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Rollerskiing with Confidence: How To Keep the Rubber Side Down
By:  Peter Beisel   (2011/07/15)

Maybe you’ve noticed, like I have, that roller-skiing is a pretty risky business! It makes me think that it’s probably a good thing for me to share some good roller-skiing habits with you, even if you might have heard some of them before. Now, I wouldn’t call myself the roller-skiing expert, because I have definitely had my share of mishaps and road-rashes but I think that especially racers, who use their equipment more often, tend to think of their roller-ski stuff as training equipment, and not so much as a vehicle for traveling 60 km/h down Blacks Lake Hill with no brakes except the extra soft one located on your rear! I have included some simple equipment checks as well.

    Before you go out, here’s a little check-list:

1. Helmet
2. Reflective or brightly colored shirt
3. Roller-ski ferrules (Sharpened and Glued Properly)
4. Wheels in Good Condition
5. Axle Bolts Tight
6. Bindings in Good Condition
7. Bindings Installed on Rollerski Properly
8. Poles (especially carbon shaft) checked for integrity
9. Ferrules sharp

    Im really happy to see that almost everyone on roller-skis in the park is wearing at least a helmet. Other padding, such as knee or elbow pads, seem to be optional but let me just point out that your going to feel kinda silly putting pads on top of your scratched up knees if you wipe out and don’t want to do it again! Other things like checking your equipment, are not done nearly often enough for many frequent skiers. A little lube such as what you use on your bike might go a long way to improving the  lifespan of your wheels. If you are feeling really ambitious, you can re-grease your axle bolts with a light grease such as you would find in the bottom-bracket of your bicycle.


On the left is an example of a wheel which is nearing the end of it’s safe lifespan. (Note the cracks on its upper surface)

On the right is a picture of a very dull ferrule. These semi-sharp counterparts are actually less dangerous when they are sharpened properly because they are much less likely to slip and cause you to fall or bury themselves in the friend behind you.

    Lastly, there is some basic road etiquette that you should try to follow. Always try to stay to the right of the road and don’t “clump up” with other skiers, especially when there is traffic. Say “track” or “skier” when over taking another person, the same as you would in the winter. The city would prefer that you ski on the Gatineau parkway or on selected roads for Sunday Bike Days as opposed to on paths or on sidewalks. ABOVE ALL ELSE REMEMBER: YOU WEIGH MUCH LESS THAN THE CAR THAT HITS YOU, EVEN IF IT WAS THEIR FAULT! So ski with care!

    If you are at all interested, please check out a new website I just developed at www.peterbeiselracing.com It is basically just a little more in-depth into my profile, with my articles and what I think is an interesting platform to look at training as it progresses. Check out : Training, where I hope to use ilog and Garmin software to display stats and trends in a more visual format. This is just the beginning of the site, more coming soon!

You might also be interested in the following rollerskiing related articles..

Thanks For Reading!
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