The pleasure of skiing comes with mastering the right equipment, experience, and good equipment. But sometimes, despite good skills and expensive equipment, fatigue comes too quickly and we have to stop to rest.
This kills the fun and the more resilient we are, the more we would enjoy skiing on the piste. Of course, the best way to develop strength and endurance on skis is to ride more. But what to do when you do not have the opportunity to ski? Can some exercise in the gym help us?
In this article, we will describe how you can improve your strength, endurance, and mobility when skiing, through exercising in the gym.
Since skiing actively loads the legs and buttocks, you would benefit if you include squats and deadlifts with straight legs in your leg program (6-7 reps in 4 sets). This will help you develop muscle mass in the thighs and buttocks, which means you will have more stability and strength when descending.
This is probably the most important component that will help you when skiing. If you often have to stop to catch your breath, you need to work on aerobic endurance. For this purpose, it is necessary to choose aerobic exercise (cardio). Suitable for this purpose are running, jogging, swimming, cycling/ergometer, rowing. Choose one of these exercises and perform up to 3 sessions a week for 20 to 40 minutes. Increase the time gradually. Each session should be stressful but not unbearable. If you don’t like cardio, you can do Tabata or HIIT as a substitute.
Exercises to develop mobility and balance
The exercises below will help you develop your mobility, balance, and speed of response.
- Side walking with rubber bands – For this exercise, you will need rubber bands to put on your ankles. Take a starting position by placing the elastics on your ankles, bend your knees, and lean forward slightly. Make sure you have space on your side and start the exercise by spreading your right leg to the side with a big step. Then make a smaller one with the left one. Do 6-7 side steps with your right foot and then repeat the series for your left foot. This exercise improves stability and actively loads the Gluteus Medius.
- One-legged squat on a box – For this exercise, you will need a special box (platform) or bench. Stand away from the bench so that when you squat you can sit on the bench. Stand on one leg, inhale and squat down while sitting on the bench. Tighten your glutes and thighs and explosively, exhale, stand up. Your other foot should not touch the floor. Do 6-7 repetitions and repeat for the other leg. The lower you sit (lower bench) the more you will load the seat. If you are more hardcore, you can increase the load by adding weight (holding it with your hands or with a weight vest). This exercise develops balance and loads the thighs and buttocks.
- Side jumps on a box – For this exercise, you will need a special box (platform) to jump on or a platform that is not too high and strong and stable enough to jump on. Stand so that the box is on one side of you. Bounce on the box. From there, bounce down the other side of the box. With a side bounce, get back on the platform and with a bounce, get off on the other side (the one you started from). The goal is to constantly, sideways, by bouncing up and down the box. This exercise will develop your mobility and explosiveness. Choose a platform with such a height that you can jump and so as not to stumble on a bounce. If you find it difficult to perform this exercise in this way, you can simply jump sideways, by bouncing, a low obstacle.
- Plank and Side Plank – They will help you for more stability in the torso, do not neglect them.
There are various ways you can include these exercises in your workout program if you are a fitness enthusiast. Include strength exercises in your leg workouts. Do the endurance component (cardio) on non-workout days. Do mobility and balance exercises before cardio on non-workout days.
If you are a really hardcore skier, you can do a ski workout in one day. Keep in mind that it can put a lot of strain on your legs and it may be better to include it instead of your leg workout. Start with a 10-minute warm-up, using low-intensity cardio of your choice. Then do strength exercises, squats, and deadlifts with straight legs (6-7 repetitions in up to 4 sets). Then perform the squats on one leg, the side jumps, and the dissolution of the elastics to the side, each in 2 series. Then make 2 series Plank and Side Plank. Finally, finish with medium-intensity cardio of your choice lasting up to 30 minutes. Remember stretching at the end of your workout.
If you are not a fitness trainer (we advise you to become one) you can do each individual component (for strength, endurance, and mobility, and balance) on different days, with days off between them.