Beginning Skier's Guide
Cross-country skiing is the perfect sport if you are interested in fitness. Among health-promoting exercises, scientists usually rank it Number One. It's the Total Fitness activity. Many fitness sports--such as walking, running, cycling or swimming--condition only the muscles of the upper or lower body. But cross-country (a.k.a. "Nordic") skiing exercises both the upper and lower body!
You can get a good aerobic workout simply by cruising the ski trails, or you can go anaerobic by pushing the pace either on the flat or up a hill. You also can test your agility, as well as develop it. Cross-country skiing is a particularly good cross-training exercise for runners during the winter, when snow covers the trails they run during other parts of the year.
But if you ski only to stay in shape, you're missing the point of this sport. Skiing--both cross-country and downhill--owes much of its popularity to the beauty of hills and fields covered with snow and the excitement of sliding down those hills. If nothing else, becoming a skier will change your attitude toward winter. Instead of grumbling when the Weather Man forecasts a blizzard, you will rejoice, because it gives you an opportunity to go outdoors and play in the snow.
Skiing, however, can be an intimidating sport. Certainly, more technique is necessary to become a skier than to become a runner. Equipping yourself with skis, boots and poles also can be expensive. And you do need snow. Nevertheless, learn to ski and you will learn to love winter.
Here is how to become a cross-country skier. This Beginning Skier's Guide will get you started, so that when snow starts to fall, you can join me on the ski trails.
|Getting Started||Ski Technique||In Full Stride|
|Where to Ski||Turning||Snowshoes|
|Two Techniques||Stopping||Downhill Skiing|