.: Ski XCOttawa.ca :: Skiing in Ottawa and Gatineau Park

Free Ski Lessons: Much Ado about Downhills.
By:  Team XCOttawa.ca   (2004/01/14)


Much has been said about skiing downhill on cross-country skis (mainly on www.TriRudy.com. This Jan 17th and 18th I will be holding downhill sessions, one for beginner/Intermediate and one for advanced x-country skiers. all are welcome and there is no cost. Don't be shy. I have a level one certification for X-country skiing and have raced and taught downhill skiing for many years. Wear appropriate clothing for standing around (temp should be below -12c both mornings), bring fluids. You will need to buy your a pass or have a seasons pass to use the trails/parkways.

This is a FREE session. I need to know if there is interest in these sessions by this Thursday at noon. To commit please email a confirmation to thomas.mcgee@sprint-canada.com.

Here is the time and agenda. Sessions will be held in Gatineau Park from 9:00am to 10:30am. ( Beginners and Intermediate abilities or Advanced skiers.)  

For Beginners and Intermediate abilities: Sunday Jan 18th at P6.

(P6 is the McKenzie estate parking lot) You should have the ability to use snowplow to linked snowplow at a minimum. If you have never skied before this will not be a good class for you to join. (If you are an advanced skier but terrified of downhill's, join this session.)

  • PARKING LOT to PARKWAY ski (10 min)
    • a.warm-up ski and stretch
  • FLAT TERRAIN (20 min)
    • a.Understanding weight transfer
    • b.knowing body position
    • c.application of pressure on skis
    • d.Understanding an edged ski and a flat ski.
    • a.same drills as on flat terrain
    • b.movement across the hill, both ways(horizontal)
  • FLAT TERRAIN (10 min)
    • a.movement, Travel into a "V" using slip technique
    • b.movement, travel into a "V" using equal pressure to a stop.
    • c.Movement, travel into a "V" using only one edge and one slip
    • d.Repeat using other ski
  • HILL (30 min +)
    • a. using "V" for slipping
    • b. using "V" for stopping)
    • c. Using "V" for one turn
    • d.Using "V" for linked turns
    • e.Moderated "V" for linked turns using higher speeds.
    • f.eliminate true "V" to initiate stem-Christie turn to stop
    • g.Stem-christie linked turns with speed control.
    • h.Step turn from Modified "V" / stem-christie.

Depending on the group, we could break into separate groups and move into other parts of downhill technique that need more attention. It is possible to not complete all of the list.


ADVANCED skiers only: Saturday Jan 17th, 9am for at parking lot #10. (Meet at the gate next to ticket booth on the groomed parkway)You should be comfortable with higher speeds (Skate or classic). If you are afraid of speed, Sundays session might be more applicable.


  • warm-up ski to top of fortune hill parkway to Lac Fortune.
  • FLAT TERRAIN (10-15 min)
    • a.Understanding weight transfer
    • b.Understanding ski limitations
    • c.knowing body position
    • d.application of pressure on skis
  • SMALL GRADE downhill (15 min)
    • a.working from a flat ski to a flat ski
    • b.working from a flat ski to an edged ski
    • c.working from one edged ski to the next edged ski
    • d.taking an edged ski initiate a turn to stop (both sides)
    • e.slow linked turns for speed control (not slalom turns)
  • SLIGHTLY STEEPER GRADE downhill (1 hour)
    • a.step turns
    • b.linked step turns
    • c.high speed step turns
    • a. at speed linked turns (not slalom turns)
    • b.High speed turn from standing position
    • c.High speed turn from tuck or semi-tuck position
  • a.slalom turns, pre-jump, and anything else we can fit into the end of the session.

I will be free skiing for one and a half hours after through #3, 24, 40, #33/2 and 1B back down #3 to p10. I will be using all of the above techniques for those who wish to join after the session, let's have some fun.

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