Snow Skiers: Exercises to Strengthen Your Knees

February is a great month to hit the slopes; are you planning on heading to your favorite ski resort?  If so, the physicians at Resurgens Orthopaedics want you to know how important it is to strengthen your knees before you get on the mountain.

Knee injuries, especially to the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL), are common among skiers but there are some exercises you can do to strengthen that area, making the knee joints more resilient.  Here are just a few:

Barbell/Dumbbell Squat

This is a great all-around exercise that will strengthen not only the muscles of the legs, but the core as well.  Skiers’ knees frequently go from a bent to a straight position, so beefing up the quads, hamstrings, and calf muscles will help limit lateral movement in the knee joint that can cause an ACL or MCL tear.​

Squat Jump

Along the same lines, squat jumps are a perfect way to build up the muscles of the legs and core to help you have more control while you’re skiing.  The jumping motion will also help improve your explosive power when going from a squat to standing position.

Lateral Box Jump

This exercise will help simulate the same motions you’ll be making on the ski slope, especially if you enjoy ski runs with moguls.  Again, this will target the muscles that support the knee joint, making them less susceptible to injury. High level skiing requires high level training and this is not an entry level plyometric exercise

It’s always important to talk to a physician any time you’re starting or changing a fitness routine, and you’ll need to start your skiing conditioning at least three weeks before any planned outings.  If you’ve injured your knee after a trip to the slopes, call or request an appointment online today with one of the physicians at Resurgens Orthopaedics.   Here’s to a great snow skiing season!