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A simulation of cross-country skiing on varying terrain by using a mathematical power balance model

Authors Moxnes JF, Sandbakk, Hausken K

Received 1 November 2012

Accepted for publication 12 January 2013

Published 16 May 2013 Volume 2013:4 Pages 127—139


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

John F Moxnes,1 Øyvind Sandbakk,2 Kjell Hausken3

1Department for Protection, Norwegian Defence Research Establishment, Kjeller, Norway; 2Human Movement Science Program, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway; 3Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Stavanger, Stavanger, Norway

Abstract: The current study simulated cross-country skiing on varying terrain by using a power balance model. By applying the hypothetical inductive deductive method, we compared the simulated position along the track with actual skiing on snow, and calculated the theoretical effect of friction and air drag on skiing performance. As input values in the model, air drag and friction were estimated from the literature, whereas the model included relationships between heart rate, metabolic rate, and work rate based on the treadmill roller-ski testing of an elite cross-country skier. We verified this procedure by testing four models of metabolic rate against experimental data on the treadmill. The experimental data corresponded well with the simulations, with the best fit when work rate was increased on uphill and decreased on downhill terrain. The simulations predicted that skiing time increases by 3%–4% when either friction or air drag increases by 10%. In conclusion, the power balance model was found to be a useful tool for predicting how various factors influence racing performance in cross-country skiing.

Keywords: skiing, power balance, metabolic rate, work rate, air drag, friction coefficient

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