6 Yoga Exercises Every Skier Needs to Know

Skiers are some of the strongest athletes in sport. And it’s not surprising why: skiing combines near every element of fitness training such as agility, speed, strength, power, endurance and flexibility. Which is why this high-energy sport benefits from the slow and thoughtful practice of yoga. Whether they’re headed downhill or cross-country, skiers need adequate upper and lower body strength, flexibility and stamina. Below are some of the best strengthening exercises for skiers.    


chair

Chair
Chair pose is a deep strengthener for the arms and legs while focusing on the powerful breath. This position is almost similar to a downhill skiing position, with the exception of having arms overhead.

How to Perform: Stand tall with feet together. Inhale, raise arms overhead and exhale the hips back, similar to a squat position. Engage the core and hold for 30 to 60 seconds.


crescent lunge

Crescent Lunge
This position strengthens the upper and lower body, while challenging the balance since the back heel is lifted from the floor. It allows the core to remain engaged while integrating mobility of the hip.

How to perform: Stand tall and step your right foot behind into a lunge position. Rotate your chest and hip to face forward and inhale, raise arms overhead. Relax shoulders away from the ears. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds before switching sides.


warrior 3

Warrior 3
This position focuses on powerful balancing skills while strengthening the core, gluteal and leg muscles. The inner and outer thighs on the stance leg are required to activate to keep the pelvis stable and neutral.

How to Perform: Stand tall and place your right toes on the floor behind the body. Raise arms to shoulder height. Start to hinge forward from the hip, keeping the head and foot as a counterbalance. Once your body is near parallel to the floor, extend arms overhead. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds before switching sides.


triangle

Triangle
Triangle increases strength in the legs and mobility in the hip, inner thighs and chest region. It overall enhances flexibility and strength, which is beneficial for various planes of movement, especially is skate skiing.

How to Perform: Stand with feet three to four feet apart. Turn your right toes forward and keep the left parallel or with the heel slightly kicking out. Inhale arms to shoulder height and exhale arms to reach toward your right shin or the floor. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds before switching sides. 


side angle

Side Angle
This pose deeply strengthens the legs and core while integrating mobility between the hip and thoracic spine.

How to Perform: Stand with feet three to four feet apart. Turn your right toes forward and keep the left parallel or with the heel slightly kicking out. Inhale arms to shoulder height and bend your right knee to 90 degrees. Slowly, reach the right arm and chest forward to place the hand on the ground. The arm will be in front of the leg and next to the shin.


dolphin

Dolphin
This position stabilizes and strengthens the shoulder-blade and arm region while lengthening the backside of the body. This is beneficial for when the skier places poles into the ground and incorporates movement patterns or stability when  

 How to Perform: Start on all fours and place forearms on the ground. Interlock your fingers and curl your toes onto the mat. Slowly lift the hips and relax the heels toward the ground. Hold for 30 to 60 seconds.