Originally Posted by Zombaco
Carving / Dynamic Turns:
I spent a lot of time working on this, trying to remember everything the vids from snowolf, SA, and snowprofessor said. I tried to keep my range of motion in the 3-8 range, but it's hard to tell for sure without going to the videotape. I seemed to have toeside carves going fairly well. I could see that I had a nice thin 'c' shaped line as I looked at my tracks. But heelside- a different story, every single turn was a wider path, more of a skid- what can I do to improve this? It feels like my shoulders are lined up with the board properly, I'm bending my knees and keeping loose (at least it feels like it). I also have a hard time on my heelside when trying ride flat (as close to flat as I can- slight on edge)- my back foot tends to skew out from behind my front foot (back toes out farther than front toes if this makes sense). Are these two problems related?
Your problems are not related most likely. For the skidded out heelside turn try these two exercises.
1. As you are turning on the heels remember to look across the fall line into the direction you are turning, Progressively raise your toes as you are turning(thinking like ratching your straps moving your toes up a click at a time). Remember to look across the hill and don't get stuck looking down it. Looking down it usually means you are park and riding and no longer actively moving.
2. Second try this small opposing movement. Like making a flutter kick while swimming push or let your front foot push down the mountain, with your back foot pull up the mountain and into the snow. First try this in just a traverse then in your turns after initiating the turn. This will for both heel and toeside turns. The amount of movement can be measure in milimeters.
As for riding flat terrain on your board being slightly on your heels, this could be caused by your shoulders and hips being open to the nose of your snowboard. when you loose pressure management with the snow your spine trys to unwind causing your board to pivot on the snow and becoming perpindicular to the direction you are trying to ride. This can cause a "catch" feeling with the board edge. try not to ride quite as open and with some more knee and ankle bend(flex) so that you manage changes in terrain by keeping your baord in contact and your spine straight without any built up twist.
I also noticed, while looking at my lines, that I had little to no track in the transition between heel and toe, and later realized while riding I kinda do a very small hop transition between edges. Is this the down-weighting / un-weighting I've been reading about? And also, I seen mention of fore and aft movements for carving turns. Can someone explain in a little more detail what is meant by this?
This is a method of up-unweighting. Your cm moves up away from the snow.
Fore/Aft movement means moving toward the nose(Fore) and or toward the Tail(aft). Starting into a turn with your weight more over the front foot and moving back toward the rear foot through the control phase allows you to manage pressure more effectively where it is needed during the phases of the turn (Initiation, Control(apex), and finish). If your try this movement try not to let your weight shift all the way back to the tail but instead feel like it is starting over the front foot and moving back to slightly back of center toward the rear foot on the board. Exercise to practice this movement or nose/tail stands, nose/tail manuals, pendulming, and riding nose heavy and then tail heavy while still trying to do s-turns.
I get a sense that the up / down motion for dynamic turns is much like pumping a half pipe on a skate, but instead of using to transitions to gather speed on a pipe, you're using the carves to gather speed? Is this a proper analogy?
It is a good way to think about it. The following describes first the CM is doing at the begining or initiation of a turn and then through the control phase of the turn( the round part of a C)/
Up-unweighting - the riders CM moves up and away from the snow. During the turn the rider leg Flex increases(lowering CM toward the board), at the finish of the turn the rider extends up moving CM away from the snow.
Down-unweighting - the riders CM move down toward the snow. During the the turn the riders legs Extend(pushes) causing the CM of mass to move away from the board. At finish of turn the rider lowers back down towards the snow.
Retraction - The rider pulls the board up toward their CM. CM keeps the same distance from the snow. At intiation the riders legs pull the board up toward the riders CM.
So I attempted and landed my first jumps of any kind over the holidays, and was pretty stoked to pull some off. I concentrated on mainly straight airs off park jumps (as very few side hits existed at the time). Getting used to popping off the lip was a lot of fun, and then I stepped it up by going switch... and landing it first try and the only landing switch. Pumped to say the least. I also attempted a few 1s but only landing two (1 FS and 1 BS). This was the last 3 days of my trip and my legs were pretty beat by then and I just didn't have the energy fully commit to it. Enter painful landings... haha. Anyway, I wanted to know when a good time is to start attempting grabs? Should I master 1s first? Get better at popping higher first?
You can start trying grabs as soon as you start straight airs. Remember when grabbing the board you bring the board uptoward you not bend down and grab the board. That later movement can through you off axis in the air.
I saw in another thread about flicking the hips for 1s more so then a wind up. I'll be trying this out soon. Makes a lot of sense.
So for 3 days a friend that is regular footed started her first time snowboarding. She took lessons the first day, and my friends and I took turns helping her learn the next 2. Bonus for me being goofy is that it forced me to learn switch. By the end of her 3rd day, I could link my switch turns down the Schoolyard bunny slope, but definitely took some shots on the tailbone trying to learn (I always fall back). My problem is I seem to get tunnel vision riding switch, looking only at my nose, or legs, or one turn ahead. Then BAM! Edge caught and I'm flying. Is this normal? I guessing my vision will open up more with more time spent?
Yes, when people are concentrating on riding switch they tend to look down at their feet to make sure they are making the movements and forget all about where they are going. To fix this seperate the movements you want to make into 4 reference parts 1 - across the hill, 2- diagonal down the hill 3 - Straight down the hill, 4 - Diagonal down the hill: This can also be used as reference for where to look and where the nose of your board should be pointing: see pic