Although there are several effective slalom styles and methods employed among top water skiers, one factor that is almost collectively shared is the low positioning of the handle during the pulling phase. The lower your arms when they extend away from your body, the lower the boat’s pull is transferred through your back. This allows you to bear the load with your entire back and midsection (core).
Turn to completion
The finish of your turn is where you establish a low anchor point with your handle. As you move through your turn, resist the urge to quickly get across the course. Instead, ensure your outside hip and free hand move back to the handle at the same rate. This will allow you to finish the turn with your hips and handle close.
The taller you remain as you approach the wakes, the lower you will be able to keep the handle. When you bend forward at the hips, your upper body comes toward the boat, bringing you out of your lean. This causes the handle to move farther from your body. By staying tall, your upper body will remain over your cutting edge with the handle near your hips.
Change your edge, not your position
As you transition from your cutting edge to your turning edge, it’s crucial to keep a low anchor point close to your body. Instead of rocking forward through the edge change in an attempt to “prepare” for the turn, keep your handle close to your hips as you swing into your turning edge. It may feel like your weight is farther back as you near the turn, but by keeping your handle position consistent, you will continue to travel on a longer outward path and arrive at the buoy with more width.