6 Ways to Avoid Back Pain from Skiing or Snowboarding

By Savanna Stone
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There is nothing else like looking out into a snowy world, and you’re on top. Sliding down the mountain pumps you full of adrenaline and makes you feel like you own the world. The only thing that ruins that feeling is when your back pain interrupts. So don’t let your back pain ruin your fun. Here are some ways to avoid back pain from skiing or snowboarding this season.

1. Prepare your body for the season. 

Jumping back on your board or skiis before your body is ready for the physical toll that comes with the sport is how your back gets sore or injured. A few weeks before you plan to hit the slopes, start exercising your leg muscles, core strength, and balance. You can also use the Chirp Wheel+ as part of your stretching and exercise routine. It will help you loosen up your muscles for the season.

2. Warm up. 

When you go for the first time of the season, you might also want to start off the day on the easier hills to warm up your muscles. Also warm up your body before any ride (small hill or big mountain) by doing some simple exercises and gentle stretching. Exercising and stretching before your ride will warm up your muscles so that they are less prone to injury and soreness.

3. Wear the right gear. 

It can be hard to find clothes that are both warm and flexible, but that is exactly what you need to make sure you don’t experience back pain during or after your ride. Also make sure your equipment is the right size for you. If you have the wrong clothing and wrong equipment, your body will be stiff and your muscles will tense up, causing you more back pain

4. Fall correctly. 

Falling down when skiing or snowboarding is a given—especially when you’re first learning. When falling, our instinct is to tense up, which can lead to muscle strains. Instead of self-correcting, try to land on your butt or side and roll. Fighting the fall will cause more injury and pain.

5. Look out for your surroundings. 

Part of the fun of riding down the slopes is looking down at the beautiful view. However, to avoid injury and back pain when you’re riding down the slope, make sure you look out for obstacles in your path, such as tree branches, rocks, or fences. Staying on marked trails is also a good way to avoid injury and back pain.

6. Pick the slopes according to your skill.

If you’re still learning, keep it simple and go for the smaller slopes until you feel ready to take on the bigger ones. Taking on a big slope too soon makes you more prone to injury or back pain from straining your muscles in unnatural ways. Learning correct form before you take on a big slope will help you strengthen your muscles and will keep you away from unnecessary back pain. If you are a more experienced athlete, just remember to start off slow and warm up before you get on the big slopes.

 

Sources: 

  1. https://www.goodshepherdrehab.org/blog/prevent-low-back-pain-skiing-and-snowboardin
  2. https://www.mountbakerexperience.com/self-help-for-snowboarders-how-to-avoid-knee-and-back-pain/