30 October, 2022
As you finish the ski season, we look toward how to keep ourselves sharp through the summer to ensure that you ‘hit the ground running’ when the next season begins. Following some of the advice in this article will allow you to ski longer and with less fatigue, therefore, getting more from your ski holiday.
Many people do some ‘fit to ski’ classes or exercises but, usually only start these a few weeks before their holiday or they go for a session or two at a dry slope or indoor snow facility, again, just before their holiday. In our opinion, this is just too late to really make a difference.
You can help yourself get the most out of your skiing next season by keeping fit for skiing and whilst aerobic training such as cycling or jogging can help, skiing is a largely anaerobic sport where we exercise in short bursts which can be heavy on muscle use.
Things like sprints (bike or running) and HIIT are really good training for skiing so I’d recommend these types of training throughout the year to keep fit for skiing.
There is nothing like actually practicing the sport to keep ‘match fit’ and there are multiple opportunities for this in the UK either at one of the many outdoor, dry slope facilities or in one of the 6 indoor snow facilities. And don’t forget the several indoor, rolling carpet facilities which, whilst they feel odd to begin with, give the longest ski run to practice on, building that specific ski fitness.
To get the most out of training on your skis in the summer, rather than just free ski on the UK facilities, get some training or coaching. Not only will this help improve you, it will make your trip to the slope much more interesting and give you focus. Just skiing without focus on 150-170 meters might not keep you enthused, so look into this.
There are some great facilities not too far across the channel with 300+ meters of indoor snow. Landgraaf in the Netherlands is one that we have been using for 15 years, with 3 slopes of 30 meters wide and half a Km long, this really has to be tried. At -5 indoors and, in the summer, maybe 30 outside, it’s certainly something to experience.
Landgraaf is 3-3.5 hours from Calais and has a hotel on site, a gym, bars and restaurants to make it a self contained year round resort.
A weekend here can yield as much skiing as some people get in a week on a mountain. With guaranteed conditions, It’s great for improving skiing and as a social trip.
There is also the choice to head to one of the European glaciers – these are dotted about the alpine countries with varying dates for opening and closing. To give a true alpine trip. Beware that the conditions can be tough, variable and, with the glaciers being high and exposed, prone to closure for a day or two. That said, the conditions, weather and skiing can be amazing!
What To Do? And How?
You can pop along to your local facilities and just book a session or a coached session, join a club or just take some time to practice.
Impulse run some coached sessions at facilities in the UK and private training at both Hemel and Manchester indoor centres.
There are also trips to Landgraaf in summer between May and October to avail of that great facility. Why not join us? Drop me a line.
Phil Brown is an internationally qualified Instructor and Race Coach with over 30 years experience working with skiers from grass roots to the world stage. He is currently programme Director of The National Schools Snowsports Association, Race Coach Educator and Author at The Irish Association of Snowsports Instructors and runs Impulse Alpine and Racing - [email protected]
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