Luke Lockwood continues with Change in the Pocket
So, picking up where we left off last time... Let’s continue to talk a little more about change in the pocket. And if you didn't read my last blog post, you might want to start there first since we are going to build on the concept today.
I want to focus more on what’s going on I accordance with the rest of our body and balance this time however. Balance is important, and body position is important. Having both fine-tuned with each other will cause them to catalyze one another. That being said, having them out of tune will cause a vicious cycle where each proceeds to worsen the other one more.
There is no one perfect and magical position for change in the pocket. Although the goal should be to stand tall and neutral on one’s ski, everybody stands differently. The placement of our change in the pocket arm should be based off of our stance and where we find ourselves comfortable and tall. Remember that the chest is going to follow the body. Leaving the arm too far out in front will cause the chest to drop forward. If we pull our arm way back then we’ll find ourselves beginning to fall on the tail of the ski.
After watching me ski just one pass, it is easy to pick up on the fact that I am incredibly back foot heavy. So in my case, throwing the arm far back when reaching for change in the pocket will only put me more on the back of the ski. This is detrimental to the turn and will cause the ski to stall out almost every time without fail. So when opening up, finding a comfortable position where one can naturally stand tallest on the ski is going to be key.
As far as how far outward and upward one should reach, it’s again going to be about balance and comfort. A good key to think about is to have the outside arm at some height or level near equal with the inside arm. When getting into shorter line lengths and our reach is maximized to a point where we are nearly parallel with the water, having the arm too high is going to cause us to fall right over into the water. Having it too low will do the complete opposite causing our reach to be compromised and thus the ski will not want to turn for us.
So at this point it should come as no shocker when I tell you the key to proper positioning for how tight the arm needs to be is somewhere comfortable leaving you well balanced. Generally I’m going to recommend keeping at least a little bend in the arm for more control. Tighter arms are going to give more control, but often times one will notice that as the line gets shorter, the arms may extend more often during the change in the pocket reach. This is what helps the body stay more opened in the pre-turn and will help the ski come around more smoothly. Again, balance and comfort are key here.
Everyone’s stance and position is going to be unique and you need to find what works best for your style.
Get out there work it!
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