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SKI TIPS - general tips to improve your skiing

I have been teaching skiing for over a decade now and have had the pleasure of skiing with countless different skiers - of all different ages, abilities, confidence levels, aspirations and everything else. But despite all these differences there are some very common similarities when it comes to people's technique and mindset.

In very general terms the following are some key points & generaly tips to help you improve your skiing immediately. Don't try to think about all of these points at the same time! Take them one at a time, really become aware of the one particular aspect - how you handle it, what it feels like and whether you can change it.

For some objectivity and more of a nudge in the right direction come and have a lesson in order to personalise these general tips to you...

Keep weight on the outside ski. Think about having your outside (downhill) hand a little lower and keep your shoulders parallel to the gradient of the slope.

Lean forwards from your ankles. Not from your waist causing your bottom to stick out. Ski boots are designed with this in mind - they will push your ankles to bend, don't fight it.

Look ahead and not at your feet. Looking down tends to cause the bottom to stick out and shift weight backwards. Look forwards - take in the views and plan your next turns.

Keep moving - don't stiffen up. You are trying to remain balanced on a pair of slippery planks on a slidey slope with gravity doing it's work and ever changing conditions. Make sure you keep your joints relaxed to respond to the changes.

Find a rhythm - maintain a constant rhythm & flow to your turns. Thinking about riding a bike and gradually pedalling from one foot (ski) to the other.

Pole plant - down the hill (in line with your toe binding) and slightly away from the body. This will help the hips move across the skis to release your edges and start the new turn. A good pole plant will also help maintain a good rhythm & flow. Remember it is a small movement from the wrist to lightly tap the pole on the snow, not a whole arm or body manoeuvre designed to embed the pole into the ground!

Finish your turns. Make sure your turns match the gradient of the slope. If it is steep and you don't come far enough round the circle of the turn, even a little back up the hill, then you will pick up more speed with each turn rather than maintaining speed which can get a little scary!

Ski something different - we would all prefer to be inside our comfort zone, skiing slopes we know well and are sure we can conquer. How about doing something different and pushing yourself a little harder? This doesn't mean jumping from the green runs straight to the blacks. It could mean picking a different route down a familiar run, it could mean skiing shorter turns instead of long ones, it could mean popping off the side of the piste for a turn or two...

Get fit - physically prepare for your time on the slopes. Check out my blog post here

Relax & stop worrying about falling - think positive, see it then be it. Don't think about falling as it is likely to become a self fulfilling prophecy.

Believe in yourself - believe you can and you're halfway there...

Take your time and enjoy it!

Also take a look at my other posts

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