Triathlon Magazine Canada - - FEATURES -

Cross-coun­try ski­ing can be bro­ken into two dif­fer­ent cat­e­gories each with their own cross­over ben­e­fits. Clas­sic ski­ing, where you are in a set track, toes point­ing for­ward and you kick or ex­tend one leg out be­hind you, most closely mim­ics run­ning from a mus­cu­lar stand­point. Al­though the ac­tions are not ex­act, the ba­sic move­ments in­clud­ing op­pos­ing arm and leg ac­tions are sim­i­lar. Mus­cu­larly, the gluteal group, calf, lower back and hip flex­ors are all ac­tive dur­ing cross-coun­try ski­ing and al­though they are fir­ing in slightly dif­fer­ent ways there are still sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fits.

Skate ski­ing, on the other hand, more closely tar­gets the mus­cles in­volved in cy­cling. It’s no sur­prise that some of the best cy­clists in the world com­pete at a sim­i­lar level in speed skat­ing, which has very sim­i­lar move­ments to skate ski­ing. The gluteal mus­cle group is a huge con­trib­u­tor to the ac­tions in­volved in any skat­ing ac­tion and is a prime driver on a bike. A great deal of the power you gen­er­ate on a bike will come from the largest of th­ese, the glu­teus max­imus. Spend­ing time de­vel­op­ing this group of mus­cles will help your cy­cling in the sum­mer months. Like snow­shoe­ing, ski­ing, is hugely ben­e­fi­cial for triath­letes. Cross-coun­try ski­ing has the added ben­e­fit of in­volv­ing the up­per body. This in­creases the body’s need for oxy­gen and adds aerobic stress, mean­ing it’s of­ten eas­ier to get a harder work­out purely be­cause the sport in­volves

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