Contact: Tommy Kirchhoff
Date: For Immediate Release
Local Racers Develop New Ski Technique
you do it right, your body looks like an upside down tuning fork,” says
Park City local Tommy Kirchhoff. “The key is in the rotation of the
waist. It’s feels something like doing the Chubby Checker Twist.” Kirchhoff
invented the technique he calls “Waist Steering” last winter
based on the Chinese art of Tai Chi.
of the torso and other body parts is innate and natural—but many ski
racing purists shy away from rotation because it’s very misunderstood.
All of the balance and power in Tai Chi comes from turning the waist.”
Kirchhoff felt his Waist Steering technique was starting to solidify in January
of 2005, he began sharing the concepts with Park City local Gary Dranow,
a certified USSA coach. Dranow was able to understand and apply Kirchhoff’s
radical fundamental changes, and began skiing much better. In turn, Dranow
began formalizing a learning progression for the new technique.
effective is “Waist Steering?” For starters, the ModernSkiRacing.com
website, which represents the partnership of Kirchhoff and Dranow, publishes
many glowing testimonials. Also, Gary Dranow is ranked as the number one
Nastar expert age 50-54; he’s nationally ranked 9th overall,
with Daron Rahlves, Casey Puckett and A.J. Kitt all ahead of him in the top
seven. Dranow is also ranked second in the Intermountain Masters Division,
Class 6. Kirchhoff is the number one ranked Nastar expert in the state of
Utah for ages 30-34, although he does not race formally very often.
none of those accolades turn your head, maybe this will: The Modern Ski Racing
Team has just received a generous sponsorship from Rossignol. When asked
why the giant ski manufacturer would want to partner with two unknown ski
racers seemingly bent on challenging 60 years of ski racing fundmentals development,
Rossignol responded this way:
views the Modern Ski Racing Team as a unique instructional channel
for recreational ski racers. They (the MSR Team) will help Rossignol gain
market share by increasing product awareness within the recreational
racing world and by teaching their cutting-edge Waist Steering technique. Thus, recreational
racers throughout the country will gain interactive exposure to
innovative Rossignol products.
the technique may not yet be turning the heads of Bode Miller or the Austrian
national team, Kirchhoff and Dranow taught a “Waist Steering” clinic
with almost 30 nationally-ranked Nastar racers in March, and have a tour
of clinics across the country slated for this winter. Their first will be
a Thanksgiving race clinic at Snowbasin Resort.
racers have studied the Waist Steering technique informally on www.modernskiracing.com,
and have drawn very diverse conclusions. Some bulletin boards even have people
arguing and getting angry about it. While Kirchhoff and Dranow offer all
of the technique’s details for free on their website, they don’t
understand why people get upset about a theoretical new ski technique which
has shown to help racers ski faster and more safely.
Kirchhoff teaches Tai Chi at the Park City Racquet Club.
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