Started by Cadnesaberdeen in Beginning Skiing 08-Jul-2018 - 3 Replies
im a newbie at this and wish to learn how to effectively stop when i want. lack confidence to go higher because of this.
The 'A frame/plough' technique is tiring on steeper slopes. Any help here? oh, i'm 62yrs, male. cheers
I think ultimately what you will be looking for is what is commonly called a hockey stop. But lets take it a step at a time.
From the plough, you will learn how to do the plough turn. Turns are the basic way of controlling your speed and at the beginner level you will usually do lots of turns and basically come down the mountain by crossing across the slope many times. Once you have mastered the plough turn, you will move on to what I know as stem christies and finally parralel turns.
The simplest thing to remember is that if you want to stop, simply keep your turn going until you start to go uphill, this will always slow you down, although you have to remember you may have a tendancy to start to slide backwards once you come to a stop going forwards
A hockey stop is simply an agressive turn where the skis are allowed to slide sideways with the edges acting like a brake. I'm sure you will have seen downhill skiers at the end of the run doing exactly this on tv.
I would strongly advise that you seek professional guidance if you are asking how to do something pretty basic on here. A few days with an instructor will give you so many benefits in the long run and should help you enjoy the sport even more, especially if you have only just taken it up towards the end of your mid-life.
There are plenty of videos around and I'm sure someone will have something better, but just to give you an idea here is one I just picked off of youtube
FarQueue's adivce is spot on – turn shape is key to controlling speed easily. Follow that principle that FarQueue mentions. Shape the turn by continuing to steer the curve until it slows you down.
That principle can be used in all types of turn, starting from the plough turn.
To help you in putting things into practice there are some common problems people experience. When trying to use turn shape to control speed rather than the width of a snowplough.
1) Width of snow plough. if this is too wide the legs and skis tilt onto a greater edge angle. Consequently the plough acts as a brake. Unfortunately this also acts a 'barrier' preventing the skier from steering easily. So this counters the efforts to turn.
Now this may seem counter intuitive, but narrow the plough (yes you will take the brakes off and slide more). But this gives you the opportunity to flatten the inside ski and rotate your legs and feet to steer the curve. The end of the curve will slow you down again. Practice this on shallow slopes first to limit the 'woooah' factor. As you practice steering curves with a modest size of plough (feet just outside of a hip width apart – no more) on a gentle slope. Once in control of the turn shape, build up the slope angle slightly. You will also need to steer further around the curve as the slope angle increases. Also increasing your range of steering.
2) Steering the legs
Avoid using the upper body to rotate or lean as you build up more rounded curves. It can mess with your edges and balance. Creating another barrier from being able to finish the curve (the part that slows you down). Again aiming to flatten the inside ski. So keep the body steady and level, just turn your legs and feet against the ground.
General tip – as you start to build up better turn shape, and flow from turn to turn you will notice that your outside ski feels 'heavy' and loaded. And the inside ski feels 'light'. This becomes a greater sensation as the terrain and overall momentum from turn to turn gently increases.
Use this sensation, and let your legs bend and steer with it (just don't lean the upper body, keep it level and steady) – you can begin to rotate and steer the light inside ski more, opening the tips. Naturally leading you into plough turns with a parallel finish. Still keeping the principle of steering a curve to control speed. This natural evolution of skill will take you towards parallel skiing.
Go steady with terrain and use gradual increases as you gain more accurate control over the skills. And you'll ace it in no time.
And if you take a professional instructor for an hour or two it will most certainly help to progress through those things more easily.
Good luck, and enjoy the skiing – it is the best thing ever.
Topic last updated on 31-July-2018 at 10:55