When it comes to fitness and prepping for your ski holiday, this is as important for children as it is for the grown-ups. Skiing uses muscles you might not usually exercise, and as the average ski holiday is about a week long you don’t want to spend that limited time you have struggling on the slopes, fighting aching limbs, watching everyone else enjoy themselves.
The Amamaya team know, from their own experiences, that training your muscles has massive benefits when it comes to hitting the slopes. Not only will being fit hugely improve your skiing practice but by strengthening certain areas, you can also vastly reduce the likelihood of you getting an injury. After all, if you were planning an epic week of daily sport – football, running, rugby, ballet – you’d be bonkers not to put in some training beforehand, so why on earth should we think of skiing differently?
So to help the whole family prepare for your skiing adventure, we’ve spoken to experts and pulled together some ideas to get you all ski fit!
Get your hearts racing
To make the most of your ski holiday (and the all-important après ski!), you’ll need a good base of cardiovascular fitness and strength. So, if you’re more of a gin-bunny than a gym bunny, it might be a good idea to make some small changes to your routines to increase fitness. Start small – resist calling that Uber when you could just as easily walk, choose the stairs over the lift at work, or take the scooters on the school run! Tiny changes can make such a difference to your overall stamina and give you a head start once you arrive in the mountains.
There’s no need to sign up to an all singing, all dancing gym membership, you just need to do a little light exercise before you head off. Take the kids swimming twice a week and instead of bundling into the car for the short journey, why don’t you all put your trainers on for a jog there and back? Or ask Alexa to put on a brilliant playlist and all dance around the sitting room – you’ll be surprised at how it gets your heart racing!
Build your strength
As well as preparing your heart for the ski trip, there are also a few super easy exercises that you can do to strengthen your body and get ready for the slopes. We recommend starting with your core, because core strength helps with everything! So if you can do some family yoga or pilates – either head to a local class or there are some fab videos on YouTube to do at home. If you can’t manage that, try doing a “plank” every day, twice a day, holding for a short period. You could even do a mini plank challenge – do that every day for a month, and at the end see which family member can hold it for the longest!
<p”>Once you’ve begun on the core, your main focus should then be on your leg muscles: your quads (the front of your thighs), your glutes (bum) and calves, because these are the areas you’re probably not used to working. Your thighs are probably the hardest working muscles when you are skiing. The kids can join in with these too, but to a lesser extent than you – to be honest, they’re probably fitter anyway!
Try these 4 quick and easy moves for stronger skiers’ legs! Squats are fantastic for strengthening your thighs: Take your feet to about shoulder-width apart; Put your hands out in front of you; Sit back as if you are sitting in a chair, keeping your feet flat on the ground and your knees behind your toes. As you sit back, keep your chest up and your head looking forward. Take your squats to the next level with Squat Jumps by adding in a little jump at the end.
Wall sits are really fun to do as a family – especially if you’re competitive! Find a section of wall where you can all line up and lean with your back against the wall, as if you’re sitting down and see who can stay like that the longest! Lunges are excellent practice for skiing! Keep your upper body straight, with your shoulders back & relaxed and chin up. Engage your core. Step forward with one leg, lowering your hips until both knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle. This one is a good laugh if you set it up as a race in the living room or on the lawn and do walking lunges!
You’ll be surprised what a difference these exercises will make to your stamina. No achy limbs for you and your family, you’ll all be chomping at the bit to go, go, go!
Hit the (dry) slopes
If you can, as well as building up their strength and stamina, it’s a good idea to try to get your kids familiar with skiing before you go head into the mountains. Pay a visit to your local ski centre and let the children have a few ski sessions so it’s less of a shock to them on the first day.
Do you have any other fitness tips for fellow family skiers? Let other readers know in the comments below!
We hope you have an amazing holiday. Don’t forget to tag us in any photos on the slopes where your brood are showing off their awesome Amamaya ski wear – on Facebook or Instagram! It really does make us beam from ear to ear when we see our gorgeous clothes adventuring, just as we designed it to do!