How to prepare indoors for the ski season

Three-day special, split training plan


Are you a winter sports fan? Or you think it’s time to learn how to ski this year? Whichever applies to you, if you really want to take things seriously, it’s not a bad idea to start to train those muscles, in particular, which you will use on the slopes, at least a few weeks before the winter holiday, so you won't have to spend the second day of your holiday in bed with sore muscles.

But which muscles are we talking about?

You don’t need to think too hard to find out which muscles this popular winter sport will need. Just imagine the posture and movements (or you can as well imitate them): knees bent, straight inclined body, arms move back and forth, body leans to the side. So it's the glutes, the quads (quadriceps femoris), the thigh flexors, the core muscles (especially spinal muscles), the shoulder and back muscles (mainly the deep back muscles), the iliopsoas muscle (the one that brings the thighs closer to the body); so it's more or less all your muscles. Besides training your muscles, you will also need to work on your endurance, as well as your spatial stability, coordination and balance.

The best way to boost your endurance is through cardio training or cardio-type sports (swimming, running, cycling – and considering the current freezing temperatures, I suggest the indoor versions to spare your joints). Certain cardio machines also improve coordination and balance, so you could kill two birds with one stone by choosing the elliptical trainer (try it without the arms, too) – you can find it in any gym. Cardio wave is getting more and more common, and some gyms even offer split-belt treadmills. But there are also some useful tools and exercises which you can integrate into your workout plan; now we’ll have a look at those.

Three-day special, split training plan

If we take the physical activity of an average person, a three-day split training plan is the ideal preparatory training. So, there should be a day that focuses on the lower body (preferably as a week starter, say on Monday), then an upper body day (midweek; around Wednesday of Thursday), and finish the week with a little cardio. You can insert the abs and/or core exercises at the end of all.

For example:

Training day 1

Warm-up: 10 minutes cardio (above options preferred), 5 minutes gymnastic exercises (full body)

  1. Walking lunges (with dumbbells) 4 x 20
  2. Leg extension machine (medium resistance) 4 x 20
  3. Seated leg curls (medium resistance) 4 x 20
  4. Bulgarian split squats (bodyweight, barbell, Smith machine or dumbbells) 4 x 10 - 10
  5. Squats – put a fitball under one foot (then switch feet) 4 x 10 - 10
  6. Wide-stance leg presses (increase weight by 10 kg in each rep) 4 x 15
  7. Cable kickback 4 x 10 - 10
  8. Single-leg stiff-legged deadlift (kettlebell, plate or dumbbell) 4 x 15
  9. Plank 4 x 60 seconds
  10. Full sit-ups with Sparrowbag or plate on chest 4 x 20
  11. Scissors 4 x 40

Training day 2

Warm-up: 10 minutes cardio (above options preferred), 5 minutes gymnastic exercises (full body)

  1. Bent over rows (barbell or dumbbell) 4 x 12
  2. Wide-grip pull-ups (bodyweight or resistance, maybe plate) 4 x 10
  3. Hyperextension 4 x 10
  4. Decline bench presses 4 x 15
  5. Lateral raises combined with front raises 4 x 8 - 8
  6. One-arm rows 4 x 10 - 10
  7. Alternate hammer curls 4 x 10 - 10
  8. Knee and elbow balance exercise: push-up position, right knee on the ground, left leg straight in the air, stretch your right arm forward, and then bring your left knee and right elbow close in front of your chest – both sides 4 x 10 - 10
  9. Side plank 4 x 30 – 30 seconds
  10. Single-leg weighted hip thrust 4 x 10 - 10

Training day 3

60 – 90 minutes cardio. Can be varied: quick treadmill walk, elliptical trainer, bike.

You can vary the intensity and resistance, as your body gets used to it more and more. Come on!


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