There’s no denying it – the end of the season is here. Ski season always seems too short and we risk losing skill over the summer. This year, try something different. Instead of winding down at the end of the season, finish strong. Here are a few tips.
1. Finish Strong
Most of us pick up bad habits over time. Instead of letting them set in over the long toasty days of summer, tune up with an instructor before closing day. Be sure to work with a certified instructor, not a buddy down the street, and absolutely not your significant other! What you need is someone who won’t hesitate to provide constructive feedback. This isn’t a “learning to ski” moment; it’s a tightening up moment.
Spring skiing has an additional benefit. There are loads of lift ticket deals! And you might even save on lessons too. Several resorts offer springtime lodging and lift packages also.
“But what about the snow,” you ask? April delivers and average of 6.7 feet of snow in Utah, and many Colorado and Vermont resorts receive over 2-3 feet. Yes, there are powder days in spring. There’s nothing better than skiing a bluebird powder day in a tank-top.
Eventually all of the fun will end, your skis will get a fine layer of dust, and those pesky wildflowers will bloom. How do you stay ready for next winter? Two things, stay focused and in shape.
2. Keep Your Focus
To stay focused, I recommend browsing YouTube for instructional videos. I use them throughout winter to help me visualize correct form on the slopes and watching them helps off-season as well. One of my favorites is SKI School by Elate Media. Another popular series is the Sofa Ski School. They are excellent and free.
Maintain stoke by watching inspiring ski films as well. Two of my recent favorites are Valhalla and Sun Dog (a short by DPS Skis). I especially love watching ski flicks in the fall as ski season nears. This is also when I start to pet my skis lovingly every time I walk by…don’t judge.
3. Stay Fit
Stay strong for skiing by focusing on your glutes, legs, and core. Exercises such as squats (in all their variations), lunges, dead lifts, and squat jumps are great picks. Thrusters are excellent as well. I like them because they include the use of momentum (fast twitch muscles), strengthen the core, and work your upper body as well.
Anyone who says downhill skiing doesn’t involve cardio isn’t pushing too hard. I find myself out of breath regularly (and yes, I’m in good shape). Boost cardio endurance by jogging or trail running throughout the summer. Oftentimes the best trails are at the same resorts where you ski all winter. I’ve hiked and ran on resort trails from Colorado to Utah. An added bonus, haunting resort trails off-season delivers the most magnificent views!
Use these suggestions and “get out the gate” faster next season.