• Get the Basics Right

It's that time of year again mornings so cold I often think it will snow in Melbourne. You have heard all the recent snow reports and don't want to miss out on the best snow season in years. This is the year you really want to get back into skiing or your best mate from work has convinced you that this is the season you'll take up skiing or snowboarding for the first time. You are ready to invest the cash, but have you invested the fitness hard yards your body deserves in order to endure the winter (or even just the weekend) on your skis or board? There is that dreaded feeling you get in your legs, feet and butt that comes on your first day on the slopes that will make you regret skipping those Wednesday-morning spin classes.

It is hard to simulate 'on-snow' training in the off-season but there are certainly target areas and muscles you can work on without being strapped into your boots. When doing any sort of snow sport, whether it be skiing, snowboarding, cross-country or even gung-ho tobogganing (most of which are considered extreme sports), having a gym membership is like having insurance.
Pre-season fitness training ensures you will be prepared for longer, steeper and more challenging terrain as well as providing your best chance of avoiding injury (especially if you're a first-timer). Skiing and boarding put a lot of strain on your body not to mention all the muscles you never knew you had. Snow sports require strength, endurance, speed, flexibility and often reflexes (Mount Buller's Bourke Street on a Saturday, anyone?)
Here are some simple no-brainer tips to help you get through the winter in one piece. It's recommended you put in the effort before the ski season or planned ski holiday, but it's not too late to start now.Train frequently a minimum of three times a week, if possible. Variety is the key. Mix up your cardio; if you love running, switch to a bike or the stepper once a week or even that Zumba class you have been eyeing off.

Vary your strength training switch your linear weight session to yoga or a pump class. Your most important focus should be strong, conditioned legs. These are what will get you through the winter. Try squat and lunge variations mixed in with all your other programs. You should enjoy the cross training and stay motivated. Don't be afraid to mix things up a little. Keep training throughout the winter months, too. So you went up the hill last weekend and you think you will need Monday to Friday just to recover for the following weekend? Wrong! The midweek training between snowy weekends is the most important.
You may reduce the workload to save your legs for the weekend. I recommend a home workout if you don't have the time or access to the gym. All you need is a Swiss ball, a Thera-Band and a yoga mat.
Always warm up before a day on the slopes a hot shower and a good stretch before you leave the house will make a big difference. Three stretches focusing on your lower body I would include would be: quad stretch; calf stretch; and hips and glutes stretches.
Finally, get a lesson for first-timers it's a must. Get the basics taught to you by someone who's qualified (and preferably has a rich European accent) and avoid picking up bad habits from friends and family.
If you have not been to the snow for a few years, it never hurts to tune up again and hone those fundamentals. Plus you'll avoid the agony of having your partner gloat over their own skiing skills, years of experience and newfound ability to be a ski instructor.
Enjoy yourself ! and see you on the slopes.

(Article from: http://www.theweeklyreview.com.au/article-display/Get-the-basics-right/4196)