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The 2019 2020 Cross Country, Nordic Ski thread & some tips for beginners

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
primoz wrote:
davidof wrote:

Anyone who can actually classic ski will be quicker (and more graceful) than someone who has poor or even intermediate skate technique. The difference in speed between the two techniques is not great, going uphill and a classic skier might outpace a skate skier.

That's not really true, or better yet, it depends who we are talking about.


So you saying it is a lie? Maybe you can poney up some facts to back up that fairly bold claim.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Fairly bold claim that skating is faster then classic? Let's say 20 years of racing brings experience or two. Otherwise if you don't believe my experience, let's check results....
Last year's World Champs in Seefeld, women 7.5+7.5k skiathlon.
Johaug went out of start on her own, and finished classic 7.5k loop in 18:45.6, changed equipment, went out on 7.5k skating loop which she finished in 17:30.9 (celebrating last few 100m so not going full speed on). This means 45sec difference in 7.5km or about 7% slower classic then skating. Will that be enough of the fact that classic is way slower then skating?
Men is harder to compare as it was group going through the race together and there was whole bunch of tactics going on, but if you want just times, 36:29.1 for 15k classic and 33:11.3 for 15k skating.
So yeah, I'm saying that classic is not faster then skating, and there's no way anyone of racers would be faster uphill classic then skating. If that would be true, you would see people skiing classic on skating races, as there's no limit for skating, and you can easily ski classic on skating race, but opposite is not allowed.
snow conditions     
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
davidof wrote:


Even in the Northern Alps the climate is pretty benign most of the time, youl could ski in your shorts and t-shirt.



Don't try that first week in Feb in the Finnish arctic. The problem there is that you generally speaking still only wear a few thin layers due to your work rate and will still sweat; but when you stop...

At -15 it doesn't take long to get very cold very quickly. So the moral of the story is only stop indoors in a hut. A spare dry inner layer also helps I find

I've been out in below -25 a few times and worn a thin goretex shell on top and when you take it off you find that in fact you have a thin veneer of ice over the entire inside where the sweat has frozen on contact with the material !
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 You need to Login to know who's really who.
You need to Login to know who's really who.
primoz wrote:
Fairly bold claim that skating is faster then classic? Let's say 20 years of racing brings experience or two. Otherwise if you don't believe my experience, let's check results....
Last year's World Champs in Seefeld, women 7.5+7.5k skiathlon.
Johaug went out of start on her own, and finished classic 7.5k loop in 18:45.6, changed equipment, went out on 7.5k skating loop which she finished in 17:30.9 (celebrating last few 100m so not going full speed on). This means 45sec difference in 7.5km or about 7% slower classic then skating. Will that be enough of the fact that classic is way slower then skating?
Men is harder to compare as it was group going through the race together and there was whole bunch of tactics going on, but if you want just times, 36:29.1 for 15k classic and 33:11.3 for 15k skating.
So yeah, I'm saying that classic is not faster then skating, and there's no way anyone of racers would be faster uphill classic then skating. If that would be true, you would see people skiing classic on skating races, as there's no limit for skating, and you can easily ski classic on skating race, but opposite is not allowed.


Ok lets take your quote:

1. Anyone who can actually classic ski will be quicker (and more graceful) than someone who has poor or even intermediate skate technique.

That's true - someone who is actually capable of skiing classic, that is, not just shuffling around, is going to be quicker than someone who has poor/intermediate skating technique. How do I know that - because I watch the skiers going around the local loipe and I see the club classic skiers overtaking the fit but with poor technique skaters uphill, downhill and on the flats.

2. The difference in speed between the two techniques is not great,

Yes, going back to the original post we are talking about the speed advantage of skating over classic technique. IE putting my claim into context. Skating is about 10% faster than Classic at top level on the same snow, same course. For amateur skiers at the same level it is more like 15%. So not a great deal of difference. I've never said classic is faster than skating like for like - you have poor reading skills or are on the spectrum or something.

3. going uphill and a classic skier might outpace a skate skier.

Yes, it might be. Soft / fresh snow conditions for example - you might be better skiing classic in the tracks than skating.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Quote:

or are on the spectrum or something

Ok boomer.
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Where's Harry Hill when you need him ? He'd sort it out !
ski holidays     
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Sure my English is far from perfect, but considering English is not my native language I can live with that. If you have problems with that, we can always switch to Slovene, where I'm more fluent. I never claimed comparing racer going classic with someone who just started xc skiing going skating would show skating is faster, but that's useless comparison anyway. Even I can nowadays be faster then pretty much everyone who I meet on track (based on short search, I would easily dare to bet it would include you too Wink), when going classic and others are on skating, but not really sure that would be fair comparison Wink
Difference between classic and skating is not great? Well maybe 10% is not great, but for me that's certainly A LOT. If we take that 3min difference from men race, and put it to let's say Davos 15k F race last year, being 3min off the pace of winner would put you in place 78. That's pretty huge difference, don't you think? If we stay on same race, from where I took time differences to compare, 3min behind CL part would put you in position around 55 out of 72 racers (including some 10 which are more of skiing tourists from Turkey, Argentina, Greece etc. and are not on start of WC races).
3... Believe me, I have done more then enough kilometers on any sort of track, and there's no slightest chance that classic would be faster uphill. There's no conditions where that would work, at least when both classic and skating would go on track with same conditions. Unless you compare icy classic course and 20cm fresh snow on skating course. But we are not comparing like that, or do we just to find some way for you to be right?
As I wrote, I have been racing xc on relatively high level for half of my life, and not skiing 20k race in a bit under 2h, so I know a thing or two about xc skiing.
snow report     
 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
This thread seems to have turned a bit 'mine is faster than yours'. So I'll add that I can actually walk faster than I can Langlauf. In fact I often take my skis off and walk, either to catch up with friends who are leaving me behind, or to deal with scary downhill sections. Very Happy
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 You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Quote:

"Anyone who can actually classic ski will be quicker (and more graceful) than someone who has poor or even intermediate skate technique."

That's true - someone who is actually capable of skiing classic, that is, not just shuffling around, is going to be quicker than someone who has poor/intermediate skating technique.


queenie pretty please wrote:
This thread seems to have turned a bit 'mine is faster than yours'. So I'll add that I can actually walk faster than I can Langlauf. In fact I often take my skis off and walk, either to catch up with friends who are leaving me behind, or to deal with scary downhill sections. Very Happy

LOL snowHead
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Skating generally has a steeper learning curve than classic. If your are fit and have good balance you can progress up this learning curve quickly enough to start with skating. If you are less fit and/or have poor balance you will probably appreciate that you can make progress 'walking' on classic skis compared to the technical requirements of skating - particularly uphill, even on gentle gradients. There is then the challenge of progressing from walking to gliding on classic skis.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
The question is not whether a well practiced classic skier can beat a poorly prepared skater.

The question is whether a fit and motivated alpine skier will learn skating faster, just as fast, or slower than learning classic.

Everyone claims classic is “easy”. My own experience and observation is it’s not. The only “easy” part pf classic is the walk/shuffle part!

To actually “ski” in classic style takes quite a bit of work. Does it take less or more work than skating? That’s the question I’m not qualified to answer.


Last edited by snowHeads are a friendly bunch. on Mon 2-12-19 21:51; edited 1 time in total
snow report     
 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Having "skied" classic for some years, I decided I would take up skating... So last week, I took a 3 day clinic to get myself started properly. Toofy Grin

I now can say skating is just as easy to learn for a competent alpine skier!

Day 1's 2 hr clinic started with us putting our poles on the side of the trail and just skate baby steps. A few drills to "force" a full weight transfer and precarious balancing on the one gliding ski. Lots of falling down and getting back up. My arms were sore despite not using the poles at all. At the end of the lesson, I was able to actually balanced for a couple seconds on the gliding skis without having to hurry putting down the other skis (as a cheat). Was looking forward to learning how to use the poles the next day.

Day 2 started with us dropping our poles on the side of the trail first thing! Shocked Shocked Shocked

(we had different instructors on each session, that was BY DESIGN, so we got exposed to many different ways to achieve the end result, we were told)

I thought I was good to go on the gliding on one ski thing and expected we move on to new focuses. But the new instructor thought differently.Shocked More new drills for balancing on a single ski. I was a bit resistant at the start (because I thought I did pretty good at the tasks). But then I thought I'll just use the opportunity to practice what I "know". Well, I apparently didn't know much. Because by the end of that 2nd session, I was able to extend my glide for double the time and probably triple the distance! Who would have thought that by putting one's weight fully on the gliding ski, it would transform into a solid platform for pushing off to the new glide ski too? rolling eyes

At the end of the session, we had a little competition to cover a stretch of snow with the least number of steps. I tried to match the instructor's number (obviously she wasn't putting all her power into her demo run). Came close but not quite matching it.

Day 3 turned into a private session because everyone else who's a true beginner had dropped out. snowHead (there's one who had skated before the clinic. As not a "never-ever" or true beginner, she got kicked UP to the "novice" group Toofy Grin )

I couldn't resist asking the new instructor if I can do something with my poles other than carrying them from the room to the side of the trail head and back to my room! Skullie

He laugh out loud. Very Happy His reply was "When we teach juniors, we don't let them use pole till they're 12-13". To which I answered "Do I look like I'm over 13?" wink He was properly amused, and agreed we would "do something with them poles".

But apparently, I had lost my balance overnight.Embarassed Even I could tell I wasn't balancing properly on the one ski. After a few less than satisfactory tries, I decide to blame the new addition of poles. So they were promptly taken away. Sad More single ski exercise again.

At some point, I got them gliding on single ski thing again. Then arm swinging was added while skating along. Until finally, poles back in hand, I was doing something resembling a V2 skate.

As soon as the pole push was added, it became apparent again that I was still rather shaky on my glides. To best "enjoy" the combined pole push and leg kick, I theoretically COULD stay on the gliding ski for ages and got a really long and nice forward glide! But I wasn't.Sad It took some more drills to stop my flailing arms and leg from upsetting my balance on the glide ski. Adding more power to the push/kick also requires more fine tuning of balance each time. Happily, each tweak on balance with kick or push extend the glide phase a little further and a little further... Smile

Being the only student in a 2 hr "group" session, I got no rest while the non-existing "other students" do their practice. I was getting tired after only 90 minutes, at which point the instructor declare I've got enough to to practice for the rest of the season on my own (not really for the "rest of the season", but enough to work on my own for a bit).

Strangely enough, I find climbing long shallow grades easier skating then classic. It's just really hard to get a good grip on classic skis going uphill. Hence my conclusion that it might be just as easy to learn skating without bothering with classic.

I have every intention to skate without poles A LOT on my own. I now totally see the point of the last instructor on why not using the pole will be beneficial. And will need to find a good local instructor to continue help me to work on technique as the season goes on. (the clinic was at Montana, we haven't quite got snow deep enough to ski yet)

It's fun to learn new things! snowHead snowHead snowHead
ski holidays     
 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
abc wrote:
..........I now can say skating is just as easy to learn for a competent alpine skier!...............


Do think that's what a few of us have been saying, though would also add the caveat "fit alpine skier".

Anyway great you're getting into it.

A couple of additional points, as I know the subject of clothing etc has come up, Decathlon (what a surprise) do a great economical range of XC attire, and some would be good for ski rando as well.

And on that subject was ski touring today, and caught up with these two dudes, one of whom, taught me for my first couple of hours skating, when my HR was going through the roof, this morning I was the one nice and calm and not out of breath whilst my "instructor" was getting a little messy.

I did take a bit of relish in putting him to the sword on a steep climb, so just goes to show, how technique can overcome fitness etc , and I have no doubt he will take great delight in reciprocating should he come across me on the XC trail Laughing
ski holidays     
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Weathercam wrote:
abc wrote:
..........I now can say skating is just as easy to learn for a competent alpine skier!...............


Do think that's what a few of us have been saying, though would also add the caveat "fit alpine skier".

Indeed. That's what I've been saying too... Toofy Grin

But that was based on my experience doing classic for ages (and still working to get just a little bit better at it). Until I tried skating myself, my "saying" was without 100% conviction. Now I can say that from first hand experience. Very Happy

I'm not even sure being "fit" is all that important. I was huffing and puffing a lot. But I think that's more due to being at 6000' instead of sea level. Toofy Grin

Once I got into some kind of rhythm, it went a lot smoother. And I was able to go on and on for a while without stopping.

Granted, that was on relatively flat'ish stretches. I will have to find out how it goes once the trail got steeper. Shocked

Going again Saturday. Very Happy
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