instruction I see on YouTube blows my mind. As you said, Geoff, many skiers will use these people as gurus with the end result being; the blind teaching the blind.
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