Skiing is one of the most popular winter sports in the world and there are plenty of challenging trails to choose from in the Rocky Mountains. But no matter how experienced of a skier you are, thereâ€™s always a chance that youâ€™ll get injured on the slopes. Luckily, most of those injuries are preventable as long as you take the time to stretch and warm up before you get on the lift for the first time each day. Your trusted physical therapy treatment
provider wants to help you do just that. Here are a few important stretches you should do before and after you ski each time.
Use a Foam Roller
Foam rollers are one of the best fitness tools you can invest in. They allow you to stretch your muscles and provide a form of myofascial release that keeps your body from stiffening up as quickly both on and off the slopes. Roll your calves, quads, hamstrings, lats, and rotator cuffs thoroughly before and after you ski. This will help your muscles recover more fully and more quickly. Even better, it can help cut down on the pain and soreness youâ€™re used to feeling after spending hours on the mountain.
Stretch Your Hip Flexors
Your hip flexors help you attack steep slopes with ease and make carving your way through thick powder both possible and painless. Unfortunately, they can get stiff quickly and when they do, youâ€™ll have more trouble getting down the mountain comfortably. To stretch them out, start by taking a lunge step and bring your back knee to rest on the ground. Then, lean forward into the stretch. You should feel this along your back legâ€™s hip joint. Repeat the stretch on the other leg. You can and should do this before and after skiing for best results.
Keep Your Calf Muscles Loose
The muscles in your calves arguably see some of the most strain during each ski session. They support you, control the movement of your skis, and help you stay upright at high speeds. They need regular stretching to help you keep your performance great. Before and after you hit the slopes, find a stair or a curb to rest the balls of your feet on. Then, dip your heels down off of the stair or curb to stretch your calves. You can do this between ski runs, too to help you stay loose and limber at all times.Â
Try These Stretches for Yourself
These are just a few of the key stretches you should do to help you stay healthy on the slopes. Pay attention to your body and stretch out any muscle groups that start to feel stiff as soon as you notice any discomfort. If you can, get in the habit of stretching each morning to further stave off those feelings of stiffness for the long term. If you do end up getting injured while skiing, donâ€™t ignore the injury and hope it gets better on its own. Schedule an appointment
with your physical therapy team immediately.Â