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The CURSE of ‘Just one more run...’ myth or reality?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I take it you mean the ones ended up in the hospital are "girlymen"? Wink
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tatmanstours wrote:
For us the last run is invariably a deserted, freshly groomed, 4km piste at around 5.30pm, after an hour or two in a mountain hut that does little to discourage the habit by offering two-for-one on all drinks after 3.30. Would hate to miss it - and, if you don’t do that last run, how else are you going to get down?


This. Austrian hut culture is great. Fancy a drink? Certainly, we're open all evening. But you're at the top of a mountain?! Don't worry, we'll piste your run home while you're enjoying your delicious drink(s)! What if I enjoy so many drinks I can't stand up?? Then we'll call a piste basher.....

Roll on January Toofy Grin
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Quote:

Confirms there's some valid reasons on why "last run" have higher injury rate.

If you can find reason for it, it's not a "myth", is it?


But all the reasons are due to factors in the person's control (and generally end of day things rather than last run specific). There is no reason that "one more run" or last run has to be any riskier than the second to last run. If you choose to ski an extra run when you are tired, the light has gone, or you are going to push it harder/go faster etc that's your own choice, not some kind of superstitious last run curse.

It's a bit like saying young men are more likely to be in car crashes than the rest of the population, so I'm going to ban my 18 year old son from driving. Simply make good decisions and a lot of the risk (crashing car or hurting yourself while skiing) is mitigated.
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Yup. If I am not feeling the love, conditions are getting crappy or I am just knackered I'll sometimes download, especially if I have been off piste all day on fat skis. But generally I'll stop for a few drinks and ski a lovely deserted piste to the bottom snowHead
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Layne wrote:
Yeah but come on, if I take a tumble on my second run of the day and have to return to the shed you wouldn't say you were hurt on "the last run of the day".

And anyway the title and opening line of the OP says "Just one more run".


+1

A few people have quoted 'the last run' but it's actually 'one more run'. It's when you've just finished your 'last run' and your legs are tired and someone turns to you and says 'one more run'?' - it's a no from me!
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@Handy Turnip, ...exactly. I covered in the opening the idea of 'the last run' - indeed if you mess up the first run of the day and get injured and off the hill that is your 'last run of the day'. I indeed distinguished that from 'just one more run'....your quick and clear clarification of the idea is spot on. Many thanks. And Alex just calling down for more ibobrufen. It's hurting after a full day at school...
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If he’s hurting so much, there’s probably some soft tissue damages too.

Keep a close eye on his recovery to make sure no other accompanying damages besides the broken collarbone that needs attention.
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I think this is real. Same as driving, a disproportionate amount of accidents when "nearly there", also 3pm to 6pm most dangerous times to drive. Suspect it's due to inappropriately relaxing due to the proximity of safety. See also skiing injuries -middle age man on blue run going too fast.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/motoring/news/6018081/One-in-three-road-accidents-happen-a-mile-from-home-survey-says.html
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@abc, ...thanks abc....will do...I had a grade 3 shoulder separation a few years ago (but that's another story) and so very conscious of keeping a good eye out for additional problems and complications...thanks for the reminder; very important to keep on top of it....
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I always do one last run
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Quote:

It's when you've just finished your 'last run' and your legs are tired and someone turns to you and says 'one more run'?' - it's a no from me!


But you are assuming legs are tired which is not necessary true. Again, one last run is only as dangerous as you decide to make it. If someone says one last run and legs are ok,conditions are good and you just cruise down an empty piste your risk is no higher than the runs before. It's not the "one more run" in itself that is dangerous.
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@boarder2020, how many desk jockeys have such good fitness that they can ski hard all day and NOT end with tire legs?
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boarder2020 wrote:
Quote:

It's when you've just finished your 'last run' and your legs are tired and someone turns to you and says 'one more run'?' - it's a no from me!


But you are assuming legs are tired which is not necessary true. Again, one last run is only as dangerous as you decide to make it. If someone says one last run and legs are ok,conditions are good and you just cruise down an empty piste your risk is no higher than the runs before. It's not the "one more run" in itself that is dangerous.


Of course, technically you're right - there's nothing dangerous in just doing one more run in itself, but the OP is describing a set of circumstances which normally happens (personally) when skiing with people that are better than me. My legs are tired, and it's time to call it a day - one of the group gives that smile and says "Come on, just on more run".

It's a bit like when someone in the pub says "Just one more drink?". Obviously there's nothing inherently wrong with having a drink - but the term is known for the set of circumstances where the respondent knows they shouldn't have another drink for whatever reason.


Last edited by So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much on Tue 8-10-19 8:15; edited 1 time in total
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.

http://youtube.com/v/HYjIRbNNYe4
It's not always easy to know when to stop...
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I learned this the hard way too although the context was different. Skied on New Years Day having gone to bed after 6am and taken much refreshment. Beautiful bluebird day with a few cm fresh and thinking it was too good to miss. So rather than 'last run' it was, in that situation, any run. My point being that the doubt was there, I should have heeded it but didn't. Learned my lesson and if it's is there now I just don't do it. Even if I'm not back at base I download rather than ski down. So far so good Puzzled
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@abc, who says anyone is skiing hard all day before their 'one more run'?
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@robboj, surely the lesson there is to have a few less Vimto's and hit the sack a bit earlier when out skiing.... Toofy Grin Very Happy Little Angel
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LittleBullet wrote:
It made me conscious of tiredness, flat light, route planning (crowds) and changes in temperature.
totally agree with this. The person I ski with starts to noticeably fade around 3pm (9 am start Very Happy ) at which point the discussion becomes beer or car park and that's it for the day.
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Quote:

If he’s hurting so much, there’s probably some soft tissue damages too.

When I broke my pelvis focus was on that, as it was acute, but it healed up well and quickly. But I later had to see an osteopath who pointed out that hitting the ground hard enough to break a pelvis is likely to have done other damage, did some manipulation, gave me gentle strengthening and stretching Pilates type stuff to do and said he probably wouldn't need to see me again. Of course I was old, and this lad is young; makes a big difference. (This was the same osteopath who had recommended cycling up hills to strengthen legs for skiing....)
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Interestingly there was a program last week that sought reasoning from decision making.

They, in one illustrative experiment, used money to explore risk and made two versions presented in the opposite psychological position, but with exactly the same monetary outcome.

When presented as being equal or a certain gain, people almost in their entirety acted conservatively and didn't take a risk.

When presented as a potential equal or loss, it flipped the response to almost entirely people selecting to take risk and participate further with a gamble.

It was designed to show exactly that, how outlook affects risk decisions.

Now I know you can make most things fit most explanations but staying with this thought line, if Alex thought thought he's faced with a loss situation by not being able to get more of that activity has it caused him to gamble on taking another run?
Conversely, if he was in the position of thinking he's happy with what he's completed / achieved just at that point, would he have made a different decision as did you?
The classic kids reaction to being told they've got to go to bed brings the same process, they just see a loss of what they where enjoying doing. Rather than appreciation of all that they've had.

I guess placing yourself as moderator in this situation is often unpopular, but could be absolutely the right decision as you can see it clearly.

There's a book on this, which the programme covered " Thinking Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman that is very interesting.
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Klamm Franzer wrote:
tatmanstours wrote:
For us the last run is invariably a deserted, freshly groomed, 4km piste at around 5.30pm, after an hour or two in a mountain hut that does little to discourage the habit by offering two-for-one on all drinks after 3.30. Would hate to miss it - and, if you don’t do that last run, how else are you going to get down?


This. Austrian hut culture is great. Fancy a drink? Certainly, we're open all evening. But you're at the top of a mountain?! Don't worry, we'll piste your run home while you're enjoying your delicious drink(s)! What if I enjoy so many drinks I can't stand up?? Then we'll call a piste basher.....

Roll on January Toofy Grin
Years ago we went into one such hut, music was great live band, boots were opened, dancing in ski boots is fun, Couldn't understand why my turns were so crappy on the way home in the dark, ( no fancy lighting ) it was so much fun, but when we got to the bottom of the run I remembered my boots were open , Embarassed
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You only need one saying...

If in doubt, dack out.
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I thought it was "if in doubt, flat out"?

Similar to Ski3's post, I saw a TED Talk where a guy withdrew real money for his kids to play Monopoly with so that he could see if they adjusted their style. Two of the three changed how they approached the game. The talk was more in relation to how we see money in today's society, but I think the perception of risk applies in the last run idea too.
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ski3 wrote:
... There's a book on this, which the programme covered " Thinking Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman that is very interesting.

Oh, I was just going to say that this is "Prospect Theory" when I got to your last line there.
Kahneman won a Nobel prize for it. I think it's a hugely important insight which has wide application in the real world.

Superstition is obviously wrong, but knowing when to quit is obviously right. They're not the same thing.
I often wait until the slopes are clear at the end of the day at a resort, depending on conditions those runs can be some of the best.

Personally the time I quit is when I notice that my tiredness is making me struggle at things I'd normally have no issue with, and I switch to riding defensively.
Possibly it takes experience to notice that.
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I must re-read that book. Didn't properly take it in the first time around.
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Quote:

@boarder2020, how many desk jockeys have such good fitness that they can ski hard all day and NOT end with tire legs?


I don't know any desk jockeys that can ski hard until lunch and not get tired. I would question how many people are actually skiing hard anyway, most seem to enjoy a long lunch, hot chocolate breaks, a beer etc. My point is that you should know when to call it a day based on all the variables (including tiredness). This may be well before "one more run" is suggested, it could be after though. Simply banning/refusing "one more run" seems superstitious. The logical thing when presented with the idea of one more run would be to weigh up the variables and make an informed decision, although you would hope people are doing this before every run.
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philwig wrote:
Personally the time I quit is when I notice that my tiredness is making me struggle at things I'd normally have no issue with, and I switch to riding defensively.
Possibly it takes experience to notice that.


This is my approach too, although sometimes I think I maybe push too far and others I possibly hang up the towel too early. But if I notice that my technique has gone to pot or I'm making weird decisions then I like to think that I'm capable of calling it a day.
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boarder2020 wrote:
Quote:

@boarder2020, how many desk jockeys have such good fitness that they can ski hard all day and NOT end with tire legs?


I don't know any desk jockeys that can ski hard until lunch and not get tired. I would question how many people are actually skiing hard anyway, most seem to enjoy a long lunch, hot chocolate breaks, a beer etc. My point is that you should know when to call it a day based on all the variables (including tiredness). This may be well before "one more run" is suggested, it could be after though. Simply banning/refusing "one more run" seems superstitious. The logical thing when presented with the idea of one more run would be to weigh up the variables and make an informed decision, although you would hope people are doing this before every run.


Yes, that's really what the study is about. The fast brain response when asked if you want to go is just a yes / no answer. When in reality you're better using the "slow brain" reasoning to assess truly what that decision entails aand then acting appropriately with that reasoning in place.

Placed in the "Alex " scenario, was he thinking if I don't go now I'll not immediately be able to do this activity which I've enjoyed any time soon, discounting any relevant tiredness as he said yes?
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philwig wrote:
ski3 wrote:
... There's a book on this, which the programme covered " Thinking Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman that is very interesting.

Oh, I was just going to say that this is "Prospect Theory" when I got to your last line there.
Kahneman won a Nobel prize for it. I think it's a hugely important insight which has wide application in the real world.

Superstition is obviously wrong, but knowing when to quit is obviously right. They're not the same thing.
I often wait until the slopes are clear at the end of the day at a resort, depending on conditions those runs can be some of the best.

Personally the time I quit is when I notice that my tiredness is making me struggle at things I'd normally have no issue with, and I switch to riding defensively.
Possibly it takes experience to notice that.


Same here in sometimes having the most fabulous run down at end of day. Rewarded with empty piste, low warm sunlight and long shadows making all the snow texture throw long textural shadows across the piste surface taken at a pace to enjoy it.

Also, long before I read Kahneman, I'd ask my children what was the most enjoyable thing they'd done that day, which I felt effectively deposits into the memory bank those good experience and learn to become able to appreciate that, this usually at bedtime. To me it's a method of recognising for your own mind that you don't necessarily have to add "more" of anything to it.
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Quote:

Placed in the "Alex " scenario, was he thinking if I don't go now I'll not immediately be able to do this activity which I've enjoyed any time soon, discounting any relevant tiredness as he said yes?


I think you may be overanalysing a bit. We don't even know why he fell. I don't mountain bike so have no idea how tired 90mins would make you (of course lots of other things other than just duration influencing fatigue). We could make an argument that the coffee break was enough time for muscles to cool down, psychologically switch off a little, then he went straight back to a track he didn't take so seriously (due to familiarity) without (I'm guessing) a warm up. Obviously we should ban coffee breaks Toofy Grin

The truth is there are usually many variables involved in an accident. Sometimes it's just bad luck, you can only mitigate the risks so much. While it's sensible to look back and try and see where mistakes were made, it's easy to overanalyse and worry.
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boarder2020 wrote:
Quote:

Placed in the "Alex " scenario, was he thinking if I don't go now I'll not immediately be able to do this activity which I've enjoyed any time soon, discounting any relevant tiredness as he said yes?


I think you may be overanalysing a bit. We don't even know why he fell. I don't mountain bike so have no idea how tired 90mins would make you (of course lots of other things other than just duration influencing fatigue). We could make an argument that the coffee break was enough time for muscles to cool down, psychologically switch off a little, then he went straight back to a track he didn't take so seriously (due to familiarity) without (I'm guessing) a warm up. Obviously we should ban coffee breaks Toofy Grin

The truth is there are usually many variables involved in an accident. Sometimes it's just bad luck, you can only mitigate the risks so much. While it's sensible to look back and try and see where mistakes were made, it's easy to overanalyse and worry.


But isn't that just proving Kahneman is correct, that you fail to establish the potential consequences by taking that snap decision? Not the nature of the consequences but that you'd not really consider them at all.

Isn't that what training in any discipline does, transfers the logical analysis and slow consideration largely to the fast thinking reaction for your own use when you're tearing through something with your trousers on fire Laughing
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Humans are terrible at making decisions full stop. Plenty of research shows humans make irrational choices regularly, especially when those choices presented in the right (or perhaps wrong) context.

I'm not really sure prospect theory fits so well here. Assuming Individuals are thinking "one last run" as a gain (fun experience), they should be more risk adverse i.e. "no I've had a good day and don't want to get hurt".

I've turned down "one more run" before. I don't think it's that hard to say no under normal circumstances. (20+cm powder day may be harder, but nobody is saying "one more run" under those conditions it's just implied).

Of course we can't calculate all the variables and accurately predict risk. However, most people know if they are tired, or if the lights bad, etc. Perhaps I'm looking at this from a backcountry point of view where you are generally looking for reasons not to ski a line.
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Quote:

Kahneman is correct, that you fail to establish the potential consequences by taking that snap decision?


Perhaps this is a different Kahneman theory? In prospect theory it's more about knowing the options and being more likely to act risky when in losing situations and less risky in gaining situations.

I suspect most peoples reasons for one more run are a lot more simple. Enjoyment of skiing, peer pressure, and the idea that injury is unlikely (which it is).
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It needs to snow, we're all overthinking...everything..

I once blew out a knee on the "last run". But it had been preceded by five other "last runs" (the corn persisted). I also know people who've been hurt on the first run of the day. Some folks like to go for it, and some like to shake their finger. Either way, live your live and own the consequences.
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Scooter in Seattle wrote:
It needs to snow, we're all overthinking...everything
...
live your live and own the consequences.

"Own the consequence" includes learning from it and not repeat the same mistake.

That's the difference between overthinking and proper thinking.
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After too many incidents downhill biking, kayaking, snowboarding our rule now is always 2 more runs and normally skip the last one.
there does seem to be a mental thing where if it is the last run you just focus on getting down and brain starts turning off. Normally results in either a crash or a close call that makes your sphincter twitch.
I do think that tiredness applies too as if you are starting to question it, that is the time to stop
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Appreciate the debate @boarder2020, think you're right in that my bias is probably skewed in taking my kids through decision making and toward autonomy in situations like this. Rather than offering permission to them, we discuss realistically and I more often ask them to make up their mind with that information.

Interesting thread anyway from the OP, and as @Scooter in Seattle, says, all waiting for the snow here too.
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boarder2020 wrote:
I don't know any desk jockeys that can ski hard until lunch and not get tired.


There are plenty of desk jockeys who run marathons, do iron-man tri's etc. I used to be a very fit cycling desk-jockey.

Laying bricks won't help your skiing fitness Very Happy
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boarder2020 wrote:
I've turned down "one more run" before. I don't think it's that hard to say no under normal circumstances. (20+cm powder day may be harder, but nobody is saying "one more run" under those conditions it's just implied).

There's nothing "implied" at all, even on a powder day!

I had this day 3 years ago at Whistler (only 10cm though Wink ). It was fantastic, till about lunch time. It's not so much I was tired from simply skiing. It's the snow had gotten super heavy in the late season sun so quickly, one run was delight but the next run was a struggle!

The group, buoyant by powder fever, wanted not just "one more run" but MORE runs! I bit them goodbye and gone down. Even I was late in my decision to quit. My legs got so wobbly that I barely made it to the mid-mountain gondola to download (at which point I met up with a few others from the group who made the "quit" decision right after I did). Those who insisted on "more" only gotten "1 more", before they realized is was no fun at all! They were a good hour late in showing up at the bar, having struggled against the rapidly consolidating snow to get down safely.

Quote:
Humans are terrible at making decisions full stop. Plenty of research shows humans make irrational choices regularly, especially when those choices presented in the right (or perhaps wrong) context.

Humans are the only species that are capable of any rational decision at all. That we don't do it all the time is an indication that we're not as evolutionally advanced as we'd like. Not an excuse to not bother trying our best (to make rational decisions when possible)


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Quote:


gondola to download



I too often download on the gondola at whistler. Late in the day lower runs are usually crowded, can be icy, and the terrain is not particularly interesting. Yet I met others who abided by the "death before download" motto even early and late season when snow on the home runs was patchy. I guess this is similar to the one last run mentality, however in this case risk was way higher than potential reward making it an easy decision for me. I suspect this is also an easier choice for those of us lucky to be based in resort that know there's tomorrow, and next week, and month. For those with only 1 week I can see the reasoning of trying to maximise ski time.

Quote:


There are plenty of desk jockeys who run marathons, do iron-man tri's etc. I used to be a very fit cycling desk-jockey.



I never said desk jockeys can't be fit. I know many very fit people, but it doesn't directly translate to skiing. Different activity requiring different demands. Don't get me wrong fit desk jockeys will do far better than someone unfit, but some old chain smoking seasonnaire that doesn't do anything in the off-season but racks up the winter vertical will fatigue less over a day. At least that is my experience.

I have taken a few fit people out at kicking horse. All the locals and seasonnaire can ski top to bottom laps after a few weeks no problem (1200m). I'm yet to find someone regardless of fitness that doesn't need a few stops on the way down there first week or so.
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