Skiers may not realize the importance mobility and flexibility plays into improving function, range of motion, and performance. Adequate flexibility, especially in the hips, allows for better speed, turns, and cuts. The post-ski stretch is an important factor in maintaining mobility throughout the kinetic chain. Before you hit the hot tub or bar, be sure to spend a few minutes stretching
Hold each pose for 30 to 45 seconds. If the stretch is one-sided, repeat the stretch on the alternate side.
Standing Straddle Stretch
Purpose: Lengthens gluteal, hamstring, and calf muscles
How to Perform: Stand in a wide legged stance (feet four feet apart). Keep toes facing forward, hinge at the hips and place hands on the shins or ground. The folding forward is dependent upon the body’s current flexibility.
Standing Side Lunge
Purpose: Lengthens inner thighs
How to Perform: Stand in a wide legged stance (feet four feet apart). Keep toes facing forward, hinge at the hips and bend your right knee forward. Keep the left leg straight. Rest hands on the right quad or on the floor, depending on your flexibility. Return to center and repeat on the opposite leg.
Standing Quad Stretch
Purpose: Lengthens the quadriceps muscle
How to Perform: Stand tall and place the right foot into the right hand. Hold the inside part of the right foot (where the big toe is). Balance, or use a wall to support the one-legged stance. Keep the inner thighs parallel. Repeat on the opposite leg.
Standing Chest Opener
Purpose: Opens the chest musculature, anterior shoulder and latissimus dorsi muscles
How to Perform: Stand tall with feet hip distance apart. Lift arms overhead and interlock fingers. Place hands behind head and let the elbows open to the side. Hold to a point to where you can feel a stretch in the chest region.
Supine Hand to Foot
Purpose: Lengthens gluteal, hamstrings and calf muscles
How to Perform: Lie on the ground and place a strap or towel around the right foot. Extend the right leg toward the ceiling and keep the left leg flat on the ground. Hold to a where you feel a stretch. Repeat on the opposite leg.
Supine Hand to Foot: Outer Thigh
Purpose: Lengthens external rotators
How to Perform: Lie on the ground and place a strap or towel around the right foot. Extend the right leg toward the ceiling and keep the left leg flat on the ground. Hold to a where you feel a stretch. Cross the right leg over the body, toward the left. The stretch should be felt in the lateral region of the right gluteal. Return to center and repeat on the opposite side.
Lying Spinal Twist
Purpose: Increases mobility throughout the chest, torso and hip
How to Perform: Lie on your back with feet on the floor. Place arms on the ground at shoulder height. Slowly, lower knees to the right and rotate the head to the left. Hold, return to center and repeat on the opposite side.