by DR.MATTHEW STRIDE
1. EXERCISE AT THE OPTIMUM LEVEL
Your metabolic fitness will decline as you get older and with sedentary behavior. Dr Stride says sitting down for eight hours a day is the equivalent health risk of smoking 20 cigarettes a day. Exercising is good but optimizing your metabolic fitness is even better. Find out the optimum heart rate at which you should exercise to increase fitness at a centre like Isokinetics in Harley Street.
2. BUILD MUSCLES
Strengthening muscles helps resist tiredness and fatigue and protects the skeleton from damage after falls. Resistance based exercises such as weight training are particularly valuable as you get older.
3. WORK ON BALANCE AND COORDINATION
The risk of falling can have profound effects as you get older. Proprioception is the feedback from the body’s joints to the brain. Most of us are heavily reliant on what we see. People often struggle to stand on one leg with both eyes shut. Practice can really improve this.
4. TAKE HEED OF WARNING SIGNS
Get any pains checked out before you head to the slopes. Take into account your skiing history. If you haven’t skied for many years, consider taking lessons in the UK before you go, and make sure you have appropriately fitting boots and bindings. Dr Stride says: “We see many lower leg breaks and knee injuries resulting from bindings not releasing when they should.”
5. BE PREPARED
He also advises skiers to wear appropriate clothing to stop muscles getting too cold, as that’s when injuries are more likely to occur. Other advice includes getting a good night’s sleep and not drinking too much alcohol. “It affects muscle capacity and co-ordination,” he says.
6. BE FLEXIBLE
If muscles are too stiff, you risk straining them; too flexible and there’s increased risk of injury to joints. Most people are somewhere in between. If concerned, it’s worth getting checked out with a physio. Consensus is that stretching after activity is a good thing but not before
published in The Sunday Telegraph Sunday 27 January 2019