Updated: Oct 27
It's that time again! The first snowfalls of the year are gracing the slopes, and the majestic beauty of Mount Sopris that we get to see every day has us thinking ahead to ski season. It will be here before we know it, and it's time to get excited about hitting the slopes. However, before you wax your skis and plan your next mountain adventure, there's an important question to consider: Is your body as ready as your mind?
Get your gear ready to ski, but first get your body ready. Stop and make the following considerations before you start your season. Weakness, lack of flexibility and strength, and poor cardiovascular fitness are all things that can contribute to injuries that will put an unfortunate end to your time on the slopes and in the mountains this winter.
Muscle Strength: Skiing requires a combination of strength, balance, and agility. Weak muscles, especially in the legs and core, can lead to falls and overuse injuries. It's not just about powering through the downhill runs; you also must have the strength to maintain control and the resiliency to absorb the impact of skiing.
Flexibility: The dynamic movements involved in skiing, from carving turns to navigating moguls, demand a high degree of flexibility. Muscles and joints that are too tight can lead to strains and sprains, especially in the knees, hips, and trunk.
Cardiovascular Fitness: Skiing can be a physically demanding sport, and without adequate cardiovascular fitness, you may find yourself quickly fatigued and unable to enjoy the slopes to the fullest. Your cardiovascular endurance can be the difference between a day of exhilarating skiing and a day of exhaustion and frustration.
The good news is that it's the perfect time to get your body in shape for the ski season. Here are a few steps you can take to ensure you're physically ready for your next adventure:
Strength Training: Incorporate strength training exercises into your fitness routine. Focus on your legs, core, and upper body to build the necessary strength for skiing. Squats, lunges, and planks are great options.
Mobility and Stretching: Regular stretching exercises can improve your range of motion and reduce the risk of muscle injuries. Incorporate yoga or specific stretching routines into your weekly workouts.
Cardiovascular Conditioning: To boost your cardiovascular fitness, engage in activities like running, cycling, or swimming. These will help build endurance and increase your stamina on the slopes.
Ski Fit Evaluation: Consider signing up for a ski fit evaluation with our physical therapists. We will assess your condition, posture, and strength, then provide you with personalized tips and suggestions to work on at home, or we can continue work with you one on one in the clinic to get you where you need to be.
Ski season is an exciting time of year, but don't let the thrill of the slopes overshadow the importance of physical preparation. Injuries resulting from weakness, poor fitness, and poor mobility, can quickly turn a great ski season into a winter spent on the couch. By taking steps to improve your strength, flexibility, and cardiovascular fitness, you can ensure that your body is as ready as your mind and gear for the upcoming ski season.
For the best results, we recommend signing up for a ski fit evaluation. These assessments can provide you with a personalized plan to address your specific weaknesses and ensure you're ready to enjoy all that the winter has to offer. So, before you head to the slopes, take the time to invest in your physical readiness – your body will thank you, and you'll enjoy every moment of skiing even more.