Piste off?


All our ski courses are off-piste and ski touring, but we get many enquiries for those on our trips, how to better prepare for their ‘warm up’ on-piste / family ski holiday. This advice has been written for you by a personal trainer, to give you some top tips!

Legs shaking and leaden after a hard days skiing? We’ve all been there, staggering back to the chalet, to slump in front of the wood fire with a vin chaud firmly in hand, focusing hard on the next few minutes to blot out the potential leg pain of another days skiing the next day. Don’t worry, we aren’t going to deny you the cheeky vin chaud, but here’s our top 5 training and exercises tips to share, that will help you prepare for your next ski holiday.

1) Strength – To avoid the leaden ski legs scenario, there’s several muscle and strength building exercises to try. The most effective workout exercises include squats, burpees, star-jumps, and plyometric training. Planking will build up your core strength very quickly. The key is to work all the muscle groups in the core and legs, especially the quadriceps, gluten, and calf muscles.

2) Endurance – Skiing is a chaotic mix of long duration efficient output, and bursts of explosive power. For endurance training, build up to one hour steady output endurance training, focusing on keeping just below the aerobic-anaerobic threshold. Choose your sport; cycling, treadmill, swimming, or running. The most important element is to keep a steady speed for the full 60 minutes.

3) Speed – Find a hill, or even a small slope, that is big enough for you to sprint at least 30 seconds up it. Run as fast as you can up the incline for 30 seconds, then jog slowly back down, sprint up again, and back down, for 5 laps initially. Try and maintain the same high point on the hill. This builds your explosive speed, and also your aerobic recovery time reduces as you get faster, stronger and fitter.

4) Power – Fartlek literally translates as ‘speed play’ in Swedish, and is where you mix up a session to do a fixed interval of higher speed output, followed by a slower tick over level, followed by most cycles of fast and slow. This builds your explosive power, and moves you higher into the aerobic training zone. Fartlek exercises can be built into whatever sport you are doing, but cycling and running are often best.

5) Recovery – Training doesn’t all have to be hard work. Build in at least a day off each week, for your body to recover fully. This is essential to help you avoid injury, and to let you rest completely. Throughout the training regime, try and drink plenty of fluids, and to eat healthy food. By fuelling your body correctly, you will ensure that when you hit the slopes, you are in tip top condition, full of energy.

Practise these for several weeks before your next ski trip, and rather than slinking off to the mountain resto after each ski run, you’ll be doing laps of the mountain, and positively bouncing into the aprΓ©s bar, and leaping out of bed the next morning.

Link: Visit our training pages and planner on the website, click here.

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