A Year-Round Activity
Ski jumping is a year-round sport at Blackhawk and the facilities are some of the best in the nation. Blackhawk has 5-meter, 15-meter, 30-meter, and 60-meter ski jumps. All of Blackhawk’s ski jumps have plastic mats and steel track for training in the non-snow months. Blackhawk’s smaller jumps (5, 15, and 30-meter) also have a rope tow that is used throughout the year to dramatically increase the number of jumps a jumper can take during a practice session.
Ski jumps are designed so the jumper flies close to the ground to land safely on the hill. This is an individual sport that stresses good sportsmanship and encourages kids to improve their personal records. Jumpers come in all body sizes. Ski jumping is a great sport for families with kids of all ages since all jumpers practice on the same days. A typical practice session lasts about an hour and a half and includes playing soccer (non-snow months), cross country skiing (winter months), stretching, imitation jumping (IMOs), jumping and reviewing videotapes.
Success in the Past and Present
Blackhawk has a long and proud history of ski jumping. The club was founded in 1947 by a group of ski jumpers. Blackhawk added snow-making equipment and was the first ski jumping club in the Western hemisphere to successfully install plastic mats for year-round training. The club has produced numerous national champions including Werner Schorr, Kurt Stein, Will Schott, and Anna Hoffman (2016). Will Schott participated in Junior Worlds in January of 2010 and was named to the U.S. Ski Jumping Team. Since 2012 eight Blackhawk jumpers have qualified for Nationals.
Success in the ski jumping program comes from having access to top-level facilities and highly trained coaches. Blackhawk is fortunate to have both.
Still Not Sure…Check This Out!
If you are still having a tough time wrapping your head around how one begins ski jumping, take a moment to check out this video from USA Ski Jumping.
Introduction to Ski Jumping
Skiers who can easily ski down Hill #2, usually ages five and older, are welcome to try ski jumping. Blackhawk offers an Introduction to Ski Jumping class on Tuesday evenings, Saturday mornings, and new this year, one on Sunday afternoons. The Sunday afternoon class will be held right before the Nordic Kids program. Our hope is to introduce kids to Nordic Combined, a sport in which athletes compete in ski jumping and cross-country skiing. Beginning ski jumpers will learn the basics of ski jumping. When they feel comfortable, they can jump the smallest jump with their alpine skis. Helmets are required. New jumpers have a chance to participate in Blackhawk’s home tournament in January. As the young jumpers progress, they can choose to join the Blackhawk Ski Jumping Team.
Blackhawk Ski Jumping Team
The Blackhawk Ski Jumping Team includes youth who have tried the sport and want to learn more, possibly compete in tournaments and/or work towards the goal of Junior Nationals and beyond. Practices are held Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:00-8:00 p.m. Members of the team can train on snow in winter (December-February) and train on plastic in the spring (May-June) and fall (September-November). Dry-land training is done in April. Jumpers are not required to attend all practices.
Jumpers can participate in the club’s winter tournament in January or in optional camps throughout the year. Jumpers may also begin traveling to other tournaments in the Central Region (Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan and Illinois) when they are ready. Participation in tournaments at other clubs is optional and those fees are not included. As jumpers progress, they can use jumping equipment from the club. Adult guardians are asked to stay and help during practices.
For more information
For more information about Blackhawk ski jumping, contact Christine Gessner.
For a downloadable PDF of the Ski Jumping program