Basic Fitness Tests for Skiers

You will need a measuring tape, a stop watch, a 10" (25cm) square box (or obstacle of similar size) and some chalk, lipstick or dirt for marking your finger. The test should take around 30 minutes, please do not rest more than the allotted time between tests. Download and print out a Test Recording Sheet

Warm Up First! Start with 5 minutes jogging, cycling or on a cross trainer. Then do some specific dynamic warm ups to help you get ready. Complete the following series of exercises: 5 off each Star Jumps, Burpees, Knee Press Ups, Mountain Climbers, Lunges and Squats. Click on the links if you are unclear on any of the exercises or tests before starting.

Rest 3 minutes

Front Plank - Lie on your stomach on an exercise mat or floor with your elbows close to your sides and directly under your shoulders. Start the test by extending you hip upwards until you back is straight. Time yourself until failure which is when your hip moves more than a few inches up or down. Maintaining correct form during planks is much more important than a few extra seconds with bad posture. Record result in Minutes and Seconds, if under a minute put 0 in Minutes.

Rest 3 minutes

Vertical Jump – Apply chalk on your longest finger of your dominant hand. Stand at 90 degrees to a wall with your dominant side touching. Reach up as high as you can and mark wall with marked finger, this is your starting point. Keeping your arm straight up bend down and in one motion leap as high as possible marking wall. Do NOT swing your arms or bounce at the knees. Complete two attempts and record the best in Centimetres.

Rest 3 Minutes

Right Side Plank – Wearing trainers lying down prop yourself on your right elbow with your left arm along your waist. Stack you feet on top of each other and raise your hip until your spine is straight. Start timing and stop when your hip drops by more than 4 inches or your start to rotate your hip. Record result in Minutes and Seconds.

Rest 3 minutes

Single Leg Penta Hop - Have a space of about 10 metres cleared ahead of you. Start with toes on a line, opposite leg in the air and make five forward leaps onto same foot and hold on landing last jump for 2 seconds. Mark position of the back of the heel and measure distance to start line. Rest 3 minutes between legs and record best of three attempts for each leg. (If you have any history of knee injury, test out your knee by attempting this test at 50% output and build up slowly)

Rest 3 minutes

Box Jump Overs - As many lateral box jumps over a 10 inch (25cm) square box in 1 Minute.

Rest 3 minutes

Stork Balance Stand Test - Barefoot, hands on your hips take one foot and place it on the calf of the supporting leg. This is the starting pose. To start the test raise your heel off the ground and maintain the posture. Time yourself until either your hand(s) come off of hips, supporting foot hops or swivels, the non-supporting foot loses contact with the leg or the heel of the supporting foot touches the floor. Complete two attempts on each leg and record the best result for each leg in seconds.

Sit and Reach Flexibility Test - Barefoot sit on the floor with your legs together feet flat against a step or box approximately 30cm high. Both knees should be locked and pressed flat to the floor. With your palms facing downwards and one hand over the other slowly lean forward with a straight back and your knees remaining on the floor without "bouncing". After a few practice attempts chalk your longest finger lean forward and hold for at least one second, press down finger to mark distance. Record in Centimetres. If you cannot reach your toes touch the floor to the side of your legs and measure the distance from the step and enter as a negative number.

Warm down

This is NOT A COMPETITION! These tests are for you to monitor your own progress with a general fitness programme. They aren't comprehensive but should give you a general indication of how your ski fitness improves over time. Redo the tests periodically (every 6 weeks or so) and check your progress. It is never too soon to start working on your fitness for skiing. Have fun!

Inside Out Skiing also offers Stability Testing For Ski Injury Prevention and Personalised Exercise Programmes please contact us for details.

If you are an instructor please specify your qualification level and if not please have look at our Guide to Skiing Levels to determine your skiing ability level.