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I've trained in alpine skiing for a couple of years now. I'm good at downhill & super g, and my times are improving, but I'm really bad at slalom. How can I go faster in slalom without crashing? Are there special tips apart from those taught in training?

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    Welcome to Sports SE! What have you tried? What advice have you been given so far? – user527 Mar 18 '13 at 12:56
  • @edmastermind29 I can carve all right but my short turns are unpredictable - they don't always come out right. – komissarova Mar 23 '13 at 14:13
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    I see. That may be useful information in helping you. – user527 Mar 24 '13 at 19:48
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I've been skiing competitively since I was about ten, and I am in the same position as you. What seems to be the problem is often one of the following:

  • A bigger person has the upper hand in speed, since the weight grants higher top speed, but becomes a problem when going around tight courses.
  • Skis that are too long might prove very hard to control in tight turns.
  • Lacking in explosive strength will hamper your preformance on these "turn intense" courses.
  • Attack stance, don't hang back, this will make your turns unpredictable and slippery.

These are only my observations and this is what I found out to be the deciding factors. What I have done to improve my own preformance is to up my explosive power and keep my stance as far forward as possible, but I'm still at a disadvantage against lighter more nimble opponents.

Hope this helps.

//Marcus

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In addition to Marcus Wigert's post, I would also suggest looking at two other very important factors:

First one being equipment. I am skiing since I was 4 years old and used to have rental skis until I turned about 18 and stopped growing (simply because I did not want to buy new skis every single year...). I already did a lot of slalom before and always had a feeling that I could not move "aggressive" enough. Now my new skis are race skis. Besides being new and not used, the edges of those skis are really hard and sharp. You hardly slide but rather cut through the snow. It renders the entire movement more aggressive, allowing you to make quicker turns - which basically enables you to go faster as the only thing that slows you down is slowing down while turning.

The other factor is your attitude. Expressing it colloquially: just don't give f*ck. Luckily, while racing, there is no one else in front of you to care for. I had a hard time just "letting go" - but when I did and just tried to get down the hill, ignoring the fact that I might fall, it kind of changed everything. Simply stop slowing down. (Please ignore this advice if you do not feel confident enough about your own skiing skill set. In case you judge your abilities to be "not good enough" yet, DO NOT IGNORE YOUR FEAR, you might seriously injure you.)

That is just my personal experience, but I believe that an aggressive style automatically makes you faster. Just don't forget to "switch" back to normal behaviour while on the slope with others.

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