How CrossCountrySkiTechnique.com got started

Kim-Headshot

Kim McKenney

Performance nordic skiing is not well known in Canada. Many people think cross-country skiing is as simple as “walking on skis.”

When/if they discover the technical side of nordic skiing they usually want to learn how to improve their efficiency. When this happens, they’re hooked!

That was my story. I (Kim) skied for decades not understanding how unskilled I was. I mistook my years of experience for expertise. If my kids hadn’t joined a competitive cross-country ski club I never would have discovered the thrill of high performance skiing.

It’s not easy to become an expert in this sport. Once you discover performance skiing and want to improve your technique, your next challenge is to find reliable and useful information.

I was lucky to belong to one of Canada’s top clubs, but I still felt confused for years. Even after I started coaching, I continued to struggle to find quality information.

Kai

Kai Lukowiak

So, in typical blogger fashion, I started this website to create the resource I wish had existed when I was learning to ski. It didn’t take long before I understood why there wasn’t better information online about cross-country skiing. For one thing, if you want to make a ski video, you need at least two people.

Fortunately my son Kai was still skiing competitively and he agreed to come onboard and help me develop this site. You’ll see him in a lot of the videos.

Evolving coaching philosophy

Since starting this website, I’ve had a lot more opportunity to develop my skiing and coaching skills. I’ve taken several more coaching courses and they’ve been valuable, but my biggest gains came from studying real, live human movement, working with other coaches, and from countless hours of coaching.

Chris-Headshot

Chris Jeffries

One person who has been hugely influential on my development as a skier and coach is Chris Jeffries, who coached Kai in his teenage years.

Chris is a former Canadian National Ski Team member; he competed at the Turin Olympics and many World Cups. He started coaching after retiring from racing and is currently one of Canada’s national level coaches, training elite athletes at the Alberta World Cup Academy.

Chris epitomizes everything I love in a coach. He’s passionate about his athletes and even after a lifetime of involvement, he’s passionate about cross-country skiing. I’ve relied heavily on his expertise over the years.

(Of course all errors on this website are my responsibility, not his or Kai’s.)

What we do now: XC Ski Nation

In October 2016, the 3 of us teamed up to create an online resource for nordic skiers. It’s a membership site called XC Ski Nation and it combines learning resources with ongoing support and technique feedback for members.

We’ve had a lot of positive comments about the Cross Country Ski Technique website (thank you!). People ask me why they would bother paying for anything when we give so much away for free. Are we just putting new blog posts behind a paywall? (No.)

XC Ski Nation has a course library with many hours of video courses. The content is much higher quality and more in-depth than what you will find on this blog.

One top of that, XC Ski Nation is an interactive membership – we provide ongoing support and members can also interact with one another. We even offer feedback on skiing videos our members submit for technique analysis.

If you’d like more information, please visit the XC Ski Nation website.

Happy Skiing!

Kim