Fit for the slopes: 6 effective exercises for skiers

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Do you want to avoid wobbly knees on the slopes? A few exercises are enough to help you get through the winter safely. Sports scientist Gabrielle Vuille demonstrates her favourite exercises.

Physical fitness prevents accidents

Skiing is one of the most popular sports in Switzerland. More than a quarter of the population take to the slopes every year. However, the sport is not without its dangers. To minimise the risk of accidents and injuries, good physical fitness is important.

Ski exercises: get fit at home

Getting fit for the skiing season starts in the living room. Although winter is already upon us, it’s not too late to start. Two to three training sessions of around 15 to 20 minutes a week are enough to build muscle strength, stability and coordination. This will enable you to enjoy the winter sport to the max while reducing your risk of falls and injuries.

Please note

  • Keep your back straight and activate your core muscles.
  • Keep joints in line: ankle – knee – hip.
  • The exercises shouldn't cause pain.
  • Keep your head straight and in line with the spine.
  • All the exercises can be done with­out any equipment. However, a mat is useful.

6 exercises at a glance

Sports scientist Gabrielle Vuille demonstrates 6 effective ski exercises. (in german)

Exercise 1: Counter-movement jump

Start in a standing position, feet hip-width apart. Place hands on hips. Bend knees to 90° and then jump into a vertical position. Land with knees bent. Stabilise the body.

Effect: strengthens thigh muscles and coordination.

Exercise 2: Star balance

Balance on one leg. Sweep the raised leg as far as possible forwards, to the side and backwards. 

Effect: improves balance and stabilises knee joints.

Exercise 3: Plank variation

In plank position, take one step to the right and then one step to the left. 

Effect: strengthens the core.

Exercise 4: Bridge variation

Lie on your back with legs bent and feet on the floor. Raise the pelvis, and bring knees, hips and shoulders into line. Take 4 steps forward and then return to the starting position. Alternate legs.

Effect: strengthens the glutes and rear thigh muscles.

Exercise 5: Lateral jump

Stand balancing on one leg. Imagine a line and jump over it 3 times. Stabilise the landing. 

Effect: promotes coordination and stabilises the entire leg axis.

Exercise 6: Lunge with rotation

Take a forward lunge position. Keep the knees at a 90° angle. Rotate the core on the side of the front leg.

Effect: strengthens leg muscles and stabilises the entire upper body.

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