Yoga for Snow Sports! Monday and Wednesday at 5:30
Throughout the years of being a massage therapist and yoga instructor I have seen a lot of injuries from snow sports, but these are the most common and how yoga can help prevent them:
1. Whiplash: from biting it! Some falling is inevitable, but without a strong core we fall harder and have more of a tendency to let our head swing as we fall creating impact and causing long lasting pain in the front of the neck. Strengthening the core through yoga will make you balance better and fall less. When a fall does happen your body will react better.
2. Ankle/knee injuries: A lot of this is caused by 2 things.
a. Weak adductors and quads that cannot support the constant flexion at the knee, forcing the burden to the connective tissue of the knees and ankles. Yoga strengthens the muscles of the legs and butt to protect the skeletal structures.
b. Limited range of movement in the feet. In both ski and snowboard boots, the foot is held for long periods of time in dorsi flexion (foot flexed toward the calf) that is out of the normal range of movement for many. To get it, we often fall into patterns of either rolling the foot in or out, putting unnecessary strain on the ankle or the achilles. In yoga we always focus on strong and flexible feet to create stability in standing postures and balance.
3. Rotator cuff strains, sprains, and worse: when we lose balance or even just sit down, we often put arms behind us to bear our weight. The combo of cool muscles and tight pecs/rotator cuffs can lead to injury. Through yoga we can lengthen both the muscles of our chest and back to give more spring to the joint even when we are fatigued or lose an edge!
Finally yoga helps calm the mind and keep you focused. This is important for technical terrain and general enjoyment of your time on the slopes!