Pressure on the edge controls skier's turn

Here's a steering tip based on US Ski Team exercises. It was passed on to me by Al Hobart and Bill Moore, coaches at the Green Mountain Valley School, one of Vermont's several academies that give students concentrated training in ski racing.

At fast speeds you steer a ski by putting it on edge and applying pressure or weight to it. An interesting point brough out very clearly by former US coach Dave Durrance, who helped develop this series of exercises, is that the efficiency of the turn depends upon the point in its arc that a ski is pressurized or weighted.

The sooner in the arc the ski is edged and pressurized, the more efficient the turn, notes Durrance. After you have crossed the fall line of the slope, gravity begins to work against you. At this point pressure or weight on a ski will cause much friction against the snow, causing excessive skidding and loss of speed.

If the ski can be edged before you reach the fall line, Durrance says that the skier has only to regulate the pressure under the ski enough to keep it in its arc, but not so much as t o make the ski skid.

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