5 Tips to Hack Your Ski:IQ™
Are you hooked on trying to beat your Ski:IQ™ personal best? Don't worry, you're not alone!
This season we have seen thousands of skiers all loving the new Ski:IQ™ algorithm, and doing whatever it takes to try and get a new high score, challenge a friend, or top the Carv leaderboard at their local mountain.
Take these 5 tips with you to the mountain next time you go skiing, hit Free ski Mode, and take your Ski:IQ™ to the next level!
Tip 1: Hit the slopes early
I’ll start with a simple one, but it’s important too! If you’re looking to eke out those extra few Ski:IQ™ points, make sure that you’re skiing in the best snow conditions that you can.
When the slopes are groomed and crispy (but not too icy!), you’ll have a good amount of grip which makes it easier to ski beautiful arcs with big edge angles. Groomed snow can help your skiing because the surface provides consistent support when edging and pressing the ski. When the snow is crispy, the skis can turn faster (rather than pushing snow out of the way), making it easier to balance and increase your edge angles.
But we know that finding the best snow conditions is often easier said than done. So while you might not be able to turn that mid-afternoon slush into crispy corduroy, what you can do is hit the slopes bright and early, when the piste bashers (or “snow groomers” for you Americans) were the last things that touched the snow. Extra points (but not Ski:IQ™ points 😉) for making the first lift!
Tip 2: Work on your Edge Similarity
Most skiers can boost up their Ski:IQ™ by making small adjustments to their lower body position. The best skiers roll onto and off of their edges in one fluid movement. And at the core of this fluidity is Edge Similarity. Tipping your edges over in unison is a sign that you are well balanced against the outside ski, and it’s a great way to find a few Ski:IQ™ points.
A common challenge for intermediate and even advanced skiers is moving your ankles, knees, hips and shoulders in parallel, and maintaining a strong alignment when skiing throughout the turn. It is common that mistakes with alignment which result in low edge similarity actually develop at the turn initiation and then manifest later in the turn.
To avoid this pitfall, focus on a strong turn initiation by rolling your knees into the new turn. Your shins should feel parallel throughout the turn.
Tip 3: Find a smooth run
Do you find that you always get your best Ski:IQ™ score on a certain run in your local resort?
That’s likely because it’s the smoothest and most consistent slope around. Finding a run that’s consistent in pitch and camber will help you to find your flow and ski with a consistency that’s favoured by Carv.
Smooth, even pistes will particularly help your Turn Comparison: Pressure (which measures how much of a bias you have towards your left or right turns) and Edge Smoothness (how smoothly you increase and decrease your edge angle).
And a wide piste will help too. Carv likes a medium radius turn, where you can keep your turns tight but you have enough space to ski safely and get your hip to the snow for some high edge angle carving.
Tip 4: Push your Edge Angle to the max
And that brings us nicely onto our fourth tip. For you advanced skiers out there, it might sound like an obvious one. It’s not quite this simple, but generally speaking the bigger your edge angles, the higher your Ski:IQ™.
If you’re not yet a confident carver, start small. Use Carving Training and your personalised tips to ease into skiing on your edges and rolling your skis into the turn rather than skidding your tails out. Don't forget, we’ve got some great video lessons on YouTube to help you along the way!
Tip 5: Use your personalised Carv feedback
The final tip for the day is to listen to the personalised feedback that Carv gives you. Whether that’s an audio tip after your run in Free ski Mode or the turn by turn feedback of Training Mode, Carv is designed to help you improve your Ski:IQ™.
And don’t forget that performance is different from learning. There will always be days and conditions when reaching top scores is more difficult. This is the nature of skiing!
On those days especially, you can go back and read your personalised tips from every run that you’ve recorded with Carv. So you can see where you’ve improved your technique along the way. And if you need a little extra detail, just tap on the tip for a richer insight and videos from world-class ski instructors explaining the concept.
Maximise your day with Carv
1. Use Free ski mode to get warmed up and into the flow of your skiing. On the chairlift, you'll get personalised audio tips to give you coaching for the next run.
2. Switch over to Training Modes to work on a specific area of your skiing. Try Balance Training (pictured) to improve your skiing stance, a fundamental skill, and work through the 20 grades of assessment.
3. To fine-tune an area of your skiing, use Monitor Mode to dial into the numbers and get an audio readout every turn, so you can match the feeling exactly with the data.
Most importantly, whether you're on the slopes with Carv or not, alone or with friends, don't forget to have fun!
Carv is all about giving you the skills to improve your skiing, so you can make the most of your time on the slopes. Take a deep breath of that fresh mountain air and embrace the rush of skiing - after all, that's what we're all here for!
Written by: Jessi Honkonen
Ex Ski Racer | Carv Support Team
Before working with Carv, I was an alpine ski racer and ski coach for the Finnish National team. I was also fortunate enough to be part of the University of Colorado Ski Team and 2x National Champion. I am passionate about coaching and have an M.A. in Sports Coaching from the University of Denver.