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Importance of Conditioning

Safety Site

     Monica Palmer, Safety Administrator

Recreational Safety takes Responsibility & Control


The Importance of Conditioning Prior to Skiing and Snowboard Season

 Elizabeth Brinkley Pateta, MA, ATC, LAT Reno Orthopedic Clinic

 Anytime a person begins a new activity without stretching, without strengthening, without any activity preparation, the person runs the risk of musculoskeletal injury-whether joint, muscle, or bone. Preparing for an upcoming sport season is important for many reasons. First, different activities or sports use muscles in different ways (ex. Running vs. Snowboarding). Second, when a person has not actively participated in a sport recently, say a seasonal sport like skiing, the body’s systems need time to adapt to the sport again, or for the first time. You can’t just go run a sprint without any training and expect to come out of it unscathed, unless you are 6 years old! In general, it takes about 3 weeks for the body to adapt to the new activity and/or exercise before it’s ready for another challenge to adapt to.

Now we all know that snow is important to this area, however, at ROC we see a lot of injuries during winter season from sport participation, that could have easily been prevented if not diminished the severity of the injury. One of the most common and preventable injuries during this sport season is the Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) tear in the knee. I know this may be a misconception but ROC incorporates pre-season conditioning and prevention exercise programs as part our orthopedic care. Preventative exercise programs are much more cost effective in the long run than surgical interventions. So why not prep and train the body to maintain the health of the individual? Sport Performance and injury prevention are concepts for all ages, all participants. Prevention exercise programs should be the norm, not fixing the injury. Sounds a lot like brushing your teeth or eating fruits and vegetables daily for optimal health?

Back in the fall of 2014, this doctor came to a general meeting and spoke to our club.  At the time ROC had a ski conditioning class.  I called to see if this was still available, but I was advised that ROC no longer provides this type of training.

If any members are aware of a local ski conditioning class, please share this information with us.