How to best keep track on your training or progress is a common questions, many of us use apps, GPS watches or training protocols.
In this blog i try to explain some of the pro's and con's of gadgets available so if you are looking for something this may help you.
The devises listed are specifically for Roller skiing/ Cross skating, there is a much bigger choice for Cross country skiers but not all have a Roller ski function.
I have use may devices from Fit bit to Phone apps, GPS watches and followed training protocols.
Let's start at base level with
Smart watched or Fitness trackers ( Fit Bit, Vivo Fit,...)
Fitness trackers have become very popular but most of them have limited use for Roller skiing. Counting steps might be a nice feature for walkers and give you a good indication of your daily activities but that's about it. Distance is measured by steps taken (calculated on stride length) and not via GPS making it very inaccurate. Some top end models however have GPS functions so they are definitely more suitable for the task. The downside on all of them is the Heart rate being measured under the device,when striking poles or skiing with high intensity contact can be interrupted giving false readings.
Many use phones and most have downloaded apps like Runkeeper, Strava or Endomondo. Some smart watches are also compatible with these apps. They can be very useful to track your ride and progress over time. Apps Like Endomondo feature Roller ski programs so that is definitely our top choice when i comes to app and the one i used the most. Strava for those not familiar is also good to track and map your ride, you can also find routes mapped and timed by others making it a great way to improve and set challenges. The Cons are you got no heart rate measurements, the size of the Phone you need to carry and most of all apps drain your battery life !!
By far the best option to track your rides and keep track on your progress. Heart rate belts give an accurate reading and all watches can be paired with phone apps or PC programs to record all of your training. I have noticed almost all big brands ( Garmin. Polar, Suunto,..) have Cross country skiing functions but not all Roller ski programs. I currently use the Suunto AMBIT3 sport and so far i'm very happy with the watch. Roller ski functions is available and almost everything you will ever need can be measured.
Best brands Suunto (AmbitT3,.. ) Garmin (Fenix 5/ Forerunner 735XT) Polar ( V800)
Other devices and Training protocols
One device that was deigned for assisting with training is the Racefox. A digital skiing coach that analyzes your movements, finds your potential and takes you to the next level.The sensor belt measures three dimensional acceleration of your torso through built in movement sensors.The coach is an app that interprets the sensor belt's signals, gives you feedback in real time along with extensive statistics for all aspects of your skiing. It also provides you with personalized training suggestions. ( text of website https://racefox.se/ )
However the program is only for XC skiing !!
Training protocols are road maps or plans that will help you to get your body into the best shape possible for an upcoming event. Maybe you like to participate at one of many ski classic races like the Vasaloppet in Sweden or Kangaroo Hoppet Down under,or perhaps you are an athlete preparing for an the race season or an specific goal like the olympic games than a training protocol is a must have item to keep track on your training.
Protocols can include any training from Muscle building to endurance work, intervals or long distance roller ski sessions. The key is that it is individually designed to your needs any current fitness level so you can build towards the goals set. Ask your local ski club, teams or contact us if you have more questions about training protocols or what you should do to get the best training possible. firstname.lastname@example.org
Fitness trackers are are great tool to have in your training, but what matters most is that you have FUN ans enjoy what you do!!
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