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Surf Technique

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
No, nothing to do with water.


Does anyone remember the Surf Technique, Georges Joubert was a big proponent.

I was introduced to this last winter in powder, despite all my reservations it worked really well!
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Never done this consciously Puzzled Care to give a quick run-down of what it involves?
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well with modern skis it's all about the edge. This technique is all about *not* having any large edge angles.

Bend ze knees wink until you are almost in a chair like position, simply turn/rotate/pivot your feet underneath you, *very* flat ski, late engagement of a very small edge angle.

Works surprisingly well in powder, and less chance than you think of tripping up over the outside edge.




(Joubert is credited as the father of modern ski technique. He introduced avalment to the French Ski Team as a technique in deep powder. His booke "Skiing: An Art - A Technique" probably outlines the surf technique, if anyone here has a copy it would be great if they could look it up!)
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Shocked sounds a bit like "flatboarding" as esposed by that crazed bloke on epic who claims to teach "tai chi skiing"
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
No, no waist movements (waist steering) involved here Laughing
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First page (Quick OCR job, forgive errors) - runs to 15 pages wink
(edited see below)


Last edited by You'll need to Register first of course. on Tue 15-08-06 18:46; edited 2 times in total
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Bit better OCR:-

THE SURF TECHNIQUE, A NEW KIND OF LEG ACTION
The search for optimal gliding with flat skis has led the "all terrain, all snows" specialists and the virtuoso gliders of the race courses to a particular kind of leg action which I have ,baptised the "surf technique". This leg action has the unique characteristic of dissociating the lateral displacements of the knees from the pivoting movements of the feet. Its acquisition, even if just partial, can improve the finesse of your leg action considerably, not only for flat ski contact with the snow, but also for carving on the edges.

The surf technique, just as rotation, flexion-extension, vissage, avalement and the forward thrust of the feet, is not the invention of a technician !
Even a long time ago, virtuosos and other inspired skiers began to use the surf technique in certain specific situations without actually understanding what they were doing. There are even photographs that were taken of these skiers during the fraction of a second that they assumed a position very different from the other skiers and magazine editors and advertisers used these photographs, exploiting this new image. I can think in particular of a photograph of Stein ERIKSSEN clearly using the surf technique over 20 years ago.
My attention was drawn to the characteristic position of the surf technique very early, but I never fully recognized the implications of it until I had my first opportunity to see the latest of the ski virtuosos, the Swede Ingemar STENMARK. This slalom and giant slalom specialist doesn't use the surf technique exclusively, but in very quick turns on hard snow this technique has assured him a superiority over all of his competition for several years. This technique is also one of the potent weapons of the young star of the 1977 season, Perrin PELEN.
The surf technique is derived from the technique of avalement which was executed perfectly during the years 1968 and 1969 by Gustavo THOENI and Patrick RUSSEL.

avalement and of gliding, such as Gustavo THOENI, tried to increase the tempo of their turns by using dynamic platform movements against the ground. Another Italian, Nero GROS, turned this into his specialty.
The young Swede Stenmark, howevever, began his technical progress beginning with the foundation which the classical avalement represented for him. His leg action in a very low position and his ability to glide, on flat skis as well as on his edges, struck me as early as 1974. Today his technique is even more varied and is less differentiated from the techniques of other racers. I recognized very early the connection between his leg action and the leg action of some of the powder snow virtuosos and ultimately of the mogul skiing specialists of the freestyle skiers.
I then analyzed this gesture at my leisure and attempted to explain it to and instill it in good skiers. I met with failures, semi-failures and then semi-successes. I believe that I have mastered this technique and its instruction sufficiently today to be able to attempt to pass it on to you in the following pages.
It was during discussions with students that we adopted the name "surf technique", as much for the similarity of some of the positions to positions of surfboard and skateboard riders as for a certain similarity in the sensations perceived during these types of activity.

Caution ! Do not consider the surf technique as an exclusive technique !
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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!
Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy

Well done that man!!!! Is that from Jouberts book?

If so I think I will have to track down a copy.

One of the biggest users of this technique (modified slightly) is Bode, these days we call it "drift & lock" - but it just goes to show that techniques from years past can be tweaked to peform in todays climate!
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veeeight, yes it is. I shouldn't post more in case I infringe copyright, but we can probably claim that this is a "revue" - that's allowed apparently Confused
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veeeight, I wouldn't really say that what Bode does has much in common with "surf technique".
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rjs, The skill that Bode has is that he can glide almost as fast on flat skis as he can on his edges, and then re-direct them at the gate exit is pretty similar.

But do expand.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Yoda, Lucky you to still have it - mine got drowned in a flood in Stubaital many years ago, and I couldn't then find another copy. maybe now, with ebay and amazon it might be possible. Georges Jubert worked at the University of Grenoble (for peeps who don't know) and was one of the early sports scientists. Tomasz Ondrusz, has a copy for those who are around Guildford/Aldershot way.

veeeight, We certainly used surf technique in powder when I was working in Wengen (1972/3). However all these "turns" (see Jubert's caution) are variations - avalement, jet turns, retraction turns, compression turns, and probably a few more that I can't think of at the moment.
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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
easiski, Cool!

I guess the reason why I brought this up is that in this modern day of modern skis, it's all about the edges, edges, edges, getting onto your edges. and it was refreshing (for me) to be introduced to an effective technique that brought out the benefits of a flat ski !
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
veeeight, But surely it's all about control of how much edge you use at any given time? All variations from flat ski to total edge being part of the whole ( and part of carving), it's no good being able to put your ski on the edge and ride it if that's all you can do is it?

ps: isn't it great to see Stenmark referred to as a young skier? Perin Pelen was certainly one of my heroines when I was young. (she was a slalomer for those of you who don't know). Very Happy
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
easiski, Totally agree, but there are many many many folk out there that believe it's all about the edges.

Fair point, I myself like to see performance out of a ski, but like you say, it's the ability to have the total blend that is more useful.

Hang on a mo. Are we in danger of agreeing here? wink
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veeeight, OMG! Shocked Shocked Shocked
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Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
veeeight, watch out, she agreed with me a couple of times recently too - I think she's getting soft!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Wear The Fox Hat, Never! Twisted Evil
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Quote:

in this modern day of modern skis, it's all about the edges, edges, edges, getting onto your edges.


another little taster for you:-



Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Wed 16-08-06 18:48; edited 1 time in total
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
And don't forget this book was written by a Frenchman......
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Yoda, and BASI think it's "up to date" to talk about thigh rotation???? I can produce scans from a book by emil Allais (but not till I get back to Bath - Dad won't let it out of the house). Also he has some extraordinary books about skiing way back when.

This is from one of mine (lost it's cover sadly), but seems to have been written around 1938-40: "Downhill Skiing" by A. Jacques
Not much has changed, has it?

Sadly, we had to go through these extraordinary gyrations to get back to where we were more than 50 years ago:
from a book "Modern Skiing" by Dr Norbert Gemsch and August Julen, first published in 1964.

Very Happy Very Happy I find the Oxfam bookshop almost always has a little treasure like these! Very Happy
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
I can see I'm going to have to hunt down Jouberts book!
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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!
easiski, nice snowHead Ah for the days of the comma position Toofy Grin
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Thanks for the thread veeeight. My copy of Jouberts arrived today (very easy to track down on Amazon). Spent a very enjoyable commute reading it.
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You too? Mine arrived as well, it's an incredile book! He was wayyyyy ahead of his time!
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