Do this circuit several times a week and you’ll build perfect-for-shredding core, hamstring and glute strength by the time you hit the slopes.
1. Core Rotation With Medicine Ball Press
Equipment: 6-pound medicine ball
Targets: legs, core and shoulders
1. Stand with your feet turned slightly outward in a wide stance. Hold the medicine ball to your chest.
2. Squat and rotate to the right as you lift the medicine ball diagonally overhead – it will wind up over your right shoulder. Allow your left foot and hip to rotate. Make sure to tighten your abdominal muscles and glutes. Exhale on your rotation. Return to starting position and repeat to the left side. Continue to alternate sides. Do 12 – 15 reps.
Need a modification? “Do it without the med ball,” says Rocky Ribacoff, Equinox Group Fitness Director, who designed this workout. “Just reach your arms up” until you’re strong enough to incorporate the equipment.
2. Supine Hip Bridge/Leg Curl
Equipment: Stability ball
Targets: “This exercise is perfect for building core and hip stability as well as strengthening the hamstrings and glutes,” says Ribacoff. “Strong hamstrings help stabilize the knee joint and prevent common ski injuries.”
1. Lie face up on the floor with your hands at your sides. Place your heels firmly on top of your stability ball with your knees bent to 90 degrees. Lift your hips up. Make sure to keep your weight on your heels and shoulder blades.
2. Extend your legs while keeping your hips elevated. Make sure to keep your core engaged.
3. Bend your knees and pull the ball back toward you with your heels and engaged core powering the movement.
4. Drop your hips down to your starting position.
This is a four-count exercise. “Up, out, in, and down,” says Ribacoff. ” That’s one rep. Aim for fifteen reps.”
Need a modification? “To make this exercise a bit easier, just focus on lifting and lowering the hips,” she says. “Do not extend the legs.”
3. Side Plank/Hip Abduction and Adduction
Equipment: Towel or mat
Targets: core, gluteus medius and hip abductors. “Increasing hip abductor strength reduces the risk of ACL injuries,” says Ribacoff.
1. Lie on one side with the supporting elbow under your shoulder and legs stacked. Lift your hips off the floor.
2. Slowly lift and lower (abduct and adduct) 15 times.
3. Repeat on the other side.
To modify this exercise, bend the bottom knee to a 45-degree angle and use the top hand to provide support as needed, says Ribacoff.
4. Squat Jump
Equipment: None needed
Targets: “Explosive exercises like this one are great for conditioning the glutes and quads for power,” says Ribacoff. “Essential for carving through deep powder!”
1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Squat to 90 degrees keeping your chest lifted and abs engaged.
2. Jump high into the air and try to land softly and quietly on your feet.
Need a modification? If you don’t want to jump, squat down and power up onto your toes, says Ribacoff.
5. Overhead Slam
Equipment: 6-pound medicine ball
Targets: “Increasing strength and mobility of the legs and core will help you manage those steeps,” says Ribacoff.
1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Hold medicine ball with both hands and bring it overhead.
2. Drop into a squat while slamming the ball down in front of you as hard as you can.
“Go for twelve to fifteen reps,” says Ribacoff. “Rest up to one minute depending on your fitness level and repeat two more times.”
6. Mogul Hops
Equipment: 2 agility rings, an agility ladder or floor markings, such as tape
Targets: “These plyometric exercises are fast, high-impact lateral movements that will not only improve your cardiovascular capacity but will help you navigate the bumps,” says Ribacoff.
1. Line up two agility rings or pieces of tape side by side, 12 inches apart. If you have an agility ladder, roll it out and you can do this exercise using forward motion, which would make it more advanced.
2. Begin standing on one side with knees slightly bent and arms bent to 90 degrees. Hop both feet together, side to side, as quickly as you can, for 20 seconds, rotating between ring landings.
3. Rest for up to one minute depending on your fitness level. Repeat two more times.
7. Deep Squat/Row/Kickbacks
Equipment: One pair of 8-pound dumbells
Targets: “This is a multi-joint exercise that trains the legs, glutes, core, lats and triceps,” says Ribacoff. “This exercise translates well for skiers as hip and knee flexion are constant as you make your way down the mountain.”
1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart holding a dumbbell in each hand.
2. Squat, aim your butt far back and lean your chest forward—but keep it lifted. Your weights are down at your sides. Your neck should be in a neutral position with your spine; aim your gaze about six inches in front of your toes. Keep your belly button pulled back and stabilize your core.
3. Keeping your elbows tight against your body, pull them straight up and back so your weights are now by your hips.
4. Extend the weights back behind you and bring them back in.
5. Stand up straight to starting position. This is a five-count exercise. Repeat 15 times.
8. Pushup Reach
Equipment: None needed
Targets: “This exercise develops upper-body strength by targeting the chest, shoulders and triceps,” says Ribacoff. “It also recruits the core. A must for everyone—especially all you snowboarders!”
1. Begin in a plank position with your hands underneath your shoulders.
2. Lower your body toward the floor and inhale.
3. Exhale, lift your body and reach one arm forward at the top. Try for 10 -12 reps.