With fall practically here, we are beginning to feel the anticipation for the upcoming ski season. Whether you're a seasoned skier or someone with just a few years of experience, getting physically prepared and thereby mentally prepared is key to making the most of your time on the slopes.
Keeping this in mind, we consulted with Rippin' Chix coach and physical therapist Dr. Theresa Hayley for some tips we could share to help you get strong and subsequently feel more confidence for the upcoming ski season.
Start Early, Start Now
Do not wait until the last minute to start your ski conditioning. It takes 6-8 weeks to build strength, so begin your training regimen well before the snow hits the ground. Incorporate exercises that focus on building strength, balance, and flexibility. Remember, consistency is vital, so aim for regular workouts, 2-3 days a week that gradually increase in intensity.
Do Full-Body Workouts
Skiing engages various muscle groups, from your legs and core to your upper body. Make sure your workout routine covers all these areas. Squats, lunges, and deadlifts can help strengthen your lower body, while planks and push-ups work your core and upper body. Compound movements like these mimic the demands of skiing and enhance overall stability.
Skiing requires quick bursts of power and agility. Incorporate plyometric exercises like box jumps, squat jumps, and lateral hops into your routine. You can start with low impact plyometrics which will help you build up to jumping. These exercises not only build strength but also improve your explosive movements, helping you navigate challenging terrain and snow with ease. Plyometrics can also be added after a strength exercise targeting that same muscle group in the form of supersets to help build endurance. For example, squats followed directly by jump squats. You’ll feel the burn and this will translate into more turns before needing a break.
Focus On Core Strength
A strong core is your body's foundation for maintaining balance and control on the slopes. Incorporate exercises such as Russian twists, bicycle crunches, and stability ball exercises to target your core muscles. A solid core enhances your stability and minimizes the risk of injury.
Fit in Flexibility
Let’s face it, skiing can contort your body into some funny positions, so make sure you have taken the time to work on your mobility. Calf stretches such as pedaling out your downward dog, stretching out your quads, cat cows for your lower back are all essential.
Physical strength is important, but so is your mental outlook. Skiing can be both thrilling and daunting, so cultivating a positive mindset is crucial. Visualize yourself confidently maneuvering down the slopes. Practice mindfulness techniques to reduce stress and anxiety, which can hinder your performance.
Rippin' Chix's mission is to empower women to expand their mountain playground and enhance their skiing skills. Like everything, getting stronger and more confident on skis takes time, but by preparing for the season with these six tips, you'll be well on your way to building the strength and confidence needed to conquer any ski challenge that comes your way.
Bell to bell baby!
If you’re looking for more guidance on a training program, Dr. Theresa Haley, has developed a 12-week "Training for Ski Season" program to help prepare you to hit the slopes on day one - (Launched September 4th).
She also does custom programs for Washington State residents that include a strength and mobility screen to target specific areas you need to work on. Check out the Alpine Mechanics Instagram page @alpinemechanics for more info on Theresa's expertise in programming.
Ready to take your skiing skills to new heights? Join us at one of our women's freeskiing clinics for an experience that combines high-level coaching with a fun and supportive environment.
Until then follow us on social media or sign up to our mailing list for more tips, inspiration, updates and other exclusive content tailored to women skiers ready to conquer the mountains!