A great way to remind yourself is to imagine that you have eyes on the ends of your ski poles. When one is planted, you are blind and you need to reach your other pole through to allow you to see the next turn. If you practice this early pole plant by swinging your eye balls down the hill, it will help you stay balanced on your skis and maintain a nice rhythm.
The ski pole is not merely an aid to help use move around on the flat or a weapon with which to spear queue jumpers - but a vital aid to balance, timing and control. The plant becomes more and more important the shorter the turn becomes.
- During these shorter turns or in the bumps, the pole plant acts as a fleeting anchor point - about which to make your turn. It also helps to establish a rhythm to your turns.
- At the start of a new turn as the skiers centre of mass darts across the skis towards the centre of the new arc, a strong and deliberate pole plant will help to pull your upper body down the hill and enable a quick edge change. Your feet can only move as fast as your hands. If the poles are not leading you down the hill, then chances are, you are not going in that direction.
- When planting the pole, do not swing the arms - as this I more likely to unbalance you - rather swing the pole by wrist action alone. This way the action will remain efficient and calm. A regular, rhythmic pole plant also helps to keep the skiers weight centred over the skis by bringing the arms and elbows slightly forward.