WEDZE Freestyle : les conseils d'une championne

Freestyle: tips from a champion.

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You are on for a good day of freestyling, with one goal in mind:  having fun! In my opinion, the more the funnier. The day is set, your buddies are coming with you, and there is one watchword: fun… the snowpark is yours, ready to go for it?

 

 

Equipment

For a first go at freestyle, you will need a pair of rather flexible and rather short twin tip skis that are easy to handle. 

A helmet and back protection will obviously be your best allies. Your ski poles should also be short to reduce the risk of shoulder injury.

 

Warming up

Once you're geared up, I cannot overstate the importance of a proper warm-up. 

You need to prepare your body for potential movements it is not used to, and to be in good physical condition for greater ease. 

I recommend you to start warming up indoors before you put on your skis. 

 

Start with the neck, by simply moving your head up and down, and right and left. Then, make circles with your arms to loosen up the shoulders, and make hip circles with your hands on the hips - don't be afraid to exaggerate the movement, even if you feel ridiculous. Whatever, ridicule never killed anyone, while proper warm-up can prevent an injury... Finish with a dozen squats. 

 

As I already said, warming up is crucial.

 

 

To the Snowpark!

Generally, snowparks are crowded with what are called "Park Rats". These people have skied every centimetre of the park and know every single bump by heart.

 

Don't let them shy you away!!! The park is open to everyone and was made for fun. There is no ludicrous rule that you might ignore. The only rules are to take your turn for the start, and to never stay behind a feature. Indeed, if you need to stop, you must get off the landing areas to avoid crashes. 

 

Choose the features that are adapted to your level. They are often tagged like slopes: green, blue, red, black. For added safety, let one or two people go before you so that you can judge the inrun and the appropriate speed to land on the jump or the box.

 

Always be dynamic and lean slightly forward, resting on your shoe tongues, ready to push. Enjoy the butterflies in the stomach you will feel when you leave ground and keep your muscles tensed for landing. 

 

For a soft landing on the jump, try to pass the flat part after the bump and go land on the slope. 

 

On the box, to get used to it, opt for an axis approach, with no swing motion. Try to keep your feet hip-width apart. 

 

Finally, bring out your inner child and trust it! Half of your success is in its hands... Have fun!

 

Marie Martinod
Olympic Vice-champion of Half-Pipe and Technical Partner Wed' ze
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