Yoga & Pilates

Yoga For Skiers And Snowboarders: 6 Ways It Will Improve Your Riding

Thought yoga was just for hippies? Think again....

Photo: Pinterest

Skiers and snowboarders – I would place a large bet that at some point your yogi friend has tried to get to start practicing yoga. Am I right?

You might think yoga is kinda….. boring. All that slow breathing and sitting really still can get to you after a while, huh?

Yoga is actually amazingly beneficial for skiers and snowboarders. It will help you to become stronger, more flexible and balanced , as well as preventing injury.

If you’re just coming out to the mountains for a week, yoga is an awesome way to get your body prepped for the slopes.

Forget the Day 3 Ache, you’ll be stretched and limber, ready to charge from breakfast ’til last lifts.

1) You’ll be flexible and stronger

Photo: Jamie Anderson

Yoga is a full-body workout. It’s not just about sitting in a meditation pose and breathing.

It works and stretches everything from your hamstrings and quads to testing your upper body strength.

Olympic gold champion Jamie Anderson is a huge yoga fan – and clearly it’s done her some serious good.

2) It lengthens your hamstrings

Photo: Tumblr

Skiers and snowboarders use their quads. A lot. This can lead to overdeveloped quads and shortened, tighter hamstrings.

Everyone knows that tight hamstring feeling after a day shredding the mountain. Yoga is brilliant for stretching them out.

It’s important to keep your hamstrings loose and strong – particularly for skiers – as weak hamstrings can place extra strain on the knee joint, which can cause injury.

3) It really helps open up your hips

Photo: Choclo Project

Flexible open hips are important for skiers and snowboarders.

Most of us spend too much time sitting in office chairs and cars, so we don’t use our hips as much as we should.

Pro snowboarder Caroline Béliard-Zebrowski (above) discovered yoga after suffering numerous injuries from her winter seasons.

Powerful, flexible hips help with balance and angulation of turns, so you’ll make sharper, cleaner lines rather than using the upper body to make the turn.

4) You’ll get rock hard abs

Photo: Pinterest

Yoga is a damn good workout for your core.

You need strong abs to maintain balance while skiing and snowboarding, as well as redirecting weight that often falls into the knees.

If you don’t engage your core properly, hamstrings and hip flexors become tight and you’ll start to feel a strain in your lower back.

Yoga encourages you to use your core more – which ultimately will help your riding.

5) Your balance will be bang on

Photo: The Ski Week

Think about the amount of balance you need when hucking 360s off a kicker or charging through knee-deep powder.

Yoga is all about balance – whether you are balancing on one foot in Tree Pose or trying to perfect your handstands.

Get practicing and your body will be well prepped for the winter shred.

6) You’ll find it easier to focus

Photo: Pinterest

You’ve probably experienced that kind of zoning out, meditational state when you’re skiing or snowboarding right? Where the rest of the world melts away.

Yoga is all about calming the mind and focusing on movement and breath together. So if you manage to nail it on the mat, chances are it’ll come readily on the slopes.

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