Linked Sideslips

Activity Description

From a sideslip down the fall line, the skis are pivoted 90 degrees until they straight run in the fall line for a short distance. The skis are then pivoted 90 more degrees to complete a 180 degree direction change and sideslip down the fall line. Skier maintains a consistent path or travel down the fall line.

Why This Activity Will Be Useful:           

This activity uses pressure and rotational control skills and movements that are essential to turning the skis effectively in short turns and in narrow spaces. The skier also must refine their ability to coordinate the timing of edging movements to create a controlled pivoting activity of the skis, which will improve turn transitions in short turns, bumps, and confined situational skiing.

What The Skis Do:          

  • Corridor is several feet wider than the length of the skier’s skis.
  • From a sideslip down the fall line, the skis are pivoted 90 degrees until they straight run in the fall line, and then pivoted another 90 degrees until sideslipping down the fall line for a short distance.
  • Edge angles are increased/decreased at similar time
  • Skis remain parallel to each other and stance width is consistent
  • Skis turn at similar rate and time
  • Pivot points are under center of each ski
  • Tip lead in sideslipping is the result of pitch of the hill and hip lead


How The Body Moves: 

  • Maintain a hip width stance with the hips facing predominantly down the hill.
  • Keep the feet under the hips by matching the tip lead to the hip lead while sideslipping
  • Manage fore/aft pressure to maintain a path down the fall line and keep aligned over the middle of the skis
  • Edging movements come from lateral tipping of the feet/ankles and legs
  • Extension/flexion movements of the ankles/knees/hips facilitate edge release by directing the Center of Mass down the fall line.
  • Rotate/turn both legs (femurs in the hip sockets) separate from the upper body



Green/Blue terrain, well-groomed pitch with consistent fall line.

Performed in a corridor determined by each foot staying in the fall line. (Approx. ski length +3’).

Learning/Teaching Cues

See Sideslips in the fall line.

Again, the goal here is to develop powerful, yet controlled and precise ability to use leg rotation to the turn the skis and control their rate of rotation.

Develop awareness of the sensations of varying intensities of leg rotation.

  • Static practice in boots, target hips and upper body on one direction, step/turn feet to left, back to front, and then right. Repeat.
  • Static practice in boots: if unable to stand on both feet and slowly rotate them at same time, practice first with one foot and then the other. Stand with both feet on ground. Turn one foot slowly in the snow, pivot in middle of boot so toe and heel move similar amounts (bow-tie shape created in snow). Practice with other leg. Then practice with both.
  • In static drills, if one foot turns faster or earlier than the other, focus on the less active leg and try to have it turn first and faster. Blend back to similar rate and time of rotation for both legs.
  • Using and uphill arc fan progression, utilize leg rotation to turn skis. Think: the legs turn more than the body from fall line to finish phase. Turn the legs to tighten the radius of the uphill arc. Practice on lower edge angles so the skis can rotate as the legs turn.
  • In practice, slowly increase the rate and intensity of leg rotation and decrease the time and distance that the rotation takes to occur.
  • Straight run to sideslip. From a straight run in an athletic stance, begin rotating skis quickly across the fall line using rapid, yet controlled, turning of both legs in the hip sockets. (Keep COM balanced over middle of skis to promote pivot point in middle of skis).
  • Practice altering rate and duration of leg rotation to control the speed of the skis’ pivot
  • Develop releasing skills to begin transition from sideslip without use of a platform, step, stem, push-off, or upper body rotary mechanics.