September is upon us. The Summer holidays have just finished, and the tan hasn’t yet faded away, but my mind is already turning towards skiing and snowboarding. Some will say “don’t remind me about the turning of the seasons – it goes too quickly anyway”
Others will say “good point. I need to think about the snowy holiday this year. Thanks”.
To those people, yes, sort your holiday, but also, start thinking about ski fitness.
However – food for thought: Do you know when most accidents occur on ski holidays?
During the first day on the slopes.
Whether you’re a recreational skier, someone looking to push their skill level further by engaging in lessons this winter – or someone whose skill level is already up there and is happy ripping up the slopes – there is a good argument to start thinking about fitness for skiing even in September.
The ability to ski relies heavily on technique – and technique relies upon strength.
If you lack the strength to maintain your position on skis, technique suffers, and in turn, so does control. A tired out of control skier is not good news either for themselves, or for others on the slope, and this counts even more so for the ski-mountaineers and off-pisters amongst us.
Strength and stamina take a while to build up, and they aren’t something which you can short cut on. Arriving at the slopes with some snazzy gear and an expensive lift pass with a lack of fitness is pretty much a waste of your money. (Unless of course, you bought the gear to look good, and in fact the money you could have spent on the lift pass is just going to get spent on alcohol).
So. It may be the beginning of autumn, and the first snow of the year may still seem a long long time away, but now is the time to be building psyche for the white stuff, and alongside that, increasing your strength and stamina to make the most of your time on the slopes.
If you take training in 4 week blocks and intend to get out on the snow early in the season that might only give you 3x 4 weeks to beginning of December or 4x 4 weeks to Christmas. 12 to 16 weeks are ideal for really specific training blocks, whatever your approach is going to be.
You can build strength and stamina in a number of ways – there are apps which guide you, there are training programmes you can follow, there are squats to do. However, simply watching videos and obtaining apps does not make you stronger. Yes, its a step in the right direction, but without actually getting out there and doing the exercises well, and doing them consistently, you might as well not waste your money.
Either commit, start training, and find some way of ensuring you don’t lose focus – be it a trainer guiding you, or some other motivational factor, or accept that you’ll be wasting days of your lift pass by being knackered halfway through your holiday.
Don’t do that. Charge all the way through – Get ready now!
If you want to get fitter and stronger for the ski season, commit.
Commit time, commit effort, and if necessary, commit money. After all, skiing holidays are notoriously expensive so you really ought to do that investment justice and invest in your fitness.
We have different levels of Personal Training for those who want to be ready for the coming season. We can also point you in the direction of other resources – drop us a line to chat about either. Tim cut his teeth snowboarding in Northern Japan and has skied and snowboarded on and off piste in Europe and Colorado. Lynne is very much an enthusiastic novice and has skied in France a few times and once in Colorado, she also braved some pretty tough weather in Scotland once!