Friday, July 16, 2010

enlightenment through closed eyes

I’ve really worked hard on improving my technique and have made great strides, but there’s always something more to work on and tweaks to make. I think I’m on the verge of a breakthrough. Last week at the V2 video session, Ahvo told me that I need to get my hip just a bit further over and pole longer on the one ski before shifting my weight to the other side. I’ve heard this many times from various sources and know what he’s talking about. I can see it on the video and feel it when I ski, but just haven’t been able to make the change. So earlier this week I tried some balance drills with my eyes closed. I’ve read that having the eyes closed is important for improving balance. I think doing balance drills with eyes open helps strengthen the muscles used for balance, but doing them with the eyes closed helps train the brain and other systems involved somehow. Anyway, I was doing the V2 motion with my eyes closed and found that I couldn’t step back and forth without putting a foot down unless I did it a certain way. After thinking about it I came to the conclusion that that motion was what I had been trying to do but couldn’t quite get. Doing it with eyes closed forced me to do it right. So tonight at practice I tried doing the same thing on roller skis (with eyes open this time!). I was finally able to make it work. It feels deliberate and inefficient since it’s new, but I think once I commit it to muscle memory and practice it a lot it will feel good and be more powerful.

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