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GUT Gate Video Walkthrough


AdamCord
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We've been meaning to get this and other videos done for a while. It's winter so that means there is a little more time to do these things, so hopefully we will get a few more videos like this done soon. This one covers the gate only, so there's plenty more to talk about.

 

I did my best to keep it foot forward non specific, although I'm a righty. Feel free to ask questions and we'll do our best to answer. If you go to the page on the Denali website HERE the bullet points from this video are listed. It would be worth reading over those as you watch the video to help keep everything clear. There are lots of different ways to do a gate, and this is just one of them, but there's no question that if you can do this you can count on back-siding one ball a lot.

 

 

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I watched a video by the Wilson brothers a couple years ago in which they were commenting on a few different skiers and pointing out things they needed to change. In that video they stressed keeping the hands low during turn-in and not letting them rise up and disconnect from the body (I tried but failed this morning to find that video). I've been trying to do that ever since even though it feels quite unnatural to me. Your video and instruction suggests the opposite -- raising the handle up away from the body during turn in. Is this just a difference in styles or is it an actual technique philosophy difference? Or maybe the thinking on this technique has changed since that Wilson video was made?
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@TallSkinnyGuy I'm not sure why they would have been coaching that. I also have tried that before with no success.

 

Reaching with the handle like this only works if you first make an effort to keep the handle close to your body in the glide. Then when you reach you are letting the boat get further ahead of you. In a way this is like lengthening your runway into the pulling position. You are actively creating a large gap between the handle and your hips, and you then progressively ski back under the handle so that when you get to centerline, your hips are close to the handle again.

 

I went ahead and uploaded this pass too so you can just watch the whole gate without it stopping every 3 frames.

 

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@TallSkinnyGuy I know exactly what video you're talking about, I think you have it twisted a bit though, I have skied a bunch with Brooks and KC and have worked on that exact thing You and Adam are talking about a few years ago. He just explains we don't want to lead with our shoulders and having our ski behind us, because we're building speed and loading the rope from too wide of a point. Like @AdamCord said reaching with the handle allows the ski to roll out and underneath our feet easier, so we're in a balanced position over our ski.

 

Stellar gate and pass @AdamCord

 

KC talks about it when he skis at 2:46.

 

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Thanks @ColeGiacopuzzi, that is the exact video I was talking about. He particularly mentions "giving the handle back to the boat" at turn-in as a bad thing with the second and last skier. Perhaps my novice skier mind took that too literally without a full understanding of what the advice was intending to accomplish.
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I've also heard overwhelming advice to not let the arms up in the turn-in from many credible sources over the years. However, it never felt natural to me to not let the arms come up to initiate the turn-in. Glad to see it coming back into style, ha.
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Wow. I think I just understood the difference between line load and ski pressure for the first time in my life!!

 

I feel like I could go to a GUT seminar on those 10 seconds before entering the gates, every week for the rest of my life, and learn something every time!

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GREAT stuff. Clearly I need the more aggressive pull out to high. Have always been a proponent of letting the hands in first but love the vertical handle tip prior to that moment. Also love the idea of letting the body come in without turning the ski...the sprinter analogy...awesome. Also love the concept of energy build only between the 45's, so to speak.

Would also love the future instruct on the "pre-turn". I do believe the wash to the ball is the hardest part to do right...continuing to high but on the inside edge.

I think when most of us go inside edge we lose outbound or even "up bound" meaning up the boat. To counter this we pull longer or pull toward shore hoping to gain the necessary width we are about to give up by not staying connected...in fact can't stay connected after pulling for shore. I'm guilty as hell. Works fine til the line is short.

Thanks for the vidoe @AdamCord.

 

I need to remember to watch this in the spring!

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@6balls what I see with most people isn’t that they lose outbound direction by rolling to the inside edge coming through center, it’s that they give up that strong position against the boat. This is why it’s important to separate in your mind ski load and line load. This is where you end up with the “reverse c” type position that is especially prominent with Nate. His body position is still strong to handle the high line load, but the ski is on the inside edge and starting to turn down course.
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@AdamCord thank you. I tend not to get inside edge thru center feeling like I need to keep pulling to shore, this separates the handle and takes away that strong position...like I'm using ski load to keep line load until finally unloading both at the same time--not good at 38. The idea of separation of the two (line and ski load) is very cool appreciate your insights very much.
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This was incredibly insightful. Particularly the aspects of maintaining connection via loading line vs ski and properly riding the handle to outbound trajectory. I am specifically trying to better this aspect of my skiing to consistently run more 32's and finally make it all the way thru 35. The way you described it, maintaining connection finally makes sense in physical form from start to finish.

 

Just awesome

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@Kellen417 and others thanks for the feedback. Our goal with this is to get enough articles and videos done that maybe we can try and remove all the ambiguity and confusion that's out there is water ski technique theory. I've heard a lot of BS over the years, and it's frustrating.

 

Maybe if people can ask questions or just list the specific things you want explained in more detail, that will help us to know what is highest priority? We recently got some good overhead video too so I'm looking forward to using that in a video.

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@AdamCord .... Thank you for addressing Line Pressure vs Ski Pressure. The Reverse C has been something I have worked on for over 3 seasons now. Still don't have it totally correct. Could you please address what your FEELING to accomplish this correctly. I understand it's releasing ski pressure while maintaining line pressure. Question is "HOW" to do that correctly.....THX, ED

 

PS: When I release the ski pressure, but still maintain the upper body lean, it feels as if I loose at least 50% of the line pressure at the same time. Is this normal ???

 

 

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@Ed_Johnson I’ve been thinking about how best to describe the feel of this. It can be really tough to describe a feel, but I did come up with an analogy that I think might help get the idea across. We will do a video on this but let me know if this explanation helps or is just confusing.

 

Coming into the wakes was covered in the video. You must be able to efficiently accelerate into center for any of this next part to be useful.

 

cwv2ku6cckg3.png

 

As you come into the centerline, and off the 2nd wake, however, a transition should be happening. This is normally called the edge change, and your edge will start to “change”, but that is not how you should think of it. It should be more of an unloading or unweighting of the ski. Your upper body, however, doesn't really change pisition.

 

Here is where the possibly confusing analogy comes in. Imagine you are standing on a giant carousel, out near the edge, and it’s spinning super fast. There is rope tied to the center of the carousel, and that’s all you have to hold onto. Because of the centrifugal force on your body, there is a great deal of pressure in the rope and your hands, but none in your legs. The only pressure in your legs is your own body weight holding you up. This is the EXACT feeling you should have coming off the 2nd wake. This is depicted in the first image of Nate riding the carousel (far left).

 

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Now you’re still on the carousel. You’re spinning around and around and your arms are getting tired. What do you do? You decide to slide your feet out away from you a little bit and actively stand against the centrifugal force, reducing the pressure in your hands and the rope. Now a good percentage of the load can be carried by your legs and your arms get a break. This is EXACTLY what is happening when you roll to the new edge of the ski and don’t try to ski wider than the handle path. This transition is depicted as the 2nd and 3rd images of Nate on the carousel.

 

If that all makes sense, then it should start to be really clear why we don’t want to keep the ski banked up on the pulling edge much past centerline, as all you’re doing is adding unnecessary load on the rope, and you’ll be actively skiing yourself away from the handle.

 

There are several different ways to do the "unweighting" move. Some people will really try to pull the ski up and bend their knees a lot. Personally, I just try to stand up tall coming into the centerline and let the ski roll to flat, but I also am trying to not let the ski roll out too soon, as I don’t want to take too much angle off the 2nd wake. The feeling is one of just letting the ski come under you and get further from the boat. If you understand the concept, I think you can find what works best for you, it just takes some concentrated effort.

 

If you’re serious about learning this I suggest you put the rope on a short line length and take a lot of turns and cuts free skiing. Don't worry about whether or not you're getting wide enough. Just focus on progressively building angle into center and "riding the carousel." It’s amazing how much easier it is to focus on this when you’re not chasing buoys.

 

 

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@AdamCord ... Thanks, I feel better now, since I am doing it similar to you. I always thought I was missing something when the line pressure decreased with the unweighting of the ski.

Agree with the freeskiing also. As an example, if I overturn one or two ball at 35 or 38, I always free ski the rest of the course practicing, rather than just waste the rest of the pass holding on behind the boat. I find this a great experimental time, and get to see the results on video later. I continue to learn a lot by doing that.

 

Thanks again for the explanation...ED

 

 

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@Ed_Johnson -from the old west coast video we learned that the rope pressure before the wake can build up near 600 lbs. if your using your body mass after the wake to maintain pressure on the rope but you feel its not enough i recommend introducing more jelly donuts into your diet. that approach seems to be working for me.
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@mwetskier ... I've been ahead of you on that approach to long and need to start going the other way. I'm already on a 68" ski. Saw a 69.5" Pro-Built at Performance the other day, and that thing looked like you could put a motor on it. I really don't want to be headed in that direction.

 

 

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@Ed_Johnson the force in the line due to centrifugal force can be calculated as mass times speed squared divided by the radius...(mv^2)/r. So speed is a lot more important than weight when it comes to load in the line coming off the 2nd wake. When I'm skiing well I don't feel a noticeable drop in load as this transition happens, because the transition also coincides with my max rotational speed around the pylon.

 

So if you are feeling a huge drop in load, I'd say you need to do a better job of creating speed into the wakes.

 

There is another part to this, which is Zero Off. If I was progressive in loading the line and building speed into center, I should be get max response from ZO right as I'm transitioning to the new edge. If my body position is good, then I welcome that throttle because it'll whip me around the pylon and I'll be wide and early. If I got overloaded too early, the ZO probably responded early and could already be letting up as I cross into the whitewash. That could be part of what you are feeling.

 

That additional throttle that happens right during this transition is why I think many people (including me) struggled making the transition to ZO. You have to take a different approach with ZO.

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This "Reverse C" situation is not something you want to be "trying to do". It reality, it is purely a 'result' of a kinetic chain of events prior to that moment. My comment to water-"DON'T TRY TO EDGE CHANGE". An edge change is simply a by-product going on in the background during a kinetic chain of events. But where does that start? Getting a grip on some basic geometry via GUT can really shed light on how important the change in direction at CL really is.

 

@AdamCord does a good job with the Carousel concept to relay this point. We talked at length this morning about what the 'a-ha' moment was for each of us learning the "transition phase" (something very poorly explained in our sport) where our COM is experiencing a significant directional change - and not only in one dimension. We agreed that the "HOW" behind achieving a "reverse C" type position off the second wake would be answered through a conversation about 'direction'.

 

MOST people ski into center with the goal of skiing into more and more angle in order to get to the buoy line wide and early. Another way to put it is they are pulling into the first wake with a 45deg ski angle and then trying to build more and more into CL to come off the second wake with 90degs of ski angle. The only need for doing so is because of a mismatch of speed and direction. Lack of speed means you need a more aggressive direction (toward 90degs) to get to reach the ball line. If it wasn't for the fact we are physically connect to the boat this might not be a big deal, but since we are, its HUGE DEAL. Slow speed coupled with excessive ski angle produces higher loads on the ski as well as higher loads on the line. This produces a break in the waist OR handle separation - not a reverse C.

 

You must have both adequate speed AND direction at CL to accept the swing of the rope without separation from the handle or breaking at the waist. Ideally, higher speeds combined with shallower ski angle-of-attack and lower roll angle at CL will allow the ski to be more efficient, unweighting early, and sustaining high centripetal force after CL without having high pressure and load on the ski. Thus producing a 'reverse C'.

 

As the rope gets shorter, the handle moves downcourse more aggressively after CL. Therefore, we must be better at controlling our path during the transition phase to sustain our connection to the line. An effort to take a shallower line after CL is how you can get the ski to unweight early (less ski load) yet still have higher loads on the line due to centripetal forces. This is the carousel Cord is describing. Managing how you create speed and control your skis direction from white wash to whitewash will allow you to capitalize on the dynamics of the swing in such a way that the centripetal force helps you get to the ball early and wide, rather then peeling you in half and pulling you narrow. But striving for a "reverse C" will accomplish nothing. The dynamics leading up to that moment are where all the magic happens.

 

At a minimum, three things on the gate sequence must come together in order to have an effective transition and swing (reverse C) are as follows.

1. Timing: Timing between YOU and the Boat is priority #1, followed by timing the start of the swing (roll-in for the gate) relative to the physical position of the course. (Can be easily observed in Cords gate video.

2. Efficient downcourse deceleration & crosscourse acceleration. An effective and efficient position/stance on the ski that enables you to maximize rotational acceleration of the rope around the pylon without the ski being forced into excessive & unsustainable roll and/or angle before the boat is pulling you toward CL. Dont want to be peeled apart before the gate.

3. Maximum connection to handle at CL on a controlled attainable trajectory to allow the COM and ski to move with the handle outbound off the second wake.

 

To help understand trajectory away from center-line, think about hitting a baseball. You can create a lot of swing and energy in a baseball-bat prior to making contact with the ball. The bat swing up to that point is equivalent to us in our approach to CL. The question is what 'effort' are you making in the swing of the bat prior to contact with the ball ? Hit the ball too high, and you "pop fly". Tons of swing energy - but excessive vertical direction. Ball goes way high but falls back to earth before going over the fence. Hit it at the right angle and you have the potential for the home run....but for it to be a home run, you had to create enough energy during the initial swing of the bat for it to go out of the park. Trying to hit harder after you have already swung the bat will do nothing to help. The energy, control, and direction that is created in the early stages of the swing before contact with the baseball dictates the outcome of the balls trajectory to its target. The same is true for the skier on an approach to CL. Our trajectory to one ball after crossing CL is 100% defined by our timing, actions, and efforts before CL.

 

In slalom, we must have the right target(the buoy) to send our COM (the ball) to. This can be visualized as apex just outside of the buoy (home run fence). If we create a ton of energy into CL, but dont control our swing, you might either 'pop fly' or 'line drive' into the ball. A pop fly is evident when you get slack on the back of 1 ball. A line drive is when you ski inside the buoy line. A home run is when you have the right bat speed (speed before CL) coupled with the right trajectory (home run) where your COM lands at the ball.

 

Trying too hard to go wide early will repeatedly cause the 'pop fly effect' where the ski separates from the handle too early, and your COM ends up paralleling the boat and you turn into slack.

 

Your entire gate sequence should be designed to setup a home-run straight to one ball.

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@AdamCord .... Thank you, that all makes total sense, and I agree with you 100% when it comes to Zero Off. I try very hard to load ZO before it loads me, and use the power of ZO for the cast out. It's a great feeling when that works out right.

 

You have clarified a lot of what I am feeling and what I should be feeling, and I thank you for that.....ED

 

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@AdamCord why does the GUT technique emphasize the upper body staying square to direction of travel during the first 45 degrees of the pull out (i.e. Shoulders not open to the boat)? I have seen a lot of people point their sternum towards the boat as a means of dropping their hips outbound and forward in order to initiate the pull out, which is sort of a "west coast" movement. I think Parrish does this now. It seems like both movements could be viewed as a way to efficiently move the ski outbound. What are the pros and cons of these differing movements?
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@skispray while you can definitely pull out by rotating toward the boat, as is seen in many skiers, there are some specific reasons why we advocate for the Mapple/Smith/Asher/Jmac version.

 

The first has to do with your connection to the rope and how you handle load/line tension from the boat. Remember that we want to get a lot of energy in a short amount of time/space, so that means a strong but short pull. The Zero Off will gas the boat in order to maintain speed when you apply load to the line, further increasing the line load, so you need to be in position to accept it. By rotating toward the boat you will have no ability to keep the handle close to your body, as the load is pulling directly away from your body.. Rotating away, or closing off, however, loads your left shoulder and the pull comes from across your body, not straight away, so with little effort you can maintain a strong connection to the handle. Just like coming off the 2nd wake into the preturn, a strong connection to the handle will keep you moving UP on the boat, and not just OUT. See GUT articles to understand the difference (there is one).

 

Closing off and staying square to the ski allows you to stay connected AND accelerate quickly up on the boat. If you opened up and lost connection, as many skiers do, you can pull the handle back to your hips, but this is an extra step that can cause variability in your gate. Also if you lost connection to the handle that means you were outside the handle path, which means you lost energy and you are probably falling back on the boat too soon and therefore starting your gate from a narrow point.

 

The second reason has to do with your COM and where it goes. While I have seen some people open to the boat like this and still manage to keep their COM forward on the ski, this is certainly more the exception than the rule. Most people end up dropping their butts back, putting the ski into an inefficient position. We want to be as efficient as possible on this pullout so that we can create a lot of speed in a short space and get way up on the boat. If you are in an inefficient position you will have to pull longer, and most likely past the 45 degree mark. If you're still pulling past 45 then that means you aren't moving very fast, and the moment you let up you are starting to fall back on the boat. Again this results in turning in, probably too aggressively, from a narrow point. You'll end up overloaded and without enough speed into the gate.

 

The pullout should be treated similarly to how you come off the 2nd wake and into the preturn, as the geometry is the same and the physics are similar. We all know instinctively we don't want to be rotating back toward the boat as we come off the 2nd wake, as it causes the same problems described above.

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Wow - this thread should be required reading for any slalom skier. The principles described by the Adam’s are not only for short line skiers. If I had this information when I first started skiing the course it would have been like cheating! The physics and directional vectors are the basic foundation for anyone who wants to ski better, not just the buoy chasers. Well done Adam’s, and thank you for this insight!!
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@skispray -one point i don't think i've seen made here is that the most powerful connection to the boat during a pulling phase is one that applies the load to the ski somewhere between your feet. if the pull comes from out in front of your hips you will probably over load the ski tip and break at the waist as your hips go out behind you as you try to regain balance. at the other extreme if the pull comes from too far back you will end up on your tail and find it very difficult to gain enough acceleration early enough to ski ' up on the boat '.

 

but if the handle is locked to your right hip it will much easier to maintain a balanced stack and get the immediate acceleration your looking for in the pull out. you don't have the strength to keep the handle down at your hips if you open up for your pull out -no one does. your hands are going to come up away from your center of mass and the resulting pull will be coming through your shoulders instead of your hip. closed off with most load taken on your lead arm as advised by @AdamCord is far more efficient.

 

what makes this idea hard to grasp is the fact that your gate pull out is 100 per cent opposite of all the other pulls you do in the course. for the gate your initiating your pull right at the center line and then just maintaining pressure as you ski out past the 45 degree point. but on all the rest of your pulls you will be initiating your pull out wider and then just maintain your pressure as you pass the center line. because the two pulls are opposites of each other it makes sense that your body positions might be opposite of each other too.

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@AdamCord thanks for your reply. It sounds like pretty much all of what you said could be applied equally well to cut from the ball to the wakes. Do you subscribe to the idea that your shoulders should be square to the direction of travel in the cut as well?
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@skispray for sure. Although I think it's important to recognize and accept the asymmetry that results from having one foot in front of the other. It makes sense to be a little more "open" through an onside pull and a little more "closed" through an offside pull. That's just the nature of our stance. When people try to overdo it or stay way open all the time on both sides, they are just asking to lose connection and efficiency.
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Very good stuff @The Adams.

One element or factor I'd like to see more discussed is the difference between 34 and 36 and how it affects...well...all the above.

I totally get it and understand the physics of 'all the above', and I believe the fundamentals don't change at the slower speed of 34. BUT, I don't think anyone will argue that (at least for us heavier 34mph guys) it is much easier to carry/maintain speed and generate speed at 36 compared to 34. I think it is easier to build the necessary speed into centerline, to allow an early transition, at 36 rather than 34.

I'm likely doing numerous things wrong particularly from bouyline to centerline. But at shortline I find it very difficult to generate sufficient speed into centerline to allow an early shutdown AND sufficient width.

 

A typical example of me at 35 off

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@Booze You’re right that it can be more difficult to create speed at 34 vs 36, but that doesn’t change anything about what we’re trying to do.

 

I apologize in advance for picking on you, but you asked :)

 

 

Some things jump out in this video. You can see right away that you are way back on the ski in the gate glide, and you’re losing speed/width at a rapid rate. This forces your move on the turn in to be much more back and away than toward the pylon, rolling the ski further to the tail and creating a lot of angle way way too soon. You can see that by the time you enter the whitewash, you’ve already pretty much reached max ski angle, and you’ve put the ski between you and the boat. From there you are stuck in this back seat highly loaded position all the way until the handle swings past the wakes and pulls you off your edge, also separating you. This same rhythm is maintained throughout the whole pass. If you had been more efficient and progressive on the gate, your edge change would have been sooner and you would have been much better connected into 1 ball, making you wide and early, and letting you backside it. This lets you pick up the line sooner and be progressive out of 1 ball as opposed to moving back and away, again putting the ski between you and the boat too soon.

 

I also am on edge a hair longer at 34, but only slightly. Creating speed and being efficient is the same at 34 as it is at 36. Work on doing that part, and the edge change will take care of itself.

 

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@ Booze - At the end of the day - You can rip. NO DOUBT. Great skiing.

 

Looks like just a small correction with the timing on the glide will do A LOT.

 

I find that people roll back and force the ski between them and the boat simply because they have to in order to go through the gates. If you don't, you'll drift too far down course and be "late on the gate".

 

Give yourself a way to have more distance before the gate before you forced the roll in. We want to see your glide speed drop much lower then the boat speed before you start making a move to center. All you need to accomplish that is more glide distance/space that will allow time for the boat to pull away from you more before you roll back in.

 

On a gate sequence, the down-swing of the rope can initiate one of two ways.

 

1. The skier slams on the break pedal and very rapidly decelerates.

2. The boat progressive pulls away from the skier as the skiers glide speed naturally decays.

 

We want #2. This ensures that the skier is 'skiing' into the natural "downswing" of the rope and will successfully use the boats power and efficient ski position/attitude to accelerate them into CL.

 

#1 Just guarantees that you will kill the energy you do have while simultaneously sacrificing body position on top of the ski and ultimately putting the ski in a very inefficient position that is highly resistive to the ropes natural downswing and acceleration around the plyon.

Worth mentioning....Almost every person who watches me ski from the boat for the first time immediately comment that I am 'drifting in' on the gate. Simple fact is, they are conditioned to seeing a gate 'look' very different from the passengers seat. "Drifting In" is a whole different animal then the boat 'pulling away' from you.

 

What they're seeing the glide speed falling below the boat speed and the boat moving away from me very slowly. In reality the width of my glide path is unchanged....I have not 'drifted-in' (much like in @AdamCords gate video above). The moment the boat would 'start' to actually force me to roll over into CL is basically the signal to initiate the 'reach' and commit on the roll in for the gate.

 

@Booze in your video; At the end of the glide phase your speed was still basically matching the boat speed when you forced the turn in to happen. No 'downswing' had initiated up to that point. You had to force it.

 

Pull out early enough that you can let the boat be responsible for getting the rope to move into the downswing before you 'turn-in' for the gate. This will let you easily stay over your feet and get a much more effective swing dynamic through CL.

 

Forcing the roll in causes you to fall back on the ski and move to CL without the boat actually pulling you. This reduces the amount of energy you can get from the boat, sacrifices body position, and puts you in a excessive and un-sustainable trajectory after crossing CL.

 

 

 

 

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@Booze.

 

IMO the difference between 34 and 36 is technically nothing. Just need to correct the fin and boots for drag and resistance to roll/yaw/pitch.

 

Usually the settings I dial into for short-line at 36mph make 34mph shortline a challenge as I find my self sinking before I can turn and just fall over at the ball. Just need to free up and remove drag and correct the attitude of the ski.

 

The usual correction of boots forward, fin forward, shallower, and less wing typically give me the sensation of having nearly the exact same speed,glide,slip etc at 34 as I have at 36 and then I can rip on it at 36.

 

If a ski feels too good at 32, don't expect to run a PB. A ski setup that runs a little too fast and wide and may feel like it puts you down-course of the ball at the finish of the turn is likely something that you can cut to 38 with confidence. Especially when you master the timing on the gate described above.

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@adamhcaldwell had to read your last statement twice. First time I've ever heard that. I think in some ways, that's my problem. I dial in a ski till 32 feels great but struggle as the line gets shorter. So conversely, if a ski is set up for the shorter lines, what should 32 feel like? And if the 32 is a yawner, what directions do you go with settings??
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@Booze. Yes that is definitely on the right track in terms of 'timing'. If you can work on the efficiency of the 'out' a bit more, you will get up on the boat faster and have a little longer glide with a touch more energy.

 

The thing to avoid is a sensation of the ski 'sinking' just as you are rolling off the glide. Need to still be up on plane to keep the ski moving back to center effectively (notice I didn't say efficiently) at the point of roll in for the down-swing. This allows you to keep leading the ski with your COM without getting rolled into the backseat of the ski causing the ski to shift between you and the boat prematurely.

 

Just like in a turn, you don't want to run out of momentum/speed at the apex of a turn. Sure the line will come tight quick, but usually that will be followed by being overloaded and 'dragged' rather then swung into CL.

 

An early high energy pull-out will enable you the following;

1. Ample glide distance

Glide distance is important as it allows "time" and "distance" for the boat to be accelerating away from you as your glide speed falls below the speed of the boat. This is what we want in order to get the rope to have already started its rotational acceleration around the pylon and be moving toward CL - way before we actually even think about loading the line.

2. A higher overall level of energy at the point of turn in on the downswing.

Having more energy, aka speed, is a good thing as it takes the boat less energy to get you to a higher rate of speed before CL. Put differently, you can more effectively accelerate the handle around the pylon at a much higher rate. This guarantees you more speed at CL.

3. A more effective (not efficient) ski attitude.

Effective ski attitude does non necessarily mean its "efficient" in all directions. Yes, we want the ski to be able to accelerate efficiently with the handle on the way to CL. BUT, to do so, we need the ski to be more inefficient in the down course direction on the way into CL as to aid the boats ability to accelerate away from us faster and increase the rate of rope swing before CL. Having more glide speed will help us keep the ski in an effective position where the tail is riding higher and there is more surface area of the tunnel in the water to help us accomplish this. Where the body is positioned on top of the ski ultimately govern yaw, pitch and roll of the ski - which all play into the 'effective' ski attitude.

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@WISH.

 

If a ski is taking the paint off the back of the ball at 32, I am already planning my moves out for 38/39. I ski my earlier passes hard and aggressive to have a chance to know how the ski will react as the rope gets shorter. If something wrong, I hop on the platform and grab the wrench before cutting line. No point in wasting a pass if something feels off.

 

The yaw (rotation), pitch (tip height), and roll (bank angle) all need to be MORE stable for short-line where the speeds are much higher and the overall ranges (deviation) of yaw, pitch, and roll tend to be higher.

 

Typically short-line requires a fin with slightly more surface area, and a boot to fin position (wheelbase) to be a little shorter. Ultimately we must get the ski to not only accelerate faster into CL, but also decelerate quicker after CL. Traveling as fast as possible from 45deg in the downswing to 45degs in the upswing (aka whitewash to white wash) makes life at shortline a hell of a lot easier. Its the only way to buy time and space in front of the ball. However, if you get up on the boat near buoyline and cant shed the speed fast enough into apex, then its all for nothing as your apex will end up way down course of the buoy and its game over.

 

A variety of fin or boot moves can 'work' and its always something different. Sometimes at 38/39/41 I need the boot to move forward, and the fin to move back and shorter. Other times back and shallower. OR, I might move the boot back, while moving the fin back and deeper. All depends on whats happening in the moment.

 

Point is, it never seems to be the same. A lot of my 'triggers' for what I feel on the water and what the ultimate move will need to be are as follows, and specifically in this order.

 

1. Gate glide speed, ski attitude and speed generation into first wake.

2. Direction/speed and ski attitude off second wake.

3. Space before the ball & ability to stay connected through transition.

4. Overall speed and rate of ski rotation at apex.

 

My number 1 priority is speed into CL. Second priority is the ability to control the trajectory off CL, which governs the connection in the preturn. If that feels good, but I have no space in front of the ball, then then something is wrong, and I go back to tweak 1&2 again. If 1/2&3 feel good, then finally, I will focus on #4 and tweak for the turn. But usually, if 1/2/3 are working #4 takes care of its self - primarily because of the space& time to settle down under control. If something #4 is wrong, tip coming back from apex too early, or tail dropping out from having so much space before the ball, I will fine tune. The moves I make for #4 are almost always less then 5/1000ths on depth and length (DFT was corrected for 1/2/3 and rarely needs a bump after that. Once in a while, albeit rare, at 41 I may make a 1/32 to 1/16 boot move for #4, or 2-3/1000ths DFT move just to manage 'wheelbase' of the turn at 41.

 

I could write a book on what changes to make for each segment (1/2/3/4). @Skijay did us all a big favor already, so I'll let you reference that. But big picture, the turn is the last thing to happen in a highly dynamic sequence of events. If you are tuning primarily for the turn all the time, you will likely never find something that 'works'. To have a chance at a 'good' turn, you have to get there effectively in the first place - so tune for 1/2/3 first, and recognize its okay to go sailing past a buoy or too with way too much speed, or not even get there as you dial in the approach and transition from CL.

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