Panel Slalom | Ski Racing

Panel Slalom.    Skiing’s Futsal

Panel Slalom is one of the most underutilized training methods in ski racing.   Panel Slalom allows for many more complete turns and full transitions on any given slope. Panel Slalom compresses the intensity and focus of line, technique and high edge angles into a shorter hill space.  The need for correct line is rewarded, while a straight and late line is punished. Because the gates are paneled it is next to impossible to cheat the line and shin a gate, without being thrown out of the course.

Several WC teams regularly practice panel slalom to refocus athletes on the basics.    Slalom skis are usually the weapon of choice.


Shiffrin Training Panel - Short clip but you will notice the body position and transition

Ligety Panel Slalom. The description is incorrect. Ted has Slalom Ski and the set is much shorter than 25m

Swiss team training Panel Slalom


Best Panel Slalom Progression Drill

Panel Slalom Drill

Courses for this drill should be set in 10-12 gate sets. There can be multiple sets on the slope.  You should set a consistent corridor, 12-17 meters between gates. The turns should be offset enough to get the athletes to activate their upper bodies in the course.  You should use dye or brushes to set the correct line based on the Classic Line.  (Dye is great if your area allows it).   Do not use single poles because the athletes will tend to cross block and create the technique problems that we are actively trying to avoid.

Alterations to the Panel Slalom Drill:

  • Very the focus by adding free runs

  • Over exaggerating the line.  

  • Alternate the offset

  • Decrease the offset as the repetitions increase.

  • Dual format so that the athletes can challenge themselves against each other

panel slalom.jpg

Add a Feedback Loop:

Athletes should come to a full stop at the bottom of each section. They should take the time to reflect not on the run but on their best turns in that run.  They should review which turn was the best, why was it the best turn and how was the line?  Have them shut their eyes and shut down the visual cortex.  Visualize the best turn in their head. They should take a moment before they respond.   Here is where you really want them to think about it and remember the feeling.  We want them to get out of the mindset of “how was that run” and focus on the each individual turn.  What worked and what did not.  Prune, correct and repeat.