I'd like to thank the guys over at Denali Skis, and the local skiers who were extremely accommodating guinea pigs, for hosting and enabling some data acquisition beta trials last weekend. We've been working on a new approach to real time data collection that produced some really cool results. In a nut shell, we instrumented the pylon of the boat enabling continuous measurement of applied load and load vector direction. I'm now sitting on more data than I know what to do with. Our primary goal was simply to see if we could make it work. I'd say for a first effort it was wildly successful. I'm still working on sorting out my post processing methodologies, but here's a teaser sample of one of my 34 mph/28 off passes. The graph is on a time scale basis, not distance. The green is angular position in degrees of the load vector vs. time (it gets a little wacky when the load drops off but is pretty good as long as there's some load on the line). The blue is applied load in pounds. The course is plotted for time reference only.
There is a tremendous amount of information that can be learned from this type of data. It allows you to be completely objective in dissecting your abilities. Caldwell was nice enough to crush a 39 off pass on one of his new 2017 model skis while we were recording, so we spent a couple hours just staring at an overlay of my 28 off pass with his 39 off pass. It was both humbling and encouraging at the same time. We spent about an hour just looking at the gate approach alone. There were some pretty big differences and not at all what I was expecting. Needless to say Caldwell definitely practices what he preaches in regards to the GUT theories. I walked away with about a dozen clear opportunities for improvement, some were extremely obvious and some rather subtle. We're still sorting out ways to improve the data collection process and tidy up the post processing, so I'll keep it brief for now. But I'll say it's already proving to be extremely insightful.
Here's the same pass as above zoomed into 1 ball to 2 ball with an added overlay of an extremely fluid open level skier running 34mph/32off. (not Caldwell this time). As you can tell, there's a pretty big difference in how fast the open level skier gets on the line coming out of 1 ball, he's much smoother at getting on and off the line, he has a higher peak load, gets off the pull much sooner, and is sitting pretty for 2 while I'm still pulling long. I'm the blue/green data, the open level skier is the gold/bronze.@adamhcaldwell @AdamCord