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Ski Season Exercise Tips

Ski season is fast approaching and now’s the time to figure out how to make this year your absolute best. This preseason, skip all the ski sale charades and focus your attention toward tuning up the most important equipment of all – your body. While <em>conditioning</em> may not be a word that’s often embraced with a warm and fuzzy feeling, it’s the underlying life preserver in your pursuit of adventure. Higher endurance will help you improve speed and control, prevent nasty falls and make it possible to venture into more challenging terrain. Sure, you’re not trying out for the ski team at Sochi, but this sport has never been known to be a cheap endeavor. Why not invest the same value in your form and fitness? You can consider it insurance against all the other money you’ll spend on gear and mountain passes. Too often, some of the most passionate and dedicated skiers and snowboarders forget this and end up injured, squandering all of that precious powder. A little dedication to cardio and muscle prep now will make your time on the slope more fun and fulfilling. <strong>At the Gym</strong> <em>Mountain Climbers:</em> Hop down to a plank pushup position to start these time-worthy core challengers. Keep your hips low and pull your abdominals toward your spine. Holding steady, bring one knee toward your opposite elbow, then slowly return to the original stance and switch legs. Use a mirror to check that your form remains in a straight line from head to heel. Try 3 sets at 20 reps per set. <em>Aerobic Conditioning:</em> Attend a spin class! <a title="Exercise Bikes" href="http://www.atgstores.com/exercise-bikes_2597.html" target="_blank">Cycling</a> will enhance your <a title="Cardio Training" href="http://www.atgstores.com/cardio_2602.html" target="_blank">cardio</a> endurance and get those quads ready for tackling the heavy powder days we hope come soon and often. <strong>At Home</strong> <em>Wall Sits</em>: We love them because they’re an excuse-free exercise you can do anywhere. Put your back flush against the wall, slide down and lock into place when your knees hit a 90-degree angle. Hold the position and stay motivated by contemplating your next ski vacation. Try 3 sets, holding first for 30 seconds, followed by 45 and then 60. Continue to increase your time until a 2-minute wall sit becomes a breeze. <em>Box or Stair Jumping</em>: This is an aerobic and muscle-building exercise in one, which explains why they’re a trainer’s go-to for inflicting “no pain, no gain” righteousness on clients. It’s a message we can no longer ignore! Find a sturdy <a title="Power Systems Steppers" href="http://www.atgstores.com/power-systems-steppers_2600_m7404.html" target="_blank">box</a> or deep step and start jumping while using your arms to assist with momentum. Try 3 sets, starting at 10 reps and increasing by 5 for each set. <em>One-Legged Squats:</em> These are not easy and that’s how you know they’re working your hips, glutes and quads; a priority for making clean, efficient turns in deep snow. Start off using your ski poles for balance and, on one leg at a time, engage your abs and squat down as though you’re trying to bring your quads parallel to the floor. Slowly stand up and switch legs. Try 2 sets of 10 reps. <a title="ATG Stores Homepage" href="http://www.atgstores.com/default.aspx" target="_blank">ATGStores.com</a> hopes these simple exercises help get you prepped for a thrilling, injury-free ski season.
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