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Old 01-17-2014, 06:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default dynamic turns - shoulder/body position?

Hey guys,

So i've been trying to do dynamic turns, and I would say I've somewhat succeeded - I can get the up/down motion of the knees and the twisting of the body. It's a little slow on the greens, but i've been trying it on some blacks and blues as well.

However i noticed that after a long dynamic run down the slope, the 2 outer toes on my left foot (i'm regular) goes numb. I was really puzzled as my boots normally fit well, but after a while I realised that when riding dynamically I would twist most of my body to face forwards, including my feet, which is putting a lot of pressure on the outer edge of my front foot. My stance is +15/-15, but i feel like when riding dynamically my feet twist into a +20/-10 ish stance.

My question is - what am I doing wrong, since this is clearly not normal? From what I can see, videos of dynamic riding usually show the rider's body position twisted a little to face the front. Am i right? If so, am I supposed to rotate my torso but not my feet?

Thanks!
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Old 01-18-2014, 02:59 AM   #2 (permalink)
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If you want to try a forward stance, which is with both feet cocked toward the nose as opposed to cocked toward their respective tips, you will take up a naturally aggressive stance that makes it easy to twist into turns. Otherwise just remember to relax your ankles, there isn't any point in fighting your boot, its going to win every time. Keep your lower body movements limited to your hips and knees, that should take the strain off your feet.

Edit; While we're on the subject, if you've just started riding, you might just want to keep your shoulders in line with the board until you've mastered the basics. Which is to say that if you drew a line through your shoulders, it would parallel to the length of your board. Keeping your upper body quiet simplifies learning, which lets you focus on the lower body more. While twisting can add a lot of power to your carves, the technique you will want to use will vary with your gear, style, and terrain, so make sure you read up before you go off learning bad habits.

Last edited by Eat Sleep Shred; 01-18-2014 at 03:42 AM.
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Old 01-18-2014, 03:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThisIsSnow View Post
I would twist most of my body to face forwards
try not to: just your face should face forwards, your body mostly stays pretty much parallel with the direction you're going, and it's you're legs that are used to turn the board. At least that's how I experience it, and as far as I know twisting your upper body doesn't have much use, if any at all, in snowboarding?
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Old 01-18-2014, 06:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elstinky View Post
try not to: just your face should face forwards, your body mostly stays pretty much parallel with the direction you're going, and it's you're legs that are used to turn the board. At least that's how I experience it, and as far as I know twisting your upper body doesn't have much use, if any at all, in snowboarding?
Actually, you can be using your upper body as well. You're right in that when riding in a neutral stance you want to be facing parallel, but in your actual turns you want to be using both your upper and lower body as you get more experienced (depending on the type of turn you're using at the time).

The problem is 'dynamic riding' refers to A LOT of snowboarding. Some dynamic turning techniques involve having your upper body quiet while your feet are doing the turning, but many other turns require your upper body to aid the lower body to help execute that turn faster and with more power.

I *think* what the OP is trying to do is learn to turn using both upper and lower body to get more power and quickness in his turns and in this case he wants to be using both upper and lower body.

You want to be turning like this (either top to bottom or bottom to top... either works):

1) Head looks where you want to go
2) Shoulders and upper body follow head
3) Hips follow shoulders/upper body
4) Knees and ankles and feet follow hips

Basically you should be doing this with non-dynamic turns already, but the key to making your turns more dynamic is to not be passive about it. Don't just turn your head, body, knees etc and wait for the board to follow, if it's not turning fast enough, then power through with your whole body and FORCE that board to turn faster.

Push your shoulders, hips, knees, feet etc into the turn and drive that board with power. That's the difference between a dynamic rider and a beginner rider.

A strong, dynamic snowboarder will use his whole body to power through the turn and a non dynamic rider will go through the motions, but instead of pushing his snowboard to turn, he'll just sit there and wait for it to turn.
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Old 01-18-2014, 07:23 PM   #5 (permalink)
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As Jed said, dynamic snowboarding does not refer to any specific way of riding; there are lots of different ways to get dynamic. I think of dynamic principles as ideas which can be added to your solid basic turns, not a different style of riding (though it will define your style). It's actually a really complex (and fun) subject that is beyond the scope of a simple forum post or youtube video. If you can afford a lesson, get one.

Usually the first dynamic principle I introduce is weighting and unweighting the board through the turns. Typically you'll want to unweight the board for the edge change and actively weight it through the turn for extra turning power. There are different methods of accomplishing this. Either you can unweight by rising up for the edge transition and dropping your weight down while turning (cross over) or unweight by quickly flexing the legs and then slowly extending through the turn for extra power (cross under).

You can also get dynamic with active fore and aft movements. We all know that we have to weight the front foot to get a speedy turn initiation. As you start your new turn, exaggerate this weighting of the front foot, but after the turn is established experiment with the idea of pushing the back foot toward the front foot so that you're actually a bit aft (heavy on the back foot) at the turn's completion -- just don't get so far back that you can't get forward in time to start your next turn. See if you can't bring your turns around faster with this technique.

Timing is extremely important for making these movements effective, so feel the rhythm of your turns and find where these movements fit in. Also, there are many other ways to get dynamic than just these, and they can be used in conjunction with each other, or in isolation.

Edit: Effective dynamic riding techniques can be performed in any normal, functional stance, forward or duck. If you always find yourself wanting to open your shoulders/hips and rarely/never ride fakie, you might just want to consider changing your binding angles to something that is more comfortable/better suits your style.

Last edited by stillz; 01-18-2014 at 07:35 PM. Reason: Didn't address OP's question
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Old 01-19-2014, 11:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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thanks for the really helpful replies, guys!

I guess my idea of "dynamic riding" was limited by a youtube video (might have been snowolf's) that i watched, talking about how your upper body moves down the fall line in a fairly straight line while your lower body twists and you flex your knees accordingly (sort of like the "Tall and Small" example in one of your blog articles, Jed )

all this talk made me realize that my body position is a separate issue from dynamic riding. I've only been on a snowboard for 10 days so far (the first 3 of which were wasted falling all over without proper instruction), and i'm probably facing forward on blue/black runs because I'm still not used to going sideways at speed. I'm getting into park stuff as well, so I'll continue riding duck and see how it goes.

I'll have to get comfortable with going sideways down blue/blacks first, but I will also practice what stillz/Jed mentioned on greens in the meantime! I've been doing a bit of unweighting and forcing faster turns (i think), but the fore and aft movements is new.
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Old 01-19-2014, 12:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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There's nothing wrong with Snowolf's videos. They're a great introduction, and all the information is accurate. It's just that dynamic riding is such a huge topic to cover in a short video. I could not afford lessons when I started snowboarding, and I learned a lot from Snowolf (what happened to him?) and others from videos and posts on this forum. Now, five years later, I'm going for my AASI Level 2 cert. Thanks everyone!
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Old 01-19-2014, 12:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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If you have only been riding for 10days, I would focus on keeping you upper body quiet and making everything happen from the hips down. Keep your shoulders in line with the board and make your turns happen from the hips down. For a challenge, you can try making tight turns with your shoulders staying lined up with the fall line.
I use my upper body to enhance lower body moves. I have found that when riders bring upper body into the picture too soon, they end relying on it to much.
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Old 01-19-2014, 02:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Oh if you've only had 10 days you're doing great and I wouldn't worry so much about dynamic turning just yet. Just focus on getting your comfort up with basic turning and edge control and getting started with bending and using your knees during turns.

Dynamic turning techniques tend to come in a little later, once you're more comfortable with edge control and have gotten more used to using your knees while keeping your whole body lined up properly during turns (shoulders, hips, knees, ankles etc).

Right now you're likely in the middle of that pain in the butt phase that every beginner goes through where their instructor will say "bend your knees!" and you'll say "wtf, but I thought I was bending my knees!" while he responds "bend them more!"

Ah... good memories.
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Old 01-20-2014, 06:20 PM   #10 (permalink)
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i wasn't criticizing wolf's videos - it's more like I got a very narrow idea of the concept because I didn't look it up more. I still have much to learn

Quote:
Originally Posted by jlm1976 View Post
when riders bring upper body into the picture too soon, they end relying on it to much.
that was me in my first 2-3 days of riding - i had no concept of torsional flex on the board, and I was pretty much throwing my upper body into heel/toe traverses. Then I discovered this forum + youtube + everything else on the internets.

i'm in pretty much the same situation as stillz, i'm a college student and buying equipment/season pass is pretty much the equivalent of wiping out my savings

But thanks everyone for the responses! I'll take it down a notch and get more comfortable with the standard stance and then take it from there!
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