Ask An Expert is the new feature that answers your snow sport questions with responses from experts. Send in your questions, and we’ll find the experts to answer them. The feature will appear as frequently as we have your questions.

We start the series this week with this question from reader, Terry Kureth:

While skiing with a friend not long ago, we were talking about the recommended techniques for skiing moguls. My friend said he had heard that it is advantageous to loosen the top buckle of one’s boots in order to more easily assume a deeper knee bend needed to be a better mogul skier. Any thoughts?

For an expert opinion, we turned to Seth Masia, founder of the instructional approach, offered at the Aspen/Snowmass Ski School.

I’ve occasionally recommended loosening the top buckle but only when it’s clear that the boot is too stiff to begin with. No one can ski efficiently unless there’s some way to articulate the ankle — knee flex without ankle flex just results in back-seat skiing, not a recipe for safe skiing anywhere and certainly not in moguls. By the way, a boot that’s even half a size too big is likely to be too stiff.

In teaching seniors to ski in bumps, I emphasize hand discipline and speed control. The hands MUST be forward and the pole plant ready early. This enables keeping the shovel of the skis in the snow, and turning — hence speed control. When the shovels come off the snow, the only way to turn is to swivel, and that puts a torque on knees and hips — not a good technique for those of us above a certain age.

Have a question about technique, gear, destinations, travel, or any other aspect of winter sports? Send it to [email protected], and we’ll do our best to find an expert to respond.


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