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It’s painful to have to admit it but after three years of working my butt off trying to eliminate skidding back and forth down the hill I must go back to finding the edge by, again, mastering “The Norm.”

Part of the problem is finding a wide enough run of the proper slope to zero in on good Norms but I have only two choices, i.e. 1.   master Norms to move forward in carving or, 2.  quit trying to carve, sell my carving equipment and go back to skiing occasionally with my grandkids for a few more years before calling it quits altogether. 
Sobering choices but I at least have the mental and physical ability to act on those choices. 

After learning to linkup a few zero skid carved turns in 2005 I lost interest in carving because not one single one of my skiing buddies would join me and carving was too terrain specific. I went back to skiing for ten years. 
 

Never had, nor do I now have, any interest in regular skidding snowboarding. It’s either on edge carving or back to skiing. I’ve done heli-boarding and skiing and, of course, deep pow is fun on both but I prefer skiing in it if I’m fortunate enough to be presented with it. 
 

On the quest for the edge again. 

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Hi @1xsculler, I think I have seen you at Crystal mountain few times, that’s why decided to write my first post here… I can share my experience. I have started riding alpine setup not a very long

Still got the 671 blower and Weind manifold with bird catch scoop lol... Very nicely put...  You are surely missed at the Loaf. I enjoy this sport is because I had to really struggle with it (a m

@1xsculler: a few points to consider.   1.  It's too late.  We're halfway through the season already, it's too late to start a strength training program.  Especially if you plan to start doi

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Worst case scenario you start linking a couple turns more down the fall line. After skiing it might actually feel similar. Once you get comfortable with a few of those, you can drive harder to get it more across the fall line, even on narrower trails.

Don't beat yourself up too badly. After an injury and a couple years off I am coming back well below my former ability. I work on certain skills, but I also realize I'm out on the hill and having a good time regardless. Maybe that translates. Have fun!

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@1xsculler   I'll mentally keep you company. Deliberate carving technique practice is part of the start of every trip to the mountains for me. I get rusty with the long gaps between holidays.

Essentials:

1/ as long a Green (beginner) slope as I can find.

2/ a familiar board with a short to medium side cut radius. No SCR longer than 12 metres.

3/ You've messaged me in the past that you like the heelside turn I'm making in my avatar. That's a forward facing stance with me tilting the board out of the sides of both feet. I describe that in more detail in a thread about an old board teaching an old dog new tricks.

https://forums.alpinesnowboarder.com/topic/46869-old-dog-learns-new-tricks-from-an-old-board/?tab=comments#comment-477279

For you, be clear in your own mind about the technique differences for tilting the board with heels & toes and not mixing the two. Think about whether your binding setup is at a high enough angle to help you achieve that forward facing stance. Older guys like us are a little less flexible at the waist than those Asian softboot carvers in the thread on Softboot carving worth watching.

In the end your feet and your ears will tell you when you are progressing. You've felt the buzz of a carved turn. Finding it again will take determination and persistence. The refining of it will take the rest of your riding life.

 

Edited by SunSurfer
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Very interesting stuff in the “Old Board” topic/thread, i.e. soles of your feet. I very much appreciate the comments and the company. I feel the stoke coming back already. I hope to hit again on Tuesday. 

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Working on Norms today and finding that bumpy terrain complicates things considerably BUT my quads letting me down is my major problem. I row my racing shell, 40’,  4-6 days/wk but that doesn’t seem to help out, at all,  in the isometric type of exercise of the quads in carving. 
I am going to have to start doing 3x10 of dumbell dead lifts every other day religiously. 

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Proper speed and staying low to the board are huge factors.  Don't complicate trying to carve, with too much speed and staying upright.  Work at slower speeds and if you low-side, no worries, just work on holding the edge at a comfortable speed, while staying low.  Too many try at the onset to carve at mach speeds, on steep slopes, riding semi-upright and unless they are already comfortable carving, they will skid the turns and not complete them smoothly.  I found, I was always trying to go too fast and keep up with the bigger (younger) kids and found I had to slow down and not be so aggressive.

Hope this helps!

Edited by Dusty Bottle
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 Here are a couple of simple things for you to remember:

Soft legs (knees bent and flexy)

Ride small (center of gravity close to the board)

I have a few more, but start with those

good luck,

mario

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Conditions are definitely a factor as well.  On hard icy trails it is always a challenge to keep speed in check while trying to make nice carves.  Not to mention that it is physically demanding.  Don’t beat yourself up.

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Been there, brother. 👍

Soft legs, and ride small/compact. Sage advice from @big mario 

I'd add edge confidence and understanding your conditions.  I have boards that absolutely defy physics on northeast bulletproof. Getting over that hurdle was 80% of the battle. Get comfortable at speed, push 10% past that until that is the norm, push 10% past that, wash, rinse, repeat. 

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1 hour ago, 1xsculler said:

Working on Norms today and finding that bumpy terrain complicates things considerably BUT my quads letting me down is my major problem. I row my racing shell, 40’,  4-6 days/wk but that doesn’t seem to help out, at all,  in the isometric type of exercise of the quads in carving. 
I am going to have to start doing 3x10 of dumbell dead lifts every other day religiously. 

I bike commute, and tow my dog in a trailer (100 lb load) 2 or 3 days a week. Just the bike commuting helped a little bit, but when I added the the dog it really helped my leg strength for carving a lot. I know not everyone is going to tow a big dog to work, but I think any kind of cycling workout with some heavy resistance intervals - hill climbs on road or MTB, or an exercise bike where you do high resistance for part of the workout - would help. 

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2 hours ago, Dan said:

I bike commute, and tow my dog in a trailer (100 lb load) 2 or 3 days a week. Just the bike commuting helped a little bit, but when I added the the dog it really helped my leg strength for carving a lot. I know not everyone is going to tow a big dog to work, but I think any kind of cycling workout with some heavy resistance intervals - hill climbs on road or MTB, or an exercise bike where you do high resistance for part of the workout - would help. 

You are doing it all wrong! Let the dog tow you. Mush! 🤣

Edited by BlueB
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5 hours ago, big mario said:

I forgot to add this link earlier.

Deceptively brutal.

Just started these in anticipation of my return to snow:

https://www.backcountry.com/explore/train-eccentric-leg-strength-for-alpine-skiing

Mario

The eccentric leg blasters really make good sense for carving strength and endurance. 
Thanks for sharing that. 
They might even have the double bonus of making me faster in my boat. 

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2 hours ago, big mario said:

I forgot to add this link earlier.

Deceptively brutal.

Just started these in anticipation of my return to snow:

https://www.backcountry.com/explore/train-eccentric-leg-strength-for-alpine-skiing

Mario

I'm going to do this in the hotel this week in prep for this weekend. It's so freaking warm in Denver?!!

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You dont have to Carve Every turn. You need versatility in your riding being able to carve when its a good place to and being able to slide when you need to.  20 years I have been on Alpine boards now and Not carving is just as fun. Thats why I keep my Coiler all Mountain cause it wont balk at messing around off edge. But when its time to just carve I have to strongly agree  with staying close to the board, being tall or fully extended upwards is when bad things can happen. I rarely have an issue when Im in what we use to call "fetal position" down and close to my board. 

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17 hours ago, 1xsculler said:

BUT my quads letting me down is my major problem. I row my racing shell, 40’,  4-6 days/wk but that doesn’t seem to help out, at all,  in the isometric type of exercise of the quads in carving. 

Assuming your board is appropriate for your weight,  foot size and available terrain, and assuming your bindings are properly configured, there is absolutely no reason why, with your purported level of fitness, your legs should go Fukushima.

Although 40' does seem like a rather short workout.

One of the most common issues for the 'entry level' skier/rider (turning, but not carving turns consistently) is working on the assumption that acquisition of posture leads to the desired outcome, rather than understanding that outcome produces the posture.

In other words, you can configure your bicycle so that you resemble a pro rider, but in no way will that produce proportional results.

In other other words, you're doing it wrong. 

 

Either change your approach on the macro level, or resign yourself to what you have.

 

 

 

Edited by Beckmann AG
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nothing wrong with going back to the "Norm".

I been stuck as an "expert beginner" for a long time....   
taking short cut: speed mask technique flaws...  throwing money/equipment at non-existent problem.
Basically "what not to do" I have done it all lol... 
It was until i took the time and work on the deficiency that i was able to move to semi-competent.
All part of the progression; i just happen to take the long scenic route.
Key point is every time I am out; i am still having a blast: refining/failing/making progress 

ExpertBeginner.jpg

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3 hours ago, Beckmann AG said:

One of the most common issues for the 'entry level' skier/rider (turning, but not carving turns consistently) is working on the assumption that acquisition of posture leads to the desired outcome, rather than understanding that outcome produces the posture.

OH.  MY.  GOD. 

This is money.  Cash money.  I have been coaching a ton of youth basketball in the last couple of years.  Seeing a lot of scrawny 10 to 13 year olds trying to heave up "step back jumpers"  Sigh.

Beckmann nailed it.  A constant source of frustration/stagnation/depression comes from assuming this and behaving accordingly.

 

 

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Thanks much for all of the good info.

Conclusions:

I have many tings to work on.

I can double my time training in my boat but, unless I do a lot of all out sprints which will wreck havoc with my back,

this will do almost nothing for my quads for carving.

My quads failing me is my biggest obstacle at this time therefore, BOTTOM LINE, I must dedicate myself to doing effective exercises for my quads.

 

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58 minutes ago, Lurch said:

Err, that is only a small part of what I read  ^ - may be worth a re-read @1xsculler

Agreed, only a small part BUT absolutely an essential as my quads are limiting my time working on all of the other stuff. 

After reflecting on this a little I now realize why rowing my boat does little for conditioning my quads for carving, i.e. in rowing the quads are used only for pushing your feet away from your body.  When you come back up the slide during the recovery your quads are relaxing in preparation for the drive.  I need to do exercises that stress the quads on the recovery what is what I think is meant by eccentric leg strength.

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Maybe, maybe not...

7 hours ago, Bobby Buggs said:

staying close to the board, being tall or fully extended upwards is when bad things can happen. I rarely have an issue when Im in what we use to call "fetal position" down and close to my board. 

22 hours ago, big mario said:

Soft legs (knees bent and flexy)

Ride small (center of gravity close to the board)

 

6 hours ago, Beckmann AG said:

Either change your approach on the macro level, or resign yourself to what you hav

 

23 hours ago, Dusty Bottle said:

Proper speed and staying low to the board are huge factors.

 

Edited by Lurch
Its not the boards snd its not your quads!
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haahha....  In a ways I am in the same boat as 1xsculler
I know that riding low/small work well.
But boy it take a toll on your body.  I am in my physical "prime" and having a hard time riding all day in that fashion....
Hence I like to ride upright/lazy/dynamic; it give me a chance to "relax" the quad/muscle.

At the expense that:
The timing need to be hasten due to the "stack height".
(same amount of time to make edge transition but that unweight/weighting motion have to travel over "longer distance")
Margin of error decrease as it's a larger movement.  Error tend to cascade and stack.

It just feel more fun to me when there are tiny bit of "unpredictability"/straddle that thin line between in/out of control...

man... i need to be back on the mountain

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