Tail Grab

How To Japan & Tail Grab

The grab variations you can perform on skis are endless, so this tutorial will focus on a few of the most basic grabs to help you dial them in: Japan and Tail grab. Use this tutorial to get them locked in on the trampoline, so you can take them to the hill this winterseason!

This tutorial was filmed using the Ski Addiction Tramp Skis. Get yours pre-ordered now so you can start skiing anytime you want!

(Skier/Narrating: Kalissa Lolos. Film/Edit: Adison MacDonald. Filmed At: Whistler Bounce)

Basic Positions

Without the Tramp Skis on, sit down and straighten your legs into a pike position with your hands holding the sides of your knees. Next, lay on your back with your arms at your side into a layout position. These two positions are the basis of the grabs covered in this tutorial.

Japan Grab Progression

It's time to learn the Japan grab! Start by sitting at the edge of the tramp with your Tramp Skis strapped in. Lean back and begin in that pike position, but instead of holding your knees, bend one knee and tuck that ski under your opposite leg while keeping the other leg straight. Perform the grab using the same hand as the straight leg.

Basic Japan GrabReaching around and under the straight leg, grab on the inside edge of the bent legs ski.

The Japan Grab

Now give this a try on trampoline. Start with a few small jumps, getting comfortable in that pike position. Make sure you bring your feet up first before bringing your chest slightly forward. Once you're ready, start reaching for that Japan grab. 

The Japan Grab

If you are finding that your bent leg is too close to your bum, your grab will lack style. Try to keep your bent leg under your knee, forcing your straight leg into that pike position.

The Japan GrabAdding height makes executing the grab a lot easier, but will also prepare you for the timing required to start adding spins to these grabs.

Tail Grab Progression

Start out by laying on your stomach in the layout position with your arms by your side. Bend your legs 90 degrees so your skis are parallel with the ground. While in the position, look to the ski you want to grab and reach with the same hand for the tail of the ski, grabbing just the tip.

Basic Tail Grab PositionThat's right, just the tip.

The Tail Grab

Hop on the tramp and start by jumping in the backscratcher position, keeping your chest up and pushing your hips forward. Add a ski cross to the bounce now to give it that touch of style, this will become evident when you start Tail grabbing. Then, do the same thing but looking to the ski you want to grab. Right of left, doesn't matter, you choose! 

Backscratcher Tail Grab PositionThis position can be disorienting, so get comfortable with it before progressing further.

Once you're ready, reach for the grab. Be sure to grab just the tip of the ski because grabbing below the tail or on the inside of the ski isn't considered a true tail grab. 

The Tail Grab

Now that you know the fundamental skills required for these two basic grabs, get out there with the Tramp Skis and start practicing! When you are practicing these grabs, make sure you learn them using both hands and as if you were riding switch, this will prepare you now for harder grabs you learn in the future, ultimately making you a better skier!

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Alex McCann
Ski Addiction
Helping You Ski Better