The season for the famous, Swedish cross-country ski race Vasaloppet is here and temperature and conditions is on everyones lips. How to optimize your performance through the 90 km long distance between Sälen and Mora that Gustav Vasa fled by ski more than 500 years ago?
Vasaloppet is an annual, rather festive, ski tradition held in Dalarna province, also called “the Heart of Sweden”. The first race was held already in 1922 which makes it the world’s first long distance ski race and for many years that was the only cross-country ski race offered in Sweden. Today it is still one of the biggest and most popular attractions for the snowloving every year.
Many brisk men and women have skid the 90km from Sälen to Mora through the years. This year they still do but in a different fashion due to the prevailing pandemic. A lot fewer contestants are allowed to gather for Vasaloppet the first Sunday in March, but the spirit is high and a wide variety of dates are available to visit the Vasaloppet Arena to get a piece of the snowy action.
Somethings haven’t changed though, like the need for that carefully balanced waxing, matching perfectly with the temperature and conditions of the race day. Good grip and perfect glide are important no matter the pandemic circumstances and since our daily focus here at Brann are patents, I’m going to tell you about intellectual property rights regarding wax and implements.
While searching for a patent in a patent database (espacenet, see link below) you’ll find patents for both the substance of different wax types as well as devices to apply it, like this one:
SNOW SPORT EQUIPMENT WAXING DEVICE AND METHOD
Publication number: WO2016161365
In this construction you can place your skis or snowboard in what they call a kiosk to have them waxed. A computer calculates and chooses the wax to use due to the weather and snow conditions.
The abstract reads as follows: “Automated systems, methods and devices for refinish surface on equipment (such as ski and snowboards), engaging the equipment and retracting ski brake arms are disclosed. The disclosure includes applying wax on at least skis and snowboards and may provide kiosks where skiers and boarders can deposit their equipment in a track and have appropriate wax for current snow conditions applied to the equipment.”
Description: “a substantial unmet need in the art is for an automated device for applying wax to winter sport equipment that can be used publicly, requires a limited amount of space for operation, and assists in proper selection of wax for snow conditions. The disclosure overcomes the problems of the prior art by providing an automated device which cleans winter sporting equipment, applies wax, and scrapes off excess wax while contained in a housing that requires limited space and assists in selection of wax based on most current snow conditions. The disclosure also provides for a public kiosk where skiers and snowboarders can insert their equipment and have it waxed on-site. This does not require either a significant time investment in manual waxing or cumbersome acts of bringing equipment to a technician ahead of time.”
Practical, I guess, and seems handy in many (ski) situations. It remains to be seen if these kiosks are available to use on Sunday when Vasaloppet takes place.
If one intends high performance in gliding this one is interesting:
HIGH-PERFORMANCE SKI WAX COMPOSITION AND PREPARATION METHOD THEREFOR.
Publication number: WO2018182087
It seems like these roller skis are extra good for training classic style skiing, due to the pressure grip generated while kicking. Clever.
Here in Stockholm the snow is gone by now and the birds are singing so maybe some roller skiing is a great alternative to keep the Vasaloppet spirit afloat.
We wish you all a lovely week of Vasaloppet and sun!