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My head & eyes

ScarletArrowScarletArrow Posts: 817 Crazy Baller
edited September 2007 in Technique & Theory
<p>
OK, I know my head and eyes are supposed to be looking down the course...but help me out here.
</p>
<p>
Background...
</p>
<p>
It's near the end of the season for me...I'm fatigued...so rather than chasing the next speed I'm staying at 32 mph which I'm completing consistently...and working on the kinks in my form.
</p>
<p>
Up to this point, my head/eyes have generally been focused on the ball I'm approaching...now my chin isn't necessarily on my chest as I stare down the ball rounding the turn, but my head/eyes never really face north (up the course).
</p>
<p>
My approach...let's say going from 1b to 2b...has been to turn my head/eyes right-to-left during the turn (100+ degrees) so that I am looking completely accross the course to a point on the water before the next ball...I then pick up the next ball as I leave the 2nd wake...then repeat the other direction.
</p>
<p>
Now I read on another forum that my eyes should only see 3 things...6 ball, mirror, 5 ball.
</p>
<p>
The next day (a couple of days ago) I tried to keep my head/eyes up the entire time while running my 32mph pass and only look at these 3 things...lets just say the results weren't too pretty.
</p>
<p>
I felt like I was moving so quickly that my eyes couldn't pick up and find 6 or 5 ball as I'm rounding the turn.
</p>
<p>
I also felt like my head was rolling around...looking this way and that...trying to find visual cues.
</p>
<p>
Of course I've read elsewhere about where I should be looking while going through the course...but there seem to be as many different answers as there are skiers.
</p>
<p>
So what say you?
</p>
<ul>
<li>What position should my head/eyes be in 10ft. <strong><u>before</u></strong> the bouy?</li>
<li>What position should my head/eyes be in <strong><u>at</u></strong> the bouy?</li>
<li>What position should my head/eyes be in 10 ft. <u><strong>after</strong></u> the bouy?</li>
<li>What position should my head/eyes be in directly behind the boat?</li>
</ul>
<p>
Anthony
</p>
Anthony Warren

Comments

  • tsixamtsixam Posts: 371 Baller
    <span><font size="3"><font color="#000000"><font face="Times New Roman">Anthony,</font></font></font></span><span><font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000"> </font></span><span><font size="3"><font color="#000000"><font face="Times New Roman">I am trying to keep my eyes on the next ball until I know I am going to make it. Then I lock my eyes on the next ball and keep them there until I know I am going to make it and so on. It helps me to keep my head and shoulders up and it helps me to keep my body position. It will also be easier to ski with a “quiet mind” since your brain is concentrated on spotting the balls. See the message “The inner game of tennis” about focusing.</font></font></font></span><span><font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000"> </font></span><span><font size="3"><font color="#000000"><font face="Times New Roman">Some skiers like to look elsewhere for example, When you approach 3b keep your eyes on 5b until you are in pulling position and then move you eyes to 4b. At 4b keep your eyes at 6 and so on. </font></font></font></span><span><font size="3"><font color="#000000"><font face="Times New Roman">Rossi and Schnitz wrote some articles about it, read them and you might find a way that suits your skiing. Good luck!</font></font></font></span><span><font size="3"><font color="#000000"><font face="Times New Roman">Tsixam</font></font></font></span>
  • DWDW Posts: 2,170 Mega Baller
    <p>
    To me, it is all about what you need to focus on, and at different levels, you might be able to look at different things while focusing on another.  This is very relevant in racing (cars in this case for me).  My intent is to get across the course ahead of the next ball, not at the next ball, so as I was working on this, I would look a little ways up (actually back from, in real coordinates) from the ball, so mentally I would be telling myself to go there.  If I were to look at the ball, I would tend to just ski right to it, which is not what I wanted to do.  As I have gotten a better handle on that and it happens a bit more naturally, I can actually look at the ball or even somewhere else and still end up where I want to be.  I think a lot of the where you look issue changes with experience, thus polling any particular person at a given time ends up with a different answer.  I'll bet that Andy Mapple, Jamie B and the rest of the pro's can probably, as they say, ski the course with thier eyes closed, or seriously actually look at a variety of things while skiing a pretty tough pass.
    </p>
  • RogerRoger Posts: 1,587 Mega Baller
    <p>
    This works for a lot of us where I ski:
    </p>
    <p>
    * Approaching bouy, look at bouy.
    </p>
    <p>
    * When you know you will make the bouy, look down course. Doesn't really matter at what as long as it keeps your head up.
    </p>
    <p>
    * As you retreive the handle with your free hand, pick up the next bouy in front of the boat, this will keep your head up and keep you from overturning.
    </p>
    <p>
    * During the lean, look at whatever you want, if you're locked in it probably won't matter too much. I used to look cross course, but these days I look into the back of the boat to ensure even arm pressure and to keep me from looking at the next turn ball too soon so I keep my outward direction during the edge change. 
    </p>
    <p>
    * Repeat on the other side of the course.
    </p>
    <p>
     
    </p>
    <p>
    If you watch the big dawg and/or the pro stops, you will see every variety of where people look. Figure out what works for you by trying different things until you're comfortable.
    </p>
    <p>
     
    </p>
    Roger B. Clark - Okeeheelee skier. Senior driver, Senior Judge
  • chrischris Posts: 23
    <p>
    I re-visited looking at the shore, ie (turning my head in the turn) with the wakes in my periphial vision as I did many years ago. Jeff Rogers, Jody Johnson, Jennifer Leachman, Deena Mapple are some skiers who do the same. If you couple that as an "early counter-rotation" for the preturn and turn, it may work quite well. I am experimenting with it, but it is old school type of skiing except the counter in the turn which definitely works well for me...... if you can keep your hips from dragging during the head turn, it does tend to help you ski out ahead of the buoy with some decent carry out and tightens up the offside turn especially.
    </p>
    <p>
     This may work if you tend to ski to the buoy instead of ahead of it. It also lends to back arm pressure, but hey, Jeff Rogers can run 41 doing that, so why cant' I?1?.............. 
    </p>
    <p>
    Each person is different, but the bottom line is what body movements make the ski do what it is supposed to do. I coach from the ski up, not the other way. Have someone in the boat just look at your ski at each phase of skiing: gates, preturn or transition, carry out, and acceleration phase and see what body movements affect the ski/water interface watching spray, movement, rhythm, and angle.
    </p>
  • eleeskieleeski Posts: 3,975 Infinite Pandas
    <p>
    I try to spot the horizon behind me - oops that's for tricking.
    </p>
    <p>
    I look through the wake (not shoreline because shorelines change at different sites) straight across. I resist the urge to look directly at the ball as I carryout (NEVER STARE AT THE BALL or you will head straight to it). I check the position of the ball with peripheral vision as I'm switching my eyes from straight across to the next buoy (in front of the bow of the boat). After the boat blocks the buoy, I look through the wake straight across.
    </p>
    <p>
    This either works really well for me because I sometimes run a few balls despite my lack of skills and coordination OR it doesn't work at all because I can't keep up with Horton. (I'm jealous) 
    </p>
    <p>
    Eric 
    </p>
  • HortonHorton Posts: 29,209 Administrator
    <p class="MsoNormal">
    <font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000">Hard Core new schools skiers preach that you must keep your gaze straight down the lake. I find this to be difficult and with most skis I do not see the payoff. When approaching 1 ball if you look at 5 ball it is easier for your shoulders to be more level and countered. This allows for a more pure new school turn. On the F1 I find that this is the only way to rip. I am unconvinced that I really want to ski this way on my own ski.</font>
    </p>
    <font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000"> </font>
    <p class="MsoNormal">
    <font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000">On the other hand looking at the ball as you approach it leads a lot of skiers to go head down and shoulders forward. This can be a disaster. Looking all the way across shore can lead to excessive shoulder rotation and that leads to all kinds of bad things. </font>
    </p>
    <font face="Times New Roman" size="3" color="#000000"> </font>
    <p class="MsoNormal">
    <font size="3"><font color="#000000"><font face="Times New Roman">The best skiers in the world may be looking down the lake but I am not that good. I try to look at the ball until I know I am going to get around it and then I look directly at the next ball. The problem for me is that when I turn my head I have to make a point of not turning my shoulders but that is a whole other subject. <span> </span></font></font></font>
    </p>

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  • RSRS Posts: 96
    <p>
    It seems to me that I do better if I look in the general direction of 5 (LLF)on my onside but offside I do much better if I gaze in between 6 ball and the 6 ball drive buoys.   If I focus at 6 on my offside I feel like I'm looking too far in that direction and don't carry the speed off the ball.   I guess I'm looking more out in front of the boat in my offside.  At least that's what seems to work for me right now.
    </p>
    <p>
     
    </p>
  • GMCGMC Posts: 107 Baller
    RE:  Horton's post.  Glad to hear that someone with credentials better than mine has the same philosophy about looking down the lake, difficulties with keeping shoulders open, etc.  Every time I really concentrate on looking down the lake at the completion of the turn, I am in the water shortly thereafter, sometimes barely avoiding a bad OTF.  Now if I can just keep my shoulders open longer... 
  • DWDW Posts: 2,170 Mega Baller
    I find not looking at the approaching buoy more difficult in water skiing than other sports (car racing as an example, apex of turn) since hitting the damn thing ends up hurting.  At least that is my theory on why I do it. 
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