Great sunny weather and over three dozen committed athletes highlighted the week in the Central Region. Top regional coaches in the region led athletes through a week of testing, education and training including US Ski Team coaches Pete Vordenberg and Matt Whitcomb.
In the first two days of the camp, athletes conducted MAX VO2 testing on CXC Kore equipment. Printed results and graphs included valuable information on their intensity training zones, strengths and weaknesses in fitness and methods for improvement.
“This is very important information not only for the athletes at the camp but for their coaches back home. All athletes received very comprehensive test printouts and explanations. Our goal is that coaches will take advantage of that information to enhance the performance of their athletes”, said Sara Willis, CXC Ski Team Exercise Physiologist.
Charlie Keller getting tested on the treadmill
During the first half of the week athletes also completed endurance and strength assessments by completing a 3,000 meter time trial on the track and part of the medal’s test (push ups, sit ups, dips and box jump).
“CXC has completed running and strength tests at the RDG camp for the last several years. We can see with returning athletes where they have improved and areas they still need to do some work. This assessment is an important element of the endurance and strength evaluation for the CXC Ski Team athletes and usually done 3-4 times a year” commented Bryan Fish. Bryan is the CXC Ski Team Head Coach. He collected two USSA awards as Development and Cross Country Domestic coach of the Year last May.
3,000m running time trial
The second half of the week included some fun opportunities for athletes to show their speed at the 150 foot rollerski skate sprint race with qualifying round, semis and head to head finals. The sprint was timed by a Brower Timing System set to 0.01 of the second. Jessie Diggins and Chris Bowler where absolute champions.
Immediately following the sprint event, athletes tested their teamwork capacities and endurance in the Water Polo tournament on the Lake Placid. Minnesota State Development Group defeated Regional Elite Group in the final game with the score of 2-1.
Bill Pierce, CXC Junior Development Program Coach commented, “This is a great activity. The risk of injury is almost zero and it is a hard work to play even for 10 minutes in water over your head. You can really see who participates as a team member. Gender doesn’t affect the result of the game. Everyone is equal”.
Winning score in the final on the last minute of the game
On the last day of the camp athletes completed a 6km skate time trial up the County OO road from Seeley up to the Birkie Trail crossing. The overall winners of the time trial were CXC Ski Team members Garrott Kuzzy and Kristina Owen.
“This was an amazing week. We not only tested athletes all week but worked on technique and had educational sessions almost every evening. US Ski Team support of this camp is a critical part of the success. We are already looking forward for next year. CXC will have another great opportunity in three weeks for these athletes and other high school athletes including younger ages and Masters to work on technique at the Birkie Big Summer Camp at Telemark Resort.” Yuriy Gusev, CXC Chief Executive Officer.
6km skate time trial