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How to accelerate......


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First the disclaimer - I'm no coach and never will be, but like everyone else here i am an avid student of the sport, as I learn I'm spending an increasing amount of time in the boat with opportunity to offer advice. I want to make sure that I'm helping not hindering.


As Horton had said recently everything is in the "stack" - get this right and you can start working on other things. Than's article on actually getting into the position and recognising it is essential reading. There is one other aspect which comes into play and is talked about in different ways that I wonder may also make a difference in the learning curve? This is your "choice" on acceleration.


Among the many coaches I have listen to there is one (Dimitri from Porto Heli in Greece) who has two phrases with regards to the wake crossing:

1. "No win no lose" - hook up early and hold onto what you have, progressive loading until pulled up into the turn. Skiing like this, it feels that you are working all the time and the past feels fast, there is little room for error but less impact on the body. Bouy to bouy skiing.

2. "Touch and go" - late as possible hook up with all the work between the wakes driving the ski through. This is the wide and early approach trying to achieve as much space before the bouy as possible. The pass feels slow as there is time before the bouy, yet the acceleration is short and sharp ( and more fun - which may be what it's all about).


With the above terms it may become easer to categorise a lot of what is being discussed on other threads and also to see what other skiers are doing. The techniques for one way do not always apply to another, for example in "touch and go" there's no real point discussing edge change or counter rotation because it happens automatically.

If I look at pros I see skiers like Andy, Seth, Nate, MB in the "touch and go" category, with Drew, CP, Regina in the "no win no lose"(you may disagree and I realise there will be variations and exceptions - there are to every rule!)


The point of my thread is that when coaching should a skier be deciding what type of wake crossing they want to achieve to help us coach them.

Further more, and this is the bit thats got me interested at the moment, it seems to me that learning "touch and go" is pretty much impossible until you have "no win no lose" mastered.

"Touch and go" as we know requires totally owning your stack, with great handle control and being totally committed to giving it everything for a split second when the rope tightens and at the exact same moment driving the ski through into the first wake. try this with your arms slightly bent or not stacked properly and at best you end up in "no win no lose" tug of war, too fast into the bouy or your pass is over.


In which case if teaching beginners and long liners we can avoid things that don't apply such as "attacking the wake" "delaying the pull", and "speed is good"

In "no win no lose" too much speed will have you too fast into the bouy, falling to the tail, big hits etc.


As beginners ski " no win no lose" anyway it may be helpful to explain that to them and help them get that right before they move on to driving the ski through. (Less OTF'sas well)


Anyway, like I said, just some random thoughts that might be interesting to put out there when there is not too much technique discussion going on.


Here hoping I don't get the Panda!









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I think the Basics (foundational) are top priority for all. As far as individual preferances and technique, I believe this will work it's self out in time.


Like a Boxer, you don't force one to be a "Brawler" or a "graceful Counter puncher" this is typically inherent and will naturally flow out of the individual with time. Skiers are also inherently "Aggressive" or they tend to be more Passive i.e."Graceful." But, both styles create their own effective "efficiency."


IMHO, The main ingredient is to keep ones self and others from falling into the trap of practicing any poor or lazy technique applications and to NEVER sacrifice good tech. for the sake of chasing Buoys in practice. This will best condition the Body and the Mind and help guard against OTF's, etc....

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