Saturday, December 16, 2006

Bio Mechanics Blog

Tuesday Dec 16, 2008
Doing a better job with my left QL, but hate being sedentary. Feel like I'm eating a lot today, but I'm hungry. Haven't been outside in three days and feel like I'm climbing the walls. Back feels better sitting in my yellow chair in front of the fire, but probably due to elaborate pillow system and giant ice pack I sit on. Am certainly sitting in a big, relaxed C, with my sits bones close to the front of the chair, and my spine curled. Been tired tired tired for the last three days, think I've got Bodhi's cold. Just want to get out and climb up something steep.

Monday, Dec 15, 2008
Wrecked tired today, can't seem to get my posture back. Spent some time on the balance ball today, notice that my tendency is to pooch my butt out and be long legged, I need to lower my center of gravity, relax my shoulders, and let the ball roll, just like slack lining, the item I'm standing on is going to move. I need to let it do so in order to reduce the movement. I love that acceptance and mindfulness of the object behaving as the object will allows the movement to calm down and my mind to step out of the way of my body, so i am just observing myself on the ball or board or line.

Sunday, Dec 14, 2008
-22 degrees and the snow was KILLER. Only five runs on some screamin groomers, trying to be mindful of a strong inside half, moving my inside hip forward while keeping my head from rising as I shift weight from turn to turn, feels good. Alex mentioned that I'm not moving across my platform as aggressively as I could, and I'm not surprised, after booting out so many times the other day, I do feel myself holding back. Changed feet into GS skis to see if a change of sidecut would be distracting enough to force me to focus on the subtle core movement, and it worked, femurs rotated into the turn, met the critical edge angle, but I'm still static at the bottom of the turn. Got em up on edge much further than before, but these were BIG turns, so had to be super mindful of my center of mass traveling through the arc described by my feet, while keeping pressure on the outside ski. Managed not to lighten and diverge, was very mindful of the chair exercise I'd done with Megan. I'm happy with my carving skills, need to get them in front of an examiner and see what they say.

Keeping my belly button pulled up to my spine and my shoulders slightly rounded is so hard for me, but I notice that when I have the core functioning like that, I can hit any compression and I feel stable. It also keeps my tail bone tucked, which limits lateral range of motion in a way that I like a lot, I feel much more stable on my outside edge of my inside ski in the bottom third of the turn, where forces are accelerating. Must school left hand not to drop down and back, it unwinds all that functional core tension!

Saturday, Dec 13, 2008
Drove from home to Bridger to Big Sky today, and noticed several times in the car that I'm going that thing with my chin and my left QL again, not good. When I'm in the car, my pelvis tips to the right and my left QL is tight almost the whole time. My chin juts up and forward, I have foreword head posture, but in a slumpy, weird, pointed up way. Put a pillow in my chair, and try to pull my head back and down and actively relax that QL. No skiing today, pulled people out of the ditch (using legs, not back), and did a 360 and ended up in one myself. Ran around in the snow in my high heels that night, then had a MONSTER boot-fitting session from 8:30 to 1:45 am! Awesome to find out that my posture in my boots is MUCH better, I'm not reefing off my skeleton any more, not too much forward lean, so that's a big improvement. Discovered I needed canting on my right boot, to the outside, which I thought I needed last year, but there were so many other issues, we weren't sure. Got em' dialed this year, standing solid, pelvis is moving forward with body mass on rocker board rather than dropping down when I move forward, core is automatically pulling into proper position when standing in boots, YEAH! Belly Button UP!

Friday, Dec 12, 2008
School today, have a really hard time sitting in these chairs because my neck hurts so much all the time. Trying to stay off the pain killers so that I can feel my body and make sure that it is safe for me to ski. Focus consistently on health and training so I can be a massage therapist and a pro skier. Every day, all day, what does it take to stay connected to my kids, love and nurture them, play with them, make my body strong, fit, balanced, and ready for both massage and skiing. Every day, all day. Focus focus focus. My back hurts a lot today. Was going to go up to Bridger and get runs in the afternoon, but need to go to Dr.s Appts that I missed while I was at the world cup. Haven't done any PT at all in three weeks, resorted to meds, stretching, ice. Not good.

Thursday, Dec 11, 2008
OPENING DAY AT BRIDGER BOWL! Yeah, yeah yeah HECK YA! The snow was manky and thick, like setting up cream cheese, and I was on my Magfires, which I'd tuned the HECK out of, so we were sharp as all get out, which is good because it was fairly chilly and had frozen the night before. It's amazing, the snow was so different than Big Sky the day or two before, so different than the wet, low angle pow that we skied on Ajax in Co, and SO different than the iced up steep WC course I'd been on, and SO different than the glacier in Hood in August, I guess I've been pushing really really hard on my skis, which is fun, I like bending them, I love the rebound and the power and how much you have to focus on flexing and extending so you don't park and ride around the turn as your core travels down hill, just ahead of your tiba, but not too much... So I'm out there in the mank and I just got SPANKED.

I booted out right under the chairlift on Deer Park about four turns into it, they felt good, and I was super surprised. What is going on? I haven't had a massive wreck like that since JUNE! I was fine on the groomers, proud of the carving, skis were bending, there was one pitch on Deer Park where I let my mind dictate where my core went rather than crossing my platform with patient authority, thus tails broke loose and the turn was big, and of course, i gained speed... reducing turn radius at high speed is scary, and i need to work on it, its an essential task for tryouts.

landed on my face several times today, super contra indicated for the condition my neck is in right now. Finally FINALLY figured it out, after changing ski partners and skiing several different aspects, I booted out Three times on the same side... checked the forward pressure on my skis, of course, it was NOT that, it was operator error. So. On my turn to the right, when I am Left foot dominant, I am clicking out and am skiing away on my inside ski. What does this tell us, Kate? I am crossing the platform too fast, I am not pressuring the outside ski, and the move is too big and i'm pushing too hard. I wasn't listening to the snow. My forces alignment aspect of critical edge angle were off because I was juiced and psyched and trying to work the ski too hard rather than listening to the snow. What does it need?

Soften. More two footedness. The move was right, but too fast, I am playing too hard, not listening, the vibration comes up from the ski tip and warns you, even when you are shin deep in mank and having to twist hard to steer, you must cross over at the right time, not just jump and whack to the inside like you own it. Got afraid to get ahead on the ski, and started letting my left hand go back and unwind me, lost my strong inside half.

SO. Light. Patient. Strong steering, but slow across the platform. Listen. tight core! ESSENTIALLY tight core, functional tension, allowing flexibility and adaptive balance. School the arms, so you can move forward, the pole swing draws you into the next turn. All the moves are right, but you have to LISTEN to the snow. Had much better rest of the day, skied well, felt solid and happy, and light and free!

Wiped out, but had massage and energy work to do tonight. The massage went well, had to really focus on moving from my core, the energy work was better, but I tend to bend forward in my upper spine.

Wednesday, Dec 10, 2008
Body Awareness in school today! Funny that I can ski all day and my neck and back don't hurt at all, but veil dance for a half an hour and i feel like someone hit me in the back of the neck with a tire iron. Must go after class and refill painkillers. Someone took my ice out of the school freezer, that sucks. I love the challenge of choreography, that's something I really miss from skating, I really love to see just how fast I can get my body to effectively learn a new movement pattern, and how long it takes for mastery. The problem is, sometimes I don't listen to my injuries while I am doing that, so i suffered today. Sitting in the chair, I was definitely aware of my spine's proclivity to collapse and slump forward. My erectors get so tight when I sit straight, but I feel comfortable with my feet straight and my knees at 90, that's ski training. I did manage to spend two years schooling my feet into the right position, and its pretty anatomically friendly for massage, luckily!!

Tuesday, Dec 9, 2008
Skied Big Sky today with Chris Jones, an examiner in our division. The snow was firm but not death cookie firm, the turkey traverse in the bowl was GNARLY and I haven't been on anything like that since last winter! One of the things I love about being in Montana and skiing with people who have skied forever is that the warm up run is, you know, in the steep bowl off the double black diamond traverse. Oh, well, I've skied it before, I know I can do it, but CRIPES, there were big drops in the traverse, and rocks, have to ski part of it on one ski, have to get some speed on it, because it goes up hill a bit... wow. Well, it was a good balance check, that's for sure. Thought a lot about getting tips to point back down, plantar flexion as my tips went off the snow, dorsi as it met resistance, through the knees, but functionally tight core to absorb impact without folding at the waist. I've never wrecked on the traverse (knock wood) but it would HURT and SUCK, so I feel like my mind is as wide open as it can be, I am trying to take in every single bit of sensory I can to make decisions a split moment ahead... the light was flat, the pitch was steep as all get out (okay, its not the steepest thing either Bridger or Big Sky has to offer, but its steeper than anything I've been on since June).

I forgot how much I LOVE steep skiing, and the snow was friendly, I could really push in small turns, there were some small bumps, no huge moguls, and I was thinking as i watched Jones just dance down them, okay, reach into the trough, extend into the trough, open into the trough, belly button, hands, reach into the trough... my body was crossing over well, I was moving into the next turn just fine... but I was moving slow, and that's okay. I had to actively let go of my desire to rip it fast on Jones's tail, because I'm hurt right now, and its okay to ease into it. I listened to the snow and felt good, prepared... we did three runs, and they were all excellent, the last one we crossed under the chair and got a beauty little stiff pow shot, which was fun, I opened them up a bit, felt the bounce, but worked the ski more than I had to, ah well.

Ran down Mr. K after, and really wanted to work the carving drill that Megan had given me now that I have a better understanding of critical edge angle thanks to Kurt and Mr. LeMaster himself (and his book!), and the angle was such that I was able to play with it at all different pitches, listening for over angulation and milking the turn. I showed Jones the chair exercise from the US ski team, which is essentially keys for a strong inside half, but which makes the transition portion of the turn much more seamless, and we worked it on a folding chair for a while.

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