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Help w/ 32 (mph that is...)


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Started skiing the course last fall, went to a Mike Suyderhoud clinic in June, and am now struggling with connecting the dots between what he told me and what I read on this forum and in the tech articles. Sometimes things feel easy and work great, lately it has been a struggle. Any suggestions on what I can do to improve would be greatly appreciated!


6'3" 195 lbs

67" Theory, no wing

all passes @ 15 off

started @ 28mph, can run 30 mph pretty consistently, 32 mph seems like a whole other world!


Yes, yes, we are the only lake left in the US that doesn't allow inboards; we ski behind a Hydrodyne (in video) and several new Dyna-Skis.


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Before I even started the video, I knew the three things I was going to suggest you work on.


1) Body position.

2) Body position.

3) Body position.


Achieving a stacked position behind the boat is the hardest and most important thing for an intermediate skier like yourself. Once you truly get that, shortening the rope comes very soon.


Practice on shore at least as much as on the water. Tie a handle to something sturdy and play around with straightening your arms, bending your knees, and NOT bending at your hips. Shoulder position should be as square to the "boat" as you can manage while still having your belly button point in the direction you're trying to go. At some point you'll find a spot where you feel very powerful and stable, and every muscle you've got is lined up to resist the "boat."


And then it will only take about 30 dedicated practice sessions to translate that to the water...


Welcome to Ball of Spray and HAVE FUN!


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I'll add this... Hold your lean until it is time to turn. At speeds under 34 mph, you can't let off your lean early. You need to generate more speed across the wake by staying down in your lean longer. Think of it like this... "Bump, bump, smooth, turn"


Be patient out of your turn, establish a stacked position to get ready to lean on.

Start your lean in harmony with the boat's increasing force against you.

Increase your lean and effort as the boat's force increases as you move inward towards the boat's path.

Feel (don't look at) the first wake "Bump". Maintain your lean.

Feel the second wake "Bump". Maintain your lean.

Feel about a ski's length of the "Smooth" water past the second wake. Still maintaining your lean.

Now, "Turn."


"Bump, bump, smooth, turn"


If you do this, you will have more momentum and an earlier path to the next turn.

At first you will feel like you are going too fast, but you are not. That speed is your friend. With that speed, you can edge-change sooner and over to a deeper angle for the turn. You will have the speed to support a more aggressive angle in the turn. Thus, your ski will turn better. Also, you should be less likely to have slack.


One thing to point out. You don't want to add effort/angle/lean past the center line of the boat's path. Simply maintain what you have. Adding effort/lean past the center line of the boat's path will make you sort of catch up with the boat and shorten the distance between you and the boat. This equals slack. Also, when you wait to turn by riding on top of a flat ski, you are creating slack. That's why "Bump, bump, smooth, turn" works. You don't have time to wait to turn. You lean until it is time to turn. The edge change is both the start of the turn and the end of the lean - nothing in between.


Once you start to tackle 22 off and 28 off, you start to adjust to a different strategy and don't lean quite so long. But for now, 30, 32, 34... "Bump, bump, smooth, turn."


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I think you run that pass pretty easy. I agree with what is said above. Need to learn to get more stacked.


I am not sure I totally agree with @ToddL trying to get you to pull longer. If it works great but I say be stacked to the second wake and then change edge softly. When you change edge try to not let the handle out much at all and very slowly. If Todd's was works great. If not try it my way.


I assume that Mike Suyderhoud did not tell you to get stacked. All kinds of move your center of mass in the direction of travel….


If you straighten your legs your center of mass will be over your bindings and you will be stacked.


I am sorry, I hold Mike in very high regards in terms of the history of the sport but his coaching is goofy. I really hate to say this publically but I would never recommend his coaching to anyone I liked.


Nothing wrong with the Hydrodyne. Old School is cool!


Where is that lake?


BABE’S ★ California Ski Ranch ★ Connelly ★ Denali ★ Goode ★ KD Skis 

MasterCraft ★ MasterLine ★ PerfSki ★ Radar ★ Rodics Innovation 

Reflex ★ S Lines ★ Stokes

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Thanks for all of the advice so far; much appreciated!


We are 20 minutes outside of Omaha; if any ballers come this way, let us know and we'd be happy to pull you, old school!


I worked on body position and getting stacked all spring and then went to Mike's clinic. I specifically asked him about how I work on keeping my hips up while trying what he was telling us. His response was "it didn't matter, don't worry about keeping your hips up".


This morning I went back to the things I was working on before the clinic, as well as advice from above, and things felt much better. Thanks again!

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In my experience, "hips up" seems to slightly confuse some people. By over-focusing on pushing the hips up, some people end up in a really awkward position with no leverage. They sort of look like they're in the right position, but they are standing almost straight up and not able to maintain a good direction across the wakes.


That's why I prefer to talk about stacking everything up and getting all your muscles lined up. Hips up is a consequence of this, but not everyone ends up with a Lucky-Lowe style where your hips are noticeably forward. You have to find the efficient stacked position that works with your body mechanics.

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Stacked is easier to "get" when you think of it in relationship to your chin. Your chin should never be ahead of your hips. In most of that video, it's above your front knee. If you try to put your chin in the correct place, the hips typically will cooperate and go where they are meant to.


FWIW.........even Suyderhoud's proteges Marcus and Terry are very stacked now days.

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I thought I recognized McCabe's sweet ride. Great boat.


I think the course may look narrow because of the location of the pylon at the back of the boat. Similar to filming from an inboard from the very front of the open bow.

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