Poling force analysis in diagonal stride at different grades in cross country skiers

B Pellegrini, L Bortolan, F Schena
Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports 2011, 21 (4): 589-97
The aim of this study was to characterize the dynamic parameters of poling action during low to moderate uphill skiing in the diagonal stride technique. Twelve elite cross country skiers performed an incremental test using roller skis on a treadmill at 9 km/h at seven different grades, from 2° to 8°. The pole ground reaction force and the pole inclination were measured, and the propulsive force component and poling power were then calculated. The duration of the active poling phase remained unchanged, while the recovery time decreased with the increase in the slope. The ratio between propulsive and total poling forces (effectiveness) was approximately 60% and increased with the slope. Multiple regression estimated that approximately 80% of the variation of the poling power across slopes was explained by the increase of the poling force, the residual variation was explained by the decrease of the pole inclination, while a small contribution was provided by the increase of the poling relative to the cycle time. The higher power output required to ski at a steeper slope was partially supplied by a greater contribution of the power generated through the pole that arises not only by an increase of the force exerted but also by an increase of its effectiveness.

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