The Norwegian national team women’s coaches want to focus on individualizing and personalizing of the training for the skiers behind Bjorgen in order to make them better.
Marit Bjorgen was in class by herself this season and the distance to the national team skiers behind her was bigger than what the coaches appreciated.
– We need to focus more on the second best skiers. We will individualize the training better. Some of them just need small adjustment in order to make a big performance jump, says assistant coach Egil Kristiansen.
He is not disappointed with the national team skier’s performances, but says that many of them are still struggling to reach their potential.
– Several have not performed at the level they should. We want to change that, says Kristiansen
– We have a young and ambitious team that all have the potential to succeed. It’s important that we don’t get too dependant upon Marit Bjorgen. Someone else need to step it up and take the responsibility if Marit is sick or has a down period, says Kristiansen.
He has in cooperation with the head coach Svein Tore Samdal already started the job that hopefully will give the second best skiers a lift next season.
– We need to take a close look at Vibeke Skofterud. She can improve in many areas. Kristin Murer Stemland needs to adjust her training. It might be a good idea for her to reduce her training more in some periods in order to recover better. Only small adjustments are needed for Kine Beate Bjornas in order for her to be established among the top. In addition we need to make Kristin Stormer Steira (23) more predictable.
Editor’s note: Steira made her firs ever podiums this winter placing second in the 15-kilometer World Cup freestyle in Ramsau and third in the pursuit at Worlds
Neither Kristensen nor Samdal is concerned about the future for Norwegian women’s cross country skiing, despite the big gap from Bjorgen down to the rest of the team.
– It’s important that the other girls are learning from what Marit has done. She is best in the World when it comes to training and that’s why she is best, says Samdal and admits that the other girls can step it up a lot.
– It’s not only about hours, but about training quality. The rest of the team is â€œwalking up the stairs where Marit is runningâ€, says Samdal and ads that’s it’s important to stay healthy in important periods.