Getting fit for winter sports - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Getting fit for winter sports

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MARATHON COUNTY (WAOW) -- Snow will likely hit our area this week, and that means winter sports.

But there are some things to think about before getting out on the slippery slope, and preparing now might save you from the pain later.

"I downhill ski, cross-country ski, I snowshoe, I used to curl when I was younger I'm going to get back into that and I used to place hockey as well," said Steve Ruppel from Wausau.

Steve Ruppel enjoys winter sports and staying active when the season hits, "Just getting up to the top and making it down without injuring myself, that's always a good thing."

But trainers said it's important to be physically fit before strapping in.

Pam Warren is a certified athletic trainer, "Anywhere between 4 and 8 weeks before you actually go out and ski is probably a good time, so right now is not too early to think."

She said she's treated her share of skiers and snowboarders, "The low back pain, the shoulder problems, the knee injuries."

But Warren said there are exercises you can do to prepare before going down the hill, "High repetitions and low weight is a good thing to work on. Quads, gluts and core are very important in being able to maintain that good skier's position for the entire day."

One exercise you can do at home is a wall sit. It's a 90 degree position and it's best to sit there for one to two minutes.

Warren said the benefit to doing this exercise is stronger quads, meaning less strain on the knees.

Ruppel works out all year round but he will make some changes during the winter, "I find myself running around the track or on a treadmill, lifting weights those sorts of things."

And Warren said with her advice you may have a more successful and hopefully less injury ridden reason.

Online Reporter: Christine Souders, Newsline 9

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