I live in California and don't get up to the mountains to ski that often, but I do have a few trips planned this year. Does anyone have suggestions on how to get in shape--and stay in shape--for skiing and snowboarding? I am specifically looking for exercises that will strengthen my legs and knees, and help get my body ready for the slopes.
I tend to do a lot of cycling and swimming, but I found the best way was to generally take care of your body. Once winter hits your body is sucked of all its nutrients and you just feel like hell. I drink Vita Coco to regain them and for rehydration purposes. It also tastes good, and has electrolytes and more potassium in one serving than in an entire banana. I truly recommend that and as much biking in the off season as you can.
An overall condition program including squats, lunges, step-ups should benefit you. Don't forget to do upper body and core work as well. The core is key. Try planks and side planks, and swiss ball exercises to develop the core. Use a Bosu ball to work on balance and leg strength. Stand on a Bosu hard side up and do squats while balancing. Try holding the low end of a squat (knees bent 90degrees) hold for 30 seconds, build from there. Also practice shifting your weight side to side and front to back just like a snowboard. 30 minutes 2 -3 times a week will do wonders.
I live in Florida, so for me it's important to be in good cardiovascular shape for that one trip a year I take to altitude. I run a lot and also to echo an earlier post, don't forget about the core and some upper body. I do free weights for upper body workouts, but whatever works for you.