SkiErg World Sprints Attract Old and New Talent Alike

Audrey ManganNovember 18, 2011
A participant in the 2011 SkiErg sprints.
A participant in the 2011 SkiErg sprints.

November 18, 2011 – Morrisville, VT – While many ski races in Scandinavia were being canceled due to lack of snow, the 3rd Annual  SkiErg World Sprints took place last weekend in locations around the world and drew a record number of participants. Races were hosted by ski clubs, high school ski teams, CrossFit gyms, fitness centers, and elementary schools, in ten different countries, with competitors ranging in age from 5 to 80. There were over 800 participants—a 50% increase over last year!

Both skiers and non-skiers alike earned top finishes. Christopher McLaughlin, who uses the SkiErg at home for fitness, is the overall men’s winner for the second year in a row with a time of 3:04.3, while Jennie Bender, also last year’s winner, won the women’s event with a time of 3:52.9. Other results of note include a tie for second place overall and first place in the men’s 30-39 category. Jack Nunn of California and Ats Pärnaste of Estonia both came in with a time of 03:12.9.

McLaughlin, 40, of New Jersey, started rowing and skiing after years of lifting, work and running had injured his knees. The Concept2 Indoor Rower and SkiErg provide him with a low impact, full-body workout. He uses the Concept2 rankings and logbook for motivation while he works out at home.

On the women’s side, Jennie Bender is a strong US skier living in Minnesota and training with the CXC program in Wisconsin. The SkiErg is a regular part of her training program, especially when she can’t get out on rollerskis due to darkness or bad weather. In the next couple weeks she’ll start her competitive season on snow.

In the adaptive field, the men’s win goes to aspiring paralympian for Biathlon David Leach of New York with a time of 4:03.9 (LTA) and the women’s  to Christina Kouros (TA)of Maine in 6:56.0. Kouros is one of the first sit skiers to compete in high school ski races. Full SkiErg World Sprints results can be found here.

All host sites with at least 20 participants were entered in a drawing for a new SkiErg. Pat’s Gym in Madison, Wisconsin was the lucky winner.

The SkiErg World Sprints, coordinated by Concept2 in Morrisville, Vermont, is an annual indoor ski race of 1000 meters on the Concept2 SkiErg held in locations around the world. Participants can accurately compare their times from one location to another because the SkiErg includes a self-calibrating Performance Monitor. The SkiErg provides measurable and specific training for Nordic skiers, while also offering a high-quality low impact exercise option for non-skiers of all ages. Concept2 offers rankings and challenges to help keep skiers motivated throughout the year. More information on the SkiErg is available at

Concept2 was founded by Dick and Peter Dreissigacker in 1976. Both competitive rowers and engineers, the two brothers designed and manufactured carbon fiber racing oars, then went on to create the world’s first air­resistance indoor rower. The SkiErg, launched in 2009, builds upon the Dreissigackers’ love of skiing and Concept2’s years of experience in designing and manufacturing high-performance training equipment. For more information about Concept2, visit

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Audrey Mangan

Audrey Mangan (@audreymangan) is an Associate Editor at FasterSkier and lives in Colorado. She learned to love skiing at home in Western New York.

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