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Old 11-29-2010, 12:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Need help with backside carves

Hi Guys,

I've been riding since 1990 but only average about 8 days/season. I basically learned to ride on race boards with a hard boot setup and angles in the high 40's (I even rode a season or two on the asymmetrical boards). I've spent the past 12 or so seasons on a freeride setup and switched to a duck stance last year and loving it.

Back then I was taught to press my back knee into the front one, and use my hips to initiate and complete turns (some upper body as well). The race setup works really well for armpits-to-the-ground carving but those days are long gone.

Anyway, my frontside turns come easily to me with the freestyle/freeride setup. I can't really explain what I do, but my upper body is relaxed and in line with the board at all times; i just dig the edge into the snow and it seems to turn all on its own. I can even apply enough pressure and keep my balance to carve a complete 360 if I have enough speed.

I've had problems adjusting my backside turns to the new way of riding though. My turns are much wider, and I can barely get the board parallel with the mountain before I've exhausted myself and turn frontside, which is the only side I can use to speed-check without interrupting a carve (by essentially riding up the hill). My riding basically devolves into short frontside carves and long, exhaustive backside ones.

I've read some things about torsion and using the flex of your board to carve, but I can't really figure out what this means. Do I basically think about lifting my toes and digging my heels into the snow? Does it involve doing so to my front foot before my back one? It seems to me that the inherent problem is that I can angle my board a lot farther into the hill on my toe edge (because I have knees!) so turns are faster and more controlled.

Any help is appreciated!

doron

Last edited by doron; 11-29-2010 at 12:39 PM.
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Old 11-29-2010, 12:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Frontside = Toeside / Backside = Heelside ???
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cifex View Post
Frontside = Toeside / Backside = Heelside ???
Yes, my bad!
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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More highback angle / lean? Sounds to be as if you are not putting enugh angle on it.

Go faster. :P
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I second that: Try maxing out the forward lean on your highbacks. The nature of going duck is the issue, as now you cannot project that lead hip as easily as before.
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:30 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Thanks guys, I'll definitely give that a shot.

I just read a piece on sidecut radius that talks about flexing the board to shorten a turn radius, but I still can't figure out which kind of "flex" they're talking about.
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Old 11-29-2010, 02:04 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doron View Post
Thanks guys, I'll definitely give that a shot.

I just read a piece on sidecut radius that talks about flexing the board to shorten a turn radius, but I still can't figure out which kind of "flex" they're talking about.
They mean squeezing your knees toward each other. I personally have never been able to consciously make use of the technique, but many far more accomplished riders find it useful. If your not already on there, alpinecarving.com and bomberonline.com have lots of great articles on these topics. Some are written with a hardbooter in mind and some with softboots and more normal stance, so you need to be mindful of that.
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Old 11-29-2010, 02:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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As others said, more aggressive highback...you didnt mention what binding you were using, if its a burton it likely doesnt need much forward as they typically are pretty aggressive by default.

As for technique, you can always just try the sitting down technique. By squatting down like your sitting down on a chair you will instinctively push down with your heels and your toes come up.
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Old 11-29-2010, 02:58 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Yeah, most carving articles actually seem to suggest against keeping your body parallel with the board. I'll keep looking out for soft boot guides, thanks!

I just bought myself a Never Summer SL since I'm moving more towards all around freestyle riding but my boots and bindings are from my old setup. I have Salomon SPX90 bindings and a pretty stiff Salomon boot. I cut back on the forward lean thinking it would help me land tricks but I guess I can play with it depending on what part of the mountain I'm at. I remember my feet falling asleep once when I had too much lean but will experiment next time I'm on a hill.
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Old 11-29-2010, 03:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I wouldnt think it would put your foot to sleep, usually thats from overtightening of your boots/bindings.
Forward lean really burns your legs and knee's though the more aggressive you go...
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