Hello fellow skiers!
In my last post I talked about one of my favourite exercises – skiing on the outside ski. I thought I’d follow up with a post about how to use exercises in general, to develop your skiing.
Exercises are invaluable tools for developing your skiing. My experience with my own development and teaching others has taught me that training is most effective when you focus on one thing at a time. When you ski, there is a lot going on, making it difficult to focus on just one thing. Exercises provide a way to break skiing down, allowing us to focus on one skill at a time.
How to use exercises to improve technique
The key to getting the most out of your training is having a clear objective as to what you want to achieve. A good understanding of ski technique will help you identify which skill(s) you need to develop in order to achieve your objectives and the right exercise will enable you to focus on and develop the relevant skill(s).
For example, if your objective is to improve your ability to turn with the lower body, you might use hockey stops as an exercise to develop your steering skills – pivoting and edging.
See my overview of ski technique for a more detailed discussion of technique and skiing skills.
Bringing it all together
The whole point of using an exercise to develop your skills is to improve your skiing.
When going from an exercise back to “normal” skiing, many people revert to how they were skiing before. But we want to bring our improved skills into our skiing.
The key to doing this successfully is to focus on feelings created in the exercise. In the example of hockey stops, you might choose to focus on separation – the hips and upper body facing slightly downhill of the skis – as a result of turning with the lower body.
When it comes to bringing your improved skills into your skiing, my preferred technique is to start doing the exercise focusing on your chosen feeling. After a few turns, transition into skiing “normally”, making sure that you maintain that feeling.
So get out and have a go at some exercises. If you’re having trouble with any part of this process, I recommend that you seek the guidance of an experienced instructor/trainer/coach. Otherwise, stay tuned for more posts, including some more of my favourite exercises.
Interested in skiing with me?
If you are interested in joining me for some on-snow coaching and you are able to make it to Idre Fjäll in Sweden, you can book a session with me through the Idre Fjäll Ski School. Just be sure to ask for James Nunn!
Don’t forget to follow Ski Better!
Please follow Ski Better! by hitting the button on the right side of this page so that you don’t miss out on new posts!