Although winters in Ohio can feel very dreary and dull, it can provide a lot of fun ways to keep you moving outside with activities such as hiking or snow skiing! When hitting the slopes this winter or participating in any other outdoor activity, it is very important to make sure your body is in proper
condition to prevent injury as well as maximize fun!! Here are some great exercises that you can use at home, during your lunch break, or when watching your favorite T.V show that will prepare your body for those upcoming winter activities!
Whether you love the thrill of shredding the mountain on your skis or board, a peaceful stroll in the backcountry on snowshoes or lacing up the skates, it’s important to make sure that your body is ready to tackle winter. Try these five training tips to prepare your body for the force of winter fun.
Most winter sports need you to use your leg muscles as you power through the snow and ice. It’s important to stretch to make sure they are flexible, particularly your hamstrings. As the motion in winter sports is generally difference than standard forward motion. Try Toy Soldiers to help create more flexibility. These are performed like so: stand up straight with your left arm out straight at shoulder height. Raise your right leg without bending your knee and move your left arm to try to touch your toe. Alternate sides for 10 or 12 reps while taking a step in between.
Just as important as flexibility, you’ll need to strengthen your legs, specifically your quads and glutes. Step-ups build strength, help with balance and coordination, and you can also incorporate a little cardio workout as well by going at a faster pace or longer sets.
Exercise Ball Hamstring Curls
Another good hamstring and glute exercise that provides the large range of motion required in winter sports. Using an exercise ball, lie down on your back with your arms straight out flat and palms up. Place your feet on the ball and pull it towards you while in a bridge position. For an extra challenge try single curls with one leg pulling and the other in the air.
Planks and Side Planks
The core is critical for winter sports. Having a strong core will give you a good center of balance. Planks and Side Planks give you an excellent all around core workout.
Your lower back takes a lot of hits in winter sports. From shredding the hills to taking hits on the ice. Start by lying on your stomach with your arms stretched out in front of you. Lift your arms and upper body, keeping your neck in a neutral position. Raise your legs, at the same time keep your ankles together. Hold for a few seconds and lower. Repeat for at least 30-seconds.
Your winter season will be more enjoyable if you start training now. Contact your Fitness Together® studio to get a one-on-one personal training program that will have you ready to conquer winter. If you do not belong to Fitness Together®, find out more at www.fitnesstogether.com.