As you start moving down the bumps a little more confidently, you will have to alter your technique slightly to absorb the uplift that they are providing. Can you imagine what would happen if you stood upright and took the bumps straight? By the eighth bump you would be wondering if you had paid your next holiday insurance, and by the twelfth you would be airborne. The next time you hit the ground could well be onto the terrace of your favourite restaurant.
The secret technique to avoid this problem and prolong your good health is to bend ze knees, and use the thighs as shock absorbers, so that you can float over a mogul field like a softly sprung limousine.As an exercise ski slowly on a traverse across some medium sized bumps. Imagine that your head is clamped in a vice that will neither go up nor down nor from side to side, ie, it will only run in a straight line above the slope. As you are moving make sure that your knees are already bent a little more than they would be on a smooth piste. You will also have to bend a little at the hips to keep the weight over the middle of the skis.
This is angulation down over the skis without edging.As you glide slowly over the bumps allow them to push your knees up even further. Keep your head steady and try to keep your weight over the middle of the skis. Do this exercise quite a few times to get the feeling of your new shock absorbers. It will be hard work on the knee joints and thigh muscles, but remember that skiing is good for you.As you come over a bump try and push the skis down into the trough so that you are in good contact with the snow for as long as possible.
This angulation over the skis means that your centre of gravity is kept low. Just like the first exercises, it will be easier to keep your balance if you keep low.You can now attack the bumps again head on.
This time adopt the car driving position that you learnt for the short turns on the piste, with your hands held out slightly in front of you, and the rest of your upper body facing rigidly down the hill.Go as slowly as you need, and allow the bumps to do the unweighting.Keep your head steady and remain in the driving position.Do one turn after the other to keep close to the fall line, so be on the lookout for the next bump.Keep the weight on the downhill ski..
Simon Dewhurst has taught downhill skiing in North America, Scandinavia and the European Alps for 35 years. He currently runs a ski chalet agency in the French Alps. His book "Secrets of Better Skiing" can be found at http://www.ski-jungle.
com If you have any comments about the above article, he will be happy to answer them.
By: Simon Dewhurst