The Ins And Outs Of Snow Sports
Winter sports differ from other sports in terms of risk factors and difficulty levels. In addition to the normal physical stresses that exercise puts on your body, cold weather comes with a long list of problems all its own. For instance, altitude sickness and hypothermia are legitimate concerns.
Because of the extra dangers present in snow sports, it’s important to be well-informed about the activity you choose. Here’s the 411 on three popular winter sports:
- Skiing - This sport burns approximately 350 calories per hour and uses your core muscles to provide balance and stabilize the pelvis and spine. Other muscles that are worked while skiing are the foot and ankle muscles, lower leg muscles, knee flexors and extenders, and the gluteal muscles. Injuries to the knees and wrists are common among skiers.
- Snowboarding - Similar to skiing, snowboarding is an aerobic sport that works all the major muscle groups. When you snowboard, you use your quads, hamstrings, and calves to ride the board, your foot and ankle muscles to steer, and your arm muscles to balance. And, like with skiing, your core muscles are crucial for balance. Snowboarding burns around 450 calories per hour and is excellent for weight loss. Injuries can occur in your knee ligaments, ankles, wrists, head, and spine.
- Snowshoeing - Although this cardio sport could be considered easier than skiing or snowboarding, it actually burns more calories. It’s great for building strength, balance, agility, and endurance. The difficulty level ranges from beginner to highly advanced. As with the two prior sports, knee injuries are common with snowshoeing.
Whether you’re trying to lose weight, want to get in shape, or you’re just seeking a thrill, snow sports are an excellent option. But they do come with their own set of risks. Before participating in any sport, especially those in extreme weather, be sure to prepare with the right equipment and take all necessary precautions to prevent injuries.
Personal trainer Ralph Roberts customizes workout plans geared to his clients’ specific needs, fitness levels, and goals. If you’re thinking of taking up a snow sport and want to prepare your body for the effort, contact us for a consultation.