Monday, 18 March 2013

Tidbits on the history of ski skating

    by Keith and Heather Nicol
     For people interested in the early days of ski skating here is a great video from Minnesota in 1985. Skating began in the early 1980’s and as you can see in the video many of the different skating techniques were already well established by 1985. It appears that they used classic boots and that the bindings of the day certainly didn’t help the skating action. It is hard to tell what the skis are like but they appear to be classic skis that are waxed for skating. Also note the narrow trails and sharp changes of pitch. In some cases the skiers are herringboning up the steep sections. In the video you will see skiers like Bill Koch (often given credit for “inventing” skating) as well as several Canadians including Pierre Harvey and Swedish skier Gunde Svan who was always a super smooth skier. Bill Koch and Pierre Harvey have links to Newfoundland since Bill Koch designed some of the ski trails in Labrador City and Pierre Harvey designed the racing trails in Corner Brook. Also here is a link to a story written by Jack Sasseville on his impressions of the early days of ski skating:  

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