Staying Busy With Adaptive Nordic Events

The CXC coaching staff have been invited to participate in several regional adaptive sport gatherings. The tour begins on July 26th with several staff members heading to Chicago for the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago’s (RIC) Military Sports Camp. The camp invited injured veterans to participate in 14 different adaptive sports including our cross country ski and biathlon station.

Simultaneously, other members of our staff will be manning a table at the Adaptive Sports and Recreation Expo hosted by the Medical College of Wisconsin in West Allis, WI. This looks to be a huge event for the adaptive public with many different sports and activities represented.

CXC will also be attending the Valor Games hosted by World Sport Chicago. The Valor games is an introductory adaptive sports competition for veterans and service members with a primary physical disability or visual impairment. Our biathlon station was a huge hit last year and we look forward to the opportunity to meet new potential athletes!

Adaptive Sports Camps

The Future Is Bright!

By Andy KellerCXC Development Coach

Wow! This summer has been flying by with all the camps and programs we have had going on in the past month and a half. It has been really exciting to see and be a part of the growth that is happening right now in the Midwest. Just in our June camps alone, we have had the most junior athletes involved in week long camps ever. What is probably more exciting is that most of those athletes are below the age of 15. The future is bright!

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Immediately after the June Junior Camp, I was able to be the representative for our Community Olympic Development Program at the National Coaching Conference out in Washington, DC. This is the second year I have had such an opportunity and I am excited to bring the information I learned out there from the presenters back to the Midwest. It was my first time ever being in our nation’s capital and I was fortunate to find time in between the conference schedule to get out and see the sights. The other CODP representatives and I rented bikes and rode around the mall late at night. I really enjoyed meeting and sharing ideas with the other CODP representatives that are involved in such different sports like Judo and Diving.

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After getting back from the conference I jumped right back into the swing of things and began preparing for the upcoming Regional Elite Group camp. This year I have been put in the driver’s seat of organizing and running most of the camp taking place at Lake Owen Resort. Most of the time was filled with mowing the courses at Telemark for the running race and double checking lodging and food plans arraignments.

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Now, as I sit at Lake Owen Resort, halfway through our training, I have to say the camp has been going very well. We have seen great performances out of all the athletes in the testing portion of camp and it is obvious to see the amount of hard work these kids are putting in. When I think back to only a few years ago, as a region we struggled to get the kids that qualified to the camps to attend. It is refreshing to see such a large, motivated group coming up out of the Midwest and Great Lakes.

Next up is our July Junior Camp which is taking place here in Seely, WI!

New Home for Milwaukee Masters and Para-Nordic Update

by Andrew Poffenberger (CXC Para Nordic Coach)

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In partnership with the UW Adaptive Fitness Training Program.

The summer got off to a fast start with back to back masters clinic weekends in Milwaukee and Chicago. The Milwaukee group found a new home in the River Hills neighborhood just north of Downtown. Smooth roads and low traffic. At both chapters we focused on locking in the fundamentals of our double poling as well as applying these skills to the V2 Technique.

The CXC ParaTeam conducted their second camp of the season with three athletes in attendance. I was especially encouraged to see that we are attracting the interest of very serious para athletes. One attendee of the camp, a paralympian, is strongly considering moving to the area because of the strength of our program and the support we are offering. I am excited with the progress we are making on the recruitment front. CXC will be hosting a youth adaptive camp in early August to begin cultivating a new generation of paralympians.

The tempo of summer isn’t looking to slow. In the upcoming months we are reestablishing clinics at the two Chicago VA Hospitals, multiple VA events at the firing range, more masters clinics and much more. I am currently writing this at our REG camp while enjoying an opportunity to train hard, meet our next generation of skiers and take a daily dip in the lake. Feeling ready for the rest of the summer!

Don’t Forget! Igor Legacy Camp

Snowflakes, Ice Cream, and Igor!!

Igor Badamshin

by Bill Pierce

I’ve had some amazing mentors in my lifetime!  Parents, relatives, friends, business associates, and others have all contributed to my life and learning!  Whether they were younger or older, I have learned many things from many different people.  Igor was one of these individuals.  From his disciplined and structured background as a professional Nordic ski racer for Russia, one would not have known that Igor was about learning and pure simple fun outside!  Igor loved to get kids moving and if they became proficient skiers, well then, all the better.  The goal was not being a great trainer and skier, it was about loving being outside and as he sometimes said in his Russian accent, “Moving, moving, moving….!!!”

The First Annual Igor Legacy Camp happened this past weekend and I am so lucky that I could get to be a part of it.  If I had to state what the theme of the camp was it would be this simple; Enjoy Moving, Enjoy Life!!  The young athletes that attended were mostly 10-14 years of age with a few exceptions above and below that group.  Unlike some of our other junior camps, this camp was shorter and a simple introduction to ski training.  This is the age where athletes need to focus on refining and sharpening their skill development for general athletics and at the end of this age (12-14) begin to focus on some very sport specific athletic activities.  The camp was a mix of lots of moving.  The best sessions were the morning warm ups and the basic functional movement sessions during the day.  Steve Myrland and Dr. Jim Mullen are the best strength and movement coaches in the business!  Really, they are!  They are kids at heart with professional refinements for functional movement and strength.  They know what gym class should really be!!  They put the kids through every basic movement plane that you can imagine!  Jumping, hopping, skipping, running, bounding, spinning, swinging, and a dozen more verbs to describe what it is to MOVE!  If you want to be a great athlete, you must be athletic and these two professionals know that!  These young athletes also got to run, roller ski, ski walk/bound, play simple catch, Frisbee, soccer, swim, stretch, and some bike.  In just under 48 hours of camp, these athletes never stopped moving except to eat and sleep.

Other great learning opportunities took place over the two days.  Mike Young a Toko wax tech presented what was some great insight on basic ski waxing and basic life knowledge.  Three collegiate skiers, William Frielinghaus, Seth Mares, and Tom Bye, also attended the camp and helped coach and share their personal experiences on the path of skiing and education.  There were another 10-20 parents and club coaches attending to help in coaching, transport, cooking/clean-up, and just general work to make this camp happen.  A special thanks to Jim and Diane Mullen, Jake Barnes, and Gordy Bartholomew for going an extra mile in organizing, running, and meal supplies/preparation!!  Becoming an outstanding athlete is all about team even in what seems to be an individual sport!  The staff and workers at this camp did everything to make this a really awesome experience!  The athletes again came from all around the Central Region.  Ironwood, Minneapolis, Madison, Green Bay, Eau Claire, Hayward, Rice Lake, Milwaukee, Wausau, and quite a few more.  Many thanks to all the club coaches that came to help and learn!!

Igor impacted a lot of kids in his short life and though he did not know most of the kids at this camp, through his work with others, he let these new Nordic athletes experience a little of the joy and happiness that he brought to everyone around him before and now!  The Legacy continues not just at camp, but EVERY DAY!!  See you at the Legacy in 2015!

Check out some of the action in photos from the past two camps here:

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4-H CANSKI Celebrates a Decade of Excellence

By:  Peter Graves, CXC Public Relations

If you look closely at the 4-H CANSKI Nordic Ski Club (Chequamegon Area Nordic Ski Club), the progress they have made in a decade has been stunning.  They have kept the message simple over time; to help cultivate the joy of cross-country skiing in literally hundreds of kids in their area. Their message and program is making a huge difference in area skiers’ lives.

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In a joint effort between UW-Extension 4-H Youth Development, the Washburn, Ashland and Bayfield schools, the Ashwabay Outdoor Education Foundation and area skiers, the program has seen its athletes achieve notable success in the challenging Wisconsin state high school league. To wit, the program is now the defending champion of the Wisconsin State Nordic Ski Championships, a title they won last February.

The program provides youth and adults a structure for multi-generational, community recreation and healthy lifestyles. Last season the program membership stood at more than 150 (2013-14 ski season). Club members also participate in on-going trail work in the summer and groom during the winter months, assuring great tracks.

About 14 to 18 coaches per year, all volunteer, provide expertise, promote the sport, instruct skiers from the area school systems, hold coaches clinics and show what a healthy and fun lifestyle cross-country skiing can be. Further, as an overriding goal the program also ensures that the development of skiing be done in a manner that develops strong community members and young leaders.

For those skiers who embrace racing as a goal, there are about thirty-five youth that compete as part of the 4-H CANSKI Racing Team which features athletes from Washburn and Ashland schools.

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The club consistently places skiers among the top ten in the state meet.  4-H CANSKI skiers regularly compete at USSA Jr. Nationals.  Two years ago they came away with an All American – Scott Johanik, who now helps coach and mentor youth in the program.

4-H CANSKI is proud to call Mt. Ashwabay, their home trail system, and holds the annual Mt. Ashwabay Summit ski event yearly on the 43KM of groomed trails there.

One of the group’s original organizers, Doug Liphart, who serves as Ashland County’s University of Wisconsin Extension 4-H Youth Development Agent, is excited about the program offerings saying in a recent newspaper interview…”that the mission of 4-H CANSKI is to promote fun, fitness, excellence and safety in the lifelong sport of cross-country skiing. Developing good community members and young leaders is also an explicit goal of the program. It’s a community ski club, and over the last several years we’ve had anywhere from 150 to 200 youth and adults involved.”

Chequamegon Bay is an area blessed with long and snow-drenched winters that also has an historical link to the past. Back in 1908, the first national level cross-country ski races were conducted in Ashland, and the area shares a deep love of the sport, along with its past, present and future.

The cost of a membership in the club is $25.00 and comes with a hat or a t-shirt. For just another $25.00 skis can be rented for the entire season.  Scholarships are available for people who cannot afford those costs, making the program within reach of just about everyone (Ashland County is one of the poorest counties in Wisconsin, making accessibility to the sport an important focus).

Cropped State Champs PhotoLiphart’s enthusiasm, as well that of the entire Board and volunteer coaches, means that kids get started the right way on skis, and in life. As he noted…” one of our mottos of the 4-H CANSKI club that is heard quite often is ‘have fun or go home.’ And we certainly manage to have a lot of fun in the best season of the year.”

For area skiers it is a program run with the best of objectives-fun and skill development.  It’s not all about racing, but if you happen to like going fast, they are really happy to have you and will help you be even faster!

AVANT USA Moves with CXC Skiing

Elk Grove Village, Illinois, May 27, 2014 –  Avant Tecno USA is thrilled to announce its partnership with the Central Cross Country Ski Association  (“CXC Skiing”) headquartered in Madison, Wisconsin.

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Avant has been a supporter and sponsor of CXC Skiing over the past two years and, will again, provide its loader equipment to complete the pre-season trail work at Telemark for events this winter season and for the 2016 USSA Nordic Junior National Championships. Avant’s compact loaders perform a critical role from basic pre-season ski trail maintenance and snow removal to moving natural and man-made snow onto the ski trail to creating top of the line conditions for everyone to safely enjoy cross-country skiing.

“AVANT played a huge role in trail and stadium preparation for the 2013 IPC Nordic Skiing World Cup. AVANT is extremely easy to operate, compact and maneuverable. In a challenging weather conditions in a low-snow December, we used AVANT to move snow on the trail around biathlon range and event was challenged again by weather with 2 inches of rain in mid January two days before the first race. AVANT did an outstanding job for moving man-made snow on the washed out sections of the trail and we were able to pull out all events as they were planed.”

- commented Yuriy Gusev, CXC Executive Director and 2013 IPC World Cup Chief of Competition.

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Avant Tecno USA offers a new breed of compact articulated loaders and attachments to the market. Its technology, benefits and solutions are unmatched in the USA.  Avant loaders can be equipped with more than 100 attachments, making one machine able to do the work of several. The use of modern hydraulics make Avant loaders strong and durable, while remaining light and agile.

For more information visit www.AvantTecnoUSA.com or contact Sales at 847-380-9822.