Fix your slalom flaws from the root of your problems
For every action there is an opposite reaction. This same basic principle can be applied when self-diagnosing your slalom woes. Instead of simply reacting to a mistake and attempting to alter the outcome, take a more proactive approach, seeking out the root of your troubles.
Effect: Bouncing wildly over the wakes.
Cause: Two separate cuts from one side of the wakes to the other. Instead, concentrate on feeling constant, even load from the back of the turn until you move through your edge change on the second side.
Effect: Feeling too much speed at the turn.
Cause: A rapid loss of direction through your edge change. The problem is not speed, but the path on which you are carrying that speed. Ensure you are not diving or pushing against your back shoulder into the release. Instead, maintain a balanced lean into your release.
Effect: Tip rises into a “wheelie” at the turn.
Cause: A rapid loss of speed at the turn. If your direction through your edge change is good, the trouble lies with your movement into the apex of your turn. Commit to counter-rotating your hips early,
allowing your inside hip to rotate forward until it is ahead of your feet. This will keep your center of mass moving with your ski and allow you to maintain maximum speed.
Effect: Breaking forward at the turn.
Cause: Rushing your turn with your upper body. Rotating your head and shoulders before your ski moves through the turn will cause your hips to fall back, your ski to rapidly decelerate, and your upper body to get thrown forward. To combat this, make sure your upper body stays counter-rotated through the turn's completion and avoid reaching for the handle prematurely.
Effect: Continually running down-course.
Cause: Inadequate speed through your gate setup. Running out of speed through a turn causes excessive load on the rope before proper angle has been set. This will cause you to ride a less-than- ideal line into the first turn, and the cycle will inexorably repeat itself throughout the course. To allow yourself more time and space before each buoy, take as much speed through your gate turn as possible. To avoid feeling out of control, be certain you are carrying your speed outward on your pullout and glide. This may require a later and shorter initial pullout than you are accustomed to using.