Winterdoesn’t have to be a time when outdoor sporting activities are put away untilwarmer temperatures come back. There area variety of winter sports available for any fitness level, enabling us to keepfit and healthy even during the cooler months.
The premiseof Cross Country Skiing is similar to downhill skiing in that you move aroundthrough snow and ice while balancing on individual skis attached to each ofyour feet. A set of ski poles is usedfor both balance and to aid in propelling yourself forward over primarily flatterrain. Though not uncommon for skitrails to have hills or elevation changes, there are generally no steadydownhill slopes to use for momentum. Theflat terrain requires use all the muscles in your body to continue trekkingforward.
CrossCountry Skiing is an all-encompassing workout that strengthens all musclegroups and works your cardiovascular system. Additionally, since snow and ice can vary in texture and density, you’rerequired to use balance and stabilizer muscles to maintain proper form as youmove forward. It is a low impactactivity that can be done by people of various ages and fitness levels. Some specialized equipment is required,though how much you invest can vary on whether you plan to pursue the activityrecreationally or competitively.
Skis areneeded, though they are different than those used by downhill skiers. Poles can be used if desired to aid inbalancing yourself and increasing the pace of your trek. You will also need several layers of warmclothing, preferably waterproof to prevent you from becoming cold or wet. Also, a water bottle to keep you hydrated,because although you’ll be in a chilly climate, the activity still burnsapproximately 600-900 calories per hour of movement.
As withany sport, it is important to warm the muscles before the activity and stretchafterward. This will help preventinjury, and keep you trekking through the snow and on your way to betterfitness all throughout the winter months.
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