Wednesday Workout: Double-Pole Intensity with Ida Sargent

Audrey ManganJune 26, 2013
High hands. Ida Sargent sprinting in Milan, Italy, in 2012.
High hands. Ida Sargent sprinting in Milan, Italy, in 2012.

Welcome to Wednesday Workout, the newest workout series on FasterSkier. During the offseason, we’ll feature components of summer training programs from top individuals and teams from throughout the U.S. and Canada at the high school, college and elite club levels. Now get outside and get to work!


Whether it’s the first few meters of a mass start or the final stages of a head-to-head sprint, a strong double-pole can be critical to the outcome of a race. Ida Sargent, of the Craftsbury Green Racing Project and U.S. Ski Team, has one interval session in particular that has helped her make recent gains with her double-pole strength, and offers a bonus opportunity to practice head-to-head tactics when done in a group setting.

“I think I’ve made big improvements in my double pole by doing this workout with my teammates,” Sargent says.

At USST camps, Sargent and her teammates repeat each interval on the same gradual uphill terrain, with the goal of gradually building intensity throughout the workout.

“We start in the same spot for every interval and build into them so that each interval covers more distance,” Sargent explains. “Usually we do the first one at about L3 and push the pace with each consecutive interval and the last one should be close to max.”


The workout:

15-20 minute warm up

5 x 3 minutes on gradual uphill. Start first interval at Level 3 and finish last interval “close to max.”

15-20 minute cool down


“They’re an awesome interval session to do with your team or in a group with everyone taking turns leading, following, drafting, or pushing the pace,” Sargent added.

When she’s back in Vermont with her Craftsbury teammates, Sargent adds a level of difficulty to the workout by finishing on a tougher uphill.

“We also do it at Craftsbury on a three minute stretch of road that gets kind of steep at the end which adds some specific strength into the practice,” Sargent said. “It’s a short session that doesn’t need to take more than 90 minutes with warm up and cool down, as the focus of the workout should be on high quality intervals.”

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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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