Тренировки по слаломной трассе и свободное катание

Slalom trainings and free skiing

Skiing is certainly assumed for skiing in the mountains. It is not so important, on the course or without a course. Skiing from small hills (for example, in Moscow) is mainly aimed to learning or training. But after you’ve learned to ski so that you can ride in the mountains, regular free skiing in Moscow generally loses this reason. The slalom course can motivate. When I had the opportunity to become an amateur sportsman and regularly ski on slalom course, the free-skiing trainings in Moscow ended (except of skiing with the family, of course). But in the past three seasons, it was possible to allocate time for free-skiing trainings in addition to training on the course. Therefore, I want to formulate what is better to train separately in free skiing and then transfer to the course.

Moscow, Kant ski resort
Moscow, Kant, Dec 17, 2016

In general, the regularity of skiing on the course and in the free descents is determined by the possibilities, no matter how trite it sounds. For the sportsman-amateur the ski is not on the first place in a life. For many seasons, the time that I can allocate for skiing coincided exactly with the possibilities of training on course. Therefore, the progress, the change of inventory, the development of technoque took place right in the track. I know a lot of exercises leading to the correct technique, but when the slalom course is set up, then to work outside of some element of the ski turn I can not. Not enough willpower 🙂

When it became possible to allocate additional days for free skiing, I first filled them with exercises. That is, skiing on the course and without a course did not seem to intersect, different approaches were worked out. But gradually there was a “saturation” of the exercises, and instead it was nice to find the relationship.

I also noticed that there are several strong alpine skiers who mostly train in free skiing (in Moscow). Looks like they have only such opportunity 🙂 But at the same time they are doing well at the competitions. Probably skiing on the course in their lives is enough for not support the sense of the track. And in free skiing they do such sharp cut turns, which I can not do 🙂


I will dwell on the main differences in skiing along the slalom course and on the same slope, but without a route. In general, this is not an indisputable statement, it’s more of my vision for now 🙂

  1. Speed when riding along the course is much higher. This is especially noticeable on the giant slalom.
    Vasily Zeyfas on ski course
    Vasily Zeyfas on the course. Moscow, Kant, March 12, 2017. Photo: Sergey Komlev

    It is most likely connected with psychology, on the course you go on a predictable trajectory, without a course you go so that in case of what you could stop suddenly. These two trends determine the noticeable difference in speed.

  2. On the course you turn more often and steeper. The number of turns for same descent during free skiing is usually less. You can work on it, but if you do not focus, then in a free descent you go more directly and turn less often.
  3. Without a course, it is much easier to “write” arcs.
  4. Without a course, you can follow the “natural” turning radius, defined by the geometry of the skis, speed, steepness, technique. In the course, to be honest, it’s better to forget about all this 🙂

The main difference is that on the course you need to go on a given trajectory, which needs to be built and correct “on the fly.” And this trajectory sometimes can be so stiff that you can not get through on the current level of technique. Then have to show all sorts of “miracles” (and in good, and in a bad meanings). In a free skiing you do not go to such limits. (More on these points here: Slalom, training of adults and here: Slalom, work on technique in the season 2016. Trajectory).

Moscow, Kant ski resort
Moscow, Kant, Dec 16, 2016

Conclusions I will give in the form of advice to myself

  1. Try to ride more without a course. It sounds paradoxical, crosses out my traditional approach for many years. The optimal ratio, as I now think 2:1, that is, two workouts without a course, one on the course. willpowerThis season, on average, it turned out, but not evenly. At first we rode for a long time without a courses, then the ratio was exactly the opposite, then again we rode for a long time without a courses. It would probably be very useful to divide each workout into skiing without a course and along the course. But now this is not realistic, as mentioned, there is not enough willpower 🙂
  2. In free skiing, you need to constantly work on the cut turn (for more details see: Slalom, work on the technique in the 2017 season. Shorten the arc). ski cut turnBut without the illusion that you will be able to transfer it to the course. In the course, at best, it will be possible to use only a piece of such a cut arc, and which one is not known in advance. Therefore, these “pieces” should be worked out to automatism on the principle of “playing the passage from any note”.
  3. In free skiing you need to try to tighten the arcs and get to the overloads, comparable with the overloads in the course. It is not as simple as it seems, because it is more dangerous than in the course.
  4. The dynamics of the movements in the turns is different. In free descents you tend to constant pressure on skis, and in a course to impulse loading up to jumps. Therefore, you need to maintain the middle. In free descents, try to move more dynamically than you want, and in the course more smoother.
  5. The installation of the offset of the bindings should be for riding along the course (for more details see: Shifting ski bindings forward or backward). It may be that in the course the turns are normal, and in free skating, the skis are transversely up to the sensation of a sharp stop. So you should try to build such an arc in a free descent, so that the skies do not become transverse. But do not bring to the point of absurdity. If your skis still “bites”, then move the bindings back and work on changing the turn in the course. But the course is primary for adjusting the position of bindings.
  6. In free descents it is necessary to wean from the “natural” turning radius, to go not just steeper, but on inner sensations much steeper. And sharper. This mainly applies to two segments of the arc. The first is the transfer of legs from the turn to the turn, you need to do this as quickly as possible. The second – the entrance to the turn, that is, immediately after the transfer of legs. You need to do it as short as possible and without pause.
  7. Try to go faster in a free descent. Faster not just down, but along arcs. So that there was no feeling of comfort. But do not harm the purity of the arc, of course 🙂
  8. In the course, on the contrary, you do not need to go as in a free descent (trying to smoothly write arcs). And do not make pause near the slalom pole!
  9. In a free descent you need to try so that in “internal coordinate system” each turn ends across the slope. And it is better that the skis even come up to the hill, as described in the note “Slalom, work on the technique in the 2017 season. Shorten the arc“. It should be noted that in the “external coordinate system” there will be no turning across the slope, it is clearly visible in the traces. If you get 45 degrees – well.

In general, skiing on the course and without the course should be linked as much as possible in the sensations. For example, in free skiing, the beginning of the arc is worked out. Vadim Nikitin skiAs soon as the result, you need to try to transfer it to the course. If it does not work, then you need to adjust something. It often happens that there is a gap in the movements, which can be skipped with free skiing due to the fact that there is a place on the arc. In the course there is no such place, so in the movement there will remain only what is up to the gap. And vice versa, after the end of the training on the course you need to find the opportunity to make several free descents with approximately the same pattern of turns. Quite interesting feelings sometimes. It becomes clear how to ride in free skiing. But quickly forgotten 🙂

Besides the associated elements in the track and without the track there are specific moments. For example, when riding without a course, I really like working on cut round turns. Although this is not transferred to the track. And in the track work on pairing the trajectory for a few gates ahead. So you can work on completely different tasks also. The main thing, there should be progress 🙂

Vadim Nikitin skiVadim Nikitin




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