3 easy steps to avoiding an injury on the slopes

by Dr. Michelle Collie, DPT, MS, OCS


You get to the mountain, put on your skis or snowboard (and maybe your kids’ too). Hop right on the chairlift. Hop off, and head straight down a run. Now repeat!


But, let's take a moment before doing all of this. Before you get to the fun, you need to prepare your body for the day ahead, and you can do so with a dynamic warm-up. A dynamic warm-up will get the blood flowing in your legs, and get your joints moving, helping you to avoid an injury on the slopes.


Try out this three-minute “Swings, Squats and Lunges” dynamic warm up next time you’re on the mountain. And check out the video below!


Leg Swings | For each leg15 seconds front and back, 15 seconds left and right

Leg swings warm up the lower back, hips, glutes, hamstrings, quads, hip flexors, hip adductor, and abductors.


Loosen your legs and joints by doing some leg swings. Start with one leg and swing it front and back for 15 seconds. Then swing it left to right for 15 seconds. Switch legs and do the same for the other.

Deep Squats |10 – 15

Deep Squats warm up the lower back, hips, knee joints, ankle joints, and your lower body.

Get your muscles warmed up and your joints stretched with some deep squats. Get down into a deep squat, then stand up by pushing from your heels. Keep your back straight and don’t let your knees go in front of your toes! Use your ski poles if you have them to help with balance or hold on to something else if you need the additional support. Do 10-15 of these.



Walking Lunge | Take 10 steps

Walking Lunges warm up the lower back and legs and stretch out your hip flexors and quads.

Lunges can also help with warming up your joints and muscles. Take a large step and sink into a lunge, keeping your back straight and making sure your front knee doesn’t go past your toes. You can put your back knee on the ground if you’d like. Return to standing, and take another step with your opposite foot. Do 10 steps of walking lunges, taking time to feel the stretch each time you take a step.




Dr. Michelle Collie demonstrates the “Swings, Squats and Lunges” dynamic warm-up!



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