Skate to Shape

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Skating is an excellent exercise to develop movements involved with good efficient skiing. As you skate, you work from one foot to another by stepping to the side and gliding. As you step from foot to foot, you drop to the tongue of the boot and then press to the arch of the foot, moving your mass forward and down the hill with your nose over your toes or hips to the tip. As you skate, you work through the flexing and lateral muscles that are involved with dynamic skiing. It is most important to make sure you step to the side, versus having a fore aft scissor of your legs (as you would walking down the street). Ideally, in skating your stance has your feet and legs comfortably underneath your mass. In skate to shape, you need to articulate your ankle and perch to the side of the ski when moving to the new leg. As the ski is placed onto its side, with your weight and then the resistance of the snow, it will begin carving in the snow creating a piece of a circle. Your extending movements will start the shape and your collapsing movements will further the shape. Blending one half circle to the next is what we strive for in dynamic skiing. Most certainly, it is important to be skating in a ready position with your posture. More or less having your hands ready, slightly ahead of your hips, elbows extended forward from your rib cage, and the core of your body, or the center of your mass, being long and strong or in the upright ready position. Flexing movements should be geared from your ankles and within the boots, in order to maintain best balance. Ideally, as you flex, you collapse and relax to the tongue of the boot and then press forward to the new arch. Make sure to practice a little, and play a lot. Slice and dice, to make it nice.  – Tip from Jon Lamb ski instructor at Killington.