If you’re looking to get ready for ski season or recover from a long day on the slopes, you should consider adding yoga to your routine. The practice can help you build strength, improve balance, recover after a tough day and it can even help you learn more about your body and the way it works.
Before you gather your equipment for your first big day on the mountain this season, try these four yoga poses to improve your skiing.
This pose helps stretch and strengthen the lower body and targets the core. Since your back heel should be off the ground in this pose, there are also benefits for balance.
How to: start in downward dog, moving your right foot between your hands, while remaining on the ball of your left foot. Keeping your rear heel raised, lift your upper body and arms toward the ceiling. Your front knee should be at a 90-degree angle and you should breathe through this pose.
This pose is great for building up strength in the legs and core and helping with balance.
How to: start standing straight up with big toes touching and heels slightly apart. Bend your knees and lower your tailbone to the floor as you reach your arms over head. Breathe long and deep, keep your eyes up and stay relaxed.
Sun Bird Pose
This pose helps strengthen your core, arms and glutes—all key muscle groups in skiing.
How to: start in table top position and reach your right fingertips straight ahead at shoulder height while extending your left toes back. Keep your hips pointed toward the ground and breathe through this pose. Remember to repeat on the opposite side.
Particularly helpful after a long day on the slopes, this pose helps stretch and strengthen the back, calf, shoulder and hamstring muscles that tend to get a lot of use.
How to: start on your hands and knees, with your wrists under your shoulders and toes on the floor. Slowly shift your weight onto your hands and feet and adjust your position until your body is in the shape of an upward arrow. Relax and find your stretches, while breathing.
All photos courtesy of Shutterstock.