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Everything You Need to Know for a Healthy Ski Weekend

By Dr. Molly Casey

Healthy Skiing Safety Tips

There are still a number of weeks left before spring and the ski season is over. So let’s get to some of the basics for safe skiing with regard to your body and spine. Whether you’re an avid skier or a newbie, these tips go for one and all.

Warm Up

Skiing is a lot of fun, at least in my book. It’s exercise and also puts a good deal of stress on your body in ways that your body isn’t often used to. That is why it’s all that much more important to get your body moving prior to simply throwing on your gear and hitting the gondola.

  • Take 15 minutes to warm up your muscles and full body
  • Before you put on your boots, stretch your calves by hanging your heel off the back of a step, each side two times, and hold for 45 seconds
  • After you put on your boots but before you put on your skis, stretch your hamstrings with one leg up on a wooden fence or picnic table (these things are all around in ski areas); bend forward at the hips over the outstretched leg. Do each side 2-3 times and hold 45 -60 seconds
  • Move your outstretched arms to get the circulation going, and do a few spinal twists for 60 seconds
  • Do a few air squats; bend those knees
  • After you put on your skis, stroll around for about three minutes to get everything moving and the blood pumping
  • Take it easy on your first and second run down the mountain; ease into the day

During Your Day

It’s easy to get lost in the joy of the runs and just keep going. That’s not necessarily the best thing for your body. So keep these tips in mind during your day on the slopes.

  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water before you go out, and make sure to drink it consistently throughout the day (about half your body weight in ounces)
  • Take breaks. As fun as it is and as easy as it is to go all day straight, it’s not in the best interest for your body. Rest every half hour or so, even if just for a few minutes, while out on your runs. Take a break every 2-3 hours in which you go inside and take at least 10 minutes to rest
  • If you fall, which you will at some point, take an honest assessment of whether you should call it a day or if it’s OK to take a breather and keep on keeping on

Chiropractic Care

Regular chiropractic adjustments improve the health, flexibility and stability of your spine. All of these elements will facilitate a greater ski experience, both in terms of your being able to be out there skiing with greater safety and for longer periods of time. When inevitable injuries do arise, chiropractic adjustments will assist in the decrease of inflammation and positively affect the healing time and experience. So remember chiropractic adjustments as part of your ski routine!

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