Exercises to Get Ready for Ski Season
The summer is nearly over, which means that ski season is just around the corner for much of the United States. Before the snow hits the ski slopes, you’ll want to do what you can to physically prepare for the season ahead. This is an excellent way to ensure you’re good to go on the first day of the season, but it will also help you prevent injuries that may occur from overuse and muscle fatigue. There are some exercises you can do to make your skiing stronger and your muscles more powerful. Here are our favorites.
Quadriceps—Your quads are the most important muscles for strong skiing and snowboarding. These are the muscles on the front of your thigh, just above the knee, and they are engaged when you hold a sitting chair position. To strengthen, put your back against the wall and sink down until your knees are bent at 90-degree angles. Hold the position (without leaning forward) for as long as possible. Lunches and jump squats will also work to strengthen your quads.
Calves—Calves and ankle joints are extremely important for skiing and snowboarding. They tend to cramp while moving down the mountain, which can cause pain and injury. The best way to exercise your calves is to stand on the edge of a stair while holding the railing. Raise your body up and down to fully stretch and work your calf muscles. Doing this once a day for a couple of months will ensure your legs are ready for ski season.
Hamstrings—Hamstrings are the group of muscles on the back of your thigh. They are prone to tear because they are difficult to isolate. The best way to strength your hamstrings is through simple stretching; spread your legs and bend down, walking your hands from one foot to the other. Don’t push too far, and do your best to hold your position for as long as possible.
Abdominal Muscles—Skiing is a full-body activity, which means the abdominal muscles are engaged throughout each run. Sit-ups, crunches, and other exercises do wonders for skiers, but practicing planks is a better full-body ab exercise. Hold a push-up position (but don’t do the push-up) for as long as you can.