Tips from the pros

Be ready for your cross-country skiing season

With the collaboration of Rémi Chapados of Parc national du Mont-Saint-Bruno.

© Sépaq

Stay fit

As you know, cross-country skiing is an excellent cardiovascular exercise. To enjoy the best possible season and avoid aches and fatigue early on, don't stop exercising just because it’s fall.

For at least 30 minutes, 3 times per week, take slow and fast walks or continue running at intervals. If conditions don't allow it, opt for a stationary bike or an elliptical trainer, but try to go outside as much as possible to accustom your body and lungs to temperature changes. If you live near Québec City, you can go up and down the 487 steps of the panoramic staircase that connects the top and bottom of Montmorency Falls.

To control your every movement, you’ll also need good abdominal muscles. Don't hesitate to strengthen them in the coming weeks. Your arms will also be in very high demand! One trick is to walk with sticks to "wake up" the upper body muscles and reclaim your ski movements.

To learn the exercises that suit you best, don't hesitate to consult a healthcare and sports professional, such as a kinesiologist, physiotherapist, or professional coach.

Take a careful look at your equipment

At times, storage will leave its mark. The first step is to make sure everything is still in good condition. The plastic on your boots is cracked? Have your poles gotten bent? Be careful to avoid unpleasant surprises during your first outings.

Also ensure that the camber of your skis still corresponds to your weight. Be aware that a ski can also lose its camber over the years… Too soft a camber results in a slow ski whose grip zone is constantly in contact with the snow while sliding. Conversely, excessive camber will prevent the ski from catching the grip zone during its kick and during climbs, thus creating the conditions for slipping. So have your camber checked in a cross-country skiing speciality shop. Their teams have the right methods and tools to find the proper weight/rigidity ratio for you.

© Sépaq
© Sépaq

Prepare your skis

If this hasn't already been done, remove last year's wax from your skis with a scraper. You can then carry out a basic treatment, with a hot iron (kick zone and grip zone). This will maximize their performance. You don't have the time or the space? Have it done by a technician in a shop. Afterwards, all you’ll have left to do is update your kick wax and you'll be all set!

With regard to unwaxed skis, we still advise you to treat the kick zones.

Soon we’ll offer you a short waxing lesson to improve slide and ensure good ski retention… In short, to save your energy and double your pleasure!

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