Tele vs parallel.

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Harris

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Tele vs parallel.

Postby Harris » Wed May 03, 2017 8:51 pm

One of things I love about tele gear is that I can either parallel or tele whenever it either suits me or works best for conditions. Some days I never drop a knee. Some days I never parallel. And some days I mix and match every turn just to play; it is kinda like a left/right brain game. I'm wondering how many people out there do the same, and if not why?

iBjorn

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby iBjorn » Thu May 04, 2017 6:30 am

Mix the turns all the time, t-turn, p-turn or m-turn., even from turn to turn. Also mix short and long turns, as well as carving. My friends usually keeps a distance when skiing behind me, they never knows what happens next ;)

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby dorthman » Thu May 04, 2017 11:47 am

When carving open groomers I like to switch between turns a lot. It's just fun. I really the sensation of going from a parallel turn into to t-turn because you don't really have to lead change, feels very smooth.. If I'm really focused on skiing something I'll try to stick to just t-turns though

Also when my legs are tired I'll ski parralel to give me legs a rest. It's certainly nice having the option to ski any way you like on tele gesr

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lowangle al

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby lowangle al » Thu May 04, 2017 12:45 pm

I learned to ski using the tele turn and didn't start doing p turns until I moved up to heavy tele equip. and spent more time at the resort. They are a lot of fun but a little frustrating because I'm not getting as much weight on my inside ski as I would like. I don't get to the resort much anymore and don't get in enough vert to devote much time to it, especially in good conditions. I am more likely to do P turns on skinny skis on the lowangle than I am to do them on a nice powder run. In the future I will probably be hitting the resort more and I plan on working more on P turns.

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lilcliffy

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby lilcliffy » Fri May 05, 2017 10:31 am

Hey Harris,

I use a very wide range of downhill turns in all of my free-heel (Nordic) downhill skiing- including, but not limited to parallel and telemark turns.

I truly learned the telemark turn back in the mid-1990s- I did much backcountry touring in the Columbia Ranges of British Columbia during the mid to late 90s.

(Prior to this, I was a "xcountry skier" in the lowland backcountry; and a "downhill" skier on-piste, using solely Alpine tech and technique. Back in my youth, I backcountry toured in the hills and mountains of the Northeast using backcountry-xcountry tech- although I did in fact often use the telemark by default- I was certainly not very deliberate about it, and always mixed in a whole bunch of other turning techniques.)

Even from the beginning of using my first true mountain "Telemark" kit (Merrill Supercomps + 3-pin-cable) I always used a wide range of turns.

From my perspective Nordic down-hill vs. Alpine down-hill fundamentally differ in these two aspects:

1) The locked heel fundamentally allows for more powerful leverage when making downhill turns. (The strength of the binding connection at toe and heel also allows much higher strength to weight ratios.)

2) The free-heel- although less powerful than the locked heel- allows complete freedom and flexibility in technique. A free-heel allows the skier to use Nordic down-hill techniques (including the telemark)- but it also allows the skier to use "Alpine" techniques just with less leverage power. (The limitation of only the toe/forefoot binding connection fundamentally produces a lower strength to weight ratio (i.e. "Telemark" bindings will ALWAYS be heavier than equivalent Alpine bindings.))

I consider myself a Nordic or "free-heel" skier. I am actually reluctant to call myself a "Telemark" skier, because I would not want to give the impression that I use the telemark turn exclusively. (And I certainly don't need to use "Telemark" boots and bindings exculsively.)

Regardless of what kit I am using- my experience suggests that the primary advantage of the telemark turn is when fore-aft stability trumps side-to-side stability. Intuitively, I know when I need that fore-aft stability and will use the telemark. However- when I need more side-to-side stability I will NOT use the telemark. This is especially true when I am downhill skiing with my distance-oriented BC-XCD kits.

I have downhill skied many many times with modern rigid and powerful "Telemark" boots-bindings. Modern "Telemark" tech is powerful enough that one can effectively use the telemark turn as one's PRIMARY turn- in all conditions.

As the telemark turn feels so damn good- I completely understand why people want to use the telemark turn exclusively.

But for me- I use whatever turn works for me in response to the conditions I am skiing in- be it telemark, parallel, Christie, step, stride, jump...

Freeing the heel really does "free the mind" because it allows such a wide range of techniques- most of which are unavailable to the Alpine down-hill skier.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

Harris

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby Harris » Fri May 05, 2017 2:38 pm

Some thoughts on when and where I prefer to use each turn, but first something I sense others might not know. You can do terrific parallel turns on tele gear, even old leather gear on skinnies, especially on fresh groom, if you have excellent alpine technique. Meaning, if you were once a good racer (GS and Slalom), you know how to bend a downhill ski, and you don't need the heels locked to do that. You do need a lot of technique and strength to lay hard railing carves. But I would say that doing hard railing P carves on tellies is frickin' kick ass fun and super techie cool; more fun sometimes than even doing tellies in the same conditions. If someone doesn't have a strong alpine turn on norpine gear I highly recommend investing good time into it. I generally P turn groomers to save my knees and thigh juice for the better stuff. The better stuff...

Steeper bumped-out: Tele. Pure tele. Tele is a great whip turn, and I'd say that it can be used as well as alpine gear turns in this terrain. Only issue is endurance.

Crud: Tele.

Wind whipped or crust: parallel.

Low angle powder: parallel. Telemarks turns love being put on edge with purpose but hate the gentile and subtle. Low angle pow likes fast, lite and upright. You can tele it but why?

Deep untracked Pow: By this I mean bottomless. If it is steep I tele (mostly), if it is medium steep and untracked I parallel. It just works better.

Wet, deep pow: A PNWers taste of champagne. Parallel. And give it to me steep even better. Telemark is NOT the turn for high water content fresh. Unless temps turn downward and it is starting to cement. A common problem here.

Bumps, any bumps: tele.

Icy steeps: were talking skied out Colorado chutes here or PNW boiler plate. Parallel. Not taking a slide for life simply because I tele. Having a good Scott Schmidt alpine turn is a must here.

Flatishs: I never tele. EVER! It is too much work and looks pretty dumb. To me anyway. I see beginners trying to Tele flats and I think, "Poor person, if only you knew." If only they knew tele like angle, tele begins to make sense on angle, and one doesn't learn tele until they commit to angle.

That's my two cents.

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Woodserson

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby Woodserson » Sat May 06, 2017 9:20 am

iBjorn wrote:Mix the turns all the time, t-turn, p-turn or m-turn., even from turn to turn.


I give up, what's an m-turn?

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby teledance » Sat May 06, 2017 9:45 am

Have to agree with Harris it gets below 25* and it's just not worth it to tele. Did have a 3' storm where I had to parallel sank to deep for tele turns. Now I have fatter skis and loved the ease of powder skiing this season.

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby iBjorn » Sat May 06, 2017 11:23 am

Woodserson wrote:
iBjorn wrote:Mix the turns all the time, t-turn, p-turn or m-turn., even from turn to turn.


I give up, what's an m-turn?


Monoturn, it is a teleturn where you dont change the lead ski, eg, you make teleturns with the same leg/ski in front - despite turning left or right. It is a good way to balance in on skis and bindings. It is a fun turn also.

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Woodserson

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Re: Tele vs parallel.

Postby Woodserson » Sat May 06, 2017 10:01 pm

iBjorn wrote:
Monoturn, it is a teleturn where you dont change the lead ski, eg, you make teleturns with the same leg/ski in front - despite turning left or right. It is a good way to balance in on skis and bindings. It is a fun turn also.


Oh right, of course. Thank you.

I will say I had a moment of pure bliss last winter... farming untouched side-pow under the snowguns at my local hill. Steep, deep, slashing one tele turn after another down the side-pow floating slowly down a staircase of snow. That's the only way I can describe it, like going down a staircase. Many turns in a tight column of deep snow at a low speed. It would have been impossible in alpine boots with parallel turns. My skis, softy 169cm 125-95-120 double-rockered skis may have helped.

If there's any run that defines my season, it's that one. WOooOOooooOOooo


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