Facts about Alpine Skiing

Did you know that 44% of downhill skiers are women

11% of downhill skiers are children ages 7-11

40% of downhill skiers are ages 25-44

Fitness Benefits and/or Muscles Used

  • Downhill skiing is an excellent form of aerobic exercise, enabling skiers to raise and maintain their heart rates for at least 15 minutes.
  • Skiing is also an anaerobic exercise that increases strength and the ability to sustain short bursts of exertion. Skiing bumps and short-radius turns all rely on power and stamina.
  • Skiing is based on coordination, balance and flexibility that allow for a more dynamic range of motion and an ultimately better technique.
  • Downhill skiing works the leg muscles, especially hamstrings and quadriceps.
  • Abdominal muscles are used to control body posture during each run, strengthening them.
  • The triceps are used for accurate and strong poling maneuvers, conditioning these muscles.

    Calories Burned

    Activity Adults* Children**
    Calories burned/hr Weight Calories burned/hr Weight
    Skiing downhill,
    light effort
    295 calories/hr 130 lbs 151 calories/hr 70 lbs
    352 calories/hr 155 lbs 189 calories/hr 90 lbs
    431 calories/hr 190 lbs 236 calories/hr 110 lbs
    Skiing downhill,
    moderate effort
    354 calories/hr 130 lbs 181 calories/hr 70 lbs
    422 calories/hr 155 lbs 226 calories/hr 90 lbs
    518 calories/hr 190 lbs 283 calories/hr 110 lbs
    Skiing downhill,
    vigorous effort
    472 calories/hr 130 lbs 242 calories/hr 70 lbs
    563 calories/hr 155 lbs 302 calories/hr 90 lbs
    690 calories/hr 190 lbs 377 calories/hr 110 lbs

    *www.nutristrategy.com **calculations are estimates based on consultation with American College of Sports Medicine

    Even More Good News

  • Alpine skiing originated from specific inventions and techniques developed in Norway’s Telemark County during the last half of the 1800s.
  • In the 1960s and early 1970s, beginners started on long, stiff skis. Today, first-timers have a much easier time because of the advancements in equipment and teaching techniques. Shorter, shaped skies have shortened the learning curve for first-timers.
  • Most resorts throughout the United States have developed Learn To Ski Packages that include a lift ticket, equipment rental and instruction, providing a less intimidating environment to learn.
  • Many ski resorts are catering to young families by offering daycare and special programs that teach young children to ski and improve their skills. Other resorts organize adventure weekends that encourage children to participate in winter sport.

    National Sporting Goods Association 2004 Sports Participation Study

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