Ski season is officially over...at least in the Northern Hemisphere. Sure, Mount Hood and other areas with glaciers are open for race, park and pipe, and mogul training and camps. However, Arapahoe Basin just closed for the season on June 22nd.
Here are a couple ideas for staying in shape over the non-skiing/riding months:
- Hit the gym. Spend time during the summer strengthening your muscles, especially your legs so you are stronger and ready to take on next season. While it may be hard to duplicate the exact muscles used in skiing and snowboarding, there are plenty of exercises that you can do to help you feel stronger next season. Learn how to properly perform a squat. This will help you in any kind of skiing or snowboarding. Core exercises and ones that force you to balance are also good for prepping for next season.
- Biking/cycling. Whether it is road or mountain, it doesn't matter. Biking will help you strengthen your legs and build up your cardiovascular capacity. Just like there are different disciplines of alpine skiing, there are different disciplines of biking (i.e. road biking, cycle cross, mountain biking- cross country, downhill mountain biking, etc.). Find the right type of biking for you.
- Stand-up Paddle Boarding (SUP). Another popular sport of skiers and snowboarders is Stand-up Paddle Boarding. This activity creates a good core workout and it is fun to be out on the water. Plus, the stabilizer muscles and balancing while in the Ocean or a choppy lake help create some great ski/ride muscles.
- Slackline. Another activity to improve stabilizer muscles in the legs/feet and activate core muscles is slacklining. Originally, invented by climbers in Yosemite that set-up climbing webbing to "tight rope" walk during down time, slacklining has become its own sport. There are certain companies like Gibbon that produce just slacklines.
Regardless of what you do, do something and stay active. This will help you get ready for next season and be less sore on your first day out.