New styles in racing? --High elbows, faster tempo

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JeffOYB
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New styles in racing? --High elbows, faster tempo

Postby JeffOYB » Tue Feb 28, 2012 7:14 am

I was talking to a racer the other day who mentioned these things, but I've also seen them mentioned elsewhere and seen it in photos.

So it looks like doublepoling nowadays is done with high hands and high elbows and a super-slamming pole-plant. Is it really noticeably faster? I recall folks saying that it uses the pecs and maybe also the lats more. Can you tell? Do they use longer poles for this style? (Has %-of-height changed? Chin, lip, nose, ears...) Any difference b/w classic and skating? How about diagonal striding?

(I've been trying it a bit and haven't noticed anything at all yet. It seems a little crazy with my shoulder-height classic poles to do it with classic DP. But maybe they're going longer?)

I also heard that tempo is getting quicker. Hands not going past the hips (maybe as in canoe racing). And even mention of fast uphills being done with more of a running style. Less glide-oriented, if it ever was.

Any more recent developments?

Are these helping citizen racers? Everyday skiers? Are these generally recommended changes?

Sometimes it seems that such things might relate to the most powerful skiers. But they might also be more suitable for the best prepared tracks or perhaps even the WC type of course with really steep uphills.

It seems like only a little while ago the advice was "master the basics, they're hard enough." And "techniques vary a lot from nation to nation." The idea of the "new-skate" seemed to lose steam. Now here we are with high-elbows and sewing-machine tempo.
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Biffbradford
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Re: New styles in racing? --High elbows, faster tempo

Postby Biffbradford » Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:13 am

Northern Michigan University put out some tapes back in ~1988 that touted high elbows. Over 20 years ago.

Then it went away, then it came back.

It all comes back full circle.

Me: I'm 6' 5" tall, use 180cm skate poles, do you think I'm going to waste all that reach by trying to ski with high tempo? (which you can't do with such long timbers anyway) NO. I'm going to stretch out every stride as far as I can, so far that you'll HAVE to pole twice as often as me if you want to keep up! :D
Cycling pics: http://www.peloton-pix.com Season Wrapup
Skiing Pics: http://www.doublepolepix.com (updated Feb. 8, 2010 Wisconsin Biathlon Fest )
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JeffOYB
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Re: New styles in racing? --High elbows, faster tempo

Postby JeffOYB » Tue Feb 28, 2012 8:41 pm

Like ol' Juha!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X0S8HmApSvg

Yeah, everyone has to find what works for them. But new tricks can be fun, too. I guess try em and see if ya likes em. Of course some of em -- perhaps the best ones? -- take awhile of adapting, which takes a lot of faith -- before a payoff and that can be a tough call. For months it might not seem to be helping. It's a gamble. I recall Pete writing as much about that "new-skate" foray into messing with their technique.

I'm pretty tall, too -- but I might try longer poles with classic and some "high wings" poling and see how that plays. Like you I probably won't do much with sewing machine tempo. Still...I found I bike-raced best at a high cadence. And I enjoy canoe-racing with high-cadence, too. So who knows. I might give that a try, too. Canoe racing has steadily increased tempo as paddles have gotten lighter. Paddle-blades today also seem darn tiny. Maybe there's some kind of cross-over lesson. I've heard that longer poles and higher tempos are being used in part due to lighter poles and lower swing-weight, so equipment change can affect technique. Now, I also know a former multi-nat'l canoe champ who used a big paddle and slow cadence to beat the hummingbirds, so you do have to find what works for you.

It's all pipe-dreams for me at this juncture. I recall the only time I made big gains and breakthrus was when I was able to ski every day and in typical Michigan Cup terrain -- that would be the first and biggest key to doing well in such a setting. I was able to sort out what kinds of waxing really worked with the regional snow and find what seemed like a path to steady performance improvement from being in that kind of terrain daily. Even so, we've had good skiers come from snow-lean parts of the region so there's that. Just covering the basics will get ya far. ...I wish I had hills where I lived. Oh well!

But maybe there are youngsters out there finding cool new styles that we'd hardly recognize. More power to 'em! ...And keep me in the loop! : )
Jeff Potter
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indie outdoor adventure, culture, heritage
...bikes, boats, skis, luggage, media & more!

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Biffbradford
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Re: New styles in racing? --High elbows, faster tempo

Postby Biffbradford » Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:12 am

Yup. Find out what works for you and expand upon it.

Bill Koch liked skating, and took it to his limits. (Who??? :-) )

Northug is a fast twitched speed demon.

If you have the balance to ride a ski forever, put that to use.

If you like wearing body armor and enjoy bouncing off of trees, do that too! :D
Cycling pics: http://www.peloton-pix.com Season Wrapup

Skiing Pics: http://www.doublepolepix.com (updated Feb. 8, 2010 Wisconsin Biathlon Fest )

Midwest Cycling News: http://www.PelotonStar.com


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