n fall line, outside knee bends inward to increase bite of edge of outside ski. This causes ski to veer out of fall line.
eading toward new traverse, inside ski moves toward outside ski to enable skier to finish turn with the skis together.
oles now swing back almost parallel to downhill ski, and body bends farther out to put full weight on outside ski.
Medium-Grade slope with flat runout is a good place to practice stem ballet. Arrow shows skier's path in making single sweeping turn to right from a traverse to the left, ending in a traverse to the right. Snowplow ballet is performed close to fall line, but stem ballet goes from traverse to traverse. Thus stem ballet forces skier to perform fast, simultaneous counterrotation and uphill weight shift in order to get the skis skidding toward the fall line.
Step stem: for tighter turns
In step-stem ballet you lift your outside ski to the stem position, making a quicker weight shift than is possible with the stem ballet. Since you balance on the weighted leg to begin the turn, the quick straightening of the weighted leg now becomes more of a pronounced spring toward the fall line to approximate the strong lift you need to ski parallel. Thus the step stem bridges the gap between the stem turn and the parallel turn. Second, during the middle of the step stem you lift the inside ski, thereby eliminating any remaining tendency to leave your weight on the inside ski. Third, as you bring the inside ski quickly parallel to the outside ski at the end of the turn, you provide a momentum for initiating the heel push that ends all advanced shortswing turns and provides the coiled take-off position for the start of the next turn. When you have mastered a single turn (below), go on to connect a series of turns more and more closely until your skis trace a snakelike path down the slope as they did in the snowplow ballet. The tails of the skis will now be skidding out first to one side and then the other, with your upper body swiveling over the skis to keep you in balance. You are now approaching the action of Wedeln, where the countermovement of the upper body speeds the skidding of the skis, making possible ever quicker turns. Practiced in this manner, the step-stem ballet should correct many would-be wedelers who try to throw the skis toward the fall line with a flip of the hip. The step action of the exercise emphasizes that the skis in shortswing turns should be moved into the fall line through a combination of leg spring and weight shift. The hips must never move toward the fall line ahead of the legs or the arms. Finally, your movements in the step stem should not be jerky; they should be quick, rhythmical and in harmony.
Rolling ridge with fairly sharp drop-off is ideal place to start practice of step-stem turn. Drop-off accelerates swing of skis, makes it possible to initiate heel push earlier. This in turn allows you to swing through a tighter arc than in the previous stem-turn exercise. When you have mastered single step-stem turns, find a smooth, moderate slope and practice closely connected step stems so as to approximate swing movement of the Wedeln.
ight turn starts with skis parallel, skier moving at 30� angle to traverse line. Upper body bends down from the waist to put weight on downhill ski.
utside ski lifts quickly toward stem position. Inside leg straightens. The upper body counterswivels and starts to shift its weight to the outside ski.
ounterswivel brings weight onto the outside ski just after the ski is set down in the stem position. The inside ski carries almost no weight at this point.
n fall line, inside ski lifts completely off the snow outside knee bends inward to increase edging action. This causes the skier to veer out of fall line.