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Learning to carve...


Guest thefishinmagician
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Guest thefishinmagician

I was just curious... did any of you learn to board on an alpine snowboard? Or did you all start on a soft setup to learn to link skidded turns and to stop before stepping up to a hardboot rig? I took the latter route. If you learned to board on an alpine setup, what was the learning curve like?

~Adam~

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I did.

On my first day I spent a couple of frustrating hours in softboots, then in the

afternoon went straight to hardboots. The difference was night and day, and I

never rode softboots again.

I attribute it to the fact that I was a skier beforehand, so it's interesting

that for you being a skier made things more difficult. My experience (in

hardboots, at least) was definitely the opposite. The stance and mechanics

were much closer to what I was accustomed to.

SW

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My parents put me on skis when I was very young. I had a plastic backyard "snowboard", first. I bought a brand new Burton Safari from an 11 year old kid with rich parents for a ridiculously low price. He only used it once in his backyard...sucker. I was completely naive about what type of board I bought. I was fourteen and getting my a** worked on that thing. All of my friends started getting boards that looked different than mine. I've been riding nothing but alpine boards, but rode with all softbooters. I learned jumps and halfpipe with them. It was kind of like being raised by wolves, slowly discovering that I could ride the edge of the tank I was on. Then the PJ comes out with Peter and Jean making some awesome videos (at the time). It was like finding my real family. So anyway, I've always ridden a carving board, but learned to be a carver by accident. I was an okay skiier but being so young I couldn't understand the whole turning thing.

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I too was a skiier before boarding, and I also thought it steepened the learning curve.

(Which means that it made the learning process faster.)

From skiing I knew about snow, about how to use edges to control speed, and about unweighting. It took me only a couple of runs before I transferred my skiing knowledge and was able to make comfortable linked turns.

I started in ski boots on a freeride board, and at first was unable to do anything but a carved turn! I'd put the board up on edge and the damn thing would start carving, and then I'd fall into the inside of the turn. After two runs I worked out how to skid the board around before getting too much edge angle, and then I was off and away over the whole mountain, but those early failed carves stuck in my mind.

I susbsequently switched to soft boots, but when I first saw a good hardbooter carving and laying it over I realised that that was my destiny. I taught myself to carve in soft boots, and was happy happy happy when it finally clicked.

Then hard boots, then an alpine board, and it's still as much of a rush as its ever been.

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... steepened the learning curve.

(Which means that it made the learning process faster.)

Wow, you are right. Until you pointed it out I didn't realize how

misused this term is in my industry. Software applications that are difficult

to master are so often said to have a "steep learning curve". In fact used so

often in that way that no one ever questions it...

"A graph that depicts rate of learning, especially a graph of progress in the

mastery of a skill against the time required for such mastery." (American

Heritage)

So Adam, you're saying it made the process faster; I agree.

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didn't finish a complete season in softies before being offered the opportunity to try a hardboot setup. after that I was searching for my own set of stiffies and board with plates. 35 years of skiing steepened the curve for me but I think slalom waterskiing was even more helpful towards my carving.

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Did lots of surfing as a kid - tried skiing a couple of times (heck, I was 16 before I first saw snow) but couldn't get those turns figured out - what's this downhill edge thing?... LONG time later, my canuck wife want's to get back into skiing - I figured I'll try this snowboarding thing and after my first turn, I was hooked. Started off in softies of course, but funny thing was my first instructor was in hard boots! 4 years of softies and I broke my ankle during the summer, so I was looking for more support in my boots... Somehow I stumbled onto Fin's site and after my first carved turn following Jack's articles, it was like nirvana all over again... Now the boss is really pissed about how much I've dropped on this sport (but I find jewelry helps)... Sorry to ramble with probably TMI, but we just had a dump here in the Mid-Atlantic and I can't wait for my first run at Wisp on Monday!!!

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I started back in 98 on a Rossignol Throttle with some real crappy bindings and ski boots. The first day absolutely sucked. I got thrown down from a heelside and smacked the back of my head that I stopped and walked the rest of the way down the hill, got in my car and went straight to a ski shop and bought a helmet. After about 3-4 days I was skidding turns and after 15 days I bought my Trench diggers and was finally able to link carves nicely. That season I rode about 90 days. I haven't ridden that many days total since then. I think that if you have the right equipment, it makes it a lot easier to learn.

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I first started skiing and for 8 years had never seen a snowboard. In 1987 I saw a snowboarder up at Magic Mtn. in Vermont. I sold my equipment that spring and bought a soft Kemper. After two years I bought a Burton PJ with soft Burton Flex bindings. In 1992 I bought a 2 Hot Logicals, 156 & 165. I rarely ( 5 times a season) get out on a softboard now, allthough I do own one. I have gone through many different boards but can say for sure that my skiing experience definately helped my carving, as did my soft boot riding. I can carve my soft board with soft bindings almost like any of my hard boards. I feel it helps to jump on it from time to time.

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I skied maybe 3 times when I was a kid and then decided to try snowboarding about 10 years later - having not been on the snow at all during that time.

I started on plates. A Nidecker something-or-other rental in Collingwood, ON. Didn't even try softies for at least three years. The reason? Everybody I rode with (mainly about 10 people named McNally - see video on carveitup.net for 3) rode plates. The first day was tough but I'm sure it is for everyone. Once I realized that a little speed is needed to make the things work, it got a lot easier.

All that said, the reason for the title of my post is that I found the transition to softies REALLY easy wheras a couple of friends I know that started on softies had to essentially re-learn from ground zero. So IMHO, it is better to learn on plates. You will be a more versatile rider.

Derek

www.carveitup.net

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My first season of riding consisted of 3 days in softies. Carving looked like something I would love, but I didn't get a chance to try it. The next season, I borrowed a hard setup from a CVA grad and was instantly hooked.

I had skied for about 10 years beforehand, but that was on straight planks, not those new fangled "shaped" skis.

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I used to race on skis, my specialty was GS. I just loved the way you could feel the skis arcing under your foot at speed with minimal, if any skidding. My buddy taught me to board on soft boots and I rode that way for 3 times. I went to Mammoth with my dad and saw a carver just laying down some trenches, immediately my thoughts went back to the way my skis felt under feet and alpine boarding was in my blood. I haven't been back on skis or soft boots since '96. Although, I bought some shaped skis this year cuz my bro was complaining that we never ski together anymore. I tried to get him into carving but he never quite took a liking to it.

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Whenever I go skiing (Im a beginner/intermediate), I notice I have no problem doing hockey stop whenever Im stopping to the left. I wonder if my snowboarding on goofy for years attributed to that tendency. I have difficulty to do hockey stop going to the right.

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Guest woodman

Skateboarded as a kid growing up in San Jose, then I started skiing at 17, got in a bad motorcycle accident in '88, didn't try anything again until 12/31/2001 when I took a snowboarding lesson at Kirkwood. I was linking turns by my 3rd run down the hill. Bought a Lamar freestyle board with soft boots and continued with that until I found a Rossignol Prowler. Rode the Rossi with highbacks and K2 clickers for half a season until I picked up my 162cm Burner. I'm into my 3rd season now and am currently on a F2 Silberfeil with Trench Digger step-ins. My 8 year old son will start his second season in hardboots this year. He started out on skis at the age of 3 and was snowboarding at 7. Next up is my 9 year old daughter who has expressed an interest after 2 seasons of skiing with mom to "do what Daddy" and her brother Zach does.......hardboot!!!:D

Good carving,

Paul

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Originally posted by LeeW

Whenever I go skiing (Im a beginner/intermediate), I notice I have no problem doing hockey stop whenever Im stopping to the left. I wonder if my snowboarding on goofy for years attributed to that tendency. I have difficulty to do hockey stop going to the right.

I doubt it's the snowboarding - everybody feels more comfortable with one direction of hockey stop over another.

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I transfered from racing skis (mostly on plastic) to monoskiing and then to snowboarding as soon as I could get a board with metal edges.

Like Baka above, it never occured to me to sideslip the board. It took maybe four hours to transfer from mono to snowboard. That was an Atomic board with Sno Pro rat-traps and floppy "hard" snowboard boots, probably 20 degree angles or something.

I didn't think much about the equipment, but I realised that I needed stiffer boots, so eventually I dumped the "snowboard" boots and went back to ski boots. In '94 or something they invented "new race method" with 60 degree angles and symetric boards... I went there because I hated the asymetric concept, and I never went back.

The "carve" concept didn't really exist when I started, and it kind of caught me by surprise. Like with skiing and mono-skiing, I just thought that there were those who knew how to do the thing with speed, style and efficiency, then there were beginners. Perhaps eventually another generation will figure out what the edge of the board is really for..

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