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Freeheel Hucking

Be Strong
posted: 01/10/2006
by A.J. Cargill

START SMALL, THINK BIG. Before you head for that 20-foot air, try launching off smaller features. Everything you practice on small hits at the resort translates to dropping a cliff or a cornice: Using your poles for timing, pop off the lip, tuck your knees toward your chest, and extend your legs for touchdown.

SPOT THE LIP AND LANDING. Visualize the jump from start to fi nish; then ski what you just pictured. Keep your eyes on the lip of the jump (the horizon) until you're airborne. Then spot your landing and aim toward it.

KEEP A TIGHT PACKAGE.Make yourself compact in the air to maintain control. Pull your knees up and push your hands forward. This will keep you balanced at high speeds while you gather momentum.

PICK A LANDING STYLE.If you're a novice in the air, land in the classic-and bomber-alpine four-point style: both feet and both baskets at the same time. If you want to be a tele star, go for the tele "lunge landing," keeping your weight centered and landing in a freeheel turn.

Face-planting may be a necessary evil in learning tele air. Be prepared to step into an alpine bail-out stance or, if all else fails, to tuck and roll.


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