This article is an excerpt from The Clendenin Method©.  While the complete book examines the art of all mountain and mogul skiing in greater depth than can we here on the site, we publish 8 excerpts in the Member section that, taken together, present key concepts to help level 6 or higher skiers develop the skills necessary to tame bumps—or ski anywhere on the mountain, including the groomed. This is excerpt No 1:

Bumps 101
The Clendenin Ski Method©—  Mogul Skills Inventory, Article 1 of 8


“John has style for days. He is legendary not just for winning Freestyle competitions at the height of the sport, but for doing it with style and charisma. Of course, he has just gotten better with time.

“I skied with him in the movie Fistful of Moguls, among other times, and he was ripping. He is so smooth. He has mastered the art of effortless skiing. His technique through the moguls is buttery smooth and efficient.”I have seen him tirelessly develop The Clendenin Method™ to help everyone else learn to ski effortlessly forever and he has it down pat. I’m stoked to see him taking it to the next level. Go John. You’re the man!”—Jonny Moseley

In all sports, joy is achieved through mastery of fundamedntals. Solid fundamentals create efficient movements that evolve into instinctive movements. As the knowing and doing become one, the joy begins. The Clendenin Method is dedicated to this journey. – John Clendenin.

The Starting Point

bumpsWe’re going to examine the often misunderstood art and science of mogul skiing. In a sense, bumps skiing is at the very heart of all mountain skiing, not only because bumps can be found anywhere good skiers go and grooming machinery does not, but because the skills involved in controlled, pro-active mogul skiing are the skills that open access to all three-dimensional skiing, from steeps to deeps.

more bumpsLet’s start with a skills inventory.

This was developed for a process we use at Camp with the Champs in Aspen, where we have found that honest assessment of current skill level, understandings and attitudes is mandatory for rapid progress. There are no “right” or “wrong” answers, but by taking an honest inventory, you begin the process of mastering moguls and the all mountain experience.

When  you have finished the complete series of yes-or-no questions below, you’ll be able to find a point-by-point discussion of each issue addressed by the questions in our member section if you choose to subscribe. We are told this series of articles is worth vastly more than the cost of subscription.

Mogul Skills Inventory

  1. I can ski fast on blue runs (OK on black), but get thrown around as soon as I enter bumps.
  2. When in bumps, I can make two or three turns but then gain too much speed.
  3. I’m not sure what to do with my poles in bumps.
  4. The way I ski bumps is a lot different than the way I ski on groomed runs.
  5. Sometimes I get caught in a traverse across the bumps and it feels like I’m riding a wild pony.
  6. I don’t know whether or not I stem my turns in bumps.
  7. I do know the difference between a stem turn entry and a parallel turn entry, but have trouble sometimes with parallel entry in the bumps.
  8. I feel OK in moderate bumps, but not when it gets steeper.
  9. I like to warm up with a fast run.
  10. Sometimes I have to hop to get over bumps.
  11. I try to use my edges to control speed.
  12. I use my pole plant to turn.
  13. I enjoy all mountain skiing, but like to play with the basics of technique on groomed terrain.
  14. I eat all kinds of bumps for breakfast!
  15. I love to watch good skiers ski.

The next 7 articles are also available in our Member section under Instruction