I’ve heard of warm yoga, infared yoga, hot yoga and Bikram yoga, of course, but I had never done cold or in fact freezing yoga until a few weeks ago. Crystal Ski invited me to try out a Ski Ram yoga class, designed to get your body, muscles and mind ready to hit the slopes. Kitted out in gloves, hat and ski jackets (and keeping my boots on) we took to our mats in the refrigerated pod (set at 2°C). Brrr.
The yoga workout has been designed to use as a warm up before skiing or snowboarding, to help acclimatise the body and generate heat in the muscles. There’s a 30 minute programme you could perform in your hotel room or chalet, as well as a shorter routine that can be perfumed at the top of the chair lift (although not sure my family/friends would be willing to wait). The routine mimics the movements on your muscles and joints you’ll be using on the slopes; quad, core, knees and shoulders.
Poses and exercises include the Downward Slope, a beginner level pose designed to elongate the spine as well as stretch out calves and hamstrings; Snow Salutations, a fluid cardiovascular movement to improve balance; and the Pepi Penguin, a seated pose to stretch the thighs and groin and increase mobility in the lower body.
Yoga really helps focus on your breathing, controlling and managing your breath affects your whole nervous system. Breathing is such an important aspect in relaxing your body, and de-stressing, allowing you to overcome fear and pain. This workout not only prepares you for the slopes, but it aims to increase your conscience of mind and body, something I think is important for everyone.
My favourite part of the class was getting to leave the pod and enjoy a relaxing 10mins relaxation time in the warmth. The class was a lot of fun, and it made me wish I had a ski holiday booked!
You can watch the video to get yourself ready for the snow here and look out for Ski Ram sessions in 2015! Alternatively, make up your own routine using previously practised yoga positions to warm up!