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Dick Van Arsdale

NBA Forward

"I have discovered throughout my athletic career that there were no short cuts to success.

Kids should realize that one does not get to the top by luck, but through hard work.

Pros make any sport look easy because they have mastered the fundamentals of their particular game."

 

What a great quote and how true this is. I have committed this year to mastering the basics in an all new and even more intense way than ever before. This has lead to an inspiration of this weeks' tip!

 

Squeezing and the untapped potential of "The Power Band"

 

As I am constantly searching for ways to improve my posture and glide approach, I find myself coaching people into doing many different tricks with surprising similarities. The greatest of these are found in a thorough understanding of Posture and Glide. As I am in the process of perfecting these skills, I find myself able to describe this feeling of perfect form in an even simpler way. That can be described as squeezing.

 

A very powerful question that must be answered is this, 'What does it feel like to perform the perfect trick, the perfect wake cross, or the perfect jump?' Or asked another way, 'what do you feel or concentrate on when you complete the specific barefoot skill?" These are two very powerful questions and I believe that if you use the powers of visualization to feel and see yourself skiing perfectly in a way that exemplifies the 'feeling' that I am going to describe, then you will get your miracle!

I can best describe how I feel when I am skiing my best as "squeezing!" This one simpler verb describes what takes me pages to write out. Let me also warn you that this squeezing feeling only works as I am describing when one has perfected posture and glide. It is possible to greatly abuse this squeezing feeling if you are in a plowing and defensive skiing position. To me, squeezing describes a feeling of harmony from head to toe that results in a powerful yet calm demeanor.

I will describe this feeling in terms of what I personally feel and then describe how it might best help you! I will number these squeezes individually for easy visual reference. 

#1 squeezing the front of my foot upward into my shin.

  Many people make the HUGE mistake of "cranking" up on their toes while pushing the ball of their foot downwards in a gas pedaling motion. They think they are gliding by pushing the ball of their foot downward towards the water which is one of the biggest problems I run across. When done properly, it should feel like you are stretching your calves and not lifting your toes! If this causes more spray from your feet, then your heel must come back towards your butt!

 

#2 squeezing my thighs together.

 

I even train in the off-season to increase my ability to squeeze my groin muscles. There are machines out there that are designed just for this purpose and should be learned under the guidance of a trainer in conjunction with other strength training. If you cannot pop a regulation basketball in between your legs, then keep practicing! Tip: practice keeping a Gatorade bottle in between your thighs (next to your cup), and performing everything from starts to turns to jumping!

 

#3 squeezing into the POWER BAND

 

Although I will most likely do a completely separate article on this, I will describe this briefly now. The POWER BAND is the position that is achieved that puts the pull of the boat into your hips and allows you to ski with way more power than you would in any other position. It is easiest understood in the back position. The best way to get you into this position is for you to get out of your chair....I am waiting...still waiting...thanks! Now, stand at attention in perfect posture. Spread your feet to about shoulder's width. Now bend over into a backwards barefooting position without changing your posture or the position of the arms at your side. Now, take a barefoot handle of something of similar dimensions and put the rubber handle under where your belt buckle would be (yes, I know some of you are reading this in your under wear!). Pretend (not that hard) that you have an enormous gut and put it onto your thighs while arching your back as described previously. If you can keep the handle squeezed into place while keeping your head up and your chest out, then you have achieved the POWER BAND!

 

#4 squeezing my shoulder blades together.

 

You should be able to do this in such a way as to force your chest out while keeping the bottom of your rib cage as far away from the top of your hip bone (i.e.. the perfect feeling of posture!)

 

How will this help you?

 

Well let's say you are learning a front deep. Squeezing your thighs together will help you to keep the water out of your face, help you achieve the perfect 3-point, and protect your knees.

 

Let's say you are an "aqua plow" that cannot be seen through the spray at any speed up through the entire range of your boat motor. Learning to squeeze the front of your foot into your shin (#1) combined with the POWER BAND (#3) will allow you to ski at speeds closer to bicycling than to NASCAR racing.

 

Let's say that you are working on tumble turns. Squeezing your thighs(#2) while keeping your legs straight and low to the water will keep your tumbles controlled and will allow for a more fluid motion.

 

Let's say you are learning to jump! #1, #2, #3, and #4 will allow you to explode off the ramp instead of getting thrown from it like a bad Rodeo ride.

 

Let's say you want a great one foot turn! Every step is critical and will allow you to have the best looking one-foot turns in the world!

 

This information is so dead nuts on that some people have told me that I shouldn't make it available where my competitors could find out about my techniques. To that I respond, I only hope that I am able to help you achieve your personal miracle!

 

Also, please do me a huge favor and refer someone to my newsletter. I work really hard on these articles and I need your help to help the sport we love so much grow! Just cut and paste the following into an email to your friends!

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hi (Insert their name here)

Do you subscribe to Lane "Dawg" Bowers Free Barefoot Tips Newsletter?

I do, and I think it's great because....(insert your own reasons here)

Subscriptions are FREE and you get a copy of Lane's 159-page

"Be the Best Barefooter on Your Lake" Ebook with 48 articles covering everything from The Easiest Way to Learn to Barefoot Water Ski to Learning to Backwards Barefoot to Jumping Inverted...

Just go to http://www.thefootersedge.com and you can get all the details.

Talk to you soon!

(Your Name Here)

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Thanks for helping out! I appreciate it...

I am available to personally help you achieve your skiing goals by calling 1-877-685-6270 or visit our website @ www.thefootersedge.com.

Back to Trauma Center

Expect a Miracle!
Lane "Dawg" Bowers
The Footer's Edge Training Center
lane@lanedawg.com
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Buon Appetito!
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