Written by Daniel Ancheta
We hire technicians to wax and sharpen our skis and snowboards, so doesn’t it make sense to prepare our joints and muscles as well? Skiing and snowboarding are physically demanding winter sports that place an extraordinary amount of stress on our bodies. Here are a few exercises that will help you prepare for the slopes. If you focus on these movements a few weeks before your next big ski trip, you can help minimize the soreness after your first day back and help prevent injuries along the way.
Watch each exercise video to make sure you are doing the exercises correctly and getting the most out of your workout.
Balance and proprioceptive drill
Facing a mirror, stand on one leg while raising the other knee to hip height. If flexibility permits, you can raise the leg higher. Hold for at least 20 seconds and then repeat using the other leg. Repeat 3 to 5 times. You can increase the difficulty of this drill by closing your eyes or by doing the drill on a balance pad or Bosu.
Side-to-side step up
This movement works your hips and legs in an explosive manner while strengthening your ability to push off laterally. To help build endurance, repeat this drill for 3 to 5, two minute intervals at high intensity.
Barbell, dumbbell or kettlebell deadlift
This is a basic movement that will strengthen your hamstrings, glutes and back. Make sure to keep a neutral spine, keep your knees slightly bent and keep your shoulders back. Don’t let your lower back round forward. Just like the squat, start with 3 sets of 10 reps using a light weight, then gradually increase the weight.
Basic barbell, dumbbell or kettlebell squat
Using this basic movement will help strengthen your legs, as well as your hips, back and core. If you are a beginner, start with 3 sets of 10 reps using a light weight. Gradually increase the weight.