As the start of the season approaches, many are returning to resorts having had some time away from the mountains. Particularly in the seasons following Covid, lots of you may have taken long breaks between trips. We know it is not always easy to get your confidence back right away, so we have come up with some advice to help you on your way! Even if you are a complete beginner many of these points will also apply to you. Here are our '5 Top Tips':
If you have time to get to the gym or do some home workouts before your trip, it is going to help prepare yourself for those long days on the slopes and also protect your body against injury. You don’t have to be a dedicated athlete to enjoy skiing or snowboarding, but a couple of sessions per week in the weeks leading up to your trip can ensure you make the most of your time away.
We recommend focusing on your endurance, your lower body, core strength and your flexibility. Regarding endurance - think cardiovascular exercise such as a brisk walk, jog, cycle or swim - something to get the heart pumping for 20 minutes to an hour. For strength training try exercises such as squats, lunges, leg raises and planks. Before trying to lift any heavy weights do ensure you are lifting with the correct technique and don’t try to lift too heavy too soon. Always ensure you stretch at the end of your sessions. Improved flexibility will help reduce the likelihood of injury if you fall or end up in twisted or uncomfortable positions. Click here to check out our blog featuring our top pre-season fitness tips.
Remember that you may not have used a lot of these muscles since the last time you skied or snowboarded. In addition, the balance and motor skills that you will have developed may feel a little rusty. Cut yourself some slack and ease your way back in. Start on more gentle gradients and get a feel for the movements again before pushing yourself forwards. It can be tempting to dive straight in but do try and get the fundamentals right first and build on it.
As the day goes on, don’t hesitate to take a break if you are feeling tired. Make sure you are keeping an eye on the conditions. Typically, the pistes will be firmer and smoother in the morning so this will be easier on the legs. You may want to avoid or take extra care in the softer snow in the late afternoons, particularly further on in the season, as this snow will be heavier and more difficult to manage.
A lesson will get you back up to speed whilst building confidence, checking in on any bad habits and refreshing your skills. Instructors are the most knowledgeable resource when it comes to teaching techniques and developing your skills. When you book a lesson on Maison Sport you will be able to chat to your instructor in the run up to your trip. They will be able to advise you on the best ways to prepare for your lessons and get you feeling pumped for your holiday!
On Maison Sport you are also able to choose an instructor who fits your exact needs. Read reviews ahead of time and choose an instructor who you feel comfortable with to bring you back up to speed.
Make sure you get in a good breakfast and/or bring snacks up on the hill with you. Skiing and snowboarding are very demanding sports and you will be using even more energy if you are not used to using certain muscles or feeling nervous. Additionally, being at altitude also increases your energy demands, so you need to fuel yourself well to maintain the energy levels.
Most ski resorts have a wide range of on-mountain restaurants to choose from for lunch. It can be tempting to indulge in the delicious mountain food; just try to make sure that you aren’t overly full or feeling too lethargic for your afternoon sessions!
It is normal to feel frustrated if you are struggling to do something you were able to do before or if you are finding things particularly difficult. It can be easy to lose focus on why you are there. Often it can take some time to relax into it and find your confidence again. Don’t forget to enjoy yourself, take in the scenery, have a laugh, take breaks and relax. If you are having any specific issues don’t hesitate to change it up and try something different. Go to different areas of the mountain, swap your skis or boots if they are uncomfortable or stop for a hot chocolate break if you are feeling chilly!
Recognise your successes and don’t be too hard on yourself. You are far more likely to build your confidence back if you are enjoying yourself whilst doing so!
Don’t hesitate to book your lessons now, the season is almost upon us. Don’t risk your favourite instructor getting booked up.
The Independent Instructors on Maison Sport are Waiting For You!
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