The Perfect Turn
Braking down a World Cup Turn | A Perfect Turn
Begin with the End in Mind Let’s chunk up a World Cup turn all the way back to the free skiing basics. These are the building blocks for any racer. If they are unable to execute an acceptable turn free skiing there is little to no chance that the athlete will be able to execute one in a course. The Progression uses an athletes Best Turn Drill as the base line that the racer must revisit every day before a practice or race. It gives the athlete’s “warm up” run purpose and hard wires the skill set into the athlete.
The Perfect Turn can be described as:
"You are on an arc with your ski base pointing up hill. As that ski goes out that you trust that your skis will come back. The pressure builds and as you pass the gate you release the turn and the skis sling shot you into the next turn." Ted Ligety Check out the video
Chunk it up
Turn: Initiation, Foundation, Completion
The Perfect Turn has three well-defined phases. It is critical that the phases work in concert with each other. An error can often begin in one phase and affect the others.
Initiation This is the first phase of the turn. The outside ski starts to take the force of the skier. Some counter rotation helps to make the tip bite. The better the racer, the quicker shorter and cleaner this phase can be executed. Usually the first thing that is scrubbed in a bad line.
Foundation. The middle phase of the turn. This is the part that is photographed most often. The hips are stacked square to slight counter rotation depending on the racers' flexibility for the building of centrifugal force. The ski is fully decambered, tracking and loaded with energy. In a perfect turn, there is minimal snow spraying off essential energy. The outside ski takes 90% of the racers weight.
Completion. This is the last phase of the turn. At the bottom of the turn, energy reaches its peak, is released, and is directed to the next turn. The energy is often lost because the racer jams the end of the turn because the line is off or rotates because the centrifugal force pulls the hips creating an awkward transition.