Snowboarding is an exciting activity that requires a good amount of physical ability. Riding your board on the mountain is certainly a good form of exercise, but if you want to take your abilities to the next level, you should consider training in the offseason as well.
There is no real substitute for the actual time spent on your board, but being in great shape goes a long way. Here, we will look at some of the best snowboarding exercises and workouts to take your riding to the next level.
Whether you are a serious rider or just looking to improve, these workouts will help you reach your best possible potential.
- 1. Squats
- 2. Lunges
- 3. Core
- Final Words
Squats are some of the best overall full-body exercises you can do to build both strength and stamina. You might think they are only a lower body exercise, but they can also build a ton of core strength as well. There are many different squat variations, and they all bring something different to the table.
Let’s take a quick look at some of the best options to directly assist with your snowboarding. The basic element of a squat is to start in a standing position and bend at your hips until your legs reach a 90-degree angle. Be sure to not let your knees move forward in front of your toes. You also don’t want your back to arch.
The back squat is a great exercise on its own, but it can seriously improve your snowboarding abilities as well. You do need a barbell to perform a proper back squat, which means you will have to go to the gym if you don’t have any personal exercise equipment.
Going heavy on your back squats will add serious strength and muscle to your body. In contrast, less weight with higher reps is great for stamina and endurance. Be sure to pay close attention to the form tips mentioned in the video above so you don’t injure yourself.
You don’t need to use a barbell to get benefits from the squat exercise. An air squat is simply a bodyweight squat you can perform anywhere, at any time.
That makes it an easy exercise for anyone to utilize in their snowboard training, year-round. You can build solid aerobic capacity, serious strength, and plenty of stamina through this workout.
If you get comfortable performing air squats and want to add another level to your workout, give jump squats a try.
This movement is basically an air squat but you explode up from the bottom position and into the air by jumping. This will build great leg and core strength in addition to stamina and endurance.
If you want to be able to ride all day or love the terrain park, jump squats can help you build the muscles needed for those activities.
Lunges are another awesome exercise that directly improves your snowboarding capabilities. To do a lunge, start in a standing position and step one foot out forward as your other leg lowers and your knee slightly touches the ground.
You then stand back up straight and repeat on the other side. Check out this video for basic lunge technique. As with squats, there are good variations on the basic lunge we can apply to snowboarding.
Similar to squats, you want to keep your knees in line with your ankle and toes when performing the movement. If you look down and see that your knee goes out past your toes, you need to step out further to avoid injury.
Lunges are another great exercise that can be completed with just your body weight. However, if you want to take things up a level and better prepare yourself for the snowboarding season, you should try a weighted lunge.
You can either hold dumbbells in your hands and perform a dumbbell lunge or you can use a barbell on your back and perform a barbell lunge. Both are challenging-but-fun exercises.
Jumping lunges are a great variation of a standard lunge exercise covered above. This movement is a great way to simulate the constant use of your legs and core that happens when you’re out riding.
The jumping motion adds stamina and cardio to the movement while also strengthening your hip flexors and ligaments. Such areas are incredibly important when it comes to being effective out on the snow mountain.
Core exercises go far beyond situps and the other basic abdominal work that you might be familiar with. A strong core is essential when snowboarding because it helps you stay balanced and actively engaged when making high-speed turns and other difficult maneuvers. Though every part of your body helps you ride, a solid core is absolutely critical.
Hollow rocks may seem like a pretty basic movement. However, once you lie down on the ground and give these a try, you will see how effective they are at strengthening your abs, lower back, hip flexors, and other core muscles. Start by laying on your back on the ground.
Lift both your arms and legs up about 45-degrees and then rock from front to back. Your abs will be on fire in no time!
Toes to Bar/Knees to Bar
Toes to bar is another great exercise. This one requires a pullup bar (or something similar) where you can hang freely with your body dangling beneath you.
Start by simply hanging from the bar and then bring your legs and toes up to touch it. This is hard. You might only be able to come up part of the way, and you can lift your knees towards the bar as an easier variation.
This is an amazing core exercise that builds grip and upper body strength as well.
Frog jumps are a simple exercise that has been used by gymnasts for generations. Some people don’t realize how much you use your core when jumping, but after you attempt 100 frog jumps, you’ll sure be sore the following day.
This exercise also helps to build cardio and endurance, two important attributes for a long day on the snow. Many snowboarders may be surprised how much jumping can help their riding abilities.
Here are a few quick answers to some common questions relating to the best exercises for snowboarding.
How do I get in shape for snowboarding?
The best way to get in shape for snowboarding is to snowboard more! But if you want to get in shape during the offseason, a combination of strength training and cardio is a good plan. Focus on lower body and core exercises to strengthen the muscles used when boarding.
Should you stretch before snowboarding?
I think you should always do a little warm-up before charging hard down the mountain. Stretching can help prime your muscles for activity and help you prevent injury. A quick 5-10 minute stretch in the lodge or parking lot is recommended.
Is core strength important for snowboarding?
Core strength helps you stabilize your body. Snowboarding involves a lot of stability, and that’s why core strength is so important when you ride. Core strength doesn’t just involve your abs; it also involves your hips, so you can see why this is important when you ride.
Why is snowboarding so tiring?
Snowboarding is a strenuous activity. It involves using some of the largest muscle groups in your body. It takes a lot of effort to snowboard, and because your muscles are constantly being used as you ride, your body will get tired.
Is snowboarding a full body workout?
It can be. You don’t really use your upper body to the same extent when you are snowboarding. But even with that in mind, snowboarding still involves using most of your muscles, so I would call it a full body workout.
Is snowboarding bad for your knees?
If you aren’t careful or are in poor shape, snowboarding can be bad for your knees. Any athletic endeavor creates the potential for injury, and snowboarding is no different. Avoid big jumps and don’t ride when you are tired if you are worried about your knees.
As with any exercise program, you need to stay consistent to get results with all of the above exercises and workouts.
If you want to see the benefits of these when snowboarding, I would recommend creating an exercise program that utilizes all of the exercises at least three days a week.
To see the most direct benefits on the mountain, you want to start doing this at least eight weeks before the season starts. There are many variations of each of the above exercises and you should take the time to find the version that works best for you.
Just remember that, when doing any exercise program, warm up and stretch before going fast or heavy to limit your potential for injury. The exercises listed here can be difficult, but they are some of the best workouts for snowboarding.
If you stick with them, you will see the benefits of your hard work the next time you get out on the snow!About Lorraine