Thanks GJS - wow, alot more detail than I expected!
When you say open, do you mean my shoulders are facing the nose of the board too much? As in if I'm traveling north, my shoulders (and face presumably) would be facing north? So that would mean that if I'm traveling north, my shoulders should be facing east as much as possible? I have realized that my weight is typically on my back foot with the exception of when I try to turn quickly - I briefly put my weight on the front foot so I can get the back around quick enough. I think I naturally done this as I'm naturally nervous about going too fast - weight on front foot has typically sent me to higher speeds. From reading things on this forum, it seems that my weight should be on the front foot most of the time and to use the front foot to initiate turns - I have tried to do this but I'm obviously not there yet!
Yes, the picture you posted is a great example. of Open and close. Another way to tho think about it is your board makes a doorway from nose to tail, and your shoulders/hips/knees make the door ( hinge is attached to the tail). We typically want to keep that door closed. When we ride the door can swing open in the direction we are riding. Front shoulder will point out past the nose over the edge you are riding.
Little confused by this - when you say "knee out over our Big toe and moving out and around to the little toe for toe to heel", do you mean both knees? So that would mean my left knee would move to the left (toward little toe on left foot) and my right knee would move to the right (toward little toe on right foot)? I just searched youtube hoping for a video.
We usually refer to this as ELVIS knee. Or youi can feel like you are pointing your heel out to the nose of the board or on heelside the toes toward the nose of the board. The back foot can mimic the front in this but it isn't necessary for what we are working on here.
When you say levering against highback, you mean pushing my calves/back of leg onto the highback of the binding, right? So as I envision this, it seems like I should be half squatting (defensive position in basketball or wall-sit), and using ankles and highback to force right side of my board to lift up and engage left edge of my board at the start of the turn, then utilize the rotation (exercise 1 above) while doing hand/leg exercises to ensure alignment of my body.
That is correct and a good way of visualizing it.
Question on this - you didn't mention how much you use your ankles vs. pushing down on toes. And I'm guessing that when you mean pushing down on toes, you mean pushing my shins into the front of the boot - or the opposite of levering via highback? As I mentioned in my first post, I have historically been relying 100% on my ankles for toeside, which has fatigued the crap out of my calves/feet/leg muscles. So it sounds like it should be a combination of the two (ankles and pushing down on boot)? I tried this a bit but couldn't get a sense of how much of either I should be relying on to sustain the toe-side turn.
Well you can move your ankles at different ankles as compared to your knee. You can move your ankle up and down at the same time you can collapse/straighten your knee. you can also combine this by position of the hips. So as i am lower my body down using knee bend I can either flex my ankle up(ie toes up) to increase the bend in the boot more) or I can extend my ankle down to increase tilt in the board. The bending knee creates downward pressure on my toe edge while the ankle flexing the toes down increases tilt in the board. Or I can flex my ankle upto help keep my board flatter and increase the pressure on my toe side.
Got it - i can see how these exercises can be linked. When you say look through, that is to maintain my body alignment and avoid having my shoulders too open to the front of the board (as you alluded to in point 2 above)?
Looking through means looking through in the direction the nose of the board is headed. This is not the same as looking down the bill. S turns will cause us to need to at time being looking sideways across the fallline, diagonally down it, straight down it, and so on.
P.S. If you can afford it even a half day or a one to two hour private lesson, could help you progress much faster. Definitely something to at least price out. the video really helps.
P.S.2. I would suggest the next time have the person below and ride toward them, but off to the side and past. That way you get to see yourself from multiple angles) Plus it helps us to pick out actual cause and effect movements when the length of time and line of site is more.