12 Sports to Help Prepare for the Ski Season
We’ve all been there, that intense thigh burn mid-way through day two and the inevitable feeling of regret you didn’t put more time into getting ski fit for your holiday! Investing in time to get fit for your ski trip this season will help you get maximum enjoyment out of your time on the slopes. Here at Ski Weekends, we’ve come up with a guide of our top ten sports to help you prepare for the upcoming season.
1) Windsurfing/Kite Surfing
Great for improving core body fitness and stability, essential for good snow sports techniques. Windsurfing also helps build up quads and hamstrings used to steer the board and as suspension in choppy waters.
Widely accepted as a great all round sport for an overall body workout. Benefits of swimming are enormous. Improve your endurance, flexibility and general strength – a 30-minute blast in the pool before or after work three times a week can really help turbo charge your preparations for the season ahead.
Yoga is an ancient form of exercise that focuses on strength, flexibility and breathing helping boost physical and mental wellbeing. Whilst yoga won’t necessarily help much on the endurance front, taking part in two sessions a week will help muscle-strengthening, paying dividends once you hit the slopes this winter.
4) Roller Skating
The great thing about roller skating is that it can be done pretty much anywhere. It’s easy on the joints yet works the legs and glutes as you power through movements. It also works your arms as you balance your body during the movement. It’s also great fun and doesn’t really feel like you’re working out!
5) Ice Skating
One of the best sports to help you prepare for the winter season, the stability, control and strength involved in ice skating all helps build up your stamina and prepares you for your ski holiday. Great for balance, improving joint flexibility, building leg muscles and endurance. No frozen lake nearby? No problem, visit skating-rinks.co.uk for a directory of where to find your nearest ice rink.
Jogging is one of the oldest and most popular forms of aerobic exercise, a great all round fitness improver to help with stamina on the slopes this season, improving all important leg and core strength.
Playing tennis is a good sport to maintain your agility, strength and overall health and fitness. It has been calculated that an hour-long game of singles tennis burns around 600 calories for men and 420 calories for women. As a non-impact, fast moving sport it helps increase aerobic capacities which in turn will help you handle physical exertion at altitude.
8) Gym/Cross Trainer
The widely acclaimed benefits of using a cross trainer at the gym is you get a less stressful workout session. When cross training, the combined effect of working your lower body, arms, and shoulders means that many other muscle groups are needed as well, helping all round conditioning, mimicking the movements of hiking and cross country skiing. In particular cross trainers help strengthen and build your lower legs, which get the most impact when you ski.
Gymnastics is another sport that can improve overall fitness, strength, balance and body control. Flexibility is a primary factor in gymnastics. The combination of physical strength, flexibility, power, agility, coordination, balance and control will all help you get the most out of your ski holiday.
10) Pub Crawl
If all else fails, there is always the option of a briske walk to the local for an ale or two to get you in the après-ski spirit!
There are an abundance of health benefits attributed to cycling; as well as increasing your cardiovascular fitness and improving general muscle strength and flexibility, cycling is great for addressing your posture and coordination - two skills that are very effective when transferred to your ski technique...