We’ve all had that feeling of burning thighs and breathlessness after the first few runs of our holiday; it's common knowledge that skiing and snowboarding, although exhilarating, are a test of our physical fitness – that’s part of what makes snow sports so much fun.
There are a few things that you can do in preparation for the slopes, which will mean you can squeeze in a few more hours each day and not be hobbling around the bar or your apartment or chalet in the evening.
If you don’t already it’s a good idea to do a bit of aerobic activity at least six weeks before you depart from the UK. Get on the cross-trainer in the gym for 20 minutes four times a week or take yourself for a jog. Spinning is also a test for your legs and your aerobic fitness, and it's good fun, cue loud music, encouragement and flashing lights (if you’re lucky enough to have a well-equipped spin room at your gym!)
Both balance and muscle strength are needed for skiing and snowboarding, so building on both of these elements will improve your experience; contrary to popular opinion, wall squats will get you used to that burning feeling you experience on a long red run but they won’t necessarily build strength. Try exercises such as lunges, split squats, step ups, deep squats and cycling.
Like most things, nothing compares to real practice; visit a snow centre or dry slope a couple of times before your holiday to awaken your calfs and quadriceps. The Telegraph published a useful article this summer on top dry slopes and indoor snow centres. See you on the slopes!
Lucy Macdonald ski and snowboard physiotherapist, Ski fitness: how to get fit for the slopes
www.evo.com How to Get in Shape for Skiing & Snowboarding
DISCLAIMER: snowbeds is not a licensed medical care provider and represents that it has no expertise in diagnosing, examining, or treating medical conditions of any kind, or in determining the effect of any specific exercise on a medical condition. Consult with your physician if you are unsure.