Is it better to talk about "drive hard" than "kick hard"?

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Is it better to talk about "drive hard" than "kick hard"?

Post by JeffOYB » Mon Mar 24, 2014 7:23 pm

...Or is it all the same?

I've been working with some folks this winter on their kick. But actually maybe it's the forward leg-drive that's just as important. I wonder if they'd get a better sense of speed if we emphasized leg drive more than worrying about kick.

If you're going to really powerfully shove that forward leg down the trail you have to both pole hard and kick hard. It might also make you realize that the kick is just a planted foot that you're leaping off of.

Here's another thing that makes me wonder about this. Those who haven't REALLY tried CAT Skis won't know what I mean, but the fun part about using Cat Skis is that you can't overkick 'em! You might think that, heck, they only have a 1.5-foot "glide path" before they hit the end of their stopper. And you're right: if you try to overGLIDE them they will whack that stopped every time, but if you leap forward down the trail you'll never hit the end! That's why they teach great technique! They also teach proper cadence. As soon as you land on that glide-foot KICK it right away! And when you kick THRUST that forward leg FORWARD! ...DRIVE IT HARD! If you don't drive it hard, you'll smack into the end. Anyway, I like what it does for my skiing and my workout intensity on mellow terrain.

...And it teaches me that I have to do an equal and opposite FORWARD leg drive to offset a hard kick.

Maybe it's only natural though?

Maybe if you kick hard but don't drive hard you'll tend to overglide and bog down?
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Re: Is it better to talk about "drive hard" than "kick hard"

Post by steener » Wed Mar 26, 2014 9:57 am

I don't think it's the same. The two need to compliment each other in order to have a powerful and efficient classic technique.

I agree with your assumption that stronger more explosive leg drive will produce better kick, if done correctly. This is something we focus on in our fall hill bounding class with and without poles. Without poles it exposes technique more and puts more focus on the leg thrust.

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