So, how do you get fit for a ski season?
Well, truth is, I’m no fitness professional. But after a few years of snowboard holidays I do have some tried and tested workouts to share. Here’s what I’ve been doing to help me get in shape for my first season of snowboard instructing, from one rookie to another.
HIIT it up
I’ve being doing mostly HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) workouts recently. I find that they don’t have to be too long to be effective (20 minutes or so) and doing them 2-4 times per week seems to work quite well – great for fitting around a busy schedule. They really get your heart rate up and prepare you for the short, sharp bursts of cardio you’ll find yourself doing down the mountain. They also work on building your strength so that your legs / abs don’t feel like they’re going to fall off after a long day of snowboarding.
My current favourite HIIT workouts for snowboarding:
There’s also a good one for skiers here:
Yoga every damn day
Ahh yoga, how I love you! After one and a half shoulder dislocations, one shoulder surgery and two first degree should separations (all on the same poor shoulder), I can’t possibly rave enough about how beneficial yoga has been to helping me build strength and heal.
Yoga is great for snowboarders and skiers as it helps reduce the risk of injury – falling onto tight muscles puts you at a higher risk of hurting yourself. If you have a bit more flexibility then classic snowboard falls such as ‘the scorpion’ will be a lot less painful, I promise!
Yoga also helps you build up strength and stamina in your muscles (for anyone who says yoga is easy, try making them hold Bakasana for a whole minute. Make sure you have a camera ready to catch them as they faceplant the ground…)
Yoga also has a meditative aspect to it and it can really help clear your head and mentally prepare you for taking on new challenges (like stomping out some new, scary tricks). One of my fave snowboarders, Jamie Anderson, swears by it (and she won Gold in the Sochi Winter Olympics, just saying).
My current favourite yoga workouts:
There is no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs
In addition to regular workouts, I’m also just trying to stay active in general (which can be a bit more of a challenge when you work from home!) I’m trying to get more steps into my day – for example, taking the stairs instead of the lift. I’ve not been too great at this recently though, I must admit. I’ve become something of a house hermit while I try and get my last few assignments for my science diploma handed in! Sometimes life just gets in the way, but hey, that’s ok.
A few weekends ago I went to Liverpool to see a couple of my friends. We spent the whole day exploring the city on foot and before we knew it we had walked 8+ miles (18,000+ steps). I love keeping active, while also having fun and hanging with friends and not always having to worry about pushing yourself to do a set workout routine.
So there you have it! Hopefully by the time I arrive in Canada, I’ll be fighting fit and ready to take on my instructor training.
What’s your favourite way to get fit for a ski season?
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