If your idea of getting ready to hit the slopes is bringing your skis or snowboard in to be tuned, you may have more than the powder flu to worry about this winter. It doesn’t matter if you’re going backcountry skiing in the North Cascades or if the bunny slope is more your speed, working on your winter fitness can help you avoid injury and aches and pains.
“In the first months of the season we’re inundated with a lot of new patients who didn’t get themselves ready,” says Dustin Butler, D.P.T., a physical therapist at Advanced Manual Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation in Ballard.
Whether you’re a skier or a snowboarder, turning and stopping requires lumbar spine rotation that isn’t really an everyday activity—especially if you’re working in an office most days. Plus, going over bumps and hitting hard surfaces creates a lot of compression in the knees and spine. That’s why low back and knee injuries are the two most common issues for skiers and snowboarders, says Butler.
He created this workout to target all of the muscles that will keep your back and knees safe on the slopes. It’s designed to help set you up for an injury-free season, so you can focus on shredding pow—and making it to après ski in one piece.