Strength and Injury Prevention in Alpine Skiing: Part 2

Developing and performing a proper pre-season/dry-land strengthening program can help to reduce your risk of injury and improve your performance.  Alpine skiing is unique in that it places equal demands on both sides of the body, as one has to be able to turn equally well to the right and the left.  Research has found that the left knee is most often injured in alpine skiing1.  Therefore it is important to compare the strength of your right and left legs to get the most out of your workouts. 

Your strengthening program should address any imbalances to correct potential injury situations and improve your performance.  Furthermore, the rate of ACL injuries in young skiers has been shown to be higher in skiers with poor core strength2.  So be sure to include core strengthening as part of your pre-season strength program.  If you need help determining if you have any muscle imbalances or designing a preventative-strengthening program consult one of our physical therapists.

At Excel Physical Therapy, winter is often our busiest time of year; and with good reason, many of us choose to live here for our winter pursuits of skiing and snowboarding.  Unfortunately these sports have a high injury rate and can lead to serous injuries resulting in the need for surgery and extensive rehabilitation.  While one cannot completely prevent injuries in skiing and snowboarding, your risk can be reduced by following injury prevention guidelines.   This series of blogs will focus on injuries and their prevention for alpine skiing, snowboarding, and Nordic skiing.

See more Winter Injury Prevention: Alpine Skiing, Nordic Skiing & Snowboarding – Part 1

See more Equipment and Prevention of Alpine Ski Injuries – Part 3

See more Technique & the Prevention of Alpine Ski Injuries – Part 4

1 Westin M, Alricsson M, Werner S. Injury profile of competitive alpine skiers: a five-year cohort study. Knee Surg Sports Traumatol Arthrosc. 2012 Jun;20(6):1175-81.

2 Raschner C, Platzer HP, Patterson C, Werner I, Huber R, Hildebrandt C. The relationship between ACL injuries and physical fitness in young competitive ski racers: a 10-year longitudinal study. Br J Sports Med. 2012 Dec;46(15):1065-71.



Jason Lunden, DPT, SCS specializes in the rehabilitation and prevention of sports-related injuries, with a particular interest in the biomechanics of sporting activities – running, cycling, skiing, snowboarding and overhead athletics. He has published on the topic of shoulder biomechanics and the rehabilitation of knee injuries and has a strong commitment to educating others. Jason serves as a physical therapist for the US Snowboarding and US Freeskiing teams and is a frequent, well-received local and national presenter on the topics of sports rehabilitation and injury prevention.

If you have specific questions about how to strengthen, restore, and get back on the slopes, contact us at Excel Physical Therapy, 406.556.0562 in Bozeman, Montana or 406.284.4262 in Manhattan, Montana. #excelptmt