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BAD Drills or Exercises that Instructors use

 Poster: A snowHead
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rob@rar wrote:
pam w wrote:
Could our instructor please discuss the merits and demerits of a javelin turn as opposed to picking the inside ski up parallel to the outside one?

The javelin turn (where the inside ski is picked up and the tip is crossed over the outside ski) promotes greater angulation as well as being good for developing balance (see the Glossary for a good explanation of angulation). Although as Skimottaret said earlier, there is a danger than you can get a bit out of shape by doing this kind of turn. Lifting the inside ski is good for developing balance, but doesn't seem to be as effective for developing angulation skills.



Yes javelin turns promote greater angulation.... because they promote counter... with a little counter more range of angulation is available...


You can do them where the lifted ski is turned across the other ski... or where the other ski is skied under the lifted ski... used for slightly different purposes (I have only done the ski under the lifted ski version once)
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easiski wrote:
I don't think there are any intrinsically bad exercises. All of them could, and might work for certain teachers with certain students in certain circs. Some work for most, some work for only a few, we all have our favourite ones. WRT aeroplane turns, they work as soon as you stop describing them as aeroplanes!

I sometimes wonder, reading these threads, if the aspiring/learning ski teachers here quite understand the process. (No offense intended) Exercises are used either to correct a fault, or to promote a certain action - nothing else. If used incorrectly they will cause problems. A good teacher needs a vast library of exercises to pull out of the hat for whatever is required, they also need to be able to invent them on the spot!

Having said that, I personally wouldn't dream of asking beginners to ski down hill on one ski at the start of the first lesson. I recently received a video of this being done at Chill Factore with horrendous results. Shocked


This post is so right on the mark.

There are NO bad drills. There are only bad utilizations. Drills promote skills, and skills are best taught in a progressive manner. Throw a drill in at the wrong time and development/motivation can come to a screaching halt. Instructors need to understand what they're doing with drills,,, why they're using them,,, what purpose they're meant to serve,,, and how they fit in the grand plan. Not just throw them at students willy nilly.

Many drills can be used for multiple purposes,,, the same drill used multiple times, each focusing on and developing a different technical skill.

Drills can also be done in various forms, at differing levels of difficulty. So the same drill can be used at multiple stages of learning to continue building ever greater skills. And drills can be combined to continue building skills even higher.
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little tiger wrote:


Yes javelin turns promote greater angulation.... because they promote counter... with a little counter more range of angulation is available...




This is right on too. Simply lifting the inside ski is great for developing angulation in beginners. Most new skiers lean into the hill,,, they don't know how to level their shoulders and balance on their outside ski. Lifting their inside ski guides them towards acquiring that skill (with the proper accompanying instruction), and gives them instant feedback when they do it wrong.

The need for more counter comes into play later on when carving is learned and edge angles grow. At higher edge angles more angulation is generally needed, and counter allows for that. The javelin turn helps students learn how to counter. It's necessitates assuming a countered position.

The javelin is a tough drill. It requires the student to have unwavering balance on the outside ski skills. It can be intimidating. This drill needs to be reserved for later in the learning cycle.
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A coach friend of mine commented on drills, "You get what you set". If you set an inappropriate task your likely to get poor results to the detriment of the learner. Sitting on the lifts I find myself trying to guess the rational behind the drills instructors are using for their groups, but it's not always obvious Laughing
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FastMan wrote:
Instructors need to understand what they're doing with drills,,, why they're using them,,, what purpose they're meant to serve,,, and how they fit in the grand plan. Not just throw them at students willy nilly.

And it's also important to ensure the student also knows why you're asking them to do something (before, or perhaps after the event if you don't want them to tackle a particular drill with some preconception). I'll give you an example:
In lessons I was tasked with doing varied knee/ankle flexes during long traverses on different slopes. A more experienced skier queried this with me, saying they couldn't see when this was necessary in skiing, so why was I being taught to do it? Rather than this lead to any doubts being planted in my mind, I was able to instantly respond to the enquirer with the reasons that I had been given by my instructor!
1. At the start of a lesson it's a warm-up that gets my legs moving & helps me feel in better balance (I tend to be very stiff as a mature novice)
2. I need to develep better flex & the exercise lets me focus on that alone, while not worrying about anything else
3. Practising repeated flexing on an easy traverse is non-threatening & is likely to yield greater results
4. It allows me to explore the effects of these movements in terms of how "solid" my edges feel & how it alters my balance
5. Moving on to do the same on a slightly steeper slope reinforces no 4 & raises confidence levels
6. It's teaching me the skill set I need from which to develop effective flex in the right place in my turns.

The enquirer backed straight off!
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Butterfly wrote:
And it's also important to ensure the student also knows why you're asking them to do something
Some skiers aren't really bothered trying to understanding why, they just like to do. If eyes glaze over when you're explaining what and why you'd like somebody to do it's time to quit talking and do some skiing.
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rob@rar, Actually, rarely my experience, but then lately I've been in the fortunate position of teaching people who actually want to learn and come for that, rather than the TO 'I'm here because my neighbour/husband/wife/whatever does it' brigade.

Butterfly, Good for you. This shows the problem: an experienced skier can't see why it's necessary to flex the ankles rolling eyes ergo ... maybe experienced, but not likely to be very good. Or did they think you were being taught this exercise as something you should actually do all the time when skiing???? It's sad that so many so-called experienced skiers have so little understanding of the core skills required, but just think they can all learn to ski like JT. rolling eyes
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'ere Butterfly, you can just drop the word 'mature' missus - we ain't in the grave yet!! Laughing
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Megamum, Laughing you're dead right there! And when the time comes, I certainly have no intention of growing old gracefully, when DISgracefully is bound to be more fun!

Rob@rar - indeed - the key thing being to know/be aware of your students' needs as individuals, which I am sure you do.

Easkski, thanks. You may be able to guess the identity of the person I referred to, someone who could be a disruptive influence if permitted to be!


Last edited by You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net. on Sun 5-04-09 21:49; edited 1 time in total
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easiski wrote:
rob@rar, Actually, rarely my experience, but then lately I've been in the fortunate position of teaching people who actually want to learn and come for that, rather than the TO 'I'm here because my neighbour/husband/wife/whatever does it' brigade.


I'd agree there - and teaching adults that don't actually want to be there has put me off teaching anything but kids next season! Hearing "I just can't do it" before they've even got one ski on... guh.

Personally, I can be introduced to drills, tactics, excercises all day - and they'll effect how I'm skiing, but I always feel to have it "click" and settle in as a permanent part I need a solid understanding of why I'm doing something. I try and keep that as a part of my lessons and introduce and phrase things in as many different ways as possible since that "lightbulb" moment is really important, imo, and sometimes it does take a lot of work to get a simple concept to stick.
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Butterfly, Hah! thought so - not that the unnammed was that good at flexing the ankles anyway!! Laughing Laughing Laughing

DaveC, Yes - it's really irritating when people say they can't do something they've never tried isn't it? All Butterfly's, group gave it a go, even though they were frightened. good for them.
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easiski wrote:


DaveC, Yes - it's really irritating when people say they can't do something they've never tried isn't it? All Butterfly's, group gave it a go, even though they were frightened. good for them.


I did all sorts of things I thought I couldn't! Each achievement, no matter how modest, contributed to growing confidence.
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IMV, Feedback is the key.....you can read or watch or even be drilled, but if you don't feel what is correct and you have no other way of telling this, the results might not be what they should be.

This is what an instructor will do, of course...tell what to do and then comment on your attempts to do it..
This is not a whole lot difference from a mate doing it.. without the quals background.. and assuming they know what they are talking about...but then you wouldn't blithely listen to any old nonsense, would you..? it would be someone you trust..as indeed, it should be regarding an instructor...and you need to know where you are going and what you want to achieve.

It doesn't work for me that this + this equals that and I like to understand the thinking behind it...and then I like to get the body shape in my head...and then I can think thru what I am trying to do..and up to a point, it can work.. but if you don't have an idea of where you are trying to get to..then....?????

And another things...if those hips don't work... it ain't gonna work..
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Butterfly, there is no such thing as a modest achievement! rolling eyes
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skimottaret wrote:
Mosha Marc, go to 2 minute mark on this video for a very very good demo of a speiss turn.


http://youtube.com/v/M9l7f-_a8Bw


It is a good video for various turns, thanks for posting. I'm not sure what the point of all of them are though.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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Quote:

Hearing "I just can't do it" before they've even got one ski on.

That must be really discouraging for a teacher. Sad Yo do wonder why some people bother. My two beginnerish friends had a private lesson today, that I'd booked for them, with an instructor I know quite well now. They enjoyed it. My friend said afterward "That guy has an uncanny knack of knowing exactly where your weight is. I thought I'd sneaked one past him once or twice, but he always knew when I wasn't doing what he'd said". He did get his own back, though, with some chat about the rugby. snowHead snowHead If people have decided in advance that an instructor isn't going to be able to help them progress, they're just miserable. rolling eyes But I do think that often, the problem is that people are scared of lessons. I've just come back from dinner with some English friends and she is really quite scared that an instructor will take her on some hairy black slopes she can't cope with. Whatever I say, about how instructors won't do that - she gets worried. It's a shame, because just watching her ski, you can see that a couple of hours with a good instructor would make all the difference to the efficiency of her skiing, and her stamina and enjoyment. Maybe the ski schools should do a special offer in the quiet season "Have a lesson with us; your money back if you don't think it was any good".
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pam w, But then lots of people would claim the lesson wasn't any good, even if it was. How would you police that sort of thing? A good way to get a free lesson! rolling eyes
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Quote:

Airplane Turns - Arms out at the side and a huge lean into the turn, it works in early stage skiers but just doesnt seem right to me. The Tilting motion just promotes bad posture and un balanced movements.


I spent probably the best part of 10 days as a beginner [6 hours dry slope and half a week on snow} just not getting this to work at all...I leaned and leaned and leaned and leaned [are you getting the picture] and WENT STRAIGHT ON with my elegant snowplough. Somehow, I wasn't actually managing to transfer the weight to the ski to push it round. I even remember nearly crushing the tiny instructor lady [who was very nice] as she did that thing where the pupil skis right behind hugging the instrucutor with the skis all muddled up. Could not get it. Cried a LOT. Crying or Very sad Crying or Very sad Was so crap I was left herring-boning up the beginner slope while the rest of the beginners got to go on the cable tow...Demoralised or waht. It took my DH who had been on a dry slope course to tell me to push on the outside [lateral aspect] of my knee with my hand to get the weight transfer [am hoping this is not a crime too, you never know with you instrutory folks Smile ]
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MarjMJ, The trouble with this is the quote: 'into the turn'. The lean should be out of the turn. However, as I said before, not all excercises work with everyone, and your instructor should have changed what s/he was asking you to do if that one didn't work. Personally I wouldn't do it with beginners to start with, but only with peeps who were turning but not transferring their weight and/or edging sufficiently. ps: you shouldn't be pushing the skis round. wink
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easiski, Rick just used airplane turns tipping into the turn with great effect in two ladies. They were both tipping in... by doing the airplane turns tipping IN first... and then doing them tipping OUT they could feel the difference between their normal IN tip (that felt natural) and the OUT tip (that made their skis work better).
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davidof, not really drills for students per se. they come from the NZ instuctor association DVD and are technical skills that aspirant instructors should be able to perform during exams.
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easiski wrote:


Exercises are used either to correct a fault, or to promote a certain action - nothing else. If used incorrectly they will cause problems. A good teacher needs a vast library of exercises to pull out of the hat for whatever is required, they also need to be able to invent them on the spot!

Shocked


I started learning to ski at the beginning of last year, and as a primary teacher I would totally agree with the above. I tell my pupils that it is part of my job to find another way to help them learn/understand if the approach I am using does not work. However, I also tell them that this is a two way process and they have to engage with the activity and give feedback if this is to happen! (I therefore sympathize with instructors concerning adults who refuse to try things).
My, fortunately limited, negative exercise/drill experiences in lessons have been with instructors who have been unable to adapt their teaching to my needs, depleting my confidence at the time but happily not my newly found obsession with skiing or determination to improve!
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little tiger, ah yes - but that wasn't what we were talking about was it? Getting peeps to do something deliberately wrong to show them the diff between that and the right way, is quite normal IME.
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skimottaret wrote:
davidof, not really drills for students per se. they come from the NZ instuctor association DVD and are technical skills that aspirant instructors should be able to perform during exams.


I'd never done javelin turns before so went and tried them on Monday - I wish I'd known it was acceptable to drag a pole on the ground like the Kiwis Little Angel , I thought they were cheating a bit but I've always felt pole dragging to be a bit lazy and try not to do it. I was pleased to be able to do the javelins without any problems as I they sounded really difficult on paper.

I really need to spend a few days on piste - maybe next season Sad
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davidof wrote:
I'd never done javelin turns before so went and tried them on Monday - I wish I'd known it was acceptable to drag a pole on the ground like the Kiwis Little Angel , I thought they were cheating a bit but I've always felt pole dragging to be a bit lazy and try not to do it. I was pleased to be able to do the javelins without any problems as I they sounded really difficult on paper.

I really need to spend a few days on piste - maybe next season Sad


Careful, you'll be hankering after skiing gates soon Wink

I frequently drag my inside pole. It's just a light touch on the snow, and I didn't know I did it until I spotted the line it makes in the snow when looking at photos/video of me. Seems to be an instinctive way of "knowing where the snow is"?
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rob@rar wrote:

I frequently drag my inside pole. It's just a light touch on the snow, and I didn't know I did it until I spotted the line it makes in the snow when looking at photos/video of me. Seems to be an instinctive way of "knowing where the snow is"?


works better if you drag the outside pole Little Angel
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comprex wrote:
works better if you drag the outside pole Little Angel


I'm normally cranked over so far that I can't reach the snow with my outside pole Wink
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rob@rar wrote:


Careful, you'll be hankering after skiing gates soon Wink


Yes maybe, it made me hanker after improving my technique and the only serious way to do that is to do some serious vertical in a ski resort.
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easiski wrote:
pam w, But then lots of people would claim the lesson wasn't any good, even if it was. How would you police that sort of thing? A good way to get a free lesson! rolling eyes


Is the odd free sample too bad if your industry depends on educating the crowd who don't take them? Very few people would be able to duck out if you made it"don't pay if we can't agree you've improved". Of course the odd idiot would take the wee wee but lets face it your feedback from happy customers would suggest that positive references and repeat business would be at least as likely.

Watched the kiwi video - lots of flixing, comprissing & ixtending but nice + clear. Can I ever be a good skier if the thought of one footed skiing terrifies me (for potential knee damage reasons)?
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rob@rar wrote:
comprex wrote:
works better if you drag the outside pole Little Angel


I'm normally cranked over so far that I can't reach the snow with my outside pole Wink


One favourite exercise a trainer had us doing at the beginning of the season, and a common exercise on the dryslope, was precisely that - medium/short turn but hold the poles in a sword grip and touch the outside pole down on the snow/matting. Laughing
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GrahamN wrote:
rob@rar wrote:
comprex wrote:
works better if you drag the outside pole Little Angel


I'm normally cranked over so far that I can't reach the snow with my outside pole Wink


One favourite exercise a trainer had us doing at the beginning of the season, and a common exercise on the dryslope, was precisely that - medium/short turn but hold the poles in a sword grip and touch the outside pole down on the snow/matting. Laughing


More seriously, I've also done that exercise a lot but find it a bit pointless for longer radius turns as I end up in some fairly weak angulated position in order to reach out and touch the snow, even using a sword grip. Not really done it much with short radius turns where an angulated position would come more naturally; might give it a try.
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'Swordsticks' was an exercise that I invented while I was in Aviemore. It then found it's way onto a BASI video etc. etc. I never got credit though. rolling eyes Laughing It may have been done in other countries of course (these things tend to be universal), but had never been done in the home of BASI. It works better than aeroplane turns for middling skiers who are not totally transferring their weight due to leaning in a tad.
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easiski, ah, so it's you we have to blame Wink
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Quote:

ps: you shouldn't be pushing the skis round.

easiski, See! You intructory guys...eh! I knew I'd get it wrong snowHead snowHead

PS. I can do a snowplough now.
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rob@rar, Laughing Laughing Laughing

MarjMJ, Well done, it does sound as though you're getting the hang of it
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Having just realised I had a major flaw in my skiing in that I angulate from the hip more by crunching my spine sidewards than proper hip angulation I'd agree that Aeroplane Turns is a bad exercise except perhaps for complete beginners.

The "Teapot" is maybe better for correct hip angulation.


http://youtube.com/v/-i34XAxUeaQ


Last edited by You'll need to Register first of course. on Tue 27-02-18 0:27; edited 1 time in total
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Airplane turns were a nightmare for me. I instinctively turned on the inside ski and was repeatedly told off for it. This post makes me feel better about that.
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Blimey, a nine year thread revival.
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@Hurtle, good interesting thread though. It's amazing how many drills I've done with instructors without ever knowing what they're called, had to look up most of this stuff!
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The Teapot drill is also called the Schlopy Drill after it's inventor.

Need to be careful how you do it in Austria or Germany as you might get arrested.


http://youtube.com/v/IQVOiolDJPs
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