The use of skis to transport the body across the snow has several advantages: It enables a person to move comparatively easily across loose, deep snow where walking on foot may be extremely difficult or almost impossible; it is possible to move much faster downhill on skis than on foot; finally, it allows the skier to moveinto the wilderness independently of roads. Since more muscle groups generally are engaged in skiing than in running (the use of the arms to pull and push on the ski-poles), the overall cardiovascular demand and energy expenditure involved in transporting the body on skis from one place to another may be as high as, or higher than, the energy expenditure when moving the body the same distance using some other mode of exercise. Because skiing employs about all of the major muscle groups in the body, cross-country skiing is an excellent method of training for cardiovascular fitness and dynamic muscular endurance.

How can I apply this with my students?

All of the topics have applications/instructional resources to be completed by you and/or your students. These activities and "hands-on" experiences serve to enhance an understanding of scientific principles and concepts of Olympic competition.

Outside the classroom

Number of out-of-class assignments accompany all of the topics. Their objectives is to interact with national, international and Olympic athletes and learn about variety of physical and mental factors involved in becoming a successful athlete.

Muscular factors of cross-country skiing

Cardiovascular factors of cross-country skiing

Performance benchmarks of cross-country skiers

Exercise in the cold

Psychological parameters related to cross-country skiing participation and performance

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Winter Olympics Course Outline Comments Questions
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© April, 1998, Montana State University-Bozeman