Skate skiing: improve your technique with 8 exercises

Langlauf Übungen: In 8 Schritten die Skating Technik verbessern Langlauf Übungen: In 8 Schritten die Skating Technik verbessern

Skate skiing is pretty exhausting. With a few simple tricks you can learn to get ahead faster.

Skate skiing technique

Skate skiing can look so light and easy. But often the reality is that after just a few metres you find yourself standing red-faced and puffing, wondering how much longer you can stand it. But this isn't necessarily due to your lack of talent or weak stamina.

People who're either starting or haven't skied for a long time often don’t use their energy effectively and therefore need much more strength for the same speed.

8 exercises to skate effectively

This is when it’s worth doing a few exercises for your technique. With a few simple tricks, you can learn the most important elements of skate skiing technique and improve your speed.

Exercise 1: Glide on one ski

With this exercise, you train the complete weight shift by gliding only on one ski.
  • Exercise: Push forward with your poles. Glide your ski as flat as possible on the snow.
  • Why: With this exercise, you train the complete weight shift by gliding only on one ski.
  • N.B.: Nose, hip, knee and foot all form a vertical line. Do not fully extend your standing leg, keep your toes relaxed and do not «claw» into the sole.
  • Material: With poles
  • Terrain: Flat

Exercise 2: Leg push off with heel pressure

With this exercise, you’ll learn how to push off efficiently with your leg.
  • Exercise: When pushing off with your leg, mentally put pressure on your heel. Afterwards, shift your weight and body centre of gravity over to the gliding leg on the other side.
  • Why: With this exercise, you’ll learn how to push off efficiently with your leg.
  • N.B.: The leg push-off isn't done with the forefoot and toes, but with the entire inner edge of the ski.
  • Material: Without poles, hands on thighs
  • Terrain: Flat

Exercise 3: Powerful legwork

Many beginners work too much with their arms and poles when skate skiing and therefore quickly get out of breath. With this exercise you learn to use the power of your legs.
  • Exercise: When skate skiing, your legs are constantly bending and stretching. During the weight transfer to the gliding leg, both legs are bent. During the glide, the legs are stretched before they are bent again for the next leg push-off.
  • Why: Many beginners work too much with their arms and poles when skate skiing and therefore quickly get out of breath. With this exercise you learn to use the power of your legs.
  • N.B.: Never stretch your legs completely – this helps to maintain balance.
  • Material: Without poles, hands on thighs
  • Terrain: Flat

Exercise 4: Shifting your weight

In this exercise, you learn to shift your weight from one leg to the other.
  • Exercise: Swing your arms diagonally forward. Cover the opposite ski tip with your hand: cover the left ski tip with the right hand and the right ski tip with the left hand.
  • Why: In this exercise, you learn to shift your weight from one leg to the other.
  • N.B.: While gliding, nose, hip, knee and foot all form a vertical line.
  • Material: Without poles
  • Terrain: Flat
Übung 4: Gewicht verlagern

While gliding, nose, hip, knee and foot all form a vertical line.

Exercise 5: Swimming

With this exercise, you learn to shift your weight with your whole body. In addition, you practise a long glide with the help of the pull of your chest and arms. This will help you skate ski more efficiently.
  • Exercise: Imitate a breast stroke with your arms, like when you're swimming.
  • Why: With this exercise, you learn to shift your weight with your whole body. In addition, you practise a long glide with the help of the pull of your chest and arms. This will help you skate ski more efficiently.
  • N.B.: Do the exercise as smoothly as possible.
  • Material: Without poles
  • Terrain: Flat

Exercise 6: «2:1 symmetry» without poles

Beginners often neglect their legwork with the «2:1 symmetry» technique, so we practise this step without poles at first.
  • Exercise: Every second leg push-off is followed by mentally planting the pole.
  • Why: Beginners often neglect their legwork with the «2:1 symmetry» technique, so we practise this step without poles at first.
  • N.B.: Swing your arms shoulder-wide at the same time.
  • Material: Without poles
  • Terrain: Flat

Exercise 7: «2:1 symmetry» with poles

«2:1 symmetry» is THE step most often used on flat terrain. This exercise helps you to train the most common technique.
  • Exercise: When planting the pole, stretch your hands forward, arms slightly bent. As soon as the hands are at hip level, hold the pole handle only with thumb and index finger, let the other fingers go – this allows you to guide the pole back smoothly. When swinging forward, grip the pole firmly again after your hands reach hip level.
  • Why: «2:1 symmetry» is THE step most often used on flat terrain. This exercise helps you to train the most common technique.
  • N.B.: Insert the tip of the pole at a point parallel to the ski binding.
  • Material: With poles Adjust the pole strap so that the pole grip lies firmly in your hand.
  • Terrain: Flat
Übung 7: «2:1 symmetrisch» mit Stockeinsatz

Insert the tip of the pole at a point parallel to the ski binding.

Exercise 8: Relaxed gliding phase (advanced)

This is a balance exercise for experienced skate skiers that facilitates a more relaxed glide.
  • Exercise: Each glide is accompanied by two pole pushes. In order to have enough time for two pole pushes, the body weight must be completely transferred to the gliding leg. This exercise therefore helps us to train our balance.
  • Why: This is a balance exercise for experienced skate skiers that facilitates a more relaxed glide.
  • N.B.: Do the exercise as smoothly as possible.
  • Material: With poles
  • Terrain: Flat

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