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Power Your Steering: All-Mountain Skiing

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...then guide your skis with your knees and thights.  Resist the urge to turn your hips.  Rather, just let the center follow along naturally.  Skid…

On cruddy snow and steep pitches, your pole gives you a third point of contact with the snow, which helps keep your upper body under control even while your legs are twisting and flexing to absorb the terrain. Swing the pole early and plant it in the fall line.
INCORRECT (right): When your pole tip lands in front of your ski tip rather than in the fall line, downhill from your body, you know your shoulders are overrotated.

As you begin to finish each turn, you'll start to feel some angulation in your lower body. Begin to drive your knees in the direction of a fully…

With your pole offering support and leverage, your flattened skis automatically turn the way your body is facing. As your upper and lower halves align, your leg muscles have time to rest.
INCORRECT (right): If there’s ever a time you want both skis and legs to work together, it’s in junky snow. Twisting your upper body too much will pull your downhill/inside ski off the snow, compromising your balance.

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Tap into your legs’ stored power to shape and size your turn as much or as little as you want. When your shoulders augment your legs, you can make accurate adjustments that aren’t complicated by extraneous upper body movements.
INCORRECT (right): Because your shoulders continue to turn faster than your legs, and all your weight is on your inside ski, your outside ski’s tail will begin to skid out of control.

Barry WoodsAge/Weight: 41/170 lbs. Data Vice president, Surefoot ski-boot specialty-shop chain; former Mt. Mansfield Ski Club and Stratton Mountain…

If you continue to face downhill and have your pole ready to stabilize your torso, you’ll be prepared to start the next turn even before you finish the previous one.
INCORRECT (right): Overrotation leads to overturning and a body position that makes it difficult to get into the next turn. The combined turning effort of your shoulders, hips and legs is too much, so your skis get more input than you can control.