Sunday, 8 August 2010

First aid and learning how to jump

Last week was frustrating as far as skiing is concerned...

We only managed three days on the mountain. We’ve been attending a 2-day first aid course run by the British Association of Ski Patrollers (BASP) which accounted for Tuesday and Wednesday and the glacier ski area was closed on Friday and Saturday due to rain and high temperatures.

The first aid course was very interesting and in terms of content and covered a huge amount of situations and technical detail. The course was split 50/50 between theory and practical scenarios outside. Passers by in Saas were highly amused by the gappies working out which casualties in a fake Tour de France crash to attend to first or giving CPR to a plastic dummy.

We’ve also had our detailed results through from the BASI 1 exam which gives a breakdown of the areas where we are strong and weak. My feedback largely reflects the areas that I know I need to work on such as bending and stretching to absorb pressure and also to only try and think of one thing at a time when I’m training so I don’t jam my brain up with technical thoughts.

The Friday that the glacier was closed meant that for the first time this summer we did dry land training in the basement sports hall of a local hotel. This involved lots of dynamic jumping from side to side to simulate a ski turn. The idea was to isolate the ankle and use it more to generate power and spring. I guess it was also a discovery exercise and I found that I was landing on my heels initially which points towards skiing too much in the back seat.

We videoed our first attempts and we found that many of the faults in our skiing could be traced back to something as simple as the way that we jumped. Our final efforts after two hours worth of work on balance, leg and core control were astounding to see on video. I’ve now taken to jumping in this style down the stairs of the hotel to keep my focus on this as I found it really useful.

My beautiful wife arrived on Thursday for a long weekend and she was certainly a sight for sore eyes. A month is the longest we’ve been apart since we met eight years ago! She seems to have brought with her a change in the weather because a cold wind is now coming up from the valley and it is raining more. There has been a dusting of fresh snow most days since the weekend, which is great as the glacier desperately needs it.

published here

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