A timely special edition with Eva Twardokens, downhill skier for the US Olympic Team in '92 and '94, is up.
Good interview. Beautiful woman. Lots of interesting little bits of information.
Thank you for the quality interview. Learned a lot.
Can't wait for the next one.
We get curling every year in Canada.
Not a good enough reason to move up here.
Rip wasn't sitting that close to Shane.
Fantastic -- thanks so much for that interview. Lots of good info (for instance, I never knew that the skiers weren't allowed to do a training run in the slalom events).
The section on responding to stupid questions from the media was hilarious. Those reporters do ask the silliest things. (Crap like "What was going through your mind when you won?" Um.... how about "yeehah!" Duh.)
I watched the women's downhill last night, and the hill was icy & bumpy, and there were several scary-looking crashes. All the skiers who crashed were able to get up and walk away (when they finally came to a stop), so at least no one's knees got blown out there.
I've been watching some of the speed skating, too (gotta see Apolo Ohno skate) and the snowboarding. The US team has some really good athletes in the snowboard cross and halfpipe. (Although, another irritating thing about the media coverage: Lindsey Jacobellis is apparently never going to be allowed to forget the way she lost the gold in the snowboard cross 4 years ago, especially because she DQ'd this time and didn't get into the final round. Media people just keep hammering her on that. Cripes, let it go....)
Rip, talking with someone on a subject you don't know much about actually made for a really interesting interview. This was great.
Edited to add: Looks like Yevgeny Plushenko could have used some lessons on handling media interviews; his lack of graciousness after Evan Lysacek won the gold in men's figure skating was not good sportsmanship or good manners. Lysacek, in contrast, remained diplomatic -- good for him.
Last edited by Kate; 02-20-2010 at 07:07 AM.
Strength and Alpine Skiers
I thought the interview would concern strength training for skiers, which would be very interesting (at least for me doing some strength training and beeing a recreational skier)
Strength is obviously key to performance in skiing. A little bit of info about the strength of the male norwegian olympic skiers:
They weigh 90 - 105 kg
According to their head coach their 1RM Squat varies from 215 kgs to 255 kgs and their bench is in the 135 - 150 kg range. This i strong in the squat, but not extremely strong.
Strength endurance is extremely important and a key test is the number of reps they can perform with 1,5 x bodyweight, unfourtunately I don't know the numbers, but it's obviously high..
Static strength is important too, but I don't know exactly how they train for this.
Additionaly alpine skiers need to be extremely efficient at processing lactic acid. And quite surprisingly the 100 kg alpine skiers did extremely well in a popular TV show competition with different short anaerbic and TV-friendly (2/3 minutes) excercises. They beat the 70 kg endurance athletes consistently at this intensity.
Anybody know anything more about the training programming of alpine skiers - its a really interesting set of variables to try to optimize (and different from most other sports)
Thanks for another awesome interview, Mark.
You took that interview in a completely different direction than I was expecting, but I loved every minute of it.
Just wanted to chime in and say that your questions were great. Extremely insightful. You just don't see athletes' minds get picked like that in regular interviews. I loved hearing about the athlete's perception of things and all those little details interviewers generally just don't care about.
Completely changed the way I look at skiing.
Bolla, cool input, thanks for that info, I love hearing that kinda stuff!
I'd be interested to know more in this area as well, Bolla. Maybe you can email Eva and see if she knows what current world cup skiers are training like in the gym? I used to race as a kid, but did not get to a level where I was doing significant dry land training.
I'd imagine lots of squatting, olympic lifting, box jumps and then maybe 400M/800M runs since those are a similar time domain (1min-2min) as the events. C2 rowing as well for having the legs deal with the pain?
As a recreational freeskier now, for the gym I just do strength training supplemented by short metcon with some long runs/rows thrown in. Not surprisingly, the more days on snow in a season, the better "in shape" I feel for skiing. I will say that since I started training properly in the gym a few years ago, I do not feel tired at the end of a long day even big powder days with hiking/skinning involved and multi day trips.
Last edited by stef; 03-15-2010 at 11:17 AM.
I finally managed to find the time to watch this interview, and it was time well spent. I think Mark is growing into this role, and conversation flowed better than in the interview with Shane Hamman (it's a matter of degrees, that one was very good anyhow).
I liked in particular the way Eva explained in detail what happens before an athlete lines up at the starting gate, it's an area that rarely gets mentioned and about which I knew almost nothing.
Thanks a lot, keep up the good work.