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Level 2 Ungroomed Terrain

Activity Description

This activity involves skiing ungroomed or variable blue or black terrain while showing the ability to control speed through use of turn shape and terrain. Skier shows high energy skiing and offensive tactics.

Why This Activity Will Be Useful

Intermediate zone skiers often stick to groomed terrain. The ability to explore ungroomed, bumpy, and variable terrain opens up much more terrain and challenges the skier to utilize the various skill blends that have been practiced and developed up to this point.

What The Skis Do (EFFECT):

• Skis maintain contact with the snow when appropriate
• Skis bend under foot the in majority of turns
• Pivot point is under center of ski in majority of turns
• Skis rotate from center at similar rate and time
• Skis tip simultaneously and edge angles are similar
• Pole plant is functional

How The Body Moves (CAUSE):

• Flexion and extension of joints allow for absorption of terrain
• Flexion/extension of joints allows for COM to maintain fore/aft and lateral balance over base of support
• Legs turn under a stable upper body and allow for upper/lower body separation
• Turning movements are progressive and appropriate to the terrain
• Edging movements originate in the lower leg under a stable pelvis and upper body
• Turn shape is round, and size is varied to reflect tactics that reflect offensive skiing


Ungroomed difficult blue or black terrain

Steps to Skiing Level 2 Variable Terrain

Practice and develop proficiency in L1 variable terrain, basic parallel short turns, retraction basic parallel turns, Dynamic medium radius turns.
This activity requires using well developed Skiing Fundamentals and Skills and adjusting the D.I.R.T. of movements to match the demands of the snow and terrain.

Common themes and some suggested corrections:

Traverse between turns. This is often coupled with a short shaping phase of the turn.
• Adjustments: As in medium radius turns, change the skis’ edges and establish a platform for balance prior to turning/pivoting the skis
• Progressively add rotational control movements that come from the legs.
• Allow the skis to seek the fall line, then slowly turn out of it. If the skier is not ready to make another turn, instead of traversing, continue to turn the skis as if getting ready to make a “J” shaped turn, then begin the next turn.

Pressure too far aft or too much on inside ski

• The undulating terrain and varied resistance from variable terrain presents many pressure management challenges.
• Fore/Aft. The perceived risk of “going over the handle bars” often leads skiers to not move far enough forward to access the skis’ sidecut/design, which leads to a loss of access to turn shape and speed control. Continue to make fore/aft pressure adjustments though all phases of the turn. Depending on snow conditions, these movements may need to happen over different durations of time, and with different intensity than on groomed surfaces.
• Lateral. While the snow surface is soft, there should still be more pressure on the outside ski than on the inside ski (there may not be as marked of difference in foot-to-foot pressure depending on snow conditions). Continue to use upper body angulation to direct pressure to the outside ski. Utilizing the outside ski turn to practice in this terrain can be helpful.