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HomeAuthor Kevin Brooker

Kevin is 42 years old, married with two children and living in Post Mills, Vermont. He began racing bicycles at sixteen and continued pursuing individual sports. After a six-year layoff, Kevin has returned to athletics racing in biathlon events. He has written numerous articles for FasterSkier, including a series on his return to racing and his current "How It's Made" series.
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When the “How It’s Made” series was proposed, I planned to cover each piece of equipment (skis, boots, poles, etc.) with a 1000-1200 word overview of the process; however, I soon realized how naïve this notion was. So far, I’ve determined that each company that manufactures skis has its own methods, materials, and philosophies, and that each company therefore deserves a unique explanation. Fortunately, several ski companies responded to my inquiries. The Nordic ski industry...

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It’s inevitable when two or more skiers are talking tech, the conversation will linger on ski bases: structure, grind, waxing, rilling, etc. If you listen carefully, however, you will notice the conversation is not really about base materials but base preparation. What is the base and how is it made? To learn more, I contacted Crown Plastics (www.durasurf.com) located in Harrison, Ohio. Crown is the manufacturer of the DuraSurf ski and snowboard base materials. Base...

Before getting to the ski gear (I promise you its here), there’s a touch more background to cover. Just as IM can be found in almost every piece of gear we use, CNC machining is used throughout the industry and one of the reasons equipment has become light, reliable and fast. Most of the machine work for the ski industry is not used on the actual gear itself. The vast majority of lathe, milling and...

Before jumping into how Nordic ski gear is made, I thought it prudent to spend some time explaining several manufacturing techniques. These methods are used in almost every piece of gear we use. While eager to start explaining individual pieces of ski gear, having the back ground and basic understanding of manufacturing techniques will keep all of us speaking the same language and hopefully give the reader a better insight into the production and hidden...

Last month the New York Ski Education Foundation hosted the “Climb to the Castle” rollerski race, a challenging hill climb up Whiteface Mountain in Lake Placid, New York. The field included many of the top skiers in the country, and blog posts on FasterSkier discussed equipment, heart rates, lactate levels and other metrics used to gauge fitness and readiness to compete at the elite level. The field was also filled with the not-so-elite participants too,...

This is the latest installment of Kevin Brooker’s journey into the land of Biathlon. Kevin has documented his experience over the course of his first summer of training and has now finally gotten up the good part – getting on snow…. Season Wrap-up The end of the season is always bittersweet. Warm sunshine and soft snow make skiing fun but the desire to “train” has faded away. A bit of effort was needed to keep...

This is the latest installment of Kevin Brooker’s journey into the land of Biathlon. Kevin has documented his experience over the course of his first summer of training and has now finally gotten up the good part – getting on snow…. The best way to place the level of competition for the NorAm Cup races is to think of it a double A baseball. The athletes in the elite divisions are vying for a spot...

This is the latest installment of Kevin Brooker’s journey into the land of Biathlon. Kevin has documented his experience over the course of his first summer of trinaing and has now finally gotten up the good part – getting on snow…. The summer biathlon season was over right at the end of September. Rollerskiing was the next transition or transformation in my yearly training schedule. Athletic activity in Vermont during September and October is magical....

May, 2007. After making the decision and commitment to become a biathlete, it was time to get started. It’s the second week of May, leaving six weeks until the big summer race at Ethan Allen. The event: a 6K sprint race on Saturday with results setting the start order for the 6.5K Pursuit on Sunday. These distances assume no penalty laps are needed. Not having a rifle to practice with at home meant making the...

If you’re like me, the idea of making time for regular exercise just because it’s good for you is not enough. There must be a goal motivating us to skip watching T.V. and go run in the rain. Drop a few pounds? What, are you nuts? Eating cake for breakfast and grabbing a few pretzels from the jar at each pass is no big deal. Stretching? Only for the remote. At the age of twenty-two...