Who’s Using the SkiErg, How and Why

Now that the SkiErg has been out in the world for a few years, we are hearing from a broad range of users about the different ways it can be incorporated into their training. It's not just skiers who appreciate the machine! Some like the SkiErg because it provides a standing exercise. Others like it for its closed-chain multi-joint movement, or its ability to improve muscular strength and endurance. And skiers continue to appreciate it for its guaranteed “good weather” and the ability to compete with friends in different places.

We think you'll enjoy these varied SkiErg stories. If you have an interesting story to offer, please send it to skiing@concept2.com.

Dean Carlson
Get Fit NH, New Hampshire, USA

Using the SkiErg to standardize fitness testing and heart rate training protocol

At Get Fit NH, we specialize in small and large group personal training. We design our training programs to be ground based and on our feet, not seated on a machine. In fact the only machines in our gyms (besides our awesomely athletic clients, of course) are Concept2 SkiErgs.

Why? Because too much of our lives are lived in the seated position, and our health is suffering for it. When we were looking for a piece of equipment that focused on working energy systems, the Concept2 SkiErg was the perfect choice.

Reasons we love them:

  • The ability to train in a standing position
  • Easy for coaches to teach technique
  • A small footprint
  • Proven to be very durable
  • The Performance Monitors allow us to objectively quantify progress
  • They are a load of fun!

We are also using them as a way to standardize our fitness testing and heart rate training protocol. I can't recommend them highly enough. In my opinion you can't go wrong by investing in a Concept2 SkiErg (or 2 or 3—we have 11).

Favorite workout:

2000m sprint relays, often as a "finisher" after strength training. We set up in teams of four, 20-30 second intervals for each skier, and let them go. Great interval training, revs up the group and builds great teamwork and camaraderie.

Martin Guyer
Eastern Regional Coach USSA, Alpine

Incorporating ski erg into threshold training circuits for junior alpine ski racers

We have been incorporating the SkiErg into threshold training circuits for junior alpine ski racers. It offers an excellent closed-chain multi-joint movement at a sustained sub-maximal or maximal effort. It helps with developing strength endurance.

Favorite workouts:

  • We usually do 500m intervals targeted at a specific time and then go right into another exercise like squat to overhead press or medicine ball slams.
  • Sometimes we do an all-out “sprint” pace for max effort. It is intense!

Scott Panchik
High School Physical Education Teacher
4th place winner 2013 CrossFit Games

Using the SkiErg for interval training and to warm up prior to Olympic lifting

I train at Crossfit Distinction in Beachwood, Ohio. I use the SkiErg in my workouts at least once a week. It is a great piece of equipment. I also use it for warm-up prior to heavy Olympic lifting. I also like doing alternating intervals on it and the Concept2 Indoor Rower.

It has helped me significantly in terms of cardiovascular endurance. I feel like it is a great exercise to strengthen your posterior chain. It also is great if you are fighting to come back from a lower body injury or just beginning CrossFit. It is easy to use and is excellent for improving your overall fitness.

Favorite workout:

10 rounds of:
250m SKiErg
250m row

I like this because it really helps build in the areas of muscular strength and endurance.

Darren Thompson
JETTraining, UK

Using the SkiErg in power/power endurance training

JETtraining is a no frills, predominantly strength and conditioning facility in the UK. We cater to the individual's needs. We prepare our athletes nutritionally, physically and most importantly, mentally. Our entry levels work on basic athletic movement, cardiovascular improvement and mental strength. We use the SkiErg as one of three pieces of cardio equipment we have deemed necessary and useful to our facility. Primarily it is used in our power/power endurance work. We use it on the highest damper setting and have various different workouts which are used depending on the task at hand. I also like the fact that the cardio stress it puts on the athlete (again like the row) transfers well to all sports played at a high level, whether it is MMA or rugby. Our athletes are seeing performance increases consistently since I installed the SkiErg. Skill and technique is still needed to produce a decent time, which correlates well to most sports (ie., you still need to be able to perform with a high level of technique even though you are extremely tired, or you will inevitably lose).

Favorite workouts:

  • During an IWT (Interval Weight Training) session we set the SkiErg to a 2:00 time. After the player has completed a medium to heavy big movement, they try to crush as many meters in 2:00 as possible. They do three rounds of this and try to stay as consistent as possible working as close as possible to maximum output.
  • We use the 500m sprint as a test every now and again alongside the rowing machine to see whether the player is improving.
  • Another great test we have borrowed from my friend Paul Timmons at Firm Fitness is the 10x500m sprint with 1 minute break between intervals.

Rickard Bergengren
Sweden

Using SkiErg for interval training and competitive motivation

I am a cross-country and roller skier who started my career in 2009. Since then I have done five Vasaloppets and my best result came this year with 582nd place with a time of 04:55 (editor's note: The Vasaloppet is a 90km cross-country ski race and has over 15,000 entries). I do running, skiing, weights, roller skiing and SkiErg for the basis of my training. I do around 10-15 hours of training each week—sometimes even more.

I use the SkiErg mostly for doing my interval training. It is very time efficient and the weather is always good. My friends and I also use it for competing against each other to keep motivation up since you can compete on the same conditions without being in the same place.

The SkiErg helps me build muscles so I do not need to spend a lot of time at the gym and can focus more on my cross-country and roller skiing.

Favorite workouts:

  • 5x1000m with 2 min rest between each interval
  • 5k all out is a good workout to see progression in your training
  • 5+5+4+3+3+3+2+1+1+1 min / 2min rest between each. Use this to get race ready.