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The presentations not only give a quick overview of each technique, but provides a number of easy to remember reminders. For example, the V2 body position section admonishes you to have “High hands” and gives the clever visual cue of “pinky in eye”. Pinky in eye suggests both how high the pole needs to be and how close the hands are to the face.
After viewing the initial presentation, you can dive deep into each technique. Each technique area is divided into several sections:
A timing section with photos and video. The photos have captions that describe key technical details in the photo. The videos describe in both normal and slow motion particular aspects of the technique in terms of timing.
Drills to help master the technique. The drill sections consist of 3 to 6 videos for each technique. The first video drill shows good technique; the other drills help you work on specific aspects of a technique.
For example, the V2 drill section contains four drills:
The diagonal stride section has five drills that work on weight transfer using the hips, proper stride length, ankle angle, forward lean, balance, timing, and generating a powerful kick.
World Cup videos show the technique in use during a race.
Multi-page PDF, one for each technique, with details on body position: (Feet, Ankles, Knees, Shoulders, Arms), Timing, Power, and Training/Racing tips. The PDFs reinforce everything in the videos and photo stills. Print them and take them with you when you train.
Some of the drills (e.g., “Locked N’ Loaded”) appear under more than one technique’s drill section. Although named the same, the drills are different, having been tweaked for that particular technique.
The drills are performed by National Team athletes Andy Newell, Kikkan randall, Chris Cook, Andrew Johnson, Kris Feeman.
I particularly like the Saddle Feet and Four Square drills in the V1 section. For old-school skaters, you need these drills!
Some of the demonstrations involve an aggressive display of the technique. For example, V2 Alternative is shown with a hop on each skate. Don’t let it intimidate you – none of us normal athletes are likely to be in good enough shape to hop during a race! But you can try it in training, and what you perfect in training might help you in that sprint to the finish!
I have personally been doing some of these drills on rollers ski, and did a couple while on snow this past weekend. Sten Fjeldhiem had us do several of these drills at this past fall’s technique clinic in Grand Rapids, Michigan. (Sten highly recommended this CD).
There is no other place where you will find modern cross country ski racing technique distilled into fundamental drills, visualizations, and coaching aids in one place. Everything is chunked into easily digestible units. Each fundamental is reinforced in text, video and voice over.
If you want to take your technique to new levels – and understand why you’re doing it – this is the CD for you.
Note: The CD requires a Windows-based PC.