2005 | Shape up now, then hit the slopes

November 6, 2005 

If you are not fit for ski season, you likely won’t get all $50 worth of satisfaction out of your lift ticket. But more important, you risk injuries. To be ready for ski season, Scott Melvin, a snowboarder and fitness manager at Lakewood’s 24 Hour Fitness, says you must train your lower body and your body core to improve strength and stability. In addition to 20 to 60 minutes of varied cardiovascular activities at least three times a week, he suggests these exercises, demonstrated by himself and fellow trainer Lisa Masters. – Craig Hill, The News Tribune

PUSH-UP WITH EXTENSION

Keeping your body straight, do a push-up. At the top of the push-up, extend your right arm out to your side, then twist your body until your right hand is pointing to the ceiling. Return to the push-up position and repeat on the left side. This will strengthen your chest, arms and core. Do three sets, each time doing five extensions on each side.

CRUNCH

Place your lower spine on a physio ball with your feet flat on the ground and your knees bent at a 100-degree angle. With your head in line with your body, do crunches without letting your body sit all the way up or lay all the way back.

Put your arms across your chest. For a bigger challenge, put your arms behind your head, careful not to pull your head up. For the hardest variation, extend your arms over your head. If you don’t have a physio ball, do crunches on the floor. Three sets of 10 will strengthen your abs and back.

OTHER STRENGTHENERS

Side Squat

Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart and your weight on your heels, bring your right knee up to a 90-degree angle. Step out as you bring your foot down, and bend over at the waist. Return to the starting position and repeat. Do two sets of 10 on each side to train your quads, hips and core.

Wall Squat

Squat against the wall as if you are sitting in an invisible chair. Keep your knees at a 90-degree angle. Keep your back flat against the wall and your knees together. For tougher challenges, lift your toes or one foot off the ground. This will strengthen your shins, hips, glutes and abs. Hold the position for at least 30 seconds three to five times.

The Plunge

Place one leg forward, bent at the knee, and the other leg straight back. Keeping your waist centered between your legs and your upper body upright, jump and quickly alternate your legs. This is a total leg workout and also works your hips and core. Do two or three sets of 10.

Inch Worm With Push-up

Bend at the waist, and put your hands on the floor. Then walk out with your hands until you are in a push-up position. Do a push-up, then walk with your hands back to the bent position and straighten up. This stretches your hamstrings and strengthens your chest, arms and shoulders as well as your core. Do two to three sets of five reps.

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