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Wobble board & skiing posture

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Background info
------------------

I've been having osteopathic treatment for a lumbar problem & they've also examined my ankle which I broke/dislocated & which has less than full strength/range of movement. The verdict is that there is no physical reason why I can't regain virtually full strength/range of movement - considering the surgeon, 5 years ago, pronounced that I would probably never walk without a noticeable limp, I am ecstatic as you can imagine!

Anyway in addition to other exercises, I was recommended to get and use a wobble board to

a. Specifically exercise my ankle in various ways
b. Improve my balance/proprioception (the fine sensing of joint position. )
c. Increase my core strength which will help my back and reduce the likelihood of the problem recurring.


Now for my question
------------------------
As you know I'm a novice who doesn't manage to ski on the real stuff too often, so I try to ensure I'll make the most of the time I do have, by learning as much as possible, from as many sources as I can, so I have a range of things to think about/try to support the lessons I take.

I've managed a few indoor slope lessons this summer, but I am still not achieving parallel turns and have been having real difficutly sorting out body posture in turns, and realise now that this results in me insufficiently weighting my downhill ski meaning I don't 'hold' the turn unless it's a very tame slope. When I got on the wobble board I realised that the side to side exercise was of course causing me to stand on a sloping surface (it has 2 heights). I therefore began to wonder if I could replicate the right posture for skiing while doing this and start to develop some useful muscle memory whilst gaining the other benefits. However I'm finding it really hard to do so as it doesn't seem to feel right. I am trying to put weight over the straight leg, the "downhill" one, but at the same time push my hips sideways towards the "uphill" one, leaving my shoulders pretty much over the "downhill" leg. Does that sound right? Is it achievable on a wobble board? Do any of you use one and can you tell me if you can achieve the same kind of body-posture feel as when skiing?

Sorry if this is a daft question and you feel I am wasting my time and yours, but I am always looking for any possible way of benefitting myself so I can maximise the time I spend away on my holiday and that can't be a bad thing to do!
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Quote:
I am trying to put weight over the straight leg, the "downhill" one, but at the same time push my hips sideways towards the "uphill" one, leaving my shoulders pretty much over the "downhill" leg.


Waste of time. There's no centrifugal force that you need to angulate against.

Quote:

Does that sound right? Is it achievable on a wobble board? Do any of you use one and can you tell me if you can achieve the same kind of body-posture feel as when skiing?

Sorry if this is a daft question and you feel I am wasting my time and yours, but I am always looking for any possible way of benefitting myself so I can maximise the time I spend away on my holiday and that can't be a bad thing to do!


IMO you could just work on the one-footed balance, maybe with not one but -two- wobble boards, doing weight transfer between them and trying to go down and up as much as you can once your weight is over the board.
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Wow, great news, NewSkier Smile

I think the wobble board will be great for helping you regain strength and articulation range in your ankle. These balance disks are good too, as I think the unstable surface requires even more strength and articulations in the ankle to remain in balance. Perhaps something to work up to?



As far as practicing angulation, as comprex says, it's hard to simulate well without centrifugal force. But as it does require angulation be used to remain in balance when the feet go out to the side, I think it will provide some benefit. The manner in which you've described doing it sounds perfect. Here's another devise that might work for you too. Used to have one of these as a kid. The originals are antiques now. Laughing


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Thanks Fastman, Comprex Very Happy

comprex wrote:

There's no centrifugal force that you need to angulate against.



I think that may be one of my problems while actually skiing, because fear holds me back from gaining any appreciable speed. I am always told that the turns will get easier if I can develop some speed but I sort of feel I need to establish technique slowly and build up, hey ho, I'll get there in the end!/[quote]

Quote:


IMO you could just work on the one-footed balance, maybe with not one but -two- wobble boards, doing weight transfer between them and trying to go down and up as much as you can once your weight is over the board.


THat's a useful suggestion, thanks. I had not thought of going up/down & can see the use of that. Very Happy
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
NewSkier, wobble boards and the giant breast implant thingy you stand on with one leg are great and helped me through my Achilles rehab (but I still need to do more as a general part of my life). Having skied with you at MK and if you look at MM's vid you'll see that your first prob is just that you spend waaaay too much time looking down at the snow. Look up and around you to assist your balance. Though it must be said that if you can ski well without a visual reference like blind skiers, that is a real and admirable skill.
there is a blink exercise that can help with this but I need to go and check my old notes before I post on how to do it.
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Centrifugal Force? Shocked Confused
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Masque wrote:
Having skied with you at MK and if you look at MM's vid you'll see that your first prob is just that you spend waaaay too much time looking down at the snow. Look up and around you to assist your balance. Though it must be said that if you can ski well without a visual reference like blind skiers, that is a real and admirable skill.
there is a blink exercise that can help with this but I need to go and check my old notes before I post on how to do it.


Yes, I've been told this before! The instructor in Tignes asked me "are your skis still attached to your boots?" of course I said they were, and he retorted "so why do you need to keep checking them?" Embarassed Embarassed

And the first thing I did standing on the WobbleBoard? Looked down Embarassed - but realised it was making me dizzy, so maybe it'll help with that too!!

Please do post the 'blink' exercise Very Happy
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NewSkier, The advantage with wobble boards and the like is that they improve your balance. When your balance is better in a general sense, your posture will also be better. Don't 'think' too much about the right posture when you're skiing. You need to think about natural posture - ie: as per normal life and not something special. You've already found out how bad it is looking down - try walking around looking down, and then look up and ahead of you. Your body will soon get the message. Very Happy
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Quote:

then look up and ahead of you

But not in Lille, where I've just spent the day - lovely town, but positively knee-deep in dog poo! Twisted Evil
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Quote:

the giant breast implant thingy you stand on with one leg

I'm about to do a load of ironing whilst doing just that. Is this wise? (Reminds me of how you give an Irishman (Belgian, Pole, etc etc, delete as appropriate) a hot ear: answer is, phone him while he's doing the ironing.
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Do anything you can to improve your balance, when you're sure you've mastered everything, try surfing on the back of a Butterfly, end of.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
How about a 2litre bottle of coke, and al old skateboard deck, works for me!
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easiski wrote:
NewSkier, The advantage with wobble boards and the like is that they improve your balance. When your balance is better in a general sense, your posture will also be better. Don't 'think' too much about the right posture when you're skiing. You need to think about natural posture - ie: as per normal life and not something special. You've already found out how bad it is looking down - try walking around looking down, and then look up and ahead of you. Your body will soon get the message. Very Happy


Thanks - you're right - I am getting a bit over bothered about the "right" posture! The balance is coming on a treat - even with just a couple of days of practice - I've got it in the kitchen so keep getting on it while waiting for things to cook, while reading the paper.....!
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
veeeight,

Quote:
Centrifugal Force?


Centrifugal and centripetal always get mixed up Laughing

For my 2p's worth I'd say stand on a wobble board in your ski boots. Maybe that'll encourage you to use knees, hips and upper body/core to balance...
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Saw something on 'The One Show' on BBC in the summer that said your 'balance' deteriorated with age. This was demonstrated by timing people of varying ages closing their eyes and standing on one leg. The time that people could achieve was directly related to their age. It was claimed that exercising or practicing didn't improve your balance as you got older. Not sure how true that was, but wobble boards and quad strengthening obviously provide invaluable strength and stability to the knee joint and improved core stability.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
NewSkier wrote:
I think that may be one of my problems while actually skiing, because fear holds me back from gaining any appreciable speed.


I have a theory about this, as fear is often what holds skiers back. I feel that there is a very simple solution to this problem. All that's needed is something even more frightening at the top of the slope to scare you into forgetting about the mountain, and just trying to get down it as quickly as possible. Releasing a pack of ravenous lions should do the trick nicely. And if it didn't work, hey ho, you wouldn't be around to complain. wink

easiski, fastman you can have this one for free. Laughing
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Kramer, nah we have used that for years on me.....

I have a "favourite" tree run at home that my instructors liek to have me ski.... it is most often (given our snow conditions) what my friend has described as "an icy luge" - bumpy and hard snow conditions....

The snowboarders like jumping off the rocks that form many of the bumps(the large ones are about my head height)....

Mostly it is not very busy and I will slack off and lose the instructors tails when I feel I don't want to go fast... or when setting line myself I just like to cruise a bit....

Every so often though I have a blitzing run... usually because I hear the "scccccrrrrrraaaaaaaaaaaaaapppppppeeee" of snowborad skidding on hard snow.... and THAT scares me much more than my bump skiing does... so i speed up!!!
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little tiger, absolutely agree about the go-faster effect of snowboard scrape! I also use the fact that I suffer from vertigo to keep me going - it's only when I stop or go very slowly that the vertigo tends to overcome me. Dithering at the top of something steep is fatal - if I don't go straight away, I'm liable to be stuck for some time!
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Kramer wrote:
Releasing a pack of ravenous lions should do the trick nicely. And if it didn't work, hey ho, you wouldn't be around to complain. wink



Nah, I'd just stop and get out the pack of lion treats laced with happy juice and say " here, nice kitties"!
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NewSkier, When you are next at dry slope/MK try skiing with your arms folded across your chest (sort of Kossak style). It's a bit unnerving but prevents you looking down. Do it on a gentle slope, quite slowly and in a snow plough if necessary. You will eventually become more comfortable with it and then try it without crossing your arms.
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Sharkymark wrote:

For my 2p's worth I'd say stand on a wobble board in your ski boots. .


The wobble board shown and the bongo board shown will only take one-part plug-style boot soles, or 3 part soles smaller than 296mm Little Angel


Edit:
Quote:
upper body/core to balance...
very true, they are both very good for balanced press-ups.
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Rolf Harris is your man for wobble boards.

'Tie me kangaroo down Sport' etc. Top class.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Sharkymark wrote:

For my 2p's worth I'd say stand on a wobble board in your ski boots. .


Will try that!

Might give that a go too Kitty.
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NewSkier, please don't, not until you get a bit of practice in at least.
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Comprex,

Which?
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Sharkymark's one.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
comprex, thanks - I can certainly see the value of trying it when the balance has become really good (and it's improved fantastically after only a few days Very Happy ) - but I don't think I'd do it without holding onto something!!
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NewSkier, and without checking that your boots fit on it without all of 1.5cm^2 contact area, please! snowHead
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You know it makes sense.
comprex, will bear that in mind Wink
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Kitty wrote:
NewSkier, When you are next at dry slope/MK try skiing with your arms folded across your chest (sort of Kossak style)..


That is so you are ready to be slid into the pine box when it all goes wrong Puzzled
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
TODAY's BALANCE CHALLENGE:


Stand next to a wall.

Put the edge of your foot next to the wall.

Put the same ear on the wall as if listening to it.

Lift the other foot off the ground.




Twisted Evil
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
comprex, Is that actually possible? I can't even do it whilst holding on to things with both hands! Shall I give up skiing immediately, on the grounds that my balance is non-existent? Shocked Shocked (I can do yoga tree posture, though.)
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Hurtle, think about what the wall is doing, then go back to a recent A-framing chat, the answer has been posted to the board before.
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comprex, Sorry, haven't got time for riddles at the moment.
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
comprex wrote:
Hurtle, think about what the wall is doing, then go back to a recent A-framing chat, the answer has been posted to the board before.


My walls don't do anything, unless I am not sober!

EDIT: Having thought about this (oh alright and having had a go, thinking it couldn't be that hard!), I think I can see what's going on! Hips stick out further than ankles, so by putting your foot & side of body touching the wall your hips are being displaced away from the wall, shifting your weight over the outside foot, which you then can't lift?

Am I anywhere near??
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I have been using one of those wobble boards that are like saturn, ie half ball underneath a round board
http://images.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http%3A%2F%2Fecx.images-amazon.com%2Fimages%2FI%2F414lndV5MiL._AA280_.jpg&imgrefurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FWobble-Board%2Fdp%2FB000S1P56A&h=280&w=280&sz=11&hl=en&start=21&um=1&tbnid=rO3JqnA-rkW6PM%3A&tbnh=114&tbnw=114&prev=&tag=amz07b-21

I hold onto something like a weights machine or pole and lean the board to one side, pushing my knees and hips down, then moving to the other side - back and forth

it is a great exercise which helps with stretching, strengthening and technique (don't put your knees together)

I go faster, slower, hold downs with counting to five / ten seconds etc

I go to another gym and they have one of those sprung wobble boards
http://images.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http://www.viewpoints.com/images/review/2007/172/17/1182464537-54071_full.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.viewpoints.com/Reebok-Core-Board-review-00a1&h=400&w=400&sz=20&hl=en&start=32&um=1&tbnid=1ymm4NXfEAC1FM:&tbnh=124&tbnw=124&prev=

and I use like an elastic skipping rope with handles around a pillar and lean over both ways pulling on the skipping rope, so I get balance, strengthing, technique and also by pulling on the ropes, it strengthens and exercises my arms like when using your poles.

brilliant.....
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I know exactly what you mean and replicating the body position (leaning) is impossible without the downhill motion to help stay balanced (we simply topple to the side as you would if you leant to the side on your skis whilst not moving).

Seen these around and seem to fit what you have been mentioning; [/size]

http://static.wixstatic.com/media/516588_36dcf6110ff3400da2aa35df87f6dbcd.png_srb_p_410_615_75_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_png_srb

Video I found here on Youtube;
http://youtube.com/v/cHuLbrKHzSc[/size]
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