The snow is coming and the smell of snowboard wax is in the air – at least in my garage. Are you ready for snowboard season, ski season, or whatever snow-sport you enjoy? There’s still time to get ready.
Keystone resort has been posting pictures of new snowfall on their facebook page. Proof positive that the season is not far away.
Prepare for Snow Season
To prepare for the season there are three types of conditioning that should be part of your conditioning program:
- Strength – snowboarding demands strong lower body strength to be sure, but pulling of a serious jib session, or grabbing big air tricks requires your upper body and core to be ready too. Strength training for snowboarding must work on building those specific areas and movements prior to hitting the hills.
- Power – explosive power is what gets you off the ground and into the air. Explosive power is what gets your board out of the deep powder and into the next turn. Snowboard training needs to work on specific training to establish that explosive power, so it is ready at your beckoning call.
- Cardio – All the strength and power in the world is useless if you are stuck sucking air, gasping for breath. Being in the mountains also means higher elevation, and less air. Snowboarding training must build an incredible base of cardiovascular endurance where your body can keep going.
Those basics are where this training program will be focused: strength, power, and cardio to get your cut to shred.
Where to start – Base Repair
Just like your snowboard we need to start out by taking a serious look at the base. If there are some injuries from prior years, take time to find ways to rehabilitate them. (Get professional help from physical therapists and doctors.)
Embrace these movements. Take time to learn the proper form for each. Take time doing them slowly with just your bodyweight. The workouts in the program will use these three fundamental movements and will crank up the intensity.
Before starting a training program and before hitting the slopes, you will need a repaired base. To get started perform a solid warm up, then focus on doing 3 sets of each of these exercises with each set consisting of as many repetitions as you can perform.
Preseason Program Fundamentals
A preseason snowboard program should have some fundamental features.
A solid way to start is a program that consists of three workouts per week. Include a warm-up on the off days to keep you limber and help release any tension in your body. The foam rolling sessions will help the most, try them, do them, and embrace the benefits.
Your workouts should be intense – be smart, but push yourself. While working out imagine that ideal run on a perfect bluebird day, you won’t want to rest on that run, so only rest when needed during the training circuits.
Trust a timer. The rest intervals are important, time them. The rest intervals are designed to only let your body partially recover. This form of training will help build your cardiovascular endurance in the shortest amount of time.
Tabata interval training may be a new form of training for you. Most likely it is a form of training that you’ll come to have a love-hate relationship with. It is wildly effective, but brutally intense. The first time I heard about it I never thought a four-minute training session could work; then I tried it. These are the secret key to improving your cardiovascular endurance. I’ve written a separate book on Tabata interval training entitled Ten Tabatas. Get a copy if you want to learn more about this form of training.
Embrace the Tabata.
To perform the Tabata sessions you will need a timer that can track these types of intervals. I use a Tabata timer application on my iPhone, but there are several options. You need some way to keep track of 8 rounds with each round consisting of 20 seconds of intense work and 10 seconds of rest.
The Pre-season Workout Plan
You could build a workout plan of your own, or use the one outlined in my book Carved The Snowboard Workout Program.
The key aim of the Carved program is to get you cut to shred – pre-season. Later in the book I’ll show you how to adapt the workout plan to help sustain your conditioning through the season.
During the pre-season, or prior to a snowboarding trip, is when this program shines. The plan is intense and will work your entire body. Do not combine this with additional forms of training. This will be all you need to get cut to shred. If you add more training, you will most likely run start to over-train and can get injured before you even strap on your snowboard. Don’t do too much. Your body needs to recover to build the strength, power, and cardiovascular endurance you will need on the slopes.
To get cut to shred with this program, simply workout out three times per week and alternate through the four workouts. The workouts are designed to work your body differently, so keep up with the rotation. Do not repeat the same workout back-to-back.
Keep track of the weight you use during the workouts. Use a weight that lets you complete the suggested number of repetitions for the exercise with good form. If you can complete that many, or more, add more weight the next time you workout.
If you have limited access to weights, you can also vary the intensity by changing how you perform each movement. Slowing how you descend, performing slow-negatives, is a great way to build strength without additional weight. For example on the squat, slow yourself down so it takes 4 seconds or more to descend from the upright position to a low squat. We want to build explosive power, so do not slow your positive movements – explode out of the bottom of the squat to the starting position.
The key is to continually challenge your body. Do not repeat the same workout at the same intensity levels. Keep pushing yourself to improve; each step gets you cut to shred.
Get Ready – Grab A Copy
So let the snow fly. While that base layer of snow is building up, be working on your base with the Carved Snowboard Workout Program. Grab your copy and let me know how I can help you get ready for the snowboard season.