Hands Forward, from Duncan Coker

February 15, 2010 |

Hannah KearneyThe two sports I am somewhat qualified to teach are fly fishing and skiing, and this weekend I took my 2-1/2 year old to a snowy hill nearby for some lessons. How many instructions can you really give a toddler? So I know I can only offer one maybe two comments that might stick with her and give some help.

In the case with skiing I can say that all my experience of 30+ years skiing, watching races, free skiing, and teaching others, can be distilled and put into two words that can really help. "Hands forward." It works. With hands forward, extended out in front, it puts your body weight forward, centers your balance over your skis, focuses your vision ahead of you, relaxes your upper body and puts you in the ideal stance.

Also, as you advance, "hands forward" will coordinate pole plants, help your rhythm in turning, direct your skis down the fall line, plus a hundred other small elements, and just plain looks graceful and in balance. I was delighted when I heard an interview with Hannah Kearney after her incredible gold winning moguls run describing her turning… "I was just thinking about keep my hands out front here…" That was all she had time to think about.


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