The ONS Foundation for Clinical Research and Education presented their 9th annual Ski Conditioning and Injury Prevention Seminar on Tuesday evening, December 7 at ONS on Valley Drive. Orthopedic surgeons Dr. Steven Hindman and Dr. Tim Greene addressed 46 eager skiers on a range of topics from the most common skiing injuries to injury prevention strategies and information on the latest treatments for injuries such as a ruptured ACL. Chalon Lefebvre, PT of ONS Physical Therapy gave a presentation about the benefits of adopting a ski conditioning and strengthening exercise program before going skiing.
All the presenters agreed that each year, excited skiers and snowboarders head to the slopes but many do little to prepare for the physical demands of their sport. Even the best athletes are susceptible to injury when under-prepared muscles engage in activity they haven’t done for many months. “Physical conditioning can make all the difference,” said Dr. Hindman. “Most people go from the car to the ski lift without even a single stretch. Skiing requires muscles and muscle groups that are used very little the rest of the year. If you don’t prepare, your risk for injury increases.”
“Don’t think you will ski yourself into shape,” warned Ms. Lefevbre, who was a ski racer in Vermont. “The sooner you begin a conditioning program, the better off you’ll be. Start with basic stretches and strengthening exercises and build slowly. It’s never too late to benefit from a program. Find one that’s geared to winter mountain sports and you won’t be making an
appointment to see me in the coming months.”
“Have a good time on the slopes but be mindful of injury factors that I call, the three Ts; Tiredness, Terrain and Timing,” said Dr. Greene who worked with the US Ski Team in Vail, CO during his Fellowship training. “Your risk for injury goes up when you’re tired, when the terrain conditions aren’t good, and at the end of the day when the light and the conditions have deteriorated, and you become fatigued.”