Jump to content
Note to New Members ×

Newbie Question: Shaving Off Speed


Mord

Recommended Posts

I'm quite new to carving. Haven't gotten a alpine setup yet and I have only carved on my softboot and all mountain board. One problem I often encounter is that I go too fast down the slope. As I'm just learning to carve, I make mistakes when I go too fast, but can't find a way to slow down without letting off the edge. How do you shave off speed while on edge?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When you really get the board on edge you can turn inside that radius.  But yeah, if you don’t want to skid, then you control your speed by the completeness of the turns (and by the tightening the turn radius; getting the board really up on edge).  Another hint for beginners is that when you are starting your run, make your initial carve at a lower speed than you would normally turn-in at.  Once you loose control of your speed you’ve really gotta work hard to slow down again unless you want to skid.

 

Mord... you aren’t based in Norway (or Scandinavia) by any chance?

Edited by st_lupo
Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, unfortunately... I live in Ohio but snowboard both in China and over here. I travel around a lot.

So basically I turn in tighter and make more complete turns to slowly rub off speed using friction? Right. Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Mord said:

No, unfortunately... I live in Ohio but snowboard both in China and over here. I travel around a lot.

So basically I turn in tighter and make more complete turns to slowly rub off speed using friction? Right. Thanks!

Read the norm... http://www.bomberonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/The-Norm-Part-I.pdf  be the norm...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

33 minutes ago, Mord said:

No, unfortunately... I live in Ohio but snowboard both in China and over here. I travel around a lot.

So basically I turn in tighter and make more complete turns to slowly rub off speed using friction? Right. Thanks!

Ohio, where at? I used to live in Xenia when I was a little nipper.

The whole Scandinavian question was just because of your handle.  Mord makes for an interesting translation into Swedish or Norwegian. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

31 minutes ago, Mord said:

So basically I turn in tighter and make more complete turns to slowly rub off speed using friction? Right. Thanks!

Ideally, you are not using friction (that would be skidding), but if you are able to hold the arcing carve until heading back uphill, you will be surprised how quickly speed is checked and control maintained.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Practice on more mellow slopes. As you are finding, when you lock into a carve, you accelerate dramatically compared to skidding or slarving. Slopes you have typically ridden before you started carving will likely be too steep for now. As you progress, you can carve on steeper and steeper slopes.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 2/15/2018 at 5:25 PM, st_lupo said:

The whole Scandinavian question was just because of your handle.  Mord makes for an interesting translation into Swedish or Norwegian. :)

Ouch. I... did not search the translation before I choose this. Now I'm called "murder" for anyone from Germany, Czech, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, or Poland.

I live near Cleveland and the lake, so.…yeah.

 

On 2/15/2018 at 6:38 PM, Buell said:

Slopes you have typically ridden before you started carving will likely be too steep for now

Right. I guess I'll switch to a mellower slope. Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One description I've seen here before for what you're trying to do is "ribbon candy" turns. 

That candy is probably a little exaggerated, but it should give you an idea of the turn shape you want: rather than ending the turn and transitioning to the other edge while you're still pointed downhill, hold the turn until you're headed across the hill, or even slightly uphill, and then transition to the other edge. 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK, so as a fellow carving noob I can tell you that the "complete your turn" is exactly how you can make sure you won't build too much speed. It is also completely unhelpful because you might complete your turn and come to a complete stop. Other than understanding how a turn works it doesn't help you CONTROL your speed through a SERIES of turns (which is really what you want).

 

There is some finesse here - how much across or up the hill you go definitely controls the speed. Too much and you stop, too little and you accelerate to face melting speeds before you blink.

That being said I've found out that if the INITIATION of the turn is good the rest of it is almost magically controlled! I know, blew my mind too. I am not at the level that I should be dispensing carving advice but I found that focusing on getting the turn initiation smooth (and not skidding at the top of the turn) has helped me a lot with completing my turn, having a real carve (not a slarve), and controlling my speed. How to do that every time? Working on that.... 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Completing the turn and coming to a complete stop (AKA J-turn) is an excellent first step.  It will show you how much you are not completing your turns.  As most beginners observe, if you just do lazy S-turns down the hill without skidding, you will soon be travelling mach schnell as you are no longer scrubbing speed with each turn.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

3 hours ago, erazz said:

There is some finesse here - how much across or up the hill you go definitely controls the speed. Too much and you stop, too little and you accelerate to face melting speeds before you blink.

 

Yeah. I reckon more practice will help me judge it better. Thanks.

 

2 hours ago, Neil Gendzwill said:

Completing the turn and coming to a complete stop (AKA J-turn) is an excellent first step. 

I've been trying that earlier this season. It doesn't help me with the transition between the turns though, which is why I started carving (or try to, at least) full S-turns. Thanks for the advice though!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Skidding at some point is essential for speed control, no matter how much you complete the turn. At the same time, you don't want to spoil the majesty of a fully committed, fully carved turn. So don't skid during the turn, skid FIRST. A little release of the edge as you come across the hill will allow you to dive into the turn with full commitment. It's the equivalent of an "abstem" in skiing - the board just turns uphill slightly in a little skid, to set up the carve at a happy speed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, Jonny said:

Skidding at some point is essential for speed control, no matter how much you complete the turn. At the same time, you don't want to spoil the majesty of a fully committed, fully carved turn. So don't skid during the turn, skid FIRST. A little release of the edge as you come across the hill will allow you to dive into the turn with full commitment. It's the equivalent of an "abstem" in skiing - the board just turns uphill slightly in a little skid, to set up the carve at a happy speed.

Maybe I am misunderstanding. If you choose a slope within your abilities, skidding is not necessary for speed control. Completed turns will keep your speed in check.

You will, depending on you ability and your hill, encounter steeper pitches that are above your ability on an otherwise perfect slope for you to practice carving. When that happens, yes, you skid some or you make slarved turns or you practice making turns knowing you can do 2 or 3 before you need to pull up and reset. When the pitch mellows out enough or the run widens out enough again, you can resume making carved turns.

The issue for me with not skidding during the turn, but before it is that carving is about successfully flowing from one turn to the next. The time before a turn is the transition and the time before the transition is the previous carve. There is only turn, transition, turn, transition, turn and so on. Pushing the edge out just before the transition would put me out of position to fully commit to the downhill rail during the transition. The quicker and earlier I can flip to that downhill rail, the better my speed control on steeper slopes.

  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Buell said:

Maybe I am misunderstanding. If you choose a slope within your abilities, skidding is not necessary for speed control. Completed turns will keep your speed in check.

You will, depending on you ability and your hill, encounter steeper pitches that are above your ability on an otherwise perfect slope for you to practice carving. When that happens, yes, you skid some or you make slarved turns or you practice making turns knowing you can do 2 or 3 before you need to pull up and reset. When the pitch mellows out enough or the run widens out enough again, you can resume making carved turns.

The issue for me with not skidding during the turn, but before it is that carving is about successfully flowing from one turn to the next. The time before a turn is the transition and the time before the transition is the previous carve. There is only turn, transition, turn, transition, turn and so on. Pushing the edge out just before the transition would put me out of position to fully commit to the downhill rail during the transition. The quicker and earlier I can flip to that downhill rail, the better my speed control on steeper slopes.

Yeah,  what Buell said.If you are riding on a slope within your ability and you don't start your first turn with outrageous speed, you shouldn't have to skid. Ever.  (We're talking free carving here).  At a certain point you are going to start thinking "gosh darn this slope is too slow when I am riding full C carves I need a steeper slope".  Then comes "Gosh darn my mountain is too slow, I need a faster board.". Then comes "Fire and tarnation my bank account is too empty to buy all the boards I want, I need to start selling blood on the weekends"... and on and on...

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 hours ago, st_lupo said:

Yeah,  what Buell said.If you are riding on a slope within your ability and you don't start your first turn with outrageous speed, you shouldn't have to skid. Ever.  (We're talking free carving here).  At a certain point you are going to start thinking "gosh darn this slope is too slow when I am riding full C carves I need a steeper slope".  Then comes "Gosh darn my mountain is too slow, I need a faster board.". Then comes "Fire and tarnation my bank account is too empty to buy all the boards I want, I need to start selling blood on the weekends"... and on and on...

Sure, for those of us who have been riding hardboots more or less exclusively since 1990 or so, or who are really athletic, your advice and Buell's is excellent - even at my advanced age and girth it's pretty much how I ride except on truly hairy terrain. But this OP is a new carver and since he's coming from soft boots he's undoubtedly used to riding much steeper slopes than a new carver would or should. So how is he going to get the sensation of a full carve on anything more than a super-flat piece of terrain? Sure, he can maybe do three or four fully--finished turns before the speed gets ridiculous and he finishes his J-turn with a full stop, and that's exactly what I see a lot of pretty good riders doing - whenever half a dozen hardbooters get together they make a few hero turns and then sit down and watch everyone else make three  or four hero turns. That's not alpinism and it makes me ill.

The purpose of my suggestion is to give him a chance to ride a full run without a slarve or stivot or a mid-turn check, and it focuses on the really big difference between carving a softboot board and an alpine board - namely, we commit to the new edge WAY earlier - in fact on the big turns you're advocating we'll commit before we're even perpendicular to the fall line. The little check prior to the turn is followed by a hard edge set on the uphill edge with the board pointing across the hill or even uphill a little, which in turn is followed by a full transition onto the new inside edge. If you've risen up to set that initial edge you can drop straight down and cross-through to the new edge, and if you've compressed you'll up unweight instead, but you're getting the full hardboot experience - a carve from 10 o'clock to 2 o'clock at a speed you can maintain, on any slope, all the way down the hill, without the SES/ECES poser's pause. As he gets more confident he'll eliminate the check until it's essentially gone, but in the meantime he's riding the whole mountain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Jonny said:

the SES/ECES poser's pause. 

Pretty strong words!  

I agree that a skid is not a terrible thing.  I'd rather skid than hit something.  But I'd rather not skid and try to eliminate that as much as possible.  I flat-out sideslipped the first 30' of a polished Aztec while posing in Aspen this year - I didn't have the cajones to try to carve that!  Kim from Germany carved the whole thing while making it look easy.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

44 minutes ago, Jonny said:

Sure, he can maybe do three or four fully--finished turns before the speed gets ridiculous and he finishes his J-turn with a full stop, and that's exactly what I see a lot of pretty good riders doing - whenever half a dozen hardbooters get together they make a few hero turns and then sit down and watch everyone else make three  or four hero turns. That's not alpinism and it makes me ill.

Shakespearean Actor Johnny?  we meet couple time at the rally.  I recalled we were in awe watching Jorg carving down flying cloud: icy, mogul-y.  I think you put it very eloquently ;-)

Excuse time:
Hahaha... Guilty, except i am just not fit enough to keep going lol(nor am i making hero turn).
When riding in group; teach/learning/admiring/observing that is "ok" IMHO.  When I am by myself usually it's balls to the wall top to bottom.
 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah looking back at how I wrote that, it was definitely before my first coffee.  Apologize for the bombastic tone, but at heart I still stand behind the core of it.  Speed control while carving is such a fundamental skill and I think that demon deserves to be taken head-on, early.  I think that what I disagreed with most was the sentence: "Skidding at some point is essential for speed control, no matter how much you complete the turn."  At best this lacks nuance and should be caveated as a strategy related to beginners and not presented as a blanket statement.  But even then, skidding is a crutch and is just delaying the inevitable, while potentially developing an idiosyncrasy that will need to be addressed in the future.  There are lots of folks hardbooting with a lot of styles but given the (arguably) most common stereotype of the ideal freecarving form,  I would suggest that controlling your speed into the first turn, truly completing the turns, deep angulation, fore/aft weight balance (ie augering in the nose just a tad), and riding on slopes within your capabilities are the essential skills to speed control.  (It's a lot of details to sweat at the start, but this is a sport for nerds). 

Having said that,  it is fine to skid if you need to.  #1 be safe! , #2 develop style and push yourself hard to get better. 

Actually #1 Have fun, #2 be safe, #3 style etc blah blah.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 minutes ago, st_lupo said:

Speed control while carving is such a fundamental skill and I think that demon deserves to be taken head-on, early.

Having said that,  it is fine to skid if you need to.  #1 be safe! , #2 develop style and push yourself hard to get better. 

Actually #1 Have fun, #2 be safe, #3 style etc blah blah.

This is the side of developing carving skill that I am also coming from. It is true though that everyone will learn their own way and this is not necessarily best for all.

I have seen enough riders who "want" to learn to carve but never stop riding runs that are too steep for them to develop their ability or never slow down enough to link carves even on mellow slopes. I have also seen enough longtime carvers fail to develop their speed control skills adequately and they continue to have a little skid some where in their turn or often on their heelside. Its just a carving pet peeve of mine. In truth, if they are having fun, then good for them.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, pow4ever said:

Shakespearean Actor Johnny?  we meet couple time at the rally.  I recalled we were in awe watching Jorg carving down flying cloud: icy, mogul-y.  I think you put it very eloquently ;-)

Excuse time:
Hahaha... Guilty, except i am just not fit enough to keep going lol(nor am i making hero turn).
When riding in group; teach/learning/admiring/observing that is "ok" IMHO.  When I am by myself usually it's balls to the wall top to bottom.
 

 

Yep, that's me - in fact I'm typing this from my office in &^*%$#@ Florida where I teach classical acting all winter. I did get 9 days on snow this year including a couple this past weekend (wearing a T-Shirt on Tuesday!). I remember Jorg on that trail - total sickness - and I remember how I got down it - jump-turns, slarves, sideslips and butt-drags. I also made two fully committed pure hard driving carves one of which nearly blew me off the trail into the trees and the other I sucked around so far that my next turns were switch.

My mockery of the 4-turn-at a time Posse is purely affectionate of course and I happily join in when I can - for one thing it's just nice to have someone to ride with and admire. I certainly remember sitting on the side of the trail at Stratton trying to figure out how CMC was getting from one edge to the other so fast without dislocating something. 

  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Recently Browsing

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...