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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    5

    Default Learning Slalom Deep Water Starts (two feet in)

    I've watched and helped many people learn to do deep water starts, two feet in.

    A few years back I quit Slalom skiing as I could no longer get up. After some encouragement from friends our aged ~40 to 50 group have slowly perfected the start. The key for me was a slow constant throttle start, that was not so fast it pulled the rope out of your hands but accelerating fast enough you did not have to survive for long before getting up. Maybe I should be at the gym more often too.

    So what are your stories and experience at teaching all ages, weights, etc.
    If there is some discussion and examples I will share more of my experience at teaching.

    What about the psychology of teaching those that need confidence; both children and adults alike too?

    Thanks

    PS I swear that I change which foot I put forward every season as I stand there on the swim grid every time guessing, I might have to get a tattoo to mark it. Some say fall forward and see which leg comes out to stop you. I'm right handed and have my right foot forward this year. I snowboard and wakesurf regular. Some things I've read say your dominant leg should be in the back boot?
    Last edited by Koocanusa_eh; 08-10-2013 at 09:39 AM.
    1969 Larsen 65 Merc
    1981 Ski Nautique / 351 Ford
    2008 Moomba Outback

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Naperville, IL || North Scott Lake, MI
    Posts
    591

    Default Learning Slalom Deep Water Starts (two feet in)

    I learned with only one foot in the boot and although I have tried I can't get up with both feet in. Having that other leg free seems to help me with my balance. Been doing it that way for almost 40yrs and with my 50th this year I will continue to do that until the left knee (front foot) holds out!!!
    2013 Outback V
    2003 SeaRay 182 -- gone but not forgotten...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    1,537

    Default

    I learned to slalom by dropping a ski from 2 skis. Then it progressed to dragging a foot out in a deep water start. At this time, the boat was a 65 hp OB, so it was more about survival than getting anything "ripped" out. When I got double boots, the balance seemed difficult at the start.
    Now, I prefer full throttle starts. Going slow on the pull up takes too much energy out of me.

    I am regular footed on the wakeboard/surf/snowboard. However, I ski right foot forward. When I think or "dream" about skiing, I always am left foot forward. When I try it on the ski, it doesn't feel right.
    1997 MasterCraft 205

    2008 Moomba Outback
    1999 MasterCraft Sportstar OB
    1992 MasterCraft 205
    1999 Malibu Response LX
    1987 Marlin Magnum Skier

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    1,537

    Default

    http://youtu.be/5R1KxuYBXkU







    From this week.
    1997 MasterCraft 205

    2008 Moomba Outback
    1999 MasterCraft Sportstar OB
    1992 MasterCraft 205
    1999 Malibu Response LX
    1987 Marlin Magnum Skier

  5. #5

    Default

    Great to have you back in the game! I ski with double boots, so one foot out is not an option. One thing you can do is try them on a longer, fatter ski. Easier to get up on. Then have them gradually work to shorter ski, especially if running a course or aggressive open water is the goal. Im not a fan of one foot out starts, because limits binding styles later.

    I also advocate a gentle pull with the throttle to take up slack and get them moving, but dont drag them. Too easy to fall off balance. Have them tuck into a ball and pull the ski under them, as level as possible without sinking the tip. This attitude will help the ski to commence to get on plane. Arms should be straight but not locked. Trying to hold bent arms with bicept muscles will wear you out and doesnt provide a stable platform. Once up --- dont fall!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    948

    Default Re: Learning Slalom Deep Water Starts (two feet in)

    I use this cuz I'm lazy.. Makes learning and getting up easier when you get tired...

    http://m.overtons.com/modperl/produc...i-Rope&i=44426

    Sent from my Nexus 4 using Tapatalk 2
    2002 Moomba Mobius LSV - Sold
    2006 Moomba Mobius LSV

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    s.e. washington state
    Posts
    2,062

    Default

    Start just like a wakeboard. Ski on the side, tip up, squatting position down to the board and arms strait. Too many want to start with the ski straight and they end up plowing water until they can't hold on and the rope comes flying at us. Rather irritating as the more un-natural start of the ski on the side is really easy. I'm a big guy so having as much of the ski out of the water on the start is important.
    1998 Mobius
    310 HP PCM

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Pensacola, FL
    Posts
    1,537

    Default

    You say this like learning to get up on a wakeboard is easy for most folks.
    1997 MasterCraft 205

    2008 Moomba Outback
    1999 MasterCraft Sportstar OB
    1992 MasterCraft 205
    1999 Malibu Response LX
    1987 Marlin Magnum Skier

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    s.e. washington state
    Posts
    2,062

    Default

    Just used as an example since more people wake board these days. If you can't get up on a wake board then try something with less than half the surface area and try and get up. Gotta crawl before you can walk. That's why water skiing rocks and wake boarding ho-hum. I started behind 70hp outboards and it was more important to get a breath before you started because it would be your last one for a while. But I always liked show time.
    1998 Mobius
    310 HP PCM

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Calgary
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Thanks for everyone's comments, I had no idea this forum is this active!

    As the the comments of throttle, I would preface any comment on the capability of the tow boat. My 65HP childhood boat was a body surfing exercise of one foot in, second foot as a rudder, one hand on the rope(I was younger and could hold on), and surfing along until we reached some speed to plane. My 1981 Nautique was another story with what felt like infinite power coupled with a more advanced rear boots on the slalom ski that you could not step into once you were up. So full throttle is relative to the equipment capability.

    So my question is truly a two feet in question. But recognize in the early stages of slalom skiiing learning can be a one foot in start or dropping a ski, that is critical to the learning process. I've taught two of my children at about about age 12 to do deep water starts with both feet in to prepare for the more advanced equipment. The eldest attended the World waterskiiing championships, as they were in Calgary a few years ago, as a spectator and watched the ladies slalom. The next weekend at the lake he decided to try it and was successful on first try. My youngest had the typical progression of perfecting the deep water start over most of last season.

    Human nature in any of our guests is to try the more advanced skis in the boat once they get hooked on slalom and then get disappointed with the two feet in deep water starts.

    So what I've observed for my start is,

    - tension on the rope is critical to set up the skier
    - some dragging to support tension;idling along will usually throw the skier off balance
    - the closer the ski angle being perpendicular to the surface of the water the better, tip up! This seems to allow the ski the rotate under the skier and plane faster.
    - straight arms, never bent
    - curled into a ball with the rope position as close to your ankles as possible
    - center of gravity is often is not far enough back, so lean back further if the start is failing by being pulled forward
    - don't stand up or bend arms too early, ride it out with low center of gravity in ball for a while
    - constant throttle but not so aggressive it pulls out of the skiers hands, there seems to be a optimum point of not enough throttle and surviving the pull until you plane vs pulling the rope out of the skiers hands.
    - I use ski gloves with the spool in the fingertips that allow more hand strength to hold on longer. Not sure if they do really add strength but it works for me.

    Some of these points can be a large factor for some individuals while minor points for others. As and example; an aggressive throttle is less of an issue for very strong and fit individuals in terms of pulling the rope from their hands. While their challenges may other large issues such as heir center of gravity that causes failure and holding on longer is not constructive.

    I agree with the wider ski comments to give a novice skier a better chance on the starts.

    I saw the Slalom Trainer Ski Rope that parrothd mentioned for the first time last weekend as one of the ladies with us brought it. It is not a training rope for her but rather a neccessity. A friend of mine is concerned with the large rope opening and V with respect to safety and being caught in it. Any comments out there on this rope design as I have no experience with it?

    Thanks, Pete
    1969 Larsen 65 Merc
    1981 Ski Nautique / 351 Ford
    2008 Moomba Outback

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