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Prior Sport experiences


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If you have ever done any other Sports well, have they influenced the way you ride now ?

I have Surfed for over 50 years and Skated hundreds of miles of sidewalk... I started Carving right away

using the motions from Surfing and Skating as my guide... wondered what others used as guides as far as

other Sports to help their Carving... Thanks for your thoughts :)

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Baseball - worked both sides of the battery for years and am sure that, as a right hander and a regular rider, the driving off the mound with my right leg has benefitted me. Both strength and feel in the foot. Also the countless thousands of squats behind the plate. It's made for some issues as well.

Mixed in lots of road cycling also. Everyone knows how that helps.

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Tournament water skiing is what made me go to carving boards. I think the g force is what appeals to me. Carving and slalom water skiing both have high g force loads, albeit, they are located in different areas.

In carving, the g force occurs at the point where you start the turn and continues to build until its climax right as the board exits the fall line.

In water skiing the acceleration occurs after rounding the bouy. Snatch the tow handle into your waist, lean back with your shoulders and wait for the tug of war to begin. Along with the tug of war comes the acceleration as you fire from one side of the wake to the other. Keep your shoulders back and you won't get pulled over the front. Don't keep your shoulders back and get broken over at the waist and stare at the ski tip that is quickly approaching your face

I also like the way a ski goes through water, no skidding whatsoever. I like my boards to do the same thing.

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on the velodrome is similar in gforce,speed even timing and balance.In fact avoiding meat gates on a Saturday is just as scary as maneuvering through a pack of racers at 35mph :) I had already been a hardbooter for six years when I started track racing at age 30.I live too far from a track now for it to be financially/logistically feasible,but I was hooked right away by the similarities and adrenaline/endorphin buzz and raced for 11 seasons through 05.

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Sakteboarded as a kid, mostly downhill (before sliding was invented), mild carving and kick-tail pumping...

Skied from early childhood, close to 30 years, prior to seriously picking snowboarding.

Back in late 80' first boards made it to the rentals of old country. I picked the bloody thing and went straight up the mountain to a frozen black. I thought "how hard could this be - I can ski and skate, surely I can do it?". Oh boy, did it kick my but... Nope, I couldn't turn it of the kick tail as a skate...

After wandering over continents, when I finally moved to Vancouver, all I could get were softies (ouch! they were hurting and still are). I set my angles somewhat forward, transfered my ski knowledge (on a green run this time ;) ) and was riding the board within an hour. Carving the edge, short unfinished turns, within few days... Got the alpine gear... The rest is history...

Then, picked skating again few years ago. Snowboard experience got quite handy! Got pretty serious about slalom last summer. Now I started noticing improvements in balance and riding more upright/angulated.

In the meantime, my ski carving improved a lot, influenced by snowboard carving. However, I completely neglected my all-mountain skiing, due to too much fun on board. Don't even know if I still can do moguls with any grace on skis...

Other then that, few years of Karate, as a pre-teen, greatly improved my sense of balance and awareness of the boody parts. It never left.

Sailing, I can not relate too closelly to carving, except that at a high level of single-hander dinghy racing, one stears off-wind legs by the heal of the boat, rather then using the helm.

Works great for quads and abs, though ;)

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Thanks so much for the responses... I know I seem to stress certain sports on here and their relationship to carving

yet this is only my personal vision. To see how others have integrated the many different sports in their lives and how they like to ride because of that is interesting...

Focus: All Sports require Focus and Carving without it can be very painful :eek:

Baseball: I have used how people stand in the batters box to help them establish their stance getting started

Water Skiing: Slalom water skiers can make the transition to Carving in a heartbeat!

and Blue B I wish you could have seem me sliding past the bank entrance on that polished aggregate many years ago on my 5" x 14" x 3/4" ply with metal wheels, which in the late 50's early 60's was all there was and sliding was what you wanted to do, just like crossing up your bike or motorcycle in the dirt :)

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I skateboarded a lot as a kid, though I sucked. I still had a blast trying even simple tricks. After discovering alpine snowboarding I bought a longboard after not skateboarding for 15+ years. I have lots of fun pumping around on sidewalks and quiet streets, though I don't do it nearly often enough. Pumping a Loaded Vanguard on a quiet street feels remarkably similar to doing little push-pull turns on a 10.5m slalom board. I push my limits WAY harder on snow though, it hurts less when you get it wrong. ;)

Mountain biking on single-track gave some of that focus you spoke of - get it wrong and you pinball off the trees. You learn pretty quick to look and think ahead, and finding an alternate route if/when things go wrong.

Autocross (car racing) at the National level really gave me a mental approach that directly crosses over to alpine snowboarding, and vice-versa. It's all about setting up the next turns in advance while managing the changing levels of grip. I love driving a car with all four wheels sliding 8 to 10 degrees, and I love carving that little bit too hard where the board is just starting to break out of a carve and into a slide. Both are flirting with disaster to someone who doesn't know what's going on, but we know better.

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Speedskating (Long and Short Track, Inline) - I've been noticing some similarities between working the crossovers in the corners as compared to carving with angulation , getting low and stacking over the carving edge, setting up the transitions, feeding the dollar (as compared to completing your push on skates by pushing forward). Using the double push technique with inline skates also has some interesting translation with the feel of the crossunder and the edge to edge transition.

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Thanks for this thread - helps me put my experience in other sports in perspective! I fenced for almost a decade, and part of that was pretty competitive! Sure, possibly the geekiest actual "sport" but I did learn a lot (some of which can be said for any sport), and I am trying to apply it to snowboarding as I am still learning - this being season number 2.

- Trust to just do it and commit. When you go in for the attack, it really is all or nothing. I am still learning this on a snowboard but I know that I will be able to trust my instincts once I build the muscle memory.

- Incredible power in my back leg. I am right handed but ride goofy. The back foot in fencing is the power foot and for a small person I find I do still have a lot of power in my back leg and can really drive.

- Lower center of gravity helps with balance and also helps with rapid movement and direction changes. This kept me light on my feet when fencing, but also helps with direction changes in snowboarding, thinking about where the weight is in your feet and how to transition power.

- Dexterity despite massive amounts of equipment. At first I found layers cumbersome, but really learning to relax and now see the equipment as an extension of who I am when competing (especially with helmets or full face masks).

- Leaving it on the piste - competing in a "violent" sport you have to learn to channel emotions and then just walk away. This has been an important technique for bad runs; just move on and don't let it get into your head to screw with the rest of your day.

A lesson that is NOT useful for snowboarding - not over focusing. In fencing, by looking "just beyond" my opponent, I was is better able to see the full picture, and not focus on the little fakes. I find that looking where you want to point your board is probably more useful (something I learned from mountain biking)

I suppose the other really important lessons can be learned through any sport; relax and have fun. We always said "it is fun and games until someone loses and eye - then it is a sport!"

I have just outed myself as the geekiest person a snowboard. I have often wondered what would happen if I brought my saber to the hill ... probably not the safest idea. Although my sister and I did toy with sabers and mountain bikes at one point!

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