The first flurries of the season have arrived which means ski season is upon us. It’s time to start thinking about preparing yourself for the physical demands of the sport. Ideally, if you are a seasoned and active skier in the winter, you’ll want to train in the off season, just as athletes for other sports do. This includes maintaining your leg strength, stable core, and being prepared for the ebbs and flows of the mountain. However, if you haven’t had a regimented training schedule through the summer and fall to prepare for the season, don’t be discouraged.
However not everyone knows how to prepare themselves for the season. This article is designed to give you 5 quick exercises to help get you ready for ski season and avoid injuries throughout.
The following exercises are designed to wake up your “sleeping” glute muscles (butt muscles). These muscles are responsible for propelling you forward and upward which will help offset the overuse of the quads. It is particularly important for skiers to strengthen this muscle group to prevent the knee from caving in, which is the mechanism of injury for an ACL tear.
Glute Activation Exercises
Mini-band hip external rotations x 10 each
Mini-band forward and backward walks (knees bent) x 10 yard
Mini-band lateral walks (knees bent) x 10 yards
Nordic hamstring curls will increase the strength of your hamstring. Research has shown that a low hamstring to quad strength ratio is a risk factor for ACL tears. Due to the extreme difficulty of this exercise, focus on the eccentric (lowering) portion of the exercise while maintaining a neutral pelvic tilt.
Lateral lunges will increase your quad and glute strength. When you are skiing you are on both feet, your weight will be shifting from leg to leg so strengthening each side individually will get you ready to absorb force on each side independently. To add some conditioning in, try to do one rep per second.
Plank rolls will help to increase your core strength. The goal of this exercise is to minimize movement of the spine while you change positions thus providing stability of your trunk as you come down the mountain.
Single leg deadlift with reach will work on balance while also strengthening your hamstrings and gluteal muscles.
If you are interested in a personalized pre-ski workout please call for an appointment: 781-216-3715.