With only a few weeks to go before the beginning of the ski season, now is the perfect time to make sure you are fit enough for your Ski Weekend.
If something has been bothering you for over two weeks or more, now is the perfect time to visit a Physiotherapist and improve your condition before you head out for your active ski holiday.
If you are fortunate to be injury free – it's time to get those legs ready for the mountain focusing on some examples as follows:
- Ski squats
- Circuit training
- Step ups
- Quadriceps, calf, hamstring and lower back stretches
These are all excellent exercises to be working with. You require 4-6 weeks of exercise three times a week to make a significant difference to your fitness, so do not leave it too late.
Avoid ski injuries
Common skiing injuries on the mountain are due to fatigue and dehydration, so ensure you take regular breaks if you are tired. If you are skiing with people who are more advanced than you, then take a break as they do a couple of fast runs or do a couple of gentle slopes instead. Make sure that you are sufficiently hydrated, taking into account the altitude and level of exercise you are doing. Your fluid intake will typically need to increase considerably (and I don't mean beer and wine!)
How to recover from a ski injury
If you are unfortunate enough to sustain an injury the follow these basic tips: If you have difficulty weight bearing after the injury or something feels like it is going to give way – then seek medical advice immediately. There are many good medical centres and physio clinics such as Physi - Chamonix in the Alps.
If you feel just badly bruised, strained and sore, remember P-R-I-C-E
The PRICE regime is a simple five-step protocol that even an untrained person can use to minimize the effects of immediate injury. The earlier the PRICE regime is adopted the better.
P is for Protection - Protect the injury from further damage. Stop skiing, make your way to the bottom of the mountain if you feel safe to do so, if not call the piste patrol to assist you down (take appropriate contact details).
R is for Rest - Allow an injury time to heal. Continuing to ski when your injury is painful is not wise and likely to cause further damage.
I is for Ice - By applying ice either from a freezer, an ice pack or even a pack of peas onto the injury you will reduce the pain and inflammation. Very cold products can induce hypothermia or cold burn so wrapping the ice in a cloth is advisable. Apply for 20 minutes every hour after the injury.
C is for Compression - Compression of the swollen area will help to reduce the swelling. A neoprene support or stretch bandage will suffice.
E is for Elevation - Elevating the injury to above the heart reduces the flow of blood to the area and reduces the swelling.
At Peak Physio we provide expert Physiotherapy in the South West of England. If you’re looking for a local physiotherapist, then take a look at Physio First. Happy Skiing and preparation for an injury free trip.
Guest Post by Jane Newman, Clinical Director Peak Physio, www.peakphysio.com
Jane Newman MSc BSc MMACP MCSP SRP is a fully qualified chartered sports physio, with 13 years of experience and three seasons working as a physio in the Alps, she knows what to look out for when it comes to ski injury prevention through to rehabilitation.