Magazine article USA TODAY

Preventing Injuries on the Ski Slopes

Magazine article USA TODAY

Preventing Injuries on the Ski Slopes

Article excerpt

If winter has inspired you to test out the slopes, physicians at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, remind you that preparation is critical to avoiding injuries. Getting in shape before you hit the trails should be first on the list, especially if you have not been skiing in a while, recommends Robert Dimeff, professor of orthopaedic surgery, pediatrics, and community and family medicine.

Exercises to bolster the core are critical: abdominal, lower back, and hip and lower leg muscle strengthening typically is advised. This may include abdominal crunches, back extensions, squats, lunges, and balance exercises. "However, any exercise regimen should be coordinated with your primary care physician, or a sports medicine specialist (for more advanced athletes) to be sure it takes into account your health history."

Injuries are reported more frequently when skiers are fatigued, such as the end of the day or near the conclusion of a vacation, as well as in the early morning, when they have not yet warmed up, cautions the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine. …

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