TeleManiac Training

When training for Telemark skiing using the TeleManiac™ (Patent Pending, U.S.  E.U.), we recommend applying the principles of Progressive Overload.

Simply stated, Progressive Overload training means to gradually increase the load or stress placed on the body during training, so that the body can adapt to it and grow progressively stronger.

You should progressively increase the following training variables:

  • Additional Weight; added in a weight vest or backpack. Additional weight replicates the additional pull of gravity (g-force) of steeper terrain. 10%-12% of your body-weight equates to black terrain.
  • Volume of training: the total number of repetitions multiplied by the resistance (weight) used, as performed in a specific period of time.
  • Intensity: basically how hard you are working; the percentage of your maximum capacity.

 

A starting point after a several month layoff or for someone new to Telemark skiing might be:

Bodyweight only, medium intensity, medium height Tele stance:
Work Rep: Tele lead changes for 1:30
Rest for 30 – 45 seconds
Repeat 15 – 20 times
Total workout time 40 – 50 minutes

From here, assess your fitness level and begin doing workouts that:

  • Add extra weight (backpack or weight vest)
  • Work high, low and medium Tele stance
  • Use fast, slow and normal lead change cadence
  • Increase rep time and intensity
  • Vary rest time
  • Increase total workout duration
  • Increase workout intensity, do more in the same amount of time

Mix it up. Workouts that constantly vary will produce the best results. Arnold Schwartzenegger famously said that in all the years he trained, he never did the same workout twice. This is good advice.

I have a month of training under my belt on the TeleManiac. This thing zeros right in on your quads and tele muscles. The effort feels like an endless black run. My legs and lungs feel totally ready for this season- big improvement.

– M. Lathrop, Seattle, WA.

A Note About the Fall Line

When skiing down a mountain, the fall line remains generally stationary while the skier moves back and forth across it as he descends. The skier rotates his torso with each turn to keep his upper body oriented down the Fall line as he descends the mountain.

Since the skier remains stationary when training on the TeleManiac, it is important to visualize an imaginary fall line and to turn your upper body in this direction with each lead change (turn) to build and reinforce the correct body position. So, when your right foot is leading on the TeleManiac it is considered the “downhill foot” (just as it would be on the snow) and you should orient your upper body to face 20-40 degrees to the right in the direction the fall line would be if you were descending a mountain. Likewise, when you alternate leads, your left foot would be the downhill foot and you would rotate your upper body 20-40 degrees to the left to mimic the posture you would have on snow relative to the fall line.

Doing this with each lead change will reinforce the correct body position and muscle-memory you use on the snow. Keeping your upper body quiet and oriented down the fall line will become second nature.

Gold Standard TeleManiac Workout

When you can complete this workout, you are ready to Tele at least 20,000 vertical feet of black terrain in a day, and go at it hard.
Added weight: 12% of your bodyweight in a backpack. Rest 2:00 between each work rep (stand up, catch your breath).

Rep 1: 8 minutes of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 2: 7:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 3: 7:00 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 4: 6:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 5: 6:00 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 6: 5:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 7: 5:00 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 8: 4:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 9: 4:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 10: 3:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 11: 3:00 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 12: 2:30 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.
Rep 13: 2:00 of tele lead changes, medium height Tele stance, medium intensity, for the last 30 seconds go high intensity, low and fast.

This workout takes 90 minutes. Assuming a lead change every 2.5 seconds, you will make over 1500 lead changes, and the load on your legs is the equivalent of at least a 20,000 vertical foot ski day on black terrain.

TeleManiac™

Using a barbell in this photo was done to illustrate the amount of Telemark-specific leg strength one can build using the TeleManiac. However, this is not the correct way to add weight and should not be attempted. When using the TeleManiac, the only way to add weight is in a weight vest or by placing weight plates in a backpack.

Extreme Leg Strength Workout (Advanced)

Put 20% of your bodyweight in a backpack or weight vest)
Medium to Low Tele stance
Do 5 – 6 minute reps, various cadence. When your legs burn, stand up and take 3 deep breaths (about 5 seconds) then resume. Only pause when you have to, but only for 3 deep breaths.
At the end of the work rep, rest for 1-2 minutes and then repeat.
Shoot for 6 – 8 total reps for a total workout time of 45 – 60 minutes.

This workout will be very challenging, but will build a huge amount of Telemark specific leg strength.

Be creative and ambitious. Your body will adapt to the stress and recover quickly.

So go for it! You will not believe how quickly your Tele fitness improves and what a difference it will make on the snow!