Does anyone REALLY like to “just exercise”? Maybe, but if you plan to ski or snowboard this winter a few easy-to-do and not so time-consuming “get ready” exercises can make the experience much more enjoyable for ALL ages and especially for seniors.
A variety of exercises that you can do at home are demonstrated on the Brave Ski Mom and Senior Skiing web sites. They are similar in their approach and speak to the fact that – despite one’s age – certain muscle groups need a little fine-tuning or preparation for a few days on the slopes.
Brave Ski Mom advocates focusing on the core (abdominal muscles and back muscles between the chest and upper thighs) and the legs with Abdominal Leg Reaches and Wall Squats. These exercises are conducive to better health and strength in general and also more beneficial for a great experience on the slopes. If nothing else, they improve stamina.
For those with kids, Brave Ski Mom suggests making an exercise program a family affair and notes “don’t forget to stretch” after each session.
Seniors can also reach better conditioning goals with some slightly altered exercises more suitable for this group. Some exercises are virtually identical – such as leg squats.
Senior Skiing outlines, in a three-part series, five exercises that are demonstrated by Rick Silverman, a physical therapist and certified strength and conditioning specialist. As noted on the Senior Skiing web site, people annually lose muscle mass after the age of 40. The exercises described on the site are designed to help improve flexibility and strength with a focus on hips and legs.
Of course, other forms of exercise such as biking, hiking and even walking also contribute to better conditioning especially if done on a regular basis.