MAST Update 14
Sunday, December 20, 2020
Dear MAST Athletes, Families and Coaches:
The good news is that we are slated to start skiing TOGETHER on January 4, 2021. The bad news is that at this point, we are only allowed to train. However, I see this as good news because we have a lot to do to build our skills before we can start racing.
Virtual Training Review
For the past three weeks we have offered four virtual training sessions a week. Each day, the captains led the team in warm up movements and core exercises. Coaches Daniel and Will put together a 15-minute strength and conditioning workout with the added touch of a trivia question for each exercise. A visual training session covering one of the six fundamental skills of alpine technique followed the conditioning session. We watched and dissected video of world class skiers and introduced over 30 drills the athletes can use to develop these same skills into their skiing. The final act of each training session was to breakout into our training pods with the lead coaches and volunteer coaches to simulate the movements discussed in the visual training session and spend some time getting to know each other. It was great to see faces and hear voices. Thank you for participating.
I want to thank the captains for doing a wonderful job leading the team through this experience. Also, a big thank you to Daniel and Will for putting together the workouts and daily trivia. Thank you to all the lead coaches who were online every day with us and led the breakout sessions with their skiing pod. Thank you to the many volunteer coaches who joined us for these sessions. Finally, thank you to the athletes for your participation. You hung in there for the three weeks. Our attendance was in the 60’s and 70’s most evenings so that says a lot about your commitment to the sport.
We have two more weeks to go in our “pause” before we can meet in-person. The coaches understand how eager you are to be skiing. We also understand that many of you have been skiing quite a bit already. The decision to ski is entirely between your parents and you. If your parents are asking you to shelter in place over the next two weeks, that is what you should be doing. No arguments. You can still train your brain over the next two weeks. (See below.) If you have permission to ski, the coaches encourage you to take these two weeks to work on the skills we examined in our virtual training sessions. Regardless of whether you be continuing to shelter in place or will have the chance to ski over the next two weeks, I want you to utilize the ample supply of resources we have created for you to continue your development over Winter Break.
Resources For Training (Visual and On Snow)
1. Virtual Training Strength and Conditioning Workouts on SPRONGO.
All 12 workouts that you enjoyed are posted on Sprongo under the playlist titled Virtual Training Playlist: Workout. Utilize these workouts to continue building and maintaining your physical conditioning. Make sure you have activated your Sprongo account. I will resend an invitation to those of you who have not done this yet. Please look in your MPS email for the invitation.
2. Virtual Training Drill Videos are on SPRONGO.
Many of the drills we introduced over the three weeks are available on Sprongo in the playlist titled Virtual Training Technique and Tactics. View these videos to recall and deepen your understanding of the drills presented in our virtual training sessions.
3. Virtual Training Videos are on our website at mplsalpineski.org.
All of the videos I presented of world class athletes as well as those drills that we could not upload to Sprongo are available on our website at https://www.mplsalpineski.org/technique--tactics.html
I encourage you to watch these over and over again. Memorize the movements, the images, the concepts. Pack this stuff into your bones. MAST alum Ben Anderson (WHS Class of 2020) graciously offered to build out the Technique and Tactics page on our website. YOU NEED TO USE THIS PAGE RELIGIOUSLY. Ben did a magnificent job. Take a look at the Fundamentals Pyramid he created with links that go live when you click on one of the skills in the Pyramid. Thank you, Ben! Not only is it incredibly user friendly, it is artistically pleasing.
4. MAST Drills For Skills
But wait, there’s more.... Luke (WHS Class of 2020) graciously agreed to spend a day with me performing the drills we use in practice so that I can film the drills. We are half-way through the MAST list of drills-- 45 so far. All 45 are posted on Sprongo under the playlist titled Drills For Skills. Each drill is presented in under 60 seconds, in regular speed and slow motion. Yours truly narrates each drill so you know exactly what skill(s) the drill is designed to develop and how to execute the drill.
Starting tomorrow, we will post a progression of 5-10 of these drills on the MAST Instagram account (@mplsalpineski). If your parents give you permission, please follow MAST on Instagram so you can take advantage of these drill progressions. For those of you who are skiing, use these progressions over the next two weeks to build your fundamental skills. For those of you who are sheltering in place, please watch these many times over so that you become familiar with the drills before we meet on snow.
Luke and I still have another 30-40 drills to film, edit and post. By the end of the week the entire inventory of MAST Skills for Drills will be on Sprongo.
Once we get on snow, we will continue to post progressions on the MAST Instagram Account (@mplsalpineski) for you to use for your daily on hill warm up and directed free skiing sessions. This will help minimize the amount of time coaches are spending giving instructions on the hill and keep you skiing more.
5. Pod Virtual Meetings and the Covid Skiing Sprongo Playlist
We want to give you a break from online learning. You need it. So no more 6PM virtual training sessions over break. However, the Lead Coaches will be setting up several very short meetings over the next two weeks to review and answer your questions about the drill progressions we are posting and possibly analyze athlete(your) video.
I want to encourage those athletes who are skiing to send us short clips (45 seconds or less) of yourself skiing that we can post on Sprongo. We will create a playlist called Covid Skiing and post any clips we receive from you to that playlist. Your lead coach will be happy to analyze your video with you in your pod meeting or individually.
Please send your video clips for posting to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
The MAST apparel order has been placed. We do not have an estimated date of delivery yet. We are working closely with the supplier and will reach out once we have more details.
Coming Soon....A Virtual Retreat?
I am hoping to offer a virtual retreat that will give us an opportunity to cover some important topics before we get on snow together.
Hyland Operational Changes
I am posting an email I received from Hyland two days ago. Just in case you didn’t receive this, please scroll to the end of this post to read Hyland’s latest announcement regarding the operational changes we need to appreciate and honor.
Please know how grateful I am to all of you for your patience and support as we make our way through these difficult times. Hopefully, we will be skiing together soon.
Peace and joy to all of you this Holiday season.