Paralympic Cross Country Skiing/Racing/Biathlon Program

Cross Country Skiing

** scroll down the page for info on racing / biathlon **

Challenge Alaska is excited to host group cross country ski groups Tuesday evenings at various parks around the Anchorage area. These groups are for people with all levels of experience. We encourage you to bring your family and friends along - skiing is more fun with others!

We meet at 6:30 pm before partnering up and heading out on various trails around the Anchorage area, from beginner to intermediate skill levels. The anticipated start date is December 19, 2017 (snow permitting). We will ski until the snow is not good for skiing (usually some time in April).

Cross country skiing provides a challenge to people of all levels of ability, but the rewards are great. Being on a quiet trail on a beautiful Alaskan evening with a group of good people is peaceful and gratifying. This is yet another way to stay active in the winter and get outside to avoid those winter blues.

Challenge Alaska has a variety of cross country skis available in different sizes. All equipment requires advance communication to set up. There is no cost to ski with the group, but there is a minimal fee for equipment to ensure that it remains in good working order.

Dates for 2017-18 are all Tuesday's (Dependent Upon Snow Conditions):

  DATE   TIME   LOCATION
  January 9, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)
  January 16, 2018    6:30 - 8:30 pm   Russian Jack Springs Park (meet in Lidia Selkregg Chalet parking lot)
  January 23, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)
  January 30, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Russian Jack Springs Park (meet in Lidia Selkregg Chalet parking lot)
  February 6, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)
  February 13, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Russian Jack Springs Park (meet in Lidia Selkregg Chalet parking lot)
  February 20, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)
  February 27, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Russian Jack Springs Park (meet in Lidia Selkregg Chalet parking lot)
  March 6, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)
  March 13, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Russian Jack Springs Park (meet in Lidia Selkregg Chalet parking lot)
  March 20, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)
  March 27, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Russian Jack Springs Park (meet in Lidia Selkregg Chalet parking lot)
  April 3, 2018   6:30 - 8:30 pm   Kincaid Park Stadium (meet near disabled parking spaces)

 

 NOTICE: Cross country skiing will not be held when weather or trail conditions pose a safety risk to participants. When weather or trail conditions are marginal we may shorten the time spent skiing. There is no specific minimum air temperature at which we will cancel. The determination of whether the conditions are safe will based on multiple factors including temperature, wind, precipitation and course conditions. Challenge Alaska staff will make a final determination regarding the acceptability of conditions as soon as possible but no later than noon on the day of the event. Please visit http://www.challengealaska.org/index.php/programs/physical-disabilityvets/21-uncategorised/327-program-cancellation-page to see if the program is cancelled due to weather.

 


Cross Country Ski Racing/Biathlon

Challenge Alaska's Paralympic Sport Club Program is excited to offer a cross country ski / biathlon race team for the 2015-16 ski season. We will work together as a team to train on and off the snow to improve strength, cardio fitness and ski specific skills. Athletes with physical and visual disabilities will have the chance to train both individually and in a team environment.

The Nordic Skiing Association of Anchorage (NSAA) has to work with Challenge Alaska to ensure that race in the Tour of Anchorage series are accessible based on skiers classifications (visually impaired, standing and sitting). Both classic and skate skis/boots will be available as will various sit skis for team members to use. As you become more involved in skiing you will figure out what your individual needs are so you can customize and adapt the equipment to enhance your performance. No matter your goals - to win a division, improve your time, or to have fun in a competitive environment - we will help you meet them.

 

For those who would like to undertake the ultimate challenge - biathlon is calling your name. We are in the process of acquiring Paralympic biathlon rifles and will be able to integrate them into weekly trainings throughout the winter. The following is a description of Paralympic Biathlon from the Casper Mountain Biathlon Club website;

"Adaptive or Paralympic Biathlon combines cross-country skiing and air rifle shooting similar to the Olympic biathlon competitions. Athletes are categorized as standing, sit-ski or visually impaired and compete against athletes with similar disabilities. Paralympic athletes always shoot in a prone position.

The Biathlon event takes place on a 2.5-km loop, which is repeated five times for a total of 12km (long distance) and the pursuit event. Athletes stop for two or four shooting sessions along the course. They are given five shots and are required to hit a target positioned at a distance of 10 meters. The penalty for a missed shot can be a time penalty that is added to the total time or a penalty loop (150m) to ski once per missed shot.

The pursuit event is a two-part competition with the first part consisting of a qualification round (sprint) where athletes ski a short loop (about 1.3 km) three times and stop twice for shooting. For each missed shot, the athlete is given a 20 second penalty.

The top ten athletes in the qualification round compete in the finals which are organized as a "pursuit start" competition. Athletes start according to a preset formula based on the results of the qualification round and the handicap percentages in the different categories. The athletes ski a short loop (about 1.3 km) three times, stopping twice for shooting. For each missed shot, the athlete must ski an extra 80 m penalty loop.  The skier that passes the finish line first is the winner.

Equipment

  • Athletes with visual impairment shoot with an electronic rifle that allows aiming by hearing. The closer the rifle points to the centre of the target, the higher the tone is.
  • The target size has a diameter of 30mm for visually impaired athletes and 20mm for athletes with a physical disability.
  • An athlete with a lower-body disability uses a sledge, which is a specially built chair that can be attached to a pair of skis. The skis are almost identical to standard skis, although shorter, and are attached to the chair with a standard cross-country binding.
  • Athletes with amputation can use a rifle support when shooting."

For more information about Paralympic Cross Country Ski Racing / Biathlon in Anchorage This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call at (907) 344-7270.