Getting the most out of a month+ with no course

buskibuski Posts: 114 Baller
This is my second season in the course. I worked up to 15 off/30mph last season, like anybody else I want to improve consistency there and work up to at least 34, then start shortening.

My local course won't be in the water until sometime in May, I hope to get out a number of times before then. The conditioning by itself is nice enough but I'd like to have some sort of focus to make the most out of the time between now and then.

I'm familiar with a lot of different drills (Seth's whips/videos, Gordon's videos, holding a strong position on either side of the boat, etc etc).

My issue is I'm not sure how best to really implement those. Sounds dumb, but what happens is I go out with the intention of working on specific drills or focus points on my body position,etc. I start out ok but usually just ski two long sets where I lose focus, get tired, and just end up skiing for the sake of skiing. That's fun but I don't feel like I accomplished anything. I'm also not sure of a great progression. Ie, do this drill to perfection before moving to the next one, etc. (Unless I just stepped through Gordon's videos in order).

Anybody have the outline of a plan to follow? Should I still ski for roughly the length of a course or two and drop for each 'pass' so I can rest/re-focus or just ski long sets of wake crossings, whips, etc and just try to get better and focusing and sticking to one thing? Like most people at this level I need to improve my position and try to drill that in before the course gets in.


  • BraceMakerBraceMaker Posts: 4,973 Mega Baller
    My plan is riding the trick ski hard.
  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,792 Mega Baller
    I don't free ski much anymore, but back in the days when we were still skiing open water sometimes, I'd pretend there was a course, pull out for the imaginary entrance gates, ski all 6, and go out the imaginary exit gates, then pull out and drop to rest. Seems funny now, but felt beneficial back then.
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • gregygregy Posts: 2,590 Mega Baller
    @buski, Check the link below there's some good info.

    I think I get something out of practicing free skiing in the spring. I'll do some of the drills, whips etc. but to me the best think about it is that you can break down different phases with out the pressure of the course. Specifically for me body positioning during cutting phase first then during turns. I don't drop to rest usually I'll just hold on to the rope and rest while skiing behind the boat.
  • DeanoskiDeanoski Posts: 1,082 Crazy Baller
    I love to free ski just feel the ski and the rope swing out and back a great way to in shape presean with out bothering with how many ball I skis, helps developed good habits.
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @buski You have the right idea using drills like whips, pull-outs and hard leaning to develop good feel, stack and conditioning. And mixing different drills into the same set helps keep it interesting. In addition, take video of every minute you spend on the water, it will help you correlate what you are feeling with what you are doing. It may also keep you focused on each drill. ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,425 Mega Baller
    I free ski quite a bit every year. I start the season (intentionally) with a couple weeks of free skiing and work specifically on my technique. In that process I work on timing, load management, handle control, and maintaining a tight line at all times. I think the most important thing is to pick one thing each set and work on that. Too many ideas and your head turns to mush. For example, decide to work on timing. Where do you want to work (buoy to wakes) and where do you want to ride with the handle (wake to buoy). Or decide to work on keeping your handle as long as you can before release. Think of just one thing, and do it every single time across the wakes.
    Jim Ross
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,425 Mega Baller
    @buski. As an aside, I also free ski regularly during the season. Many days my course is blown out by a south wind, but the south shore is smooth for free skiing. I will hit the shoreline and just work on being smooth. I will also sometimes work in open water with a shorter line length in order to help me understand the rythm of the next pass I want to make in the course. I just want to be on the water every day all summer, so I'll take course time or open water time. Summer is short -- ski hard and train smart.
    Jim Ross
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