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Thread: Kick Starts

  1. #11
    Senior Member BitterSweetRacer's Avatar
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    You know I've looked at this thread and said to myself, just get out of the start by pushing with your poles. What's the real difference? Yeah, yeah I know it will make you have a faster time, but how much faster? I think you can gain more from just getting out clean and have a smooth race and not making any mistakes on the course.
    Sometimes the Dragon wins, So Be the Dragon.
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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by BitterSweetRacer View Post
    You know I've looked at this thread and said to myself, just get out of the start by pushing with your poles. What's the real difference? Yeah, yeah I know it will make you have a faster time, but how much faster? I think you can gain more from just getting out clean and have a smooth race and not making any mistakes on the course.
    At my home hill there is a plateau that requires 3 seconds+ of skating/poling before any downhill skiing. I skied another Nastar course like that. At those places, the start is HUGE.

    At Nationals last year, starts wouldn't have been as important on Lower Hughes.

  3. #13
    Senior Member BitterSweetRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by villaski View Post
    At my home hill there is a plateau that requires 3 seconds+ of skating/poling before any downhill skiing. I skied another Nastar course like that. At those places, the start is HUGE.

    At Nationals last year, starts wouldn't have been as important on Lower Hughes.
    So a kick start will not help you on that hill. Your start on the hills you mentioned is more about having a good skate and pole technique than a kick start. Most people are missing what the kick start does. First it aligns the skis with the slope of the start getting them flat on the surface going down the hill. Then it also allows for the body to lead out in a forward position (perpendicular to the surface)for tip pressure right way, which allows for a powerful skate in unison with the pole push. So a good skate pole on a flat start is really all you can do. The body works like a pendulum around the core when doing a kick start thats the only reason the feet go back. I watch a ton of world cup races just hop right out on to the start slope. Which would do no good on a flat surface.

    I just spend 10 days on the world cup runs at BeaverCreek. I watched the pros and lucky me got to talk to a few of the coaches. I watched the men and women on the training slopes that didn't have a hugh start hill just a flat section on a blocked off run. You just need to be clean with precise movements that aren't to much. I used to racer another pacesetter at Bittersweet Jeff Gregory. He use to say I need to work on my start to beat him. I only change one thing for my start. One nice strong pole push timed just right with a strong medium skate in width. Everything else was on the course being clean. I started beating him 8 out of 10 times.

    I'm not saying the start isn't important. I'm saying just get out clean and balanced on your skis with the energy of the pole push and skate directed down the hill. Everything else is on the course. You can make up more time on the course than you can from the start. If your start is good with out the kick start then work on your course tactics and technique.
    Sometimes the Dragon wins, So Be the Dragon.
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  4. #14
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    BSR! Haven't seen you around here much lately. Are you still at Bittersweet?
    I hope all is well!

  5. #15
    Senior Member BitterSweetRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chase View Post
    BSR! Haven't seen you around here much lately. Are you still at Bittersweet?
    I hope all is well!
    I'm still around but I moved to Vail last winter. I've been training on WC runs and I've found that the kick start is really misunderstood with whats really happening. After training with WC racers I would never recommend a kick start method to a Nastar racer under any circumstances.
    Sometimes the Dragon wins, So Be the Dragon.
    HOR356
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  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by BitterSweetRacer View Post
    I'm still around but I moved to Vail last winter. I've been training on WC runs and I've found that the kick start is really misunderstood with whats really happening. After training with WC racers I would never recommend a kick start method to a Nastar racer under any circumstances.
    Wow, nice! Are you working in the ski industry out there? Or something in the same industry you worked in in Michigan (I think I remember you saying you were an engineer of some sort when I took a lesson from you once?)

  7. #17
    Senior Member jclose8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chase View Post
    Wow, nice! Are you working in the ski industry out there? Or something in the same industry you worked in in Michigan (I think I remember you saying you were an engineer of some sort when I took a lesson from you once?)
    Engineer?? He was a freakin' ROCKET SCIENTIST, MAN!!!
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  8. #18
    Senior Member BitterSweetRacer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jclose8 View Post
    Engineer?? He was a freakin' ROCKET SCIENTIST, MAN!!!
    LOL Yup Jamie that's why I can't figure out how to change my info on this stupid site. Not sure I like the change.

    Chase I'm a full time ski instructor and Development team coach in Vail.
    Sometimes the Dragon wins, So Be the Dragon.
    HOR356
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  9. #19
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    Nice! "Living the dream", or at least my dream - though I know most instructors only get paid a fraction of the paid lesson cost.

    Got a race lesson with Victor "the Inflictor" Roy at Snowbasin on my first day of skiing and he is awesome. Thought it better to start the season with proper form from the get go - I've got a lot to work on.

    Great to see you back on the forum, BSR!

  10. #20
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    That's awesome - very happy for you!

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