Tag: skiing

Pilates Exercise of the Month: The Hundred

One of the signature abdominal exercises of Pilates.

Purpose: To strengthen the abdominal muscles, develop upper body stabilization and stimulate circulation to warm  up the body in preparation for the mat workout.

  1. Lie on your back; pull your knees into the chest and feel the entire length of your spine on the mat. Lengthen the back of the neck; slide your shoulders down and back.
  1. Lift your head and shoulders off the mat bringing chin toward chest. Reach your arms long, past your hips and straighten both legs up toward the ceiling.  Squeeze your buttocks and inner thighs together.
  1. Begin pumping your arms straight up and down as if you were tapping water. Keep the movement slightly above the mat and your arms straight.
  1. Inhale for 5 counts (pumps) and exhale for 5 counts (pumps).
  1. Lower your legs to a 45 degree angle, or to the point just before your spine arches off the mat. Maintain this position, pumping your arms and breathing for 100 counts (10 full breath cycles).
  1. To finish, lower your head and bring your knees into the chest.

Checklist:

  • Shoulders are down and back while pumping the arms.
  • Make sure you are sinking your belly into your spine throughout.
  • Don’t bend the wrists while pumping; keep stretching through the fingertips.
  • Keep arms synchronized while pumping.

Note:

  • If your lower back begins to hurt, bend your knees in toward your chest.
  • If you develop neck pain, lower your head.
  • A shoulder injury may prevent you from pumping your arms. Simply reach long or pump softly.

Visualization: Imagine your arms beating out the tempo to a piece of music.

PILATES + SKIING & SNOWBOARDING

It’s ski season! The pure joy of skiing down a mountainside of sparkling powder, surrounded by tall evergreens and a brilliant blue sky!

Then, after that first day of tackling moguls, dodging trees and other skiers ~ the fatigue and soreness of the legs and hips kick in. This is partly because of muscle overuse and lack of core strength.  If the core is not working enough, your legs and hips have to work harder to stabilize you.

Pilates will stretch tight, overused leg muscles, such as the quads and hip flexors and strengthen underused muscles such as the hamstrings and inner thighs.

Skiers rely on side to side hip movement to recruit the inside and outside edge of the ski. Boarders tilt their hips forward and back to access the front and back edge of the board and use a more rotational movement to change directions. A strong core gives you better edge control. Edge control improves balance, as you navigate the twists and turns of the slope at high speeds, the ever-changing snow conditions and ability to get up unscathed when you take a tumble.

By practicing Pilates, core strength and alignment improves and you become more in tune with your body. Movements are fluid, there is less wear and tear on joints and your sport becomes more enjoyable. You’ll find yourself adapting better to changing snow conditions, challenging terrain, and falling less.

Here are some mat exercises you could start today:

1)   The Hundred: core, arms, hip stabilizer

2)  The Abdominal Series

  • Single leg stretch
  • Double leg stretch
  • Single straight leg stretch
  • Double straight leg stretch
  • Criss-cross

3)  The Side Lying Leg Kick Series

  • Front/Back
  • Up/Down
  • Small Circles
  • Inner Thigh lifts
  • Bicycle
  • Small Circles
  • Inner Thigh lifts

Nothing will improve your skiing faster than a strong core. Cross-train by adding a Pilates mat class to your fitness regime or perhaps a private session with your Pilates Instructor.

Stay strong ~ ski safe!

Pilates + Skiing and Snowboarding

It’s ski season—ah…the pure joy of skiing down a mountainside of sparkling powder, surrounded by tall evergreens and brilliant blue sky…

Then, after that first day of tackling moguls, dodging trees and other skiers; the fatigue and soreness of the legs and hips kick in. This is partly because of muscle overuse and lack of core strength. If the core is not working enough, your legs and hips have to work harder to stabilize you.

Pilates will stretch tight, overused leg muscles, such as the quads and hip flexors and strengthen underused muscles such as the hamstrings and inner thighs.

Skiers rely on side to side hip movement to recruit the inside and outside edge of the ski. Boarders tilt their hips forward and back to access the front and back edge of the board and use a more rotational movement to change directions. A strong core gives you better edge control. Edge control improves balance as you navigate the twists and turns of the slope –at high speeds-, the ever-changing snow conditions and the ability to get up unscathed when you take a tumble.

By practicing Pilates, core strength and alignment improves and you become more in tune with your body. Movements are fluid, there is less wear and tear on joints and your sport becomes more enjoyable. You’ll find yourself adapting better to changing snow conditions, challenging terrain, and falling less.

Here are some mat exercises you could start today:

  1. The Hundred – core, arms, hip stabilizer
  2. The Abdominal Series
    Single leg stretch
    Double leg stretch
    Single straight leg stretch
    Double straight leg stretch
    Criss-cross
  3. The Side Lying Leg Kick Series
    • Front/Back
    • Up/Down
    • Small Circles
    • Inner Thigh lifts
    • Bicycle

Nothing will improve your skiing faster than a strong core. Cross-train by adding a Pilates mat class to your fitness regime or perhaps a private session with your Pilates Instructor.

Stay strong, ski safe!

Take Your Exercise from the Pool to the Slopes

Water Aerobics is not just exercise… it’s making friends too. I had the pleasure of going Cross Country skiing for the first time with 3 of the water aerobics participants on March 9th. We went to the Cabin Creek area it was a beautiful sunny day on the other side of Snoqualmie pass. Cindy Shurtleff, Paul and Jean Henderson made the trip a blast. Once we had a boot repair done (duct tape is great for everything) we were off. I fell a few times and as I discovered later, came out with various bruises to prove it. As I say “No blood, no foul! Get up and stride it off”.

A few things learned by the group:

  1. Don’t roll your ankle out, that’s how you catch an edge and then it is all over, your body meets the hard pack snow.
  2. Cindy is an awesome teacher, thanks Cindy!
  3. Paul and Jean dealt with a minor boot malfunction quite well. Paul must have been a boy scout he was well prepared for anything.

My water aerobics class is planning another outing, my first time snow shoeing hopefully soon.

Improve Your Skiing and Snowboarding with Pilates

It’s ski season—ah…the pure joy of skiing down a mountainside of sparkling powder, surrounded by tall evergreens and brilliant blue sky……

Then, after that first day of tackling moguls, dodging trees and other skiers; the fatigue and soreness of the legs and hips kick in. This is partly because of muscle overuse and lack of core strength. If the core is not working enough, your legs and hips have to work harder to stabilize you.

Pilates will stretch tight, overused leg muscles, such as the quads and hip flexors and strengthen underused muscles such as the hamstrings and inner thighs.

Skiers rely on side-to-side hip movement to recruit the inside and outside edge of the ski. Boarders tilt their hips forward and back to access the front and back edge of the board and use a more rotational movement to change directions. A strong core gives you better edge control. Edge control improves balance as you navigate the twists and turns of the slope –at high speeds-, the ever-changing snow conditions and the ability to get up unscathed when you take a tumble.

By practicing Pilates, core strength and alignment improves and you become more in tune with your body. Movements are fluid, there is less wear and tear on joints and your sport becomes more enjoyable. You’ll find yourself adapting better to changing snow conditions, challenging terrain, and falling less.

Here are some mat exercises you could start today:

  1. The Hundred – core, arms, hip stabilizer
  2. The Abdominal Series
  3. The Side Lying Leg Kick Series

Nothing will improve your skiing faster than a strong core. Cross-train by adding a Pilates mat class to your fitness regime or perhaps a private session with your Pilates Instructor.

Stay strong, ski safe!

What to do when Summer is over? Don’t get bored in Winter!

Perhaps it’s all a matter of knowing “what” is out there in the world of winter, snow and ice. Many of us love to cycle, run, swim, play tennis, garden, go boating and do a million things outdoors when it’s summer sunshine and warmth… but once the days get shorter and colder we sometimes feel at loss with what to do. Here are some tips to keep you motivated and encourage you to try something new!

Where to start…
Like anything in life, the more prepared we are for trying something new or unfamiliar, the more successful we will be. So get into SAC for one of our Winter Sports Prep and Play classes, a series of fun and kick-butt circuits designed to get you strong and coordinated for the snow and ice. OR sign up for a personal training session with one of our awesome trainers. OR email Outdoor Rec Coach Brandyn (broark@sacdt.com) and she will get you motivated, moving, and mastering whatever skill you want to learn for the winter months!

What is out there…
There are a myriad of adventures waiting for you in the winter world. And YES you can stay warm while doing it! Don’t let the cold keep you from playing. Some Outdoor Adventures:

  • Snowshoeing
  • Snowboarding
  • Alpine (Resort) Skiing at Crystal Mountain (SAC’s “home” mountain)
  • Back Country Skiing and snowboarding
  • Heli Skiing and
  • snow boarding Ski Touring
  • Ice Climbing Sledding
  • Snow Ball Wars

If you are interested in ANY of these activities, Brandyn is here to help coordinate, plan or even take you out there herself to learn or dial in your skills! If you need help planning a ski vacation or want to know where to go and why…use Brandyn; she has skied all over the US, Canada and Europe and knows where to send you!

Need Gear?
Contact Brandyn, she will hook you up with great outdoor gear companies and teach you what you will need for your adventure or activity. She will find you a local supply and also share some secrets to SAC discounts for you!

It’s good to “mix it up” for the body. Have you done the same thing for years in the gym? The body gets bored when we don’t change it up and our ability to adapt and continually get stronger is limited if we don’t challenge the body in new ways. New movements, new levels of intensity, new muscles, new brain focus…these keep us YOUNG and healthy….and honestly….it’s WAY more FUN! Most of the reasoning behind why humans don’t change it up is due to “fear of the unknown”. So, this winter don’t let that fear or unknown keep you from a new experience in life. Be inspired. Get out there and change up the “same ol’ thing” for something new and exciting! We forget as adults to have fun… we often get caught up in the race of life and forget to play… try “playing” this winter. And if you need help remembering how to play, the Seattle Athletic Club will get you started…and most likely follow you along your way.

Indoor Adventures that may be new to you:

  • Rock Climbing (classes, group or 1:1 sessions with PFT Will or Brandyn) at SAC and Vertical World Try one new class a week at SAC…something you have never done!
  • Drop into Winter Sports Prep and Play with Thomas and Brandyn
  • Swimming… learn the “right” technique so you can have fun in the pool from any of our instructors or Outdoor Rec Coach Brandyn who is also a USA Swimming Coach

There are also tons of 5K and 10K walk/run and family activity days around the city through the winter… sign up for one!

Most exciting… but you have to get STARTED EARLY!!

  • Mountaineering Prep: summer 2012 we will be launching our SAC Ascents … the opportunity to climb one of our local mountains, Rainier or Adams. Instead of being “hauled” up the mountain by a guide with a random group of people, SAC will be organizing and facilitating our OWN ascents with a professional guide! Imagine a climbing adventure filled with education and prep work designed for you to have an experience of a lifetime. It’s more about the journey when you are in the mountains…not the end result. And Outdoor Rec Coach, Brandyn wants to give SAC’s members the best experience possible while in the mountains!

Take the opportunity to learn skills and get strong and stable for the ascent with Outdoor Rec Coach Brandyn through the winter. You can get started now and connect with her (broark@sacdt.com) OR Look for details in January on climbs for next summer starting in June. If you are interested in SAC Ascents contact Brandyn now so she can put you on the start list for further details!

Whatever it is, wherever you go, just GET STARTED. Don’t wait another year to try something new. Live now, play hard, scream into the finish line of life tired exhausted knowing you got it all in!!

Are you inspired yet? Still bored and don’t know what to do this summer…. talk with Brandyn then….she’ll get you going. There are no excuses. You don’t need to “get to a certain weight, strength, ability, level, etc”…that’s an EXCUSE… just GET STARTED NOW with where you are in your life…GO!

Pilates + Skiing and Snowboarding

It’s ski season—ah…the pure joy of skiing down a mountainside of sparkling powder, surrounded by tall evergreens and brilliant blue sky……

Then, after that first day of tackling moguls, dodging trees and other skiers; the fatigue and soreness of the legs and hips kick in. This is partly because of muscle overuse and lack of core strength. If the core is not working enough, your legs and hips have to work harder to stabilize you.

Pilates will stretch tight, overused leg muscles, such as the quads and hip flexors and strengthen underused muscles such as the hamstrings and inner thighs.

Skiers rely on side to side hip movement to recruit the inside and outside edge of the ski. Boarders tilt their hips forward and back to access the front and back edge of the board and use a more rotational movement to change directions. A strong core gives you better edge control. Edge control improves balance as you navigate the twists and turns of the slope –at high speeds-, the ever-changing snow conditions and the ability to get up unscathed when you take a tumble.

By practicing Pilates, core strength and alignment improves and you become more in tune with your body. Movements are fluid, there is less wear and tear on joints and your sport becomes more enjoyable. You’ll find yourself adapting better to changing snow conditions, challenging terrain, and falling less.

Here are some mat exercises you could start today:

1) The Hundred- core, arms, hip stabilizer
2) The Abdominal Series

  • Single leg stretch
  • Double leg stretch
  • Single straight leg stretch
  • Double straight leg stretch
  • Criss-cross

3) The Side Lying Leg Kick Series

  • Front/Back
  • Up/Down
  • Small Circles
  • Inner Thigh lifts
  • Bicycle

Nothing will improve your skiing faster than a strong core. Cross-train by adding a Pilates mat class to your fitness regime or perhaps a private session with your Pilates Instructor.

Stay strong, ski safe!