The racing season is still a long way off for members of the Whistler Mountain Ski Club, but training is well underway as athletes participate in group dryland sessions in Whistler and Vancouver.
Dryland training includes weightlifting at the ski club cabin, Soccer Sundays, and other cross-training activities that build strength, balance, agility and cardiovascular endurance. Some athletes at the FIS level are training up to 12 times a week, with morning and afternoon sessions at the cabin.
"We look at dryland to complement and enhance the extracurricular activities kids get at school," said FIS/junior head coach Jordan Williams. "We seek to take it to the next step and help prepare them to be athletes by training the physiological fuel systems while specifically increasing strength, quickness and stability.
"But apart from the technical terms and scientific mumbo jumbo, what we really want is to get the racer in a good state of health where they are aware and prepared to go ski hard."
Williams suggests that skiers and boarders should be doing some dryland training of their own to get ready for the season.
"Ideally you want to have some core strength and leg endurance allowing quick and proactive movement on your equipment so you can avoid the tree or rock that you encounter early season without pulling something or waking up stiff the next day."
Activities like trail running and weightlifting are a good start.