Pole Plants for Success

When you’re skiing moguls, do you ever feel like you can only
make 8 or 9 turns before you lose it? Sometimes the problem is right in your
hands! Yes, I mean your poles.


Mike Hafer of NASTC using his poles effectively

Your feet can only move as fast as your hands. If the poles
are not leading you down the hill, then chances are, you are not going in
that direction.

First, grip the poles firmly. When you swing the pole forward,
you should feel your forearm stretch. This will give you the sensation that
you are being pulled down the hill. Now go with it.

Next, as soon as one pole
touches the snow, the other is already reaching for the next touch. Picture
the poles “walking” down the hill. Even if you feel like you’ re getting out
of control try to keep the poles moving forward.

Finally, keep in mind that
this pole movement keeps your upper body square to the intended direction
of travel. Otherwise, you end up looking back up the hill. It also gives you
a third point of balance (just in case). With the upper body facing downhill,
you will be able to keep your eyes on your line so the next bump won’t be
a surprise.

So, let your hands do the walking next time you’re in the moguls.


Mike Hafer is a NASTC
trainer, PSIA-W Demo Team Member, PSIA-W Technical Team member and Staff Trainer
at Northstar at Tahoe.

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