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Olympic Cross-Country Skiing



Olympic Cross-Country Skiing
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   5.55

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    fiberglass, finishers, pistes, polyurethane, semifinalists, single-elimination, wood-like, classic, sprint, equipment, freestyle, skier, since, running, classical, original
     content words:    Lake Placid, New York, Bill Koch, United States


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Other Languages
     French: Le Ski de Fond Olympique
     Spanish: El Esquí a Campo Traviesa
     Italian: Lo sci di fondo olimpico
     German: Olympischer Langlauf


Olympic Cross-Country Skiing
By Trista L. Pollard
  

1     Since the first winters began around the world, people have traveled on ice and snow. The earliest skis found in Scandinavia by scientists were about 4,500 years old! People have used skis for transportation and work. Cross-country skiing or XC skiing was used by people to travel across large areas of snow. Even explorers used this type of Nordic skiing as transportation. The Scandinavian army still trains their soldiers in XC skiing.
 
2     Some of the original materials used for equipment were wood and bamboo. The skis were made from wood, and the poles were bamboo with leather straps. People wore leather boots that had thick soles. The bindings on the skis were usually twisted wood-like thread. This binding was called a Kandahar binding. The binding attached to the front and back of the skier's boot.
 
3     Today, cross-country skis are made from plastics, polyurethane foam, and other materials. Even the bindings are different. The skier's boot only attaches to the binding at the toe. The heel of the boot is free to move up and down. This is called a Nordic ski. These skis are long and thin. They usually measure two meters long, 5 centimeters wide, and 4 centimeters thick. The skier's poles are made from aluminum or fiberglass. The lighter the pole, the more money the poles cost.

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