Stratton skiers have made up a large part of the New England JO team each year, and have qualified a number of skiers to the J1 Scando trips and Jr. World Championships. This year at JO's, Stratton skiers were awarded the Roger Weston High School Team Award (Female) and took second overall in the USSA Club Team award. Andy Newell is perhaps the best known recent Alum, but overall 27 SMS Nordic athletes have made the U.S. World Junior Team, 17 have made the U.S. National Team and 13 have made the U.S. Olympic Team since 1980….
Sverre Caldwell has been coaching at Stratton since the Fall of 1980. He has been to Junior Olympics (many times as Head Coach) about twenty times! Growing up in Putney, VT, a product of the successful Caldwell Family, Nordic skiing has been his life. He shares with us his coaching beliefs and other interesting ski facts…
NENSA: Sverre, you have been involved in coaching for a long time. What
trends have you seen come and go with regards to training or technique?
Which ones have you found to be sustainable?
Sverre Caldwell: Classic technique has changed over the years with the introduction of
faster skis, firmer, more consistent tracks etc.; but it has really just
been a slow evolution. Skating is newer and it feels as if we are
tweaking that technique more often.
Training is training. There are different approaches that work for
different people, but the most important thing is to make a plan,
understand the plan and then work the plan. I tend to be a little old
school and I don't jump on too many trends. Train well year round,
learn good technique and then ski fast! Americans tend to be impatient.
We are always looking for better ways (which is good), but when people
start looking for short-cuts, they run into trouble. I think that there
are a bunch of programs in the US that are starting to step it up and
that is great. You can be good at a young age because you are athletic
or you mature early. To be really good at an older age you need to be
athletic and you need to be tough. Tough isn't something that comes
too easily without hard work.