In 2010 at CY Middle school in Casper, Wyoming I was introduced to cross-country or Nordic skiing. It had been about a month or so since my first season of cross-country running had ended, so when it came time to decide what to do for a winter sport cross-county skiing seemed like the most natural choice for me. Had I ever heard about Nordic skiing before? No, but I'd downhill skied so they couldn't be that much different. Little did I know I was entering a whole new world.
My young moldable mind was able to pick things up quickly, and my first few seasons flew by as I learned how to actually ski. In high school I began racing at a higher level, traveling across the country for Junior nationals to test my skills against kids from all over America. My whole life was absorbed with this culture of skiing. I trained year-round for a sport that could only actually happen a few months out of the year.
By the time I reached college my love of the sport brought me to the UW Nordic Ski Team. Here I experienced more of what skiing actually is. For me, it always revolved around physical attributes, but now I'm bringing in my mind as well. In my almost tenth year of skiing, I'm beginning to learn where the sport comes from, and how to the learning process of skiing occurs. With my new SUS teammates, I'm starting to have to analyze the sport more than I ever had. I now have knowledge of how long this sport has been a part of different cultures, the evolution of it, and how certain techniques are fairly new in the grand scheme of things. I'm having to dissect the culture in order to explain it to someone with the same knowledge of Nordic skiing as my sixth-grade self. It's been so long that I'd forgotten how I'd learned to ski, but now I'm attempting to help people learn. I know I'm still early in my journey of re-learning Nordic skiing, but I'm open to where it will lead me.