Ski Conditioning

Ski conditioning program: Rachelle Edinger, Aspen personal trainerWith ski season just around the corner, we decided to get some expert advice on putting together a ski conditioning program that would get us in top ski shape in 7-8 weeks and keep us in shape throughout ski season.

We contacted the Aspen Club & Spa, who set us up with Rachelle Edingera personal trainer from Aspen.

While ski conditioning classes are common in mountain towns, we asked Rachelle to put together a ski conditioning program that could be done anywhere  – at home with minimal equipment or at a gym that didn’t offer ski training.

Rachelle walked us through each segment of the ski conditioning program, explaining the goals, the exercises, and what, if any, equipment was required.  She then demonstrated how to do the workout, which we captured on video.

The ski conditioning program information provided is for educational and entertainment purposes only, and is not to be interpreted as a recommendation for a specific treatment plan, product, or course of action. As with any fitness program, see your doctor before trying any workout to discuss one that is appropriate for you.

Getting started with ski conditioning

Rachelle suggested we…

  • Start 7-8 weeks ahead of ski season for time to sufficiently train and progress
  • Start off with easier drills that are modifications of the ones done 7-8 weeks into the program
  • At 7-8 weeks, do the ski conditioning program with more intensity as a part of the progression process

Ski conditioning benefitsSki conditioning benefits

  • Prevents injury
  • Improves performance
  • Prepares the body for the physical demands skiing

Ski conditioning focus areas

Core & balance

Whether boarding or skiing, balance is a necessity and a strong core is fundamental for achieving balance.

Agility & power

A focus on power & jumping using different plyometric drills helps train for moguls and the more technical aspects of skiing.

Cardio & muscle endurance

  • Cardio.  At altitude, the body is under strain and with exertion, breathing can be more difficult. The goal is to train the heart for those conditions.
  • Muscular endurance. Skiing can be an all day activity and the goal is to fight fatigue. Many injuries are a result of being tired.


Many people ski all day and wake up sore the next day. Stretching for a 15 or 20 minutes at the end of a workout or ski day will help alleviate sore muscles.

The ski conditioning programThe Ski Conditioning Program

Session length

1 hour and working up to 1 1/2 hours

Program segment options

Option 1: Set up a circuit and rotate through the circuit multiple times

Option 2: Timed segments

1st 15 minutes: core & balance
2nd 15 minutes: agility & power
3rd 15 minutes: cardio & muscular endurance
4th 15 minutes: stretching

Rachelle’s tips

  • Don’t get bored with it, so change the order or exercises to make every workout different each day.
  • Start with 2 sessions per week and work up to 3 per week.
  • On off days, do some hiking, cycling, longer cardio, or yoga.

Ski conditioning during ski season

Rachelle recommends using the same program during ski season, but continuing to add elements increasing the difficulty.

For example, starting with a BOSU® side to side squat, progressing to adding a ball, then adding a reach with a ball – something that makes it harder each time.

Customized ski conditioning

We both have bad knees, so Rachelle recommended that when we do squats or lunges, to never let our knees go beyond our toes. On power drills, we are to avoid jumping if it hurts our knees.

Next >>
Rachelle demonstrates
warm up & agility exercises
using the step

Ski conditioning
Ski conditioning: Warm up & agility on the step
Ski conditioning: Using the BOSU® ball
Ski conditioning: Core strengthening & balance
Ski conditioning: No equipment needed
Ski conditioning: TRX® Ski training
Rachelle Edinger, Personal trainer
The Aspen Club & Spa


Kim HullKim Hull is a Partner with Chasing Light Media, Publisher & editor of the online pro cycling magazine  & blogs at .
Photography and/or videography may not be used without explicit permission.
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