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March 1, 2012: Volume 12, Number 47


Face Tape?


On sub zero or high wind chill days, I see skiers wearing tape across their noses and cheekbones. Can you tell me what this tape is and where I can get it. Recently, I suffered some frostbite in the cheekbone area, even though I had put on Dermatone. I'm looking for something more protective. Thanks.


One product that athletes use is Kinesio Tape. 




Help on Hills


I know I have asked this question in the past, but I cannot seem to be able to climb while skate skiing. I am fine with flat and slight inclines. When the trails become more steep I reach my max heart rate very quickly. My ski tails also start to touch and I here them click, this leads me to think my technique is poor. I have tried practicing no pole skiing on slight inclines which I can do but again when the trail gets at all steep I stall out completely. I am very frustrated but I cannot give up. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Frustrated Climber


Answer By Galanes Sports Lab,


You pose a good question that is very difficult to address in a short response because of the many physiological and technical functions are in play. When I ski I am always working on technique and efficiency and have been working on this very issue with a skier here in Sun Valley this winter. I probably will explain this differently than you have heard because I think about and teach technique from the perspective of whole body movement.


The issue of the heart rate is directly linked to the efficiency of your technique, fitness and the amount of work required moving your body up the hill. Improvements in technique will result in improved efficiency so you should see a decline in heart rate in the uphill's as your technique improves. However our level of fitness could well be a limiting factor. 

There are several basics that I feel are very important to skiing uphill's more efficiently. 
The basic position of the body, Figure 1, must be forward with high hips. A common check I use is to evaluate where you feel your body weight in the feet. At no point should you feel the weight or pressure heavy in the heels. As the hill steepens the elevation of the hips is reduced and the basic stance of the feet is slightly wider to accommodate the slower speed over the snow.  However, as the hill steepens it is of critical importance that you feel the body falling forward, up the hill. The natural tendency may be to fall back of ski more upright as the hill steepens. The other concept that is important is that the body moves, in an integrated manner, on top of the skis through the weight shift and kicking movements. In other words, the poling phase, the weight shift, the kick and the glide all follow one another in an integrated manner. The efficiency of the skiing movement therefore is linked and interdependent.  

Figure 1
Figure 1

The clicking of the tails that you hear is likely caused by the body weight being too heavy in the heels which causes the kicking through the foot to be back and too far behind the body. This results in the hips falling further back and not have the elevation for the leg to swing well forward. Result: the ski lands under or behind the body, not in front.


The timing and integration of the skiing movements is the most important and I feel least discussed aspect of efficient skiing technique. As the terrain steepens ..Please read rest of article here. 


World Juniors and U23
The World Junior and U23 Championships were contested last week in Turkey. The National Nordic Foundation paid for 80% of the expenses for this great trip. Check out numerous athlete articles at the NNF web site.
World JR/23 Team  


When in Rome 

by Mickey Sinnott


I booked my ticket to Europe In December planning on staying for 2.5 weeks.  There was a chance at longer, but I needed to make a return ticket.  As it turns out, the extension I thought possible did not come to fruition.  I skimmed the pond, I raced, and 36hrs before coming home I was given the nod to race in Moscow- certainly a chance not to pass on.  Four days later I learned I could also race the heralded Holmenkollen race in Oslo.  At more than a month away, I frantically began debating the merits of coming home, or racing in Europe all year.  I strung together some starts, pulled a few favors, and decided to stay long term.  Thus, my 2.5 week trip to Europe has become 2.5 months.


It was well worth it.  Every race is a learning experience tactically as well as culturally.  I learned Kikkan Randall has paparazzi. They jump fences at races and wait at airports to snap her photo.  I learned fans remember.  They look up your results and come back to talk about it the next day- or four years later in the case of Andy Newell and a homemade trading card. Europeans are aggressive on the downhills, but haven't yet learned to step corners.  They podium in world cups, then return home for low key races (and often lose).  There are numerous warnings and disqualifications on the World stage, so much so that they are greatly ignored by the media.  For some reason, oatmeal is universally a pre-race breakfast option and it is different in every country.  Nordic skiers are friendly across all cultures.  I have had an unreasonable amount of offers for wax support in Norway and an amazing conversation about waxing at zero degrees and raining with a Russian who only scrapped together English.  


It is possible to succeed and it is possible to fail; often times the difference is a mere second.  More often it is perspective.


Two and a half months bring an inordinate amount of experiences.  I am fortunate to have this opportunity.  Michael Sinnott, 


Mikey earned his World Cup start rights by leading 2012 USSA SuperTour round 1. He races with the the Sun Valley Ski Education Foundation  and pays for the vast majority of the trip himself.


skate sequence  

Salomon's Birkie 




Tad Elliott and Holly Brooks returned from the European World Cup to successfully avenge previous 2nd place finishes and discovered the speedy ride of the Salomon Soft Ground skis in the process.


Salomon Complete Athletes put in impressive performances taking 5 of the 6 podium positions at the 39th American Birkebeiner.  While snow has been scarce this winter in the U.S., the Birkie trail has had snowpack all year. This snow was rock solid old hard pack seven days before the race.  But throughout race week 1-3 inches of warm wet 27 degree snow fell most days. The groomers bided their time and when they rolled out onto the course Friday night more than 6 inches of new snow had accumulated and temps had dropped into the teens. By Saturday morning a firm, yet flexible, corduroy track emerged. Race morning testing revealed that the Soft Grounds liked this surface as they seemed to "skim over the soft corduroy unimpeded."   

Birkie Podium 5/6 Salomon  


The athletes say it best:


Tad Elliott 1st U.S. Ski Team, "I skied on a pair of SoftGrounds that Zack Caldwell (my tech) handed me for the first time at the start line Birkie morning. I said really? He said yes, really. I said OK. Early in the race I was smashing them and they felt like nothing special. Then instead of smashing them, I relaxed, settled back and let them ride, and they just took off."


Tad Elliott Thrill
Tad's Thrill of Victory                     Image:Swix Poles 

  Men's Finish Video

Caitlin Compton Gregg 2nd celebrating with hubby Brain Gregg 3rd 
Women's Finish Video

Read the rest of the SoftGround Birkie Story Here



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Start Spoil Your Ski and Yourself  

March 3 & 4 Wax Recs


Tour of Anchorage, AK

Start's Birkie Wrap-Up 

What was fastest and how we tested!

Festinating details for wax junkies! 



  Start's Answers to Waxing Questions 

email us  


Team Apparel

Bjorn Daehlie Announces Team Apparel Program Clubs, teams, and training groups are vital to the advancement of cross-country skiing in North America.  We know that for many of these groups budgets are tight and we want to help.


During the 2011-12 season we partnered with CXC to provide our Pure Function apparel for their elite team, junior development team and masters team.  The response to these uniforms has been overwhelming with people throughout the ski community wanting to know how they could get their teams outfitted.


We are now offering special pricing on orders for team apparel.

Whether you need jackets, pants, race suits, midlayers or hats and headbands, we have great pricing available and we have several options for further customization.


It's never too early to start thinking about new team apparel for next year.  We also offer special discounts for orders placed in March for fall delivery.

And, we do have some options still in stock now if you need to get outfitted this year.


Contact Kevin Johnson at or

262-707-7095 for more information.


Check out more photos of our clothing at Bjorn Daehlie North America on Facebook or at    


Share with your Team and Friends

The 6th Annual Equinox Snow Challenge will be
March 24th and 25th, 2012  
West Yellowstone, MT
6, 12, or 24 hours.

About SkiPost

Cross-Country skiing's community lodge. Where knowledge and stories are shared. The goal of SkiPost is to make the sport of Cross-Country skiing easier and more enjoyable for all who choose to participate. If you have questions on Cross-Country Skiing see or email us at

Enjoy Winter,
Andrew Gerlach
Director/Editor- SkiPost

Salomon's Images from Oslo
The best World Cup images click here


Win a Dinner with Bjorn Daehlie in Norway here! 



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