Tag Archives: ski coaching

Ski In Control – how to ski ANY piste anywhere in full control

Ski In Control is the name of my new book at last published through and available from Amazon, or directly from me.   Paperback £12.95 postage paid, or Kindle Edition £8.99

Tom Stiansen, World Slalom Champion says “This is a great book specially for recreational skiers.  It’s a good tool for them”.

Ski In Control

Front cover of Bob’s new booki

Ski In Control has helped the very large percentage of the hundreds of skiers I have coached to develop real confidence.  They had all given up on ski schools very early on in their skiing experience because it got them nowhere.

I wrote Ski In Control specifically for recreational skiers – folk who have largely got fed up with ski schools.  In it I explain why that happens.  I show you why once you can “sort of” do it ski schools generally inhibit your progress.  Folk then tend to blame themselves for not getting better, when in fact they are not the reason.  In truth virtually everybody has the capacity to become an expert skier.  That applies irrespective of your age, your gender, or your experience.

Don’t give up.  There’s no need to.  You genuinely have the potential.

Two folk recently wrote to me to say “If it hadn’t been for you Bob I would have given up”.  There’s no need to give up or despair, read on …

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Use your ski tips. Stop “Doing Turns” !

“Skis are like restaurant waiters – the  ( ski ) tips are very important.”

Ski Tips

Is this the most important part of your ski ?

Ski tips – another extract from my now-published book “Ski In Control: How to ski ANY piste, anywhere in full control”.  Find it here on Amazon https://www.amazon.co.uk/Ski-Control-piste-anywhere-control-ebook/dp/B078JPQCHY/

STOP doing “TURNS” ! But don’t stop changing direction.

The vast majority of skiers first learned such skiing as they now have, by going to ski schools.

Ski schools – or certainly the vast majority of them – have strange beliefs. They believe you can learn by watching, and they believe that when skiing you “do turns”. Most also seem to believe that to “do” a “turn”, you need to “Turn your skis”. This, usually shouted in quite a loud voice.

At very low speeds, on extremely gentle pistes, this “kind of” works, in so far as some kind of directional change might occur. In some ways this is a pity because the basic idea is not a good one.   Read on …. Continue reading

Have a goal

Goal setting in skiing

Goal setting is not simply setting “targets”.  Done skilfully it will help you get where you want to go. Very few people outside of professional sports folk understand “goal-setting”.

Decide where you're going

Standing at the Crossroads every highway looks the same.

We are programmed from childhood to think of goals as “targets”. Quantified amounts of something that we have to achieve, but which are usually set by someone else. Later in life it’s the school exams, or the University, and then the Boss at work. “Here’s your target, make sure you hit it”.

Most of my skiing pupils come to me initially with this general idea, although of course it’s tacit rather then precisely expressed. Almost none know about goal setting and what it can bring them when done well. But all is not lost, read on below the fold …. Continue reading

Skiing Technique – Three Big Mistakes

 

Skiing technique: mistake #2: Clumsy joint flexing.

Ski instruction - hands forward, knees bent.

Perhaps correct for her exercise but terrible for skiing!

Skiing technique can be practiced at home in your bedroom.   I want to return here to my admonition in “Mistakes #1” on posture, find it here .  If you have not already read it, I recommend reading that first.  Do the simple practices and then come back to this.

This Skiing technique issue of being able to both flex and extend your ankle, knee and hip joints – especially your ankle – is not a peripheral matter.  This is absolutely fundamental to your development of skilful skiing.  You need to develop skill in this area for your skiing to really give you satisfaction.

Here I show you some simple and safe ways to get started on this.

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Skiing technique – three big mistakes.

Skiing technique 0

We all do it, even the experts. Better Skiing technique helps!

Skiing technique : mistake #1: Standing too upright.

Skiing is dynamical in nature. Constantly moving. It is not a series of individual, and separated events but a continual stream of them. More akin to a moving stream than a line of individually separated stones.

The oft-promoted, and oft-accepted idea of being “in balance” is completely wrong.  There is never time to be “in” balance; we would have to come to a stop in order to be able to do that.  As John Shedden pointed out to me once, if you stand a brick on its end, on a flat level surface, it will be in balance.  We cannot ski like that.

Skiing technique requires instead, for our balanc-ing to be of a ‘fuzzy’ nature. So long as we are moving, we will not ever be “in” balance, we will instead be constantly moving towards that: constantly making (often unconscious) movements adjusting to changing circumstances. This is one of the reasons that skiing is difficult.  There is much you can do to change this, even while you are at home.  Continue reading

Skiing-with-Confidence: How to build yours.

Skiing-with-confidence makes all the difference between enjoying it, and not doing.  But the kind of thing in the picture, just doesn’t work.  There is no point in someone, or ourselves telling us to “Be Confident”.  If it were that easy it would not even be a topic,  never mind one as important as it is.  You might just as well say “Be Taller!”

This kind of thing doesn't work - just saying "Be Confident". But there is much you CAN do to get there.

This kind of thing doesn’t work – just saying “Be Confident”. But there is much you CAN do to get there.

This “just be confident” admonition is a something-for-nothing policy.  Like most attempted short cuts it saves time in getting you to somewhere that isn’t worth going in the first place.

To ski-with-confidence is a process, not an event.  You generate it internally and it does not automatically happen.  Like so much else, to be any good you have to work at it.

More, below the fold – read on  Continue reading

SKIING LESSONS: Get more for less.

Not a time for gross movements!

Not a time for gross movements!

Skiing lessons are a good example of the need to get more out for less in.

Watch a skilful skier skiing fast – a downhiller in a race for example – and it all looks pretty wild. Arms flailing, legs pumping, skis jumping around like jumping beans.

But in reality it’s a game of subtleties, so you need fine control, and finesse.  And that is what your own skiing is about as well. Read below the fold for more detail. Continue reading

Ski instruction - hands forward, knees bent.

Ski technique: Your hands are more important than you think.

My ski coaching sometimes surprises when I pay so much heed to skiers’ hands regarding ski technique. Surely, skiing is about your feet?  Well it is, but it’s about a lot more. Glen Plake one of the world’s greatest extreme skiers told one group that the instant he couldn’t see his hands – it was too late.   But the instruction to “Carry your hands forward”  is simply awful.  It creates poor ski technique. Here’s why ..  Continue reading

Ski learning and philosophy

Ski Learning and philosopy

Lucius Annaeus Seneca, philosopher and statesman. Born at Cordoba c. 4 BC.

Ski learning may not at first seem closely related to Roman philosophy.  The same is not true in reverse because philosophy is a part of everything in life.  Seneca had some very powerful and useful things to say about ski learning.  Take them to heart and you will be happier. Continue reading

Ski instruction needs better descriptors

Ski instruction - get them on their edges

Is this the ultimate ski design?
No!

Ski instruction is mostly delivered by ski schools and ski instructors.  Too many still use inappropriate words to convey the ideas that are most likely to help you to improve your skill.

The instructor knows what he/she means, but it’s no good if it puts the wrong idea into the pupil’s head.  Take the picture above, for example Continue reading