People often say they use different muscles for skiing than they use for other activities. People also say skiing is about having control as you fly down the slopes. You are trying to control your body while gliding down snowy hills and mountains on wax-covered skis, made of material designed to slide and move quickly. To have control under these conditions, you need to be in top physical condition.
So how do we get those muscles ready to be used again after the off-season?
Which muscles and body parts are most affected?
The key areas you need to focus on to get in skiing shape will probably not surprise you:
- Quads. The quadriceps are the largest muscles in your body and they're located at the front upper part of your legs.
- Glutes. The glutes or gluteal muscles are a group of three muscles in the buttocks area. Toned glute muscles improve balance and make your core strong.
- Knees. Your knees should be bent adequately as you ski, so having the muscles around the knee in good shape helps support a key point of your exercise in skiing.
- Legs. Your leg muscles will help you maneuver the hills and maintain control to avoid obstacles like trees and other skiers.
What exercises prepare you for the slopes?
Some key types of exercise that could help you get in top skiing condition will work on your balance and your cardiovascular system.
According to Shape Magazine's website, they recommend several strategies such as:
- Use an exercise ball to test your balance.
- See how long you can stand on one foot.
- Strengthen your core with crunches and squats.
- Try some yoga poses or Pilates.
For cardio fitness
You may already have great cardio workouts you enjoy such as aerobics, running, swimming or biking, to name a few.
Some questions to ask yourself while doing these are: How does your posture look? How often are you doing these workouts? Are your knees facing forward? Is your back straight?
What do you do to get back into ski season safely?