U.S. Paralympics

U.S. Paralympics

Mar 07 Cross Country Team Trains on Snow in Steamboat

June 09, 2009, 4:58 p.m. (ET)

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS, Colo.-- The U.S. Adaptive Cross Country Team wrapped up a two-week camp on Steamboat Springs' Rabbit Ears Pass last week. According to Head Coach Greg Rawlings, the foundation for the 2010 season has been set.

"It's early enough where they were able to figure out technically what they need to work on and I think it will carry them in to their summer when they head back to their home base and put the hours in," Rawlings said. 'They'll head home and hit the summer training more focused on being in shape for 2010."

According to Greg Mallory (Portland, OR), a two-time Paralympian, while the information the athletes heard at camp may not have been new, it was a helpful start to their summer training.

"I got two weeks of really great training at altitude and I think we gained a lot in the strength training area. We were in the gym quite a bit and we got some new ideas there as to different strength training exercises we can take with us," Mallory said. "None of it was really new, but it's always helpful to hear those things over again.

"I think the goal was to stay on snow for as long as possible while working on techniques to carry through the summer and into next season."

For Rawlings, the most important thing for the athletes to do when they were in Steamboat were soaking up the on-snow time before the summer, as well as experience a variety of activities to test their bodies.

"Our focus was volume on snow and just getting lots of time on snow," Rawlings said. "We also did lifting sessions, biking, roller skiing and kayaking. When we were on snow the purpose was to get hours in. Here they were able to get really tired, recover and train again. It allowed everyone to investigate what their body does."

Rawlings was also happy to have a few extra bodies in Steamboat to give the Team some insight on how they can keep their training up all summer.

"We had some able bodied skiers from Maine there as well. It was cool to see all these athletes training and look at what level they train. It was good to see athletes out there training no matter what," Rawlings.

The variety of training helped the athletes dial in their summer training programs, which they will do from home.

"Right now this is the time of year where you're building a base. Having that many hours of training is good, but more importantly it gets you focused on what you need to do through the summer and into the fall to be prepared," Mallory said. "I think we all have a good idea of what we need to do coming out of that camp."

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