You Won't Believe the Tiny Move that Makes Skiing Great!
January 26, 2016
(I love clickbait headlines! :) )
So in my skiing observations and my ski classes, I'm thinking this is the ONE MAIN thing that if people would do it would totally boost their experience. And it's SO SIMPLE AND EASY!
All ya gotta do is stand there!
I'm talking about the lady on the left in the pic.
The lady on the right, I don't know what she's doing. Maybe studying something. Her weight is back, for sure, but that's not how even a bad skier would be doing it. Anyway, don't lift your back foot up and bend your back leg like you're riding a bike.
Actually, you don't have to be as "extreme" as our left-lady to "get it."
Just stand on one frickin' foot! And flex your ankle a bit, and tilt forward like an inch -- enough so that the other foot rises off the ground and hangs there out back a bit.
It's weighting the ball of your foot, or your whole foot, but with a flexed ankle. And a bit of a flexed knee and tilted body.
It's the key to getting your skis or iceskates to do what they're designed to do! Edge or carve or grip or whatever.
It's kind of a pose. It takes a bit of core control to do it. There's a touch of tension. But not much! It's not hard!
Just standing like that on a ski lets it glide in control. Then from that position you can flex your ankle and knee like one inch more in a little bounce and so put EXTRA weight on your foot. MORE than your body weight. And THAT'S how you grip, kick, power or turn a ski!
Whenever people slip on an uphill they're NOT doing this! Whenever you crash in XC or alpine skiing you're NOT doing this! That is, when your weight is BACK (like on your heel or even on both feet, maybe with one behind the other) you can be sightseeing and scootching along but you're not very ready for action and so trouble might happen. And your skis won't grip up a hill.
So when you hit a bit of an uphill get ready to get a bit forward like in this picture, then you're golden: you can stride, you can skate. It's light, it's easy, it works.
(Pic courtesy of Bohart Ranch XC -- on whose website I found this nice pic!)