For successful runs, you have to do the (right) work. Steal these moves and tips from pros and coaches.

Slalom skiers sometimes withstand forces that clock in at three times their body weight, says Eirik Hole, U.S. Ski Team Women’s Speed Team Strength and Conditioning Coach. And while you may not be up against that, building a balanced body underneath you—one with good alignment, a strong core, hips, and powerful legs—is still crucial, regardless of skill level.

That’s why planning for a trip to the slopes should begin in the gym: Skiing may be an escape—invigorating and relaxing—but without the proper prep work, indulgence can turn to injury (and that can’t-quite-walk-right soreness). Here, an expert-backed plan for powering through your next day on the mountain.


Build a cardio base outside the gym.

Without an aerobic base, skiing for even a straight minute can be exhausting, attests Laurenne Ross, a U.S. Olympic alpine ski racer. But cardio can be boring. “I like to have fun while keeping my cardio up. I go mountain biking a lot—usually for between one and three hours. It builds a lot of leg strength too,” she says. “There are some similar aspects to skiing.”


Increase endurance with ski-specific intervals.

No matter where you’re headed, “you need some sort of endurance to be able to withstand forces over time,” says Hole. He suggests intervals in ski-specific lengths. Try this 53-minute workout he uses with the team:

Warmup: Jog slowly for 10 minutes, then for 5 minutes increase intensity to between 72 and 87 percent of your max heart rate. Incorporate 30-second, high-intensity sprints (87 to 97 percent max heart rate) if you choose.
Interval workout: Run for 2 minutes at high intensity, rest for 1.5 minutes. Repeat 8 times.
Cool down: Jog slowly for 10 minutes.


Prep for altitude with intensity and hydration.

“If you’re going somewhere with high altitude, the more cardiovascular-ly conditioned your body is, the more efficient it will be using oxygen,” says Beth Giersch, Senior Manager of the Equinox Fitness Training Institute and a skier herself. And besides upping your intensity and hydration, know this: “Your body hydrates more when you’re moving, so get up and move around while you’re hydrating.”


Build balance blind.

“Many injuries in skiing happen from loss of balance,” says Scott Weiss, C.S.C.S., an exercise physiologist who has worked with Olympic skiers. “Try doing lunges and air squats with your eyes closed. Not easy but extremely beneficial.”


Roll immediately beforehand.

If you have a mini foam roller, pack it on your trip. “Rolling is particularly helpful prior to skiing. It gets out any kinks or scar tissue and brings more blood flow to the muscle and soft tissue,” says Giersch. Ross agrees—that’s why foam rolling is part of her pre-ski routine.


Create your own force.

“You have to have enough force to withstand the forces you want to create on the mountain,” says Hole. “The better skier you are, the more forces will be put upon you, the harder you have to work.” That’s why the U.S. ski team practices power cleans: “The point of power clean is to create power—which is a force-velocity relationship where you have high speed and high force, just like skiing.”


Build solid legs.

“Regardless of the type of skier you are, you need strong legs and muscular endurance to make it through a full day on the slopes,” says Giersch. “Single leg and multi-directional movements will prepare your body for the dynamic and resilient movement skiing demands.”

Try: Skier Jumps (unloaded or loaded with ViPR) ,
Starting in athletic stance, hands free or holding a ViPR, jump out to the right and land on right foot, quickly sinking into a single leg squat as the left leg sweeps behind to count-balance; if holding a ViPR, reach the left hand toward the right foot before jumping laterally to the left foot and repeating for reps or timed intervals.
(Note: Be sure to master loaded lateral lunges before progressing to skier jumps.)

Try: Mini Band Monster Walks (lateral and diagonal)
Slip a mini band above knees (easier) or ankles (harder); maintaining an athletic stance (feet just wider than shoulders, knees bent, slight bend at the hips, arms grabbing invisible ski poles), step out further to the right and bring your left foot back to the starting stance; repeat 10-15 times and then repeat going to the left. Diagonal: Moving forward first, maintaining that athletic stance; take a wide step about 45 degrees diagonally to right, then tap left toe shoulder-width from your right before stepping diagonally to the left; repeat 10-15 times and the carefully repeat going backwards.

Try: ‘Round the Clock’ Lunge Matrix (loaded or unloaded)
Stand with feet together and imagine you’re at the center of a clock; starting with your right foot, do a forward lunge to 12 o’clock and back to center, then lunge diagonally to 1:30 and back, then do a lateral lunge to 3 o’clock (anchor leg is straight) and back, then another lateral lunge to 4:30 (anchor leg straight again) and back, and then a regular (reverse) lunge back to 6 o’clock; switch to your leg leg and start at 12 o’clock again (then 10:30, 9, 7:30 and 6); repeat 3-5 rounds of the full clock.


Stabilize your core.

“When skiing, your upper body should be relatively stable as your lower body shifts left and right and rotates,” says Giersch. “Focus on similar, anti-rotation exercises. This dynamic stability will help you react and recover quickly when the mountain or another skier throws you off balance.”

Try: Superman Planks
Start in plank position on your hands; lift your right arm up as if asking a question in class, then return it to the ground; then lift your right leg off the ground without moving the rest of your body, then your left leg, then your right arm; once you’ve mastered the single-extremity lifts, progress to lifting your right arm and left leg simultaneously for a few seconds and alternate for reps or timed intervals.

Try: Chops and Lifts (with cable or medicine ball)
From a standing or half-kneeling position, remaining tall from tail-bone to the top of your head, shift a weighted cable or medicine ball diagonally from one hip to the opposite side of your body overhead (“lift”), or in the opposite diagonal direction from overhead down to the opposite hip (“chop”); do chops and lifts in both directions for reps or timed intervals

Try: Warding Patterns (with cable or partner)
Using either a weighed cable or manual resistance from a workout buddy, start in athletic stance with arms extended in front of you, hands together, shoulders down, and resist allowing the external force to pull you left, right, down, or up (depending on which way the cable or buddy is pulling/pushing); from this starting point, keep your arms and upper body stable while repeating simple foot patterns such as side steps, cross-over steps, external rotation steps or small shuffles; switch up the direction of the external force and repeat for reps or timed intervals.


By:  Cassie Shortsleeve
For original post, please visit:  http://q.equinox.com/articles/2015/01/skiing-workout?emlcid=EML-newsletters_2015_01_14&emacid=EMA-QWeekly-01141142015


Master trainer Josh Stolz shows you how focusing on forgotten areas unlocks a fitter physique.

“Let’s start with ankle mobility—your foot and ankle contain a relatively large percentage of bones in a relatively small area,” says Stolz, “so if there’s something that’s not moving correctly, it’s going to affect the rest of your body. More specifically, your foot creates internal rotation up into your hip, which lengthens the glute and allows you to propel forward. So if you’re lacking mobility in your arch and foot, you’re going to limit the movement up the chain, and that’s when your body gets out of balance and overworks certain areas.”

Stolz’s approach to mobility training breaks down to three phases: Melt, mold, and move. For each phase, he employs specific tools, too. How he explains it:

Melt: “I’m going to melt the connective tissue – basically roll it, massage it, and reduce the adhesions. This smooths out and helps hydrate the tissue.”
The Tools: ROLL Recovery R8VYPER vibrating rollerSupernova
How They Help: The R8 may resemble a recycled Rollerblade, but it’s much more hardcore. “This tool allows you to move the tissue in multiple directions—I can rotate, I can add friction—and I can increase or decrease the pressure.” The VYPER vibrating roller is another gadget garnering serious buzz. “Vibration is being researched, but it is purported to increase range of motion and bone density. You can use different settings, too: 1 would be for recovery, post-workout, and 2 and 3 would be a faster movement better suited for pre-workout.” The Supernova is like a lacrosse ball for masochists, but Stolz likes it because of the notches, which allow you to create changes by manipulating your skin.

Mold: This phase furthers the hydration; Stolz favors the analogy of a sponge: “If I drop a sponge in water, it soaks up a certain amount of water. But if I squeeze the sponge, it pulls in more fluid, which, in terms of your body, hydrates tissue and also pulls in nutrients and oxygen.”
The Tool: Voodoo Bands
How It Helps: These bands, Stolz explains, offer an extremely easy way to increase range in motion—you can grip and pull, press, compress, and elongate tissue. They also help recycle and pull in fluid, oxygenate the tissue, and reduce pain by increasing the amount of nutrients coming into a specific area.

Move: “This is to stabilize the mobility you just obtained. In the Melt and Mold phases, you’ve increased range of motion and added more freedom of movement. Now, with Move, you want to be able to stabilize that extra range of motion to reduce injury risk.”
The Tool: Monster Bands
How It Helps: You’re likely familiar with this standard, but it’s incredibly useful for creating joint capsule flexilibilty, says Stolz. “Sometimes the joint capsule gets stuck, and that’s the root of the movement problem. But since you can’t stretch or foam roll in there, you need a way to manipulate.”

Stolz begins this three-part series with an ankle mobility workout, which he demonstrates in this slideshow. “These moves can be done as a set,” he says. “And it doesn’t hurt to do them every day.” For this workout’s Melt phase, Stolz recommends choosing one or two of the moves to start. And make sure you don’t rush. “When you’re rolling, think of covering one inch at a time for a minute or so,” says Stolz. “A regeneration day should be slow.”

Photographed by Mike Rosenthal; Gromming by Marina Gravini; Art Direction + Styled by Ashley Martin

R8 Ankle Mobility

Kneel, resting your left knee on a foam mat or yoga block, keeping your right knee bent 90 degrees. Using the R8 roller, slowly roll the length of your calf. This is best done in one-inch intervals, alternating directions (roll up and down, rotate and roll diagonally, and so on). Switch legs and repeat.


Sit with legs extended in front of you, palms flat on the floor. Place the VYPER above your right Achilles, then lift yourself slightly off the ground, resting your left ankle on your right. Slowly roll the VYPER from your Achilles to your calf; again, rolling in one-inch increments is best. Switch legs and repeat.


Retinaculum Ankle Mobility

On all fours, hands under shoulders and knees under hips, place the Supernova directly beneath the spot where your shin connects to your foot. Resting your leg there, slowly flex your toes up and down for one minute. Move the Supernova slightly up your leg and repeat. Add some circles of the foot in both directions. Switch legs and repeat.


Band-Assisted Ankle Mobility

Sit with legs extended in front of you, your left knee bent and left foot flat, palms flat on the floor. Secure the end of band around something solid, like the base of a machine, and loop around ankle and top of your right foot. Lift and rest your right calf on the handle of a kettlebell. Slowly flex your foot for one minute. Switch legs and repeat.


3D Flossing

Place a heavy weight plate on the ground in front of your feet (or use a slant board). Tightly wrap a Voodoo Floss band around your right calf and rest your right forefoot on the weight plate. Hinging from the waist, use both hands to wring or twist your calf as you lunge slightly forward until your knee is above your toes. Continue for one minute, moving up and down your calf. Quickly unwrap the band and repeat on opposite leg. Your leg should be wrapped for no longer than 90 seconds.


3D Band-Assisted Ankle Mobility

Place a heavy weight plate on the ground. Secure one end of a band to something sturdy, like a cable column or a machine, and wrap the other end around your right ankle. Step your left foot fully onto the weight plate, and rest your right forefoot on the weight’s edge. Hinge from the waist, holding onto something for support like an weight bench or 24-inch plyo box, and lunge slightly forward until your left knee is above your left toes. This movement should be in all planes of motion, so be sure to move forward and back, but also from side to side and in rotation in both directions. Continue for one minute and then switch legs.


Isotonic Weight Transfer

Prior to doing this move, perform an isometric contraction or hold in this position. Focus on driving the ball of the back foot into the ground with as much force as possible without moving the foot; these contractions should be held for about 5 seconds and repeated 2-3 times on each foot. Then, stand in a split stance, left leg forward, right leg back, keeping a slight bend in your knees. With a slight bounce in your step, lunge slightly forward to come up onto your right toes without lifting them off the ground, and back. This should be a very controlled movement. Repeat for one minute. Switch legs and repeat.


Dynamic Force Absorption

Stand in a split stance, left leg forward, right leg back, keeping a slight bend in your knees. With a slight bounce in your step, and without leaving this position, lunge slightly forward onto your left toes and then back, transferring your body weight between legs. Repeat for one minute and then switch legs.


For original post please see:  http://q.equinox.com/articles/2015/01/ankle-mobility