Dr. Cross Country Skiing

FasterSkierOctober 21, 2005

Swede H.C. Holmberg has just finished his doctoral degree in cross country skiing and double poling. He believes that cross country skiers have a lot to gain by becoming stronger in the upperbody.

Source: Langrenn.com

Holmberg’s is now working as a physiologist for the Swedish Olympic committee. His doctoral work is based upon three elements.

– My doctoral work is divided in three blocks. The first is about the importance and the adaptation to training of the upperbody, the seconds is lung function and breathing pattern and the last is about how transportation of blood and oxygen regulates and varies in arms and legs during skiing, says Holmberg.

He has during the last eight years published eight scientific papers on these subjects. He feels that the analyzing of the double poling is the part of his thesis that’s the easiest to understand.

— The double poling motions have developed enormously the last several years. It the past this motion was about putting the upperbody down and push with the arms, while today’s top skiers are utilizing power from the whole upperbody, in addition to using up and down motions in the knee and ankle joints to achieve more power/pressure on the poles, says Holmberg.

The results

The results shows according to the homepage of the Swedish Olympic committee that:
1. Upperbody muscles are responding to training in the same way as leg muscles.
2. That it’s possible to develop power and endurance in the muscles simultaneously.
3. That elite skiers still have lots to gain by increasing upperbody training and by training at the right intensity.

More double poling today

Holmberg is explaining that today’s cross country skiers are double poling more than in the past. He is despite this saying that the upperbody muscles still are not fully developed among many (elite) skiers.

— Also national team skiers have lots to gain in this area says Holmberg. He is convinced that most national team skiers can develop their double poling by increased understanding of double poling. The research has been based upon Swedish and Norwegian elite skiers.


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