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Anyone manage less sets than me and hope to improve?


Cam
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I have been struggling with my form the past couple of years, was thinking it is because I am getting older but when I looked at my ski log for last month I only had 12 sets due to weather and my work cycle, if I am lucky I will get 14 sets this month then the 2012 season will be over with very little to show for it.
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I live up north have a short season and only ski 3 times per week max! It' s gone on for all the time I've been skiing the course about 15 years now. I manage to improve every year despite my ageing and limited skiing, but it's very SLOW!! Only at 28off and that's on my "better" days! I enjoy it immensely and will continue as long as my old body will let me. My life time goal is to run clean passes at 32 off. Just a small fraction of what most on this site can do. My best is but one ball with just a couple of tries ever. Running a great pass at any speed any line length is all the motivation I need to keep banging away!
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Cam. I do think that you would be about to get more out of your skiing if you could get up to 4 or 5 sets per week. (Not all on the weekend if possible) I try to mix my sets up where I will do 2-3 straight up the line, then 1 where I will just run one of my easier passes 4-6x to work on tempo and technique stuff. I think it's hard to keep timing and vary your training with 3 per week.

 

Of course there are lots of other factors. 10 sets per week with a bad driver and no feedback is probably not going to be as productive as only 3 sets per week with Chet Raley!

 

Also, make sure you are ready to get all you can out of each set if you only get a few. People make fun of me a bit, but I will not get out of the boat seat and jump on a ski. I will walk away from the dock to get my mind on (my) skiing. I also do a couple of minutes of active stretching, etc. to make sure I am physically ready to go. (And hopefully be less apt to get hurt)

 

With work, kids, and age/injury limitations I think most of us probably ski less sets than what we would really like. Try to make sure you get the most out of them.

sj

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I've got you beat! 12 days since May 6th. I've been working out of town ALOT! Still managed to ski well enough to put a smile on my face a couple weeks ago. I truely believe that my success is due to the positive stimulation I get from reading BOS. I feel that the info i get here allows me to ski mentally and allows me to reinforce positive thoughts and movements with out buoys in the way. I'd rather be dodging buoys but this is the best I've got right now. So.... if i can maintain my current level until I get home for good, I'll be ecstatic! Oh, by the way, the S2 ROX!!!!! d-)>
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I get about 5-10 freeskis + 5-10 course sets a season. Hope to squeak a little more in future seasons, but that's life for me with weekends @ the cottage in Canada, being a dad & the course on the next lake over.

Only started course skiing again about 5 years ago, manage to pick up a ball or two most seasons.

Wow. I got depressed just posting that!

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Unless you're a lucky little kid growing up on a lake in a water skiing family, happiness through slalom skiing has to be about the people and the journey.

 

In a six pass set, you are lucky to get TWO minutes of in-course practice ... if you make every pass. A 60 set season is pretty good, but that's only two hours of practice per year ... if you make every pass! Can you think of ANY complex skill that can be improved with two hours of practice per year?

 

Even the lucky little kids living on lakes skiing every day are doing well if they improve by a whole pass per season, and little kids learn everything way faster than adults.

 

Realistically, it's amazing an employed adult can make any progress at all with such limited practice. Making a commitment to progressing in slalom is a full-on lifestyle commitment including where and how you will live for the next three to five years.

 

Simply enjoying the people, the location, and the thrill of skiing at or near your personal best ... happiness today.

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@andjules, I hear you. I used to live on the water, and get to ski at least a few times a week. But that was back in the 90's. Since coming to Idaho, until this year, I got to free ski maybe 10+/- freeskis a year. This year, I found a ski buddy on a comp lake who was looking for a 15 off'r type to learn with, so I have been able to get 6 sets in the course this year over 3 ski days. That lake is about a 45 minute drive, and as I have 3 kids, and work, it is tough to do anything more than a day on a weekend. On the other hand, my kids are into boating now we are freeskiing more than in the past. I hope to close out the season with several more sets on by buddy's lake, follow up with a contact at MGM lake and a ski club there to see about joining for next season. Then I could get some mid week sets in. The cost might be a problem though. And we are looking at a partnership in a Malibu. If we got that done, I might be able to find access to a course at a close local lake. But I would need to train my son to be a driver, and learn how to be a good one myself.

 

So yeah, I hope to improve my time on the water.

 

On a related topic, how many of you are nearing or over 50? I crack that number this year. Before I joint BOS, I had worried that my skiing would just continue to decline from what I knew to do in the 90's and early 00's. But learning about current and proper form and technique, and actually feeling some success with trying it, makes me think that I can definitely continue to improve, despite that number.

 

When I turned 40 I used Mapple as an inspiration. Given what he is doing now, I still can. If he can continue to ski as he does, I certainly can improve.

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@sunvalleylaw - don't worry about 50. Worry about fit. At 42, I'm the youngest of the 5-or-so guys I course-ski with. One guy is 59 and another 61. The 59 year old is focused, fit and no surprise, I believe he had the best score of all of us this summer, and he's still inching better.
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@sunvalleylaw 50 means little; it's all about technique. I was struggling to make a pass at 28 mph when I took up slalom skiing in earnest at age 50. I'm now 55 and skiing into -35 fairly regularly and still improving. BUT, I fully committed to the sport with year round access to tournament lakes, wintering in Florida, skiing 4-5 days per week including at least 50 sets with top coaches per season, cross training, the works. 50 is the new 30, but without the 24/7 kids!
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Ok, thanks for that @andjules and @SkiJay. I am pretty fit, an avid mountain biker (to some extent, mountain biking replaced skiing for me over the last several years), and incorporating core workouts this year which have helped quite a bit, and supplemented the mountain biking, alpine skiing and other stuff I do.

 

I may not be able to commit as fully as @Skijay, but hopefully, with what I can put in in a shorter, northern season, goals of completed 28 off passes and getting into 32 within the next few years are not completely unrealistic. it will depend on how much I can get into a course I believe, which leads us back to @andjules' original post.

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3 days/week I find I can get up to my prior level, but not really have hopes of getting better. 2 days/week don't get to that level. Consistent 4-5 days/week even if only one set on those days I get better (in fact as I age two sets 4-5 days a week and I get worse due to wear and tear).

Go out and have fun some days...run only your easier passes and just smoke 10 of em, maybe on hot boat times. Hard not to shorten sometimes but it's low stress, relaxing, fun and you leave the lake with no frustration. Other days, go crank out the score.

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I have always worked away from home since starting skiing usually on a 2 week on 2 week of rotation but for the past 11 years I have been lucky enough to be on a 2 on 3 off rotation, I still love the sport but this year more than others I have spent a lot of time unable to ski in my time off due to weather but phone home to find everyone has been skiing on glass.

2 years ago I was knocking on the door of running a -32 pass and would normally get 3 buoys but have only ran -28 5 times this year (4 last year) and 3 or 4 @ -28 is the norm.

 

I do spend a lot of time in the gym and hanging off a handle when I am at work so I don't feel fitness or strength is a problem, just time on the water.

 

@sunvalleylaw, I will be 61 in November and ski with friends older and better than me but both of them are retired and can ski any day of the week weather permitting. On a plus point I did gain 9 tournament buoys when I was 53.

 

@Steven Haines, tried a CO X SL last week and liked it so am guessing the S2 will be a lot better and hoping I will be able to get a closeout S2 in the next couple of months.

 

Wrote the 1st post this morning when I should have been skiing but it was too windy.

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Cam,

You'll probably like the S2, it's very user friendly and stable. No matter how I had the ski set up, it still performed well! I currently have the fin set stock for a 67.5 but followed Horton's recomendation (go ahead and gloat Horton) and moved the boots back two holes and it gave me more buoys, nothing dramatic, just more buoys! I've had several comments from the boat that the S2 looks wicked fast! I can't say that I feel that, it does feel efficient and usually leaves me up course waiting on the buoy. I do need to fine tune a little more though as I find that I'm drifting down course a bit on my toe side turn. Try it, I think you'll like it!!!

 

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This thread really touches home with me. I've been convinced for a very long time now that if I could get ONE good set a day 5 days a week I'd be a much better skier than the 2-3 sets twice a week schedule I've been on pretty much forever. Course skiing IMO is pretty much like working out at the gym in this regard - it's more about CONSISTENCY than time spent. Going to the gym once a week for four hours won't get you in anywhere near the shape going four times a week for an hour at a time will. Consistency.

 

Just turned 57, I'm in pretty damn good physical condition despite my rapidly advancing age, and I feel like I still have the capacity to be a way better skier if only I could do it more regularly. That ain't gonna happen until I retire in another 5 years (hopefully), and then I'm bucking the age issue even more. 50 may well be the new 30, but NOT without really dedicating yourself to staying fit and being consistent about it. I bust ass all winter in the gym to be able to keep doing this, if my life would allow me to hit the water in the summer as much as I hit the gym in the winter...

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I know the feeling Ed, I am looking forward to retiring, only 4 years 2 months to go but for now I am going to work for 2 weeks and hope to come back fitter and stronger for the end of the season.

 

Bad news about work is I can't get the BOS forum there so I miss my fix for 2 weeks, @horton has promised he will fix it for me.

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Like Eddy O I'm in my 50's and would love to ski 4-5 times a week, 2 sets each time. Impossible for my life and commitments. It takes me a good month to get into slalom shape, strength and cardio wise, then another to work technique while in shape and then at the end of august I'm back to my peak from the previous year.

 

So right now is when I really try and get out there more than once or twice a week. My first set after a week layoff is just getting my legs back and if I haven't burned myself out on the 1st set with bad form or taking too many slack line hits, the 2nd set is where I work on doing new things to improve.

 

We used to have rating tournaments in the weeks after the nationals to ensure your eligibility next year. This was a great excuse to stay in shape and ski well at the end of the year. Now though, improvement is harder and found in small increments mostly due to lack of consistent time on the water.

 

I will say though having a good skiing partner, (thanks Pierre, Diane and Sasha) makes the coaching better And, having Ball of Spray has helped a tremendous amount! I have made big changes in my technique this year due to the zealot geeks in here giving tremendous advice that we can bring to our mutual coaching and eventually to the water. Thanks to you all and on to 35 off!

 

 

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