Thanks for the replies and advice everyone. I really appreciate it. And realize I need to not be so hard on myself with the ice. Today started out like a nightmare, no control, no confidence, braking all the time, afraid I was going to take another bad fall like I did earlier in the week so I sat in the lodge mopping for an hour. Than smacked myself out of it and forced myself to go back out there. Basically I just wanted to get back to the bottom of the half pipe so I could watch some more runs, made it there eventually, not happy. After all the sessions were done, and getting ready to leave I start talking with this older guy on a snowboard who was apparently one of the officials. He asked me how things were and I told him horrible, but that I'm a beginner, so I'm not handling the ice well. He offered me a piece of advice, not having seen me ride at all. Told me to really sit into it more. Keep the upper body straight and just sit my butt down more toward the board, knees bent. Even told me to do it, just standing there. Had me compare my ankle mobility while standing up straight vs a knees bent sit down position more, and yeah, it is way easier to move my ankles when I am sitting down into it. I was kind of amazed, because here was a guy that didn't know me at all, and in the matter of a few minutes he gave me some advice and had me try movements that demonstrated the advice. He was an older guy who has been snowboarding for 25 years.
So my wife and I went for two more runs and even though it was still the same ice out there, I actually felt more comfortable trying to do what the guy said. It made a huge difference. On the steep parts I had to brake mostly anyway, but I went from 90% of the time breaking, to 50% of the time breaking, this is a huge change of speed. I'm sure I knew about this proper form before and did it, but I don't think I was really aware of it.
Definitely because of the ice I was tensing up and standing to tall and not bending the knees to absorb. And I've never heard about the sitting into the board, that is a great way to think about it. And really it looks like what most of the people just riding straight are doing. I still find it tough to ride mostly straight while switching edges. But thinking about this form, I can at least imagine it happening now.
Hellude, I'll take your advice on the lean, that will hopefully help with keeping my knees bent.
Snowolf, you're right, I am really hard on myself. I guess part of me just feels, that because I'm older, I'm so behind on the sport and I just want to get better so much faster.
Hobomaster, just to give you an idea of scale, I didn't want to go all out on the icy trails. Just ride a normal pace, basically not be a hazard skidding sideways for everyone to try to avoid.
Last edited by gravityhomer; 03-09-2011 at 11:00 PM.