what's here

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Introduction to Cross Country Skiing 

see on our Classic skiing resources page.  

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Ski Skating -- basic 


  • Becoming a Better Skier, with Zachary Caldwell, from Jenex

I've seen this recommended [see Discussion, Dec 2002] -- but have not viewed it myself.  Both classic and skate techniques, with drills.  Fairly new (2002?).

  • Fundamentals of XC Skiing Technique, from XCZONE, 2001.

Demonstrations of the different motion techniques, not many special drills.  Lots of talking explanations and tips which we had trouble keeping up with -- but all the words are also available in text form.  See description and excerpt on the XCZONE website.  (also on DVD-ROM)

can also try the advanced videos below, 

but be warned that while the athletic styles can be inspiring and elegant, it can  be difficult to sort out which aspects of advanced and racing styles are relevant and helpful to your own current learning stage and goals (versus other aspects that might be counter-productive). 



  • The New Simple Secrets of Skating, by Lee Borowski, 2001. (Alta Press, West Bend, WI) 

Lots of helpful concepts and exercises, clearly expressed with diagrams.  Excellent choice for beginning and intermediate skaters.  

I have not been able to find it with general book distributors, so purchase this book from your favorite cross country skiing store.  Or an article in The Master Skier magazine in early 2002 said:  "To order, send check to Lee Borowski, 4500 Cherokee Dr., Brookfield, WI 53045.  Wisconsin residents:  $9.86 (state tax included) - others $9.45.  Price includes $1.50 for shipping." 

  • The Essential Cross-Country Skier: A Step-By-Step Guide, by Rick Lovett, Paul Petersen, John Morton. McGraw-Hill, 1999. ISBN 0070496250 

Lots of helpful ideas and pictures, especially for the beginner. 

  • Cross-Country Skiing : A Complete Guide (Trailside Series), by Brian Cazeneuve. W.W. Norton 1995. ISBN 0393313352 

Helpful ideas and pictures for the beginner. 

  • Basics of Modern Cross Country Skiing, by
    Lee Borowski.  1988. 

Helpful ideas packed into a little 30-page book -- but I suspect most novices will need more detailed explanations. 

Downhill techniques

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Ski Skating -- advanced


Targeted for racers, and in the late 1990's, Daehlie was the fastest.  Includes good camera angles of him demonstrating all the Skating techniques. 

Targeted for racers.  Perhaps not current with some of the latest ideas, and demonstrated only by Americans. 

  • Skate Technique with World Champions -- Norwegian Ski Federation (distributed with English-language narration by Nordic Equipment Inc.

Very racer-oriented and very technical.  Close analysis of short segments of the best racers in the world in competition around 1997. 

  • Janne G's video files on the Web 

Digital video in computer-playable file formats:  Elite racers and recent XC ski races.  Video only -- no narration or analysis. 

Visit main website -- list of Technique video clips 

For announcements and documentation, see the discussion newsgroup rec.skiing.nordic 

  • Level 1 Cross Country Technique Progressions, from the US Ski Team.

I have not viewed it.  Shows the US team's approach to training Development Team athletes.

  • World Cup Race Videos, distributed by NCCSEF 

Nathan Schultz once recommended these as a good way to see some of the "new skate" ideas. 

National Cross Country Ski Education Foundation 

  • Tao of Skiing, from XCZONE, 1999. 

CD-ROM.  Lots of tips, from a Canadian perspective.


The publication date is old, but the concepts and explanations are stimulating -- targeted for skiers looking for speed. Some similarities to the "New Skate" ideas around 2000 -- see summary and discussion. As of July 2004, I'm still waiting to find for a better book-length presentation of racer-oriented technique. Can order it from used book websites (e.g. Amazon).

  • Ski Skating With Champions : How to Ski With Least Energy, by Einar Svensson, (1995, ISBN 0964194104)

An amazing devoted attempt to try to render technical movement details into words, diagrams, and sequences of still photos.  Unfortunately the sequences of photos didn't work for me -- I find video so much better.  I had trouble connecting the concepts with the more recent discussions of skating ideas.

newsgroup posts

the Usenet newsgroup rec.skiing.nordic has many notes posted on advanced technique, sometimes by expert racers and coaches -- see [ live newsgroup | Google archive ]

Many helpful exercises with detailed descriptions. Much longer than you'd expect of a Usenet post.

websites -- Racing technique + training 

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Waxing Skate Skis


  • instructions on each wax manufacturers' website


  • Complete Guide to Cross-Country Ski Preparation, by Nat Brown (Mountaineers, 1999)
  • Manufacturer instruction booklets

more . . . 

General XC skiing 

  • Australian Ski Instructor Manual -- lots of hints and exercises for beginners and intermediates -- but targeted for instructors, who are assumed to already know the techniques.

see also 

back to Top | more Skating | FAQ | Resources | XCski index