Source: Best Health magazine, January/February 2016
Why are lower body workouts important for skiers?
Skiing is especially demanding on the gluteal muscles, quadriceps and hamstrings, as well as the calves. These muscles support and stabilize the hips, knees and ankles, which are involved in every turn initiated on the hill. These same muscles and joints are involved in everyday activities as well, like walking, climbing up and down stairs and even getting up from a chair. The stronger these muscle groups, the easier and more efficient your movements become, both in skiing and in everyday life. Developing your strength and balance in your lower body helps with overall posture and movement, as well as physical fitness.
What exercises should I be doing to get that round, firm "ski bum" that skiers are known for?
One move I recommend is the ‘monster walk.’ Wrap a resistance band around your ankles or calves. Keeping your spine neutral, take big sidesteps (about one to two feet ‘ enough that you feel resistance). Do about 15 slow and controlled steps to the left, then 15 to the right. You should feel the sides of your hips (the gluteus medius muscles) working very hard. You can also do Romanian dead lifts. Begin in a neutral, shoulder-width stance with your knees softly bent. Keep your back flat, core tight and spine neutral. Hold a barbell or kettlebell straight down in front of you for resistance. Keeping your back straight and pointing your bum to the wall behind you, lower down to knee height. Drive your hips forward and slide the weight back up to the starting position. Do three to four sets of eight to 12 reps. Perform these exercises at least three times a week as a supplement to your exercise routine.