Preparing for the winter skiing season
Looking forward to hitting the slopes this winter? Planning ahead is key! As well as choosing the right equipment and planning your route, it’s important to get yourself in good shape. Not only will this help prevent injury, but it’ll also ensure you’re in top form for maximum enjoyment.
Simple training for big results
Three things matter in your training routine: building endurance, getting stronger, and improving balance. The best part? It doesn’t need to be complicated. Keep your training straightforward and take advantage of the outdoors.
Effective Ski Strength Exercises
You don’t have to go to extremes. Even a short hike can work wonders. After about ten minutes of warming up, find a spot where you can do a few exercises. Repeat a few times, depending on your fitness level. Finish your session within 60 to 90 minutes, adding a few more exercises for good measure.
Imitating skiing movements and improving balance
Imagine skiing downhill after a hard climb. You can mimic similar movements in your exercises. Squats and stairs are your best friends. Try jumping downhill to mimic skiing movements and prepare your muscles and joints.
For your upper body, which is important for skiing, use walking sticks when hiking. Throw in exercises like planks, push-ups and side planks. Challenge yourself on uneven surfaces or do these exercises more often to make faster progress.
Balance is crucial, not just for skiing but for your overall body awareness. Try rocking back and forth on a curb, and don’t forget side-to-side movements – they’ll be your friends on the slopes too. For something new, try side-to-side jumps followed by standing on one leg. Closing your eyes during these exercises makes them harder but more effective.
Let’s see what pros are saying
Even the pros take their summer training seriously. Athletes from the Austrian Ski Federation (ÖSV) know the value of using the warmer months to prepare for upcoming winter competitions. They also highlight the importance of proper nutrition. “As a top athlete myself, I know how important it is to maintain energy levels throughout the day. We always carry snacks with us,” says ÖSV sports director Mario Stecher. By following in the footsteps of these dedicated athletes, you’re not only setting yourself up for success, but also adopting strategies that prioritise sustained energy for your winter adventures.
From left to right: Otmar Striedinger, Stefan Brennsteiner, Dominik Raschner (Ski Austria Athletes)
Final tip: Have fun and work as a team
Austrian skiers know the importance of summer training for winter competitions. They’re also keen to eat right. They carry snacks with them to keep their energy levels up throughout the day. And remember, training with a partner is much more enjoyable. Find someone to train with and prepare your skis – there’s nothing stopping you from a great winter ski tour!