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Acceleration - staying ahead of the boat


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Whilst a strong stacked position is essential for good slalom it can also sometimes result in being too static and loading the line a lot.

What techniques do you use to ensure that you "stay ahead of the boat" and accelerate into the wake without loading the line too much whilst still staying in a stacked position?


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  • Baller

I am working on this right now in my skiing. I had seemed to develop a bad habit of trying to cut off or force the end of the turns just after the buoy. The negative result of this is basically stalling the ski's speed, causing it to then need more acceleration to get wide at the next buoy. When I would cut off the finish of the turn, I was doing it because I feel like I am going to be existing the buoy late. The funny reality is that by doing this, I end up with a less agressive ski angle out of the buoy (more down course than cross course) and with a bigger "hit" from the boat which often results in a disruption of any stack that I might have had after the finish of the turn.


I've been working on changing my habit to "moving out of the buoy into the direction across course." I picture the track runner in the starting blocks who takes off with his center of mass ahead of his feet so as to be balanced during his acceleration. From buoy line to center-line, I think about emulating that track runner and think about moving with my ski out of the buoy "starting blocks" and accelerating with the ski across the boats path. This idea results in my ski retaining more speed and almost fluidly transitioning from a turn into a lean. Since there is little to no "hit" from the boat, all the stack that I had during the turn is retained and there is minimal load at the finish of the turn, giving me time to reset and improve my stack as needed. The resulting ski angle out of the turn is more aggressive across the boat's path and I end up with more space coming into the next buoy.


As I approach the apex of the turn, I simply have to think: accelerate WITH the ski through the finish in the direction you want to go (back across the center line) like a runner out of the starting blocks.

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