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On the Road with the US Nordic Team

Thu, Mar  15, 2007 - By Aaron Saari

Aaron Saari is the Physical Therapist for the US Ski Team. See his previous article here.

The nordic teams are in Lahti, Finland right now and we're heading to Oslo, Norway today, closing up the season in the next couple of weeks.

The Nordic teams have had some of the best results in the history of the US Ski Team.  Our Nordic Combined team is doing very well right now.  If you haven't seen Nordic Combined before, it is where they perform ski jumping and a XC skate race.  They usually jump first and the person who jumps the farthest gets to start the 15km course first.  Depending upon one's distance away from the best jump, there is a formula that converts this distance into time.  And then they just keep starting gets however many seconds they are behind the farthest jumper. 

It's really exciting to watch, especially when your athletes are doing well.  So there is one guy on our team named Billy Demong who got the silver medal at the Nordic World Championships in Sapporo, Japan.  It was the greatest sporting experience of my entire life, to give you an idea how fun this is to watch.  He started about 100 seconds behind the second place guy.  He ended up catching him on the final sprint to the finish line with the entire stadium of people watching and cheering.  It was amazing.  And a week after world championships he got the gold medal in the same event in Lahti, Finland. 

So things are looking up for the Nordic teams.  Hope all is well in Michigan.  I hear you're getting some late season snow.