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Stretching before you ski - a pain in the butt?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
It can be a pain in the butt for nordic skiers if they don't. I guess it doesn't affect alpine skiers(as much) butt I imagine telemarkers would get posterior problems, with all that lunging, if they didn't stretch beforehand.

Some instructors I've skied with have been quite regimental with their stretching routines whilst others do none whatsoever, and some don't even start off with a gentle first run! Do you stretch beforehand or do you you just shoot off?

Apparently, you're also supposed to start stretching at least 3 weeks before your ski trip (please note disclaimer !)
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I ruptured an achilles tendon at a party where "nothing can go wrong" you know - long-suffering non-drinking driver (not me). Lots of good drink - wild dancing (no warm up) - tendon ping! I am now a great fan of warm-ups and stretching - and try to remember what happened to me when I go to the odd party Laughing
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I was told by one of my coaches a while ago that warm ups & stretching has been proven to play no part in injury prevention, maybe one the fitness guys has better info than that Puzzled I personally don't believe that and always try to remember to stretch.................after pulling my hamstring more times than i care to remember i definately feel it when i don't warm up properly and am paranoid of doing it again rolling eyes

Remember to make the stretching specific to the muscles you are going to use.
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Dan, I've been told the same thing, I believe that stretching after exercise has more benefit but I certainly don't believe in going off at full speed without warming up.
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
A progressive warm-up is esential, light (non-balistic) stretching can help some people, it's better to warm down and stretch properly after the days rigors - can look a bit odd in the bar though and the girl in Tignes who could do a full splits beteen two bar stools was 'spectacular'! Shocked
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Masque, and you were lying where at this point Twisted Evil
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In pain most probably!
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The Australian national teams and (I think) Californian Uni's have published results saying that stretching before exercise does not do anything to improve performance or prevent injury, however warming up does. I was shown a copy of the massive study, and told (I didnt read it) that they suggested that stretching before warming up was more of a risk than doing no stretches at all. Makes a bit of sense I think. So a few gentle/short blues, taken slowly and then stretches?
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I've gone from being fairly careless to fairly careful over the years. Like Nick Zotov, I ruptured an Achilles a few years back (playing squash), and it's not an experience I'd care to repeat, so I tend to play it safe. I'm also quite prone to calf and hamstring tweaks while running, which prior stretching seems to prevent. I've never had any significant injury skiing. I don't always stretch, but I do try to make the first run of the day fairly gentle. I can certainly recommend massage for relieving the usual aches and pains at the end of the day!
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Chris M-J, I'd certainly go along with warm-up before stretching - in line with a lot of training I have had in the past.
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Nick Zotov, in my impatience to get on the slope at CAstleford on Saturday, I didn't stretch enough, and boy did I ache yesterday.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
I`ve no idea whether running differs from skiing but one school of (running) thought that suggests that stretching is not only a waste of time but actually causes more injury (because done inappropriately) than not stretching. Others, (including me) believe in stretching after a gentle warm-up but before a strenuous session begins. Stretching after exercise is also recommended. Personally I find the whole thing pretty confusing. Different - and apparently reputable experts seem to say different things. I think you probably just have to go with what you find most comfortable.
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A little trick that usually works to use up some of the excess lactic acid build up after a hard day (though not much use if you've really abused yourself) is – later in the evening (2-3 hours), do 3 min. (no more) vigorous exercise to the affected parts, then 5-10 min of incremental stretching and if you’re really lucky, a massage. That should lessen the worst of the aches in the morning.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Masque, the problem is 3 hours after skiing Ive usually eaten to much and more commonly drunk to much to care about the pain im going to feel in the morning Madeye-Smiley
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Russell, there's always a 3 minute workout in the nightclub, or if you're lucky, after it. Not sure it'll be working the right muscles, though.
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skanky, three minutes Shocked you do it twice?
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I'm including getting your ski boots off. Cool
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I think that stretching is a complete waste of time, but doing a proper warm up and warm down is definitely worth it
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Warming up the muscles before any exercise that involves fast movements is a good idea, mainly to speed up the ability of the muscle and to improve the lubrication of the tendon sheaths. Stretching before exercise - no, except maybe when the exercise requires an extreme stretch anyway and skiing doesn't.

Stretching after exercise is beneficial if the exercise included a lot of repetitive part range of motion movements which resets the end point for the muscle - running is the classic which discourages the hamstrings from extending fully.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Helen Beaumont wrote:
Nick Zotov, in my impatience to get on the slope at CAstleford on Saturday, I didn't stretch enough, and boy did I ache yesterday.


But it was a fun day snowHead
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Nick Zotov, yse it certainly was! snowHead
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When I book a holiday I thoughtfully pick accomodation which envolves a good walk, often uphill, before we get to the chairlifts. Thus althougth I get a lot of earbashing at the time I am confident that all of the parrty are fully warmed up and rearing to go! Very Happy
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Quote:
all of the parrty are fully warmed up and rearing to go!


Remind me never to be in one of your ski parties! Shocked
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Long term flexibility...that's the key! A quick stretch before you hit the slopes won't help much if you haven't done anything else in the year since you were last in the mountains. All round flexibility will reduce your chance of injury....but you need to work at it in the same way you would your aerobic fitness....so Yoga anyone?
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Quote:

so Yoga anyone

Yes! I do it Little Angel ! And the reason I started was because of a women who goes skiing in our skiing group who is in her late sixties (how late? no-one knows....) who is a yoga teacher and still a great skiier. She drives her room mate mad, doing salute-to-the-sun as soon as she wakes up, when the rest of us can hardly crawl out of bed. She also does a few yoga classes in the hotel/chalet in the evening before dinner and can outdo the 20 year olds. Her posture is superb and she looks much younger than her age. I can highly recommend it Very Happy
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maggi, So do I, add in a session or two of Pilates and a few Aerobics classes and you can't get a better start to the skiing season. I highly recommend it, I never get stiff muscles on skiing hols....but I draw the line at saluting the sun in the chalet lounge before dinner. Shocked
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homphomp, women have an unfair advantage on these things. It is well known that women are more flexible (close your eyes Jonpim) than men, and in studies, suffer less sporting injuries as a result.
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Kit Wong, Surely that study just means you men need to get on and get stretching! There are one or two brave souls in my yoga class...or you can get a video/dvd and tie yourself in knots at home!

By the way....the balance is the other way round with ACL injuries...women are much more likely to suffer than men.... http://espn.go.com/trainingroom/s/acl.html
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I would suggest caution with some of the articles published by Peak Performance. For example in "studies" quoted by Kit Wong, there is an implication that stretching ligaments could be a good idea. Stretching ligaments destabilises the joint.

Peak Performance seems to publish articles uncritically, maybe relying on the reader to judge the value of the article. I have seen some very iffy research published by Peak Performance.
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john wells, The link was added purely, to support the claim that women were more flexible than men, and therefore suffer less injuries. I don't think the study in question advocates ligament stretching, this a Peak Performance statement. I'm not a Physician, so I can't comment on the validty of their statement.


Quote:

By the way....the balance is the other way round with ACL injuries...women are much more likely to suffer than men
, homphomp, from what I gather from the article, this is a muscle thing. Women are more challenged in this area! Unless you want to look like this (warning required?), there's not a lot you can do about it (ok, maybe I'm being a little bit extreme Very Happy )
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 Poster: A snowHead
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Mother of mercy, Kit! Did you have to do post that?!
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Kit Wong, Are you sure that's a woman?? Shocked
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Sorry!!!
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That's a bloke with long hair Shocked
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