Jump to content

Why is Mapple so good?


ForrestGump
 Share

Recommended Posts

  • Baller

So Charles and I were out skiing yesterday. As some know, he skied with CP when they were growing up and with greats like Mapple, Lowe, Roberge, lived with Jack Travers, etc. I was in the water, I made a mistake at 2, and then was chasing the pass from there til the end. When I set down, he didn't ask what made me make the mistake at 2. He asked me what made me make the mistake at 3, then the mistake at 4, and on and on. When I said, well it was because of what I did at 2, he looked at me like I was speaking gibberish. He went on to ask me why Mapple was so good and why he could come back out today and still clean house? Then he explained it to me. I'll try to paraphrase here. It gave me a new perspective of what we do here.

 

He said that Mapple technically isn't any better than some of the other greats. He said the top 5 open men and women skiers all possess some of the same technical merits. He said what differentiates them is that AM breaks the entire pass down into segments. The pull out, the glide, the turn in, the gate shot, turn 1, behind the boat to 2, turn 2, etc. And when he makes a mistake at one segment, he knows what to do at the next segment to recover. And most importantly, he doesn't then take that initial mistake from segment to segment. His question and explanation was then followed by "Why, after dropping your shoulder in at 2, did you then start making mistake after mistake in order to run the pass out?" To which I had no answer. Exept that it's obvious that I suck! lol

 

He followed it all up with "Now, do you wonder why Nate is as good as he is?" Refer back to what I just told you. He's as close to AM as anyone has been in this regard.

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Baller
@ShaneH - thanks for your post. You've got me thinking about why I ski the way I do, but post the scores I do. I have a pretty good handle on what works and why in slalom, but I struggle to post good scores - miss 35 a lot even after getting into the pass great. Even the best at this sport make a lot of mistakes, but those that can deal with those mistakes, recover the best/quickest, maybe they are the ones that put up the good scores. I feel like I have to ski "perfect" to post a good score. I rarely (read "never") do, though. Think about how little time we get to practice our sport. Even if you ski "a lot" you literally get only minutes actually skiing - you know, 6 16 or 17 second passes, a couple of times per day, blah, blah, blah. It's nothing compared to other sports. So, we have to be very good at dealing with our mistakes. My next 35 where I nail my pull out, then my turn in, then my edge change, then my preturn, turn, hook up only to f-up a couple of buoys later, I'm going to make a "correction" and just run the damn pass.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That is great insight on Mapple. Not compounding mistakes is something that separates the greats in most sports. Jack Nicklaus was the greatest golfer of all time because he almost never compounded his mistakes and didn't beat himself.

 

The challenge in the slalom course is you have very little time to think and it is very easy to try to rush after you make a mistake instead of being patient and doing the right thing. In Mapple's instructional video he shows running passes without much of a pullout for the gate to get used to being narrow and staying patient when that happens. I know when I get late I frequently try to make it up all at once and it kills me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Baller
Someone told me, or there is a video of it, where AM starts his gates shot from the white water at 39 off and runs the pass. That is more than impressive. So, then my questions is; why do we obsess about getting wide on for the gates. Yea, yea, I already know the common answer; I just wonder if we place too much emphasis on the gates.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

@skibug it is in the video I was talking about I forget the title of it but I can track it down. In answer to your question I don't think we put too much emphasis on the gates. A good gate sets you up for the pass and it makes sense to try to get early. If the gate isn't perfect that doesn't mean you can't run the pass that is what the video of AM demonstrates.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Seems that the point he makes is that the "right" gate is the one that puts you in position to turn a good one. I'm interested in the technique. Is he on top of the wakes, or is he to the passenger or driver side when he follows the boat through the gates? If someone can set up the criteria I think I see a new BOS challenge coming. Instead of the Horton long-line challenge, we can have the BOS follow the boat through the gates challenge!
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Baller
OB well put, but at the same time upper end weekend warriors or decent amateurs are ooh so close, but ooh so far from the top level pro's. Same comparison can be made of snow skiers, cyclists, golfer's etc. . . don't forget, millions of people can't even make it through the course let alone work down the line.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Baller
OB, The point of my post wasn't about the difference between an Elite athlete and any of us. But between an elite athlete and mapple. To get people to think about what makes that difference. And to hopefully think about what it takes to make up that difference in our own skiing.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Baller_

What is really sad in our sport is that their are truly other potential athletes out their that possess the same or even better talents then that of our current sports hero's, Andy included. Keep in mind Andy prospered and truly made his mark in the heyday of professional Waterskiing also has carried his name and experience into the industry with success. Today our young skiers have not any real future to warrant taking their game to the highest level and become super stars of the sport. The cost to get their is astronomical and the returns minimal money wise.

Over the last 15 years I have seen young guns-boy's and girls that were running line lengths unheard of when Andy won his last Coors light pro tour championship. These kids saw the light and moved on and have really moved very far away from the sport as their careers do not allow for them to continue in the sport .

I truly believe that had the sport continued to prosper and produce a true professional level their would be a number of skiers with the talent and ability that skiers like Andy possess.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's hard to imagine a "pro" today being sponsored by Rolex like Andy was. Not sure how long that relationship lasted or how much they paid him. It seems like most pros today are sponsored by boat, ski companies or ski shops. Not much outside sponsorship.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Baller
I think many of the European skies have other endorsements, but I also think they are more a part of mainstream sports. How else could T-Gas get on Dancing With the Stars? I could be wrong.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...