fredag 24. januar 2014

Your Cross Country Skiing Holiday In Norway Part III, Expectations

As a new beginner > When you do get to your holiday, given that you have trained semi specifically and not on roller skis, then dont be very ambitious with the amount you do. On the first day your lesson may be 2 hours with an instructor and I would say that you should just do some gentle warm downs on flat surfaces, light strides on the skis as jogging is to running, although you can of course play about on a little down hill by fish boning up and tucking down in the tracks for half an hour or so.

Plan to build up to a goal which is in line with the usual duration of what your find to be a fairly strenous hill walk, bike ride or cross country run.

The striding technique for classic XC skiing with the thrusting kicks and long gate is so very specific to 'langrenn' that you risk getting in particular crotch, knee or lower back injuries if you over do things. Discuss with your instructor after a couple of lessons on what they would recommend for your level of learning / natural ability you have picked up so far, combined with your usual physical endurance condition.

Your goal setting for the holiday should focus on learning the techniques and enjoying short tours around the area.

The main techniques I recommend you spend most time on>

1) Classic kicking with and without poles
2) fish bone up hilling
3) Braking downhill using plough, or using one foot in track one in plough which is very effective in reducing speed if not actually stopping and keeps you tracking in the right direction even in icey conditions
4) tuck position for down hill
5) poling / propulsion with the sticks alone
6) step turning and skating style

On the latter point the divergence in the two styles of on track skiing is more political than a realistic schism in the sport. You can skate on any skis really and you will see many a fixed heel alpine skier skating off the chairs or out the cafe in the alps. It was an innovative US skier Robert Koch, who caused the furore and also proved that skating on more gently undulating courses is actually faster than kicking. Skating had always been used in the step-turn and at for example hill tops where there was an interchange from fishbone to down hill with perhaps no tracks to follow. The technique is actually easy to learn if you area watch once learn what is going on person and you have a good instructor,. I would sa that learning skating early on will help you>

1) manoerve around people and between tram-lines, and take turns much better
2) enhance your ability to offload one ski completey while minimising its contatc with the snow
3) very much expand your enjoyment of your holiday
4\) inform your down hill skiiing and also if you want to take up ski mountaineering or back coutnry tours outside any laid tracks on wider BC skis.
5) mean that you can train on roller blades at home with poles.

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