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dragging a leg start off


allycat
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have always got out of the water with both feet in the bindings currently ski on a 69 connelly outlaw get out okay with it .just got a 69 ho triumpth am struggling to get out on it and dragging heaps weigh 225ponds prably should have got the 71 inch one(its great when you get out compared to the outlaw) .was just wondering what the techneke for dragging a leg is never had to do it in the past and does it get you up easyer will be trying it on sunday.never had these problems 20 years ago reckon a diet would help to
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@allycat. it is relatively easy, but a bit of a balance act the first couple times--similar to getting up in an air chair.

 

When I first got back into slalom skiing, I weighed a whopping 300 pounds and getting up with both feet in was not an option. So I will share a couple of pointers that should help in your success.

 

Now that I am skinny, (255 lol) I use both feet in and the biggest problem I see with people trying to start with one foot, is that they push against the boat too much. When I start with two in, I can push against the boat hard--sometimes it helps me pop up fast, but with one, you need to think ease of planing, not resistance.

 

It is absolutely imperative that your arms are straight and extended. It is also not as important to keep the ski tip above the water-it needs to plane, but it doesn't need to happen like when both feet are in. Once the boat starts going, think of it as a rolling motion, or rather think of a buddy helping you up off the ground. You don't put two feet forward when getting up that way, but rather, you use one foot behind you to stabilize getting up. If you can think rolling forward and just standing up, that is the easiest way I can describe it. The back leg is in essence used as a rudder to help you keep your balance. One last thing I would do is to look down as you are getting up. I remember staring at my knee hoping and praying to the waterski God's that I would have the grip strength to just hang on. As soon as you are planing and coming up out of the water, that is when I stand tall and resist and put my back foot in.

 

After you try it and get it, it is easy. It is just training your muscles and getting the feel balance wise. Hope this helps.

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Let me throw something out there if you have issues dragging a leg. When I learned to slalom I did it on double high wraps. When I switched to a rear toe plate, I initially tried getting up one foot in. Unsuccessfully a few times, I might add. lol. What I found is that if I keep my toes in the rtp, lift my heel, and bring my back knee up beside my front knee, I could come up very easily with no balance issues. Lifting your heel and bringing your knee up allows the ski to start at less of an angle to the water surface, while having your toes in keeps you with the same balance point as you're used to with double bindings.
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I like @shaneh's idea. If you do fully drag your leg, though, don't feel like you are desperate to get your back foot in the loop. Do it controlled and in balance. I've seen lots of skiers stand up only to fall by taking a quick, desperate shot at the toe loop. You can stand there and ski for a bit just fine on only your front leg.
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I'm actually hoping to try a RTP again next season because I think it's so much easier to get up. Doesn't matter whether I use a foot in the back or drag a leg. I prefer to drag a leg but haven't skied a course dragging a leg yet so I may feel rushed but we'll see... I always felt like the dragging leg is like an extra ski helping you get on top of the water.

 

I really struggle with double boots because I can't lift my heel getting up. A new driver will typically ask how I like to get up and my response is usually...everything you've got! I always feel like I might not get up even though I've only failed to get up once in two years but I have a lot of near misses and baggy shorts really adds to the problem.

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@allycat I am a dragger and I got up for years no problem on a 68.5 D3X5 then a 68.75" A1 at 240lbs. At 225 the 69" Triumph should be plenty of ski for you. I don't think you should have any problem getting up if you follow the fundamentals of knee into the chest, arms out straight and let the boat pull you up out of the water. You should be able to get up on the Triumph with both feet in also but your technique will be more important.
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I drug a rear foot from about age 11, until past age 50. ( I did some beach starts at our cabin as a kid). Sometimes I get set in my ways, so I just thought that I would always get up, dragging my rear foot, and using a r.t.p. A few years ago the mrs. And I went to ski paradise, and I was getting up so many times that my front leg started to strain and get sore. One of the guest coaches put on a rear full rear binding on my ski and told me to try that. I was kind of nervous, but I got up on my second try, and discovered that it's no big deal. So, I think there are pluses and minuses to each way. Dragging pluses: you can ball up and compress even more, the resistance is less, and your rear foot acts as a stable rudder. Dragging minuses: your front leg is taking all the force, and may get strained, you can't experiment with a full rear binding. Both feet in pluses: you can spread the leg forces to about 70/30 or so, you can see if you like a full rear binding. Both feet in minuses: you can't compress quite as much, you have to stay down a little longer, and be a little more patient. I like both full bindings now.
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I get up one footed every time on my trick ski and I fall a lot (too much!). I point my toe and use my shin and foot as another ski. This really unloads the stress of getting up. Also I get balance help from the outrigger leg. Finally, it keeps me from standing up too much too fast - one of the most common factors in startup issues.

I slalom in double boots and suffer on startup. The Goode Powervest makes getting up much easier on my back and arms. That benefit alone might make it worth the expense and quirky feel. See if you can find one to borrow and demo.

Sometimes it is just a strength issue. Work on grip strength ( squeezing old tennis balls), do pullups, do crunches and get Clincher style gloves. Or you could build your own ski with a really wide front - but Horton is right, that will hurt your skiing. Keep trying and you'll find the tricks that work.

Eric

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My history is about like bogboy's but I took a thirty year vacation from the sport. I used to drag a foot but have found that in these short lake set-ups that if you miss your rear foot kick-in it's over before you get started.

So, I switched to Reflex front w/ Connelly rear from an RTP. It seems to work well in salt water which is where we normally ski. I was 230 this Summer - skiing on a green 67" Sixam.

I have had problems in Fresh water. So I am trying an approved vest with more floatation...

We'll see.

One thing that I have learned (the hard way) is that particularly with Big Guys a great deal depends on the boat driver - my usual driver eases me up very S L O W L Y until she sees my head come above the spray and then puts the hammer down smoothly. Works about 95% of the time; once I ski myself into shape. I am working on getting down to about 205 -210 for next summer...

That should help.

One thing I can tell you for sure is that having a Driver "Hit IT" hard will not work - supposing your hands/grip can handle the load. I tore my hamstring twice until Terrance showed us that

s l o w l y works much better.

The other thing that I have found it that a plams down grip at the start seems to help with lateral balance and stability.

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hay otisg think i need some of those floatys tryed dragging a leg bending my back leg up with two feet in etc etc .failed thanks for the advise just going to keep trying to lose weight and keep sking reckon that will build my strenght up nilly got up a few times gave up i just dropped the ski today and how good is that ho triumpth to ride put my old wyles boot on it love it heaps better than the connelly outlaw.will prably try a beach start next trip hate going back looking for skis ?
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i had to relearn starts as our old boat couldn't get me out of the water 2 feet in(95kg 100hp outboard) learnt one foot out in a couple of starts. I got told to really throw the back leg down behind you. once i did that it was so much easier. pull front knee into chest back leg down head down of front knee. dont pull yourself up wait till ski is planning then use the back leg against the water to get upright. You can let it drag then put weight on top of the water to help push you up.
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At 225, you could ski on a standard width 68" ski, so your technique is probably off a little if the 69 Titanic isn't popping you out on double boots. Keys for me are arms straight and handle low and just off the top of the ski, your front ankle need to break the 90 degree angle by extending your toes to the boat and push your knees out in front of you a little. I noticed at some point that my rear heel lifts up from the bottom of my boot, so that helps me push my rear knee forward (skiing as well), like Shane mentions. You also need to counter the torque a little, so if rff, rope on left side of ski, you need to lean to the right to counter the drag to the left. I also find if I rotate left a little and lead with my right shoulder, rff, that I am not such a wall of water to pull out.

 

When dragging a foot,mwhich I haven't done in 20 years or more, I remember applying downward pressure with my left foot behind me, and it provided lift and balance. Not just hanging back there.

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I like @ShaneH's advice and that's pretty similar to what I do, though I've never thought about it in that way. I just try to draw the ski up as close to my chest as possible and position myself so that I'm 100% on the front foot coming out. I've always had a rear toe strap so naturally I wind up lifting my heel when doing it that way. I've never dragged a foot and never even tried. I couldn't even learn slalom by dropping a ski because I couldn't get my rear foot into the binding before doing a faceplant, which is why I never tried dragging a leg.

 

Years back, before everyone got so uptight about no wake zones, our parents used to start right in our private mooring area in about knee deep water with the front foot in and do one or two hops off the bottom. Main reason was they were behind 50 - 70 hp outboards. Can't do that now though or the cop has a coronary.

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I did one foot for a while when I first learned, what I found was that it was fine, so long as the driver did the expected, but I could not react to soft or hard pulls, so if my brother buried the throttle, I would be fine with 2 feet, if someone gave it a really soft tug I could wait it out.

 

One foot in, if the boat didn't progress I would eat the lake.

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@allycat, don't give up on your starts, you will be able to do it! Patience.......

 

The advice here is really solid, but I have to say, that once you master the technique starting with one foot, you will ALWAYS remember it. I don't know if you have ever been on a sky ski, but my point is very similar. I tried that for several days and I just couldn't get the balance right on it, (I kept pushing against the boat instead of planeing the huge foil) but once I got up on it, I have NEVER had even the smallest issue getting up again.

 

I would offer one more suggestion to you as you start with one foot in the ski. Instead of trying to stay right behind the boat balancing, angle hard to one side. If you put your handle on the left of the ski, angle your ski to the right. This will greatly help your balance. Many times I would be well outside the wake when I got up, but it really helps the balance aspect of things.

 

It shouldn't be a matter of strength, but rather feel! YOU can do this my friend!! We are all cheering you on!

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thanks for the great advice am going to keep tryng was a bit slack yesterday only tryed twise to get out and used my normal both feet in way(almost got out to) .a week ago i tryed untill i could not try anymore to deep water start leg in leg out etc and payed for it last week it was great to get some sking in yesterday(droped a ski) .allso got a new rope so i could shorten it up a bit was skiing at 15off its heaps better don t no why i used a full length rope years ago(more great advice from reading this forum)
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I prefer a nice gradual throttle, and not hammer down. Not slow, but gradual gas vs. all at once.

 

The other thing I have noticed as I picked up 40 pounds, is that small changes in fin shape or binding location can have a HUGE impact coming out of the water. At 195 up to 210 lbs, I would go years between missed starts. At 250-260, and on a 69" ski, I miss a lot. One day I moved the bindings forward, and missed 3 in a row. Buried the tip every time.

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