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-   -   Need carving help (video of me riding) (

pwol 12-24-2012 01:03 PM

Need carving help (video of me riding)
Just some background info:

- Vid is from my first day of the season so I'm stiff / rusty / tired from waking up at 5am and driving 3 hours
- I'm in the red jacket
- I think this is the 8th day I've ever been on a snowboard

If you just want to mute/ just watch my parts go to:

0:25-0:47 (I think this was the first run of the season actually)
1:45-2:00 (you can see me infront, I tried making quicker turns)

I'm driving up again on Wednesday and would really appreciate any comments/tips/suggestions/things to focus on.

I posted this in the video forum, and a poster said I'm using my back foot to rudder the board. I only took one lesson and they never even got to linking turns, just falling leaf... so I learned the rest by myself and never had anyone show me how to properly carve.

oh also, my board (NS SL) has a slight setback, would that play any factor in making me rudder the board more or is it just my lack of skill? I'll go look over the board and post the measurements/how I have my bindings set up to make sure its ok.


Donutz 12-24-2012 01:38 PM

First, what you're doing isn't "carving". What you're trying to do is link turns. "Carving" is when you're up on your edge during turns and leaving only a thin carved line on the snow. This doesn't mean you're doing it wrong, just means you're using the wrong term for what you're doing.

As to "ruddering", that happens when your weight is on your back leg. It's the number one problem beginners have and it's probably responsible for 90% of your problems. There are times when you do want your weight back of center, but during turns on a green run is not one of them. Your weight should be slightly forward of center so that the front half of the board is in control. There are all kinds of videos and instructions on the forum in the "Tips, Tricks & Coaching" section. Read up on proper weight distribution and edge control during turns.

aiidoneus 12-24-2012 02:53 PM

33 Attachment(s)
It is difficult to see everything that is going on. The main parts where we get to see you, it is really only the board. However, it is very obvious from there that right now you are getting very little edge angle. That mixed with the video of your legs shows that you are not bending your knees much.

The good news is it doesn't look like you are riding open, in other words you shoulders and body look to be in line with the board.

I could be wrong here, and I am only going from what I saw in the video (Snowolf will probably correct me). But it looks like you have very little edge angle for even skidded turns. Before working on carving it might be helpful to work on producing more edge angle with inclination. The means how much you lean the body in the turn. The next step would be bring more angulation into the turn.

Without a solid edge angle, carving just isn't possible. Some tactics I have used to help with edge angle:

Hockey Stop - Hop

On terrain you are comfortable with, side slip down the hill on your heel side to start. Stop hard by flexing your lower joints. After you come to a stop, get your balance and hop 3 times. This helps develop a solid edge angle, and balance on the edge. Repeat with the toeside edge.

Pour Water From Boots

Imagine your boots are filled with water. As you begin each turn, try and start to empty the water out by pouring it from the top of the boot. Near the end of the turn slowly stop pouring it out. Toeside, try and pour it from the front. Heelside, from the back.

A fun challenge:

Sponsor Turns

Imagine that along the sides of the run are a bunch of spectators. You just got a sic contract to sponsor Never Summer boards. With each turn, your goal is to show off the bottom of your board.

jml22 12-24-2012 06:49 PM

Just wait for Snowolf's explanation :D

MGD81 12-24-2012 07:14 PM


I would disagree with some of the comments made, for instance, Donutz, I dont agree that ruddering is caused by weight being aft. I have actually seen many occasions when people have their weight center and fore and still use the mass from thier upper body as a counter weight to push out their back foot. I will agree that the OP is using his back foot to make toe turns though.

I also dont buy that he should be working on inclination, he already does a shit ton of that on his toe side. It is correct that there is not much edge angle, but the way he is riding he doesn't need any, he is using the small radius skidded turns to control his speed, and doing a pretty good job of it. Also, what is the goal of the hockey stop drill? I can flex my ankles knees and hips fully and get no more edge or lose no more speed. FYI sponsor turns allow your base to be seen from up the hill, not the side.

Prescription for change:

First off I would work on that toeside posture, you are a little crooked meaning your hips are still a little over the center of the board, meaning less control especially on steeps. There could be a few causes, stiff boots, too much pushing down on your toes, or just not squeezing your butt cheeks together enough. You should be looking at a straight line from knees through hips to shoulders, and your back should be vertical, not slightly inclined like it is now. (watch yourself bending over in the video)

Second I would work on some front knee steering on your toes to stop the ruddering. Get yourself to some easy green terrain, point the board down the hill flat based and get it to turn onto your toes by flexing only your front knee, no use of the arms or shoulders, in fact if you hold them out over the tip and tail of your board you will know if your doing it right because they wont move from that position during the turn. If your front hand moves over your heel edge, you ruddered.

Third, there is no flexion and extension in your riding, Im too tired to write any more, but take a lesson and work on some cross over turns, standing tall for edge change, lowering during the control and finish phases of the turns.

As always, working with an instructor who can give you feedback after every run will always be more beneficial than an internet post.

Hope this helps, happy shredding.

aiidoneus 12-24-2012 10:58 PM

33 Attachment(s)
On second view of the video, yes there is more inclination on the toeside. Not much on the heel side, instead a lot of bending at the waist. The more advanced version of sponsor turns is to show up hill, not the initial one. Not everyone can initiate their carve early enough in the turn to show up hill. As snowolf often points out, you need to complete the turn, and come up hill slightly to do this.

As for hockey stops, I just find it is a good way for people to learn to get on edge, and develop some balance while on edge. It is sometimes difficult for people to realize the mechanics of flexing the ankles and knees properly for angulation.

Granted I am only a level 1 casi instructor, so I have a lot to learn about teaching others.

cb1021 12-25-2012 03:54 AM

1. Go to a steeper hill.
2. Put more weight on front foot.
3. Stick your head towards the bottom of the hill, attack it.

You need more speed to feel what a carve feels like. Also carving is really not a big deal imo. You just ride however you want. All this "proper" carve, slide, S, J turn, skidded turn, whatever stuff is okay on paper. But on the slope, you gotta have fun and become one with your board and the slope.

Btw some sections of the slope in the video looks steep enough to feel the carve, but you keep braking. ALso you are not even TURNING. You are riding in a straight line and wagging your tail brah. TURN more, and stop braking ("Ruddering")

I'm suggesting the steeper hill because some riders need to be whipped and forced by the terrain to improve.

Also if you set your bindings with a duck stance instead of directional stance, you will be able to carve more because with a ducked stance, you will need to lean more, thus using your body weight to set the edge. Right now, you are not even turning at all so I can't really see how you are making a turn, period.

Snow Hound 12-25-2012 04:44 AM

What you're aiming for is:

Rather than:

ig88 12-25-2012 08:02 AM


Originally Posted by Donutz (Post 556505)
First, what you're doing isn't "carving". What you're trying to do is link turns. "Carving" is when you're up on your edge during turns and leaving only a thin carved line on the snow. ......

This has been mentioned at least a few times in the forum and I think I understand what it is all about. I don't have any problems agreeing with that.

But do we have to examine the snow trails to see if a thin line was really left behind, before we define a ride as "carving" or just some linked turns? Or can we already tell by the body form and from the shear speed at which someone is allegedly "carving"?

aiidoneus 12-25-2012 08:54 AM

33 Attachment(s)

Originally Posted by ig88 (Post 556700)
This has been mentioned at least a few times in the forum and I think I understand what it is all about. I don't have any problems agreeing with that.

But do we have to examine the snow trails to see if a thin line was really left behind, before we define a ride as "carving" or just some linked turns? Or can we already tell by the body form and from the shear speed at which someone is allegedly "carving"?

The body position and movements are more important than the actual line left behind. Regardless of the line, a balanced position, proper timing and coordination and solid edging skills will result in a much more stable, and IMHO fun ride.

For me, looking back at my line while riding the lift (assuming you can see it, and it is actually your line) really helps tell you what you are doing right and doing wrong. Seeing that on my toeside I have a nice clean pencil line shows me that I am working in the right direction.

Early on, I struggled with heelside turns. Looking at my line, I had a clean line on entry. But as the heelside carve progressed it began to widen and looked more like a skidded turn. At first I didn't know why, after talking to other riders and asking on the forum, I learned I was not shifting my weight aft as the turn completed and it was washing out.

If you just want to ride, no it really doesn't matter what you call it. So many people already call linking turns carving. If you want to progress, yes it matters. If you can't distinguish between the types, how can you ask questions. Skidded turns have their place, carving is just one technique of many.

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