EC-Training Part II

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EC-Training Part II

Postby skywalker » Tuesday 12 October 2004, 15:22

O.K., lets try ;)

First of all I want to admit, that I am not a perfect carver. Over several years of teaching friends and youths I could gain some experience in Snowboard training. Last year I was asked by a friend to write something down that might help him to become a better carver. He could not join the ECS and could not find another way to learn extremecarving. So this is the collections of my thoughts for an advanced snowboarder, who wants to do some EC-Training. No surprise, that it became rather old school ;)

I'm just interested in your thoughts about this. And maybe there will be a way to make this available for everybody who is interested in in learning EC.
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Postby skywalker » Tuesday 12 October 2004, 15:25

Training plan Carving/Extremecarving?

Warm UP:

Standard warm up exercises for legs, shoulders, arms and neck of course each day before start. In addition:

Board Introduction: In any case once on the first day of the holidays. I like doing at least a short version of it very much and at least on these days, on which I intend to train seriously. See in addition extra part chapter 1) Board Introduction.

Rotation (Pre-Rotation): It takes one about one day until the Rotation works really reliably. To achieve this, I keep my arms completely closely at the body, even sometimes with the elbows pressed towards my body. Then the right hand is lead from left hip to the right side of glute and the left from your butt to the right hip (changes from frontside to the backside, accordingly in the other direction). There is a imagination, that sounds extremely stupid, but works well: a move close to the body in a kind of a semi-circle around the pelvis with both hands. Rotate the shoulder together with your hands. It helps me to present to me I would have to move with hands as far as possible in the appropriate direction. The arms hang down more or less vertically on the side of my body. But they move in the semi-circle around the pelvis (remain below the shoulder, while you turn). Other picture to imagine: You bring yourself into basic position, the arms hang closely at the sides of your body perpendicularly downward. Now you turn the shoulders as far as possible to the left and right while your arms remain vertically below your shoulders. The hands are moved in the semi-circle around the basin. But the mental control can be done more easily over the hands than over the shoulders.

Start with some stationary exercises in the flat. This should content rotations followed by slight edge change and also some training of correct positions at the beginning and the end of a turn (and between of course). I think one might need about a half to one day training rotations during normal driving many drifted turns with very accurate and clean Rotation moves (s. That means during the Basis Turn (see below): Turn the board into the drop line by weight shift to the front leg (in basic position or rotation into the opposite direction / pre-loaded), then impulse by rotation in turn direction and change of edge / turn control. Do not rotate back your upper body, thus end the turn rotated. From here you start the next turn. Do it similar with normal drift turns. Do frontside turns (change from backside edge to frontside edge) with line of sight to the curve centre, if you want with your shoulders rotated towards the nose (pre-load). Backside Turns (change from frontside edge to backside edge) should be started as an Egyptian then let your shoulders rotate to initialize the edge change.

Basis Turn vs. Drift Turn. (I don’t know, if these are the officially correct words in English)

Basis Turn: Edge change in the drop line. Start by weight shift to the front leg, let the nose turn into the drop line, then cross the drop line by rotation and then control the end of the turn by shifting weight back to the rear leg proportioned. This means: The board is rotated by weight shift at the beginning and end of the turn, when crossing the drop line by impulse/rotation

Drift Turn: Turn and edge change from riding diagonally / transversal to the slope, higher speed, narrower trace. Turn is initialized directly by Rotation from going transversal. Then the edge change follows, turn control by vertical movements and power on the edge. Longitudinal weight shift is only used to control the turn.

Next step will be rotation with carved turns, which might also take about half a day to one day. Again do easy turns with concentration on the rotation of your upper body.

High and low discharge if you desire
Have once more a few runs with clear, clean extension turns and flexion turns in rotational style.

Push Pull drifted: First I also would practice the Push Pulls drifted. Start your first turn with your legs bent; change the edges without any discharge. Extend your legs dynamically, and directly after the complete extension bend the legs again. Change edges again with your legs bent and start the whole thing from the beginning. Press purposefully against the board and the snow during the extension, feel the forces and strengthen them in the beginning of the turn. In any case line up several turns together, in order to really feel the effect.

Push Pulls carved with rotation style: I will try to show a few conceptions, what one actually tries to do. You pull the board through under your body as shown on the extremecarving HP with bent legs, change the edge and push it away from yourself against the force of the edge. At the beginning you may accept some drifting, but in any case push the board away powerfully. As soon as the legs are extended, bend again your legs and start with a turn to the other direction

Rhythm: Increase the frequency of the Push Pulls Gradually. Give rhythm to your turns. Singing, speaking to you, humming or listening to a MP3 helps.

Extremecarving turn: Usually it’s better to begin with the Frontside Turn. Initialize the turn Extremely low and then throw your body flat on the slope, as if you wanted to slip over the snow with the belly. Bend your legs again while your speed is still high enough.

Extremecarving Turn backside: A little impulse by a short mini frontside turn gives enough pressure to the Backside. Start with bent legs and lay down towards “the edge briefly in front of front foot”. Don’t forget to have your rear shoulder rotated towards the nose (or easier to control: your rear hand/arm over your belly).

Unspecific Carving exercises: Start with bent legs In rather flat area going straight downhill and then angle your board very slowly. With a stiff Alpine board you can feel when the edge is running straightforward trough the snow. After weight transfer to the turn inside then properly load the edge and by dynamic extension of the legs control the turn. Above all helps you a lot with the initialization of the backside turn.
Rear hand toward the Nose during backside turn, so your arm crosses over the belly. Thus you pivot the shoulder correctly.

Description of the turn forms:

High discharge, extension turn (cross over??)

In general it is valid for all Turns forms more or less distinctively: The turn begins with an initialization, thus with rotation technology with the Pre-Rotation. The discharge of the board for eased edge change followed by a control phase. The radius of the turn is controlled over the dosage of the edging pressure. Ideally the next turn follows directly at the end of the control phase.

In extension turns the initialization starts from moderately bent legs by dynamic extension of the legs. You quasi start a jump, which is too weak for taking off. During the extension your body rotates in the desired turn direction (Pre-Rotation with loaded board). I.e. during the cross over turns moving upward and rotation take place at the same time. As a picture to form in your mind: You follow the thread of a corkscrew upward.

In the moment of complete extension of the legs the board becomes lightweight (discharged). In this moment the edges are changed. In addition block/freeze the rotation and thus transfer the momentum of the body to the board. Directly after the edge change you begin to lower your body proportioned. That is, your legs will become gradually more and more bent, when bending is more dynamically, the turn becomes tighter. In an ideal manner the procedure of bending lasts just as long, as the turn. Exactly in the moment, when the deepest point is reached, the extension and rotation begin again. If you look at the vertical movement isolated, it consists of a fast extension, followed by a slow flexion. which starts again immediately when your legs are bent. There should be present a vertical movement at each time.

Low discharge, flexion turn (cross under???)

The initialization of the flexion turn begins with the rotation without vertical movement. At the end of the rotation the legs are bent dynamically and thus the board is relieved. The rotation must take place, before the legs are bent, as the board is relieved in the moment of bending (so the discharged board would give way). As usual the edge change takes place in the moment, in which the edge is relieved. In cross under turns thus in the moment of leg bending. As soon as you arrived “down” and the edge is changed, you begin to extend the legs proportioned. The faster your legs are extended, the more largely the pressure on edge will be and by this the turn is steered more narrowly.

Start from the frontside: Start as an Egyptian in minimum bent position, then pre-rotate. At the end of the rotation lower your body, change edges to the Backside and directly afterwards start to extend legs proportioned but powerfully. Corkscrew only works with extension turn and Push Pull, not with flexion turns!

Expiration of flexion turns: Start rather extended. Before the first cross under turn of a series I once lower my centre of gravity, then extend my legs (with simultaneous rotation) and then dynamically lower my cg. The extension helps, because otherwise you tend to start too low and go on with an extension. And because otherwise usually your lowering is not done dynamically enough. Thus pure auxiliary movement, as it were the simulation of the end of the preceding control phase. When bending the rather extended legs, the edge is relised and it takes place eased edge change. After the edge change the turn is controlled by proportioned leg extension. By the end of the controlling phase Pre-Rotation takes place, which ends with extended legs. (In flexion turns the steering is done by proportioned extension up to (nearly) complete extension). Exactly in this moment the next low discharge follows, which is also recommended to keep the time in extended position as short as possible. The pure vertical movement in a diagram would be a kind of saw tooth with sudden lowering and slow extension.

The lowering movement during the flexion turn does not accurately correspond to the upwards movement during the extension turn. If you perform low discharge turn the edge is relieved for the moment of the leg bending, in a high discharge turn just after the extension. You only can gather momentum with loaded board, afterwards discharge and edge change take place. That means in flexion turns, you rotate first, then bend your legs, while you extend and rotate at the same time in extension turns (corkscrew).

Push Pull

Sequence Push Pull: Before the first push pull turn you ride with deeply bent legs (theoretically you come along low from the preceding), pre-rotate and change edges. On carved turns this is possible without specific discharge). After the edge change dynamic extension takes place and directly afterwards again bending, everything during one single turn (e.g. frontside turn) and on the same edge. IMHO exactly this is where the name derives from. In bent position you now transfer weight to the other side of the board, change edges, and start it again from the beginning. For the change from Frontside to Backside this is: Start as an Egyptian in deep position, pre-rotate and with the freezing of the rotation change edges without special discharge movement. Dynamic extension directly after the edge change.

Remind yourself, how Patrice starts its Frontside Push Pull. If you come from the Backside and set the Frontside, you are maximally deep. Therefore it is reasonable to link the turns up together. Thus it is by far easier for all turn forms to have the correct starting position. Normal Push Pulls is less low started than EC Push Pulls, but the edge change takes place nevertheless in the bent position. Altogether the sequence is the same with normal Push Pulls and EC Push Pulls.

Differentiation from low discharge (flexion) turns: On low discharge turns you start almost extended and lighten the edge by dynamic bending for eased edge change. In contrast on Push Pull turns which are started already low. Also the edge change takes place without clear edge discharge. In my eyes the Push Pull is a low discharge with changed timing, although it took it’s time, until I understood.

I’ll try to clearly point out the differences: In comparison to low discharge turn the lowering of your c.g. happens more gently and is still part of the steering phase. Rotation and edge change in push pulls take place later in the sequence than in cross under. This is after the bending, not before it. And again it is noticeable that the classical discharge is omitted. I think, straight contribute to Surf feeling.

Pat drives Push Pull and EC accurately equivalent, just EC more extremely. Exactly that is the point with the EC side. I also thought at the beginning, he drove nevertheless only low discharge turns, so what should this all be about. In a diagram Push Pull is rather the sinusoidal curve with edge change in the minimum value. Then extension and flexion in the process of the turn and then again the edge change takes place in the minimum. As summary: in Push Pull turns you rotate low and low change edges.

Differences low discharge vs. Push Pull

A classical low discharge turn ends with extended legs. A Push Pull with bent legs. You already “pulled” again at the end of the turn. Thus completely clearly: That is the difference between low discharge and Push Pull: A low discharge turn ends extended, the Push Pull ends bent.

Summary & operation sequence

high discharge (extension) turn

1. Start frontside low (at least moderately low)
2. Dynamic extension and pre-rotate towards the Nose (relieve) (Corkscrew)
3. Edge change
4. On backside bend legs again, proportioned lowering of cg 1) – ride low (at least moderately low)
5 Dynamic extension an pre-rotation towards frontside
6. Edge change
7. Frontside. Bend legs again – ride low (at least moderately low)
8. Start from the beginning

low discharge (flexion) turn

1. Start on frontside extended
2. Pre-rotation towards the nose, cg is still up
3. Fast flexion, edge release
4. Edge change
5. Extend legs proportioned, until they are nearly completely extended 2) Ride on Backside
6. Pre-rotate towards frontside, body is still up
7. Fast flexion, edge release
8. Edge change
9. Extend legs again until they are nearly completely extended, ride on frontside
10. Start from the beginning

Push Pull

1. Start on frontside (at least moderately low)
2. Pre-rotation towards nose, cg is still low
3. Edge change - Ride backside
4. Extend legs - (control phase)
5 Build up edge pressure - bend legs again – still riding Backside edge however bent again
6. Pre-rotation towards frontside edge, cg still low
7. Edge change – Ride frontside
8. Extend legs - (control phase)
9. Build up edge pressure - bend legs again – still riding frontside edge however bent again
10. Start from beginning


With Push Pull step 3 (of cross under) is dropped. Step 5 (of Push Pull) is added
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Postby István » Tuesday 12 October 2004, 17:38


Pretty good, however it is not easy to understand by someone who does not reall know what to do. I mean that reading will not be enough for a beginner, demonstration still remains the key.

One hint for warm-up, if I might share it with others: I have to admit that I do not do proper stretching and warm-up, but at least I do the followings:
- I do some stretching for the thighs to avoid bad surprises

- I do some rotations with the upper body to warm up the muscles that support the spine (very easy to get injured otherwise)

- Then I do some rotations with my arms to warm up the shoulder muscles and joints. That is the easiest to hurt when they are not warm enough and you screw up one of the first carves and you have to use your arms as a support (or the snow is a bit deep and your arm starts digging)

- And here comes the most vital: I always start on an easy slope (preferrably blue) and I do moderate push pull and rotations - basically some heavy pumping to accelerate the board (short carves, like when you do skateboarding and you want to earn some speed).

By this
- I get a feeling about the quality of the snow
- I warm up my thighs totally due to the pumping
- I warm up all the rest of my body (neck, trunk, arms, etc)
- I get a sense of the rhytm of the board (if you know what I mean)

As the speed is accelerated I start going deeper and deeper, push harder and harder and then at the end I do 1 or 2 laid turns (depending on what the slope allows) and then I go and find some steep, groomed and wide slope to start practicing EC.


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Postby vkrouverk » Tuesday 12 October 2004, 18:40

Skywalker, have you looked at Cern ski club pages? They have good instruction material available there, perhaps you can take it as an example.
Hmm, this rider seems familiar, where could I have seen him before.... :roll:
Converting potential energy to kinetic..
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Postby drcr » Saturday 23 October 2004, 2:07

I make doc file versions of EC-Training Part I and II posts. If anyone would care to have them...

My Site, under the snowboard section. Feel free to edit and distribute, just give some credit if you distribute elsewhere. Of course you'll get credit as you're in the body text itself. :)

Let me know if you would like .pdf versions.

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