What My Teammates Have Taught Me

Upon returning from our last U.S. Ski Team camp of the year in Park City, Utah back to Dartmouth to finish up fall term, I have been thinking a lot about how I am extremely fortunate to be surrounded by incredible teammates wherever I go. Each team and individual teammate has taught me something different, and I know I wouldn’t be nearly as fast or have nearly as much fun without them!

For starters, I am very appreciative that each of my teams support me to pursue both my skiing and academic pursuits.  The past few years I have been hopping between the Dartmouth, SMS T2, and the U.S. Ski Team and the amount I spend with each team has changed every year. My teammates on all three teams have been extremely supportive and understanding as I phase in and out (for example leaving Dartmouth for a U.S. Ski Team camp and then coming back to Dartmouth).

PC Camp - Uniform 10.14.18-8
Really excited to be back with the Women’s U.S. Ski Team in Park City last week!

I have come to realize that I have learned an endless amount from my teammates and the list could go on forever, but here are some of the most important things I have learned (no particular order).

  1. Most important, always remember to have FUN!

Training with teammates is the best way to have fun, hands down! If you are not having fun, something needs to change.

YAY for snow!
Jessie introducing a new technique….?
Crust Day-37
Carving some turns with Andy in New Zealand.
  1. You are stronger as a team, working together is the best way to get faster.

I have learned this and experienced this across all teams I have been on. When everyone gets together to train, they push each other, support each other, challenge each other, and raise everyone to the next level.

Pushing each other in races.
Learning how to lunge with the help of coaches, Kelsey (giving feedback from watching), and Ida! What a fun workout!
Hannah and I went on 3 week trip alone in Germany, training and racing together! I couldn’t have done it without her.
Practicing a tricky sprint corner…and learning what not to do.
  1. Learn by following.

Everyone skis a little differently, you can learn a lot by skiing behind someone else!


  1. Set BIG goals, work hard and believe in them…and anything is possible.
Jessie’s and Kikkan’s Gold Medal has truly inspired me and taught me that anything is possible if you set your mind to it!
2 years prior we talked about how crazy it would be to medal at World Juniors…and it happened.
  1. Teammates are there to support you and to be supported.

Whether it’s a needed hug, a sunset walk, a pillow talk, or a pump up dance party, your teammates are there for you and you should be there for them. Your celebrate the highs together and ride the lows together.

Sunset walks ❤
Teammates make great pillows!
Super Tour Finals - W30K - 3.27.18-1947
Sometimes you need a hug…and someone to hold you up when your are too tired to stand.
  1. You can use your position to have an impact beyond your racing career.

There are so many opportunities to inspire and create change. For example…
– Community outreach
– Inspiring the next generation of skiers (and non skiers)
– Having a voice about pressing issues (POW for example)
– Helping kids have access to the outdoors
– Growing confidence in young girls to pursue their passions
– And many more!

This summer I became a Little Bellas ambassador and it has been so fun!
Jessie advocating for Protect Our Winters (POW).
  1. Its okay to be your goofy self…actually its encouraged to be super goofy!
Getting goofy with some fun Dartmouth traditions this fall.
  1. Skiers love being active in the outdoors, which makes for some pretty awesome adventure buddies.

Skiers share their love for snow, the mountains, and being active outdoors. You will never be short on buddies to go on long adventures with.

Crust Day-25
Crust cruising in New Zealand!
Crust Day-27
Summit photo.
Mountain biking with Sophie!
Adventuring in mountains.

So THANK YOU to all of my teammates, I am forever grateful to have you as my teammates and continue to learn new things every day 🙂

SMS T2 Team
Dartmouth Women’s Team
PC Camp - Uniform 10.14.18-3
U.S. Ski Team.

Published by juliakernski

U.S. Ski Team Cross Country Skier

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