Why does this program only go through October 14th?
A large majority of the Comp, Jr. Comp, and XC athletes in our programs race mountain bikes with NICA. We still welcome you to train with us for winter! We also realize that a 5-6 day commitment is impossible during the demanding mountain bike season. That’s why this year our “fall” program will mirror the mountain bike season. With NICA State Championships the weekend of October 22, this gives the opportunity to participate “part time” with skiing during that season, and the ability to switch to “full time” when the mountain bike season ends. Our “winter” will begin in October and run to March.
Integrated with Other Sports
This program will integrate what athletes are doing in other sports training (mountain bike and running especially) to take care not to duplicate those hours. At the same time, it will focus on the critical ski-specific conditioning that can leave winter-only skiers feeling like their fitness or skill could be better. We will focus on the aspects of ski fitness that are not covered in running and mountain bike riding for those who are training for other sports. This will include: strength training with ModusFit , Spenst training , hiking, running, and rollerskiing.
It begins with an individual plan for each athlete. This plan will include individual goals and self-tracking so that skiers will take ownership of their progress. Coaches will work together with the entire team (other sports coaches, parents, and skiers) to create a plan that works for their schedule and the days they are choosing ski practice. When athletes participate in their own planning, they have ownership over their plan. Coaches will advise and assist athletes by meeting them where they are and teaching this valuable skill.
While skiing is largely an individual sport, there is a large part of success in skiing that comes out of being part of a cohesive team. That will be a top goal for this year: creating a team that can rely on each other, push each other, support each other. We’re better together. It can be tricky to integrate everyone’s training plans. With excellent planning, the coaches will find ways to differentiate each day in a way that challenges every athlete, while leaving nobody behind.
The Focus is on Fun
Most of all, the focus will be on working together in a group to build a team who help each other achieve their individual and team goals. The emphasis is on how all of this work can be fun when it’s done well, and that’s the plan.
Pete Vordenberg – Programs Advisor, Coach
After his own two appearances at the Olympics in Nordic skiing, racing on the World Cup, and a NCAA championship, Pete coached the US National Team for ten years. He was instrumental in building the staff at USSA who are currently having the most success in the history of the sport in our country. Pete is passionate about skiing and creating new skiers and is now committed to helping the TUNA Comp and Junior Comp team grow and improve. Pete is a USSA Certified coach and is volunteering his time to this program.
Jen Santoro – Programs Administrator, Coach
Jen is a former internationally competitive road and cyclocrosser, representing the US in the road and cyclocross World Cups at the elite level. After retirement she taught secondary mathematics for ten years in grades 7 – 12. As a skier, she won a Masters World age group championship in Nordic skiing in 2018 and multiple age group national championships. She has been coaching with TUNA youth programs for six years. Jen is a USSA Certified coach and is volunteering her time to this program.
Art O’Connor – Strength Consultant
Art is a former professional cyclist who specializes in strength training for endurance athletes. His is based at ModusFit and he is focused on, “getting strong, endurance, mobility, durability, and mental strength.” Art works with many of the top NICA riders and is energized to help our skiers gain strength and learn movement patterns for skiing that will result in better performance and injury prevention. Together with his business partner Tim, an Olympic bobsled athlete, the crew at Modus are excellent with this age group and using age-appropriate training.
Additional Coaching Staff
In addition to these, we will be bringing in consultants who are experts in technique and functional strength training for skiing, as well as additional current staff members depending on numbers and grouping needs.
Rose skied for the University of Utah and has been working with TUNA juniors for the last decade. Her expertise as a classroom teacher and a ski technique specialist come together to make her one of TUNA’s MVPs. Rose is volunteering her time to this program.
Derek grew up in New England and skied for St. Lawrence University. He’s a member of the TUNA board, a Devo parent, and coaches Devo Dryland and XC. Derek is volunteering his time to this program.
Jonathan was a top amateur cyclist at the national elite level. After retiring from cycling and some years out of competition, he started ski racing 13 years ago. Jonathan has competed in Master’s World Cup, Masters National Championships, and has spent plenty of time on the WCS podium. Jonathan’s strength is helping new skiers and rollerskiers gain confidence. Jonathan is a USSA L100 certified coach with the Devo Team and is volunteering his time to the program.