Prepping for SKI SEASON! Physiotherapy can help!

It’s coming… ski season is just around the corner! If you haven’t been doing those squats, or holding those planks, it’s not too late to start! Read on for 4 key exercises to get your ski legs back fast, and to avoid injury when you get back on the slopes!
Skiing is predominantly a lower body sport. It requires good leg strength, muscle endurance and flexibility. Squats, and variations on squats, are the best overall exercise to target the ‘big’ muscles of your legs- the main muscles responsible for holding your position, keeping you upright, and preventing you from catching an edge while skiing.squat
There are a number of variations on the generic “squat”. Start off with the basic- stand with feet shoulder width apart. Keep your body upright and bend your knees as if you are sitting in a char. Your knees should not pass your toes. Push through your heels to straighten your legs and come back to your starting position. Start with 3 sets of 12.
Variations: one legged squat, medicine ball squat, jump squat, bosu ball squat, wall sit.
A strong core is crucial- it is your base. Your core needs to be activated while skiing in order to act as a strong support for the rest of your muscles to function around. A strong core will make you a faster, fitter, more competent skier with less risk of injury. There are many core exercises, but a few of my favourites (which target many of the inner core muscles) are below.
Plank: Lying on your stomach, push up onto your elbows and toes. Keep your back flat and your belly plankbutton pulled up towards your spine. Hold for 30 seconds +and repeat 4 times.
Leg Raises: Lying on your back, legs straight in the air. Keeping your lower back and head on the ground, lower your legs to hover just about the floor. Then raise them back up. Do 4 sets of 10 reps.
straight leg1
Bicycle: Lye on your back and bring your opposite elbow to your knee by raising your shoulders slightly off the ground. Tighten your core. Do 3 sets of 20 reps.bicy
Keeping your muscles lengthened and flexible is critical to avoiding injury. The following are good stretches to focus on for ski season:hamstrong
Hamstring Stretch: Remember to keep your back flat. Feel the pull at the back of your leg. Hold for atleast 30 seconds.
quad stretch3Quad Stretch: Keep your knee pointing towards the ground and your back flat. Hold for atleast 30 seconds.
You need the aerobic fitness to push your limits on the ski hill. It is critical to do cardiovascular exercises to keep your heart pumping, your muscles working and your fitness level maximized. Running, biking, and skipping are all great cardio activities, but anything that raises your heart rate, makes you sweat and increases your breathing rate slightly is working your cardiovascular system. Be sure to check with your doctor prior to starting any aerobic activities, but aim for at least 30 minutes a day.

It’s never to late to start. Try to get into a routine and do these exercises every other day to make the start of your ski season a huge success.

For more exercises, and tips for skiing and proper training, call us today at 416 545 1881 or email at

– ALPHA Health Services

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