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Effect of weight gain on skiing

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 

I have unfortunately gained weight over the last 6 years, due to stress with family, children, and long work weeks. I have started to work out at the gym and am hoping that I will be able to lose the weight over the next 6 years instead of gaining any more.

For motivation, what are some of the effects of being significantly overweight on skiing? How might my performance suffer this year as compared to 5 years ago when I weighed much less?

post #2 of 20

You will be able to ski faster, but it will be harder to turn, and harder to absorb bumps and compressions.  Check your DIN setting with the charts.  Consider more robust skis (depending on what you have).

post #3 of 20

You will be able to ski fine, but you will be putting more stress on your knees.  I was in a similar boat for a long time.  

post #4 of 20

What terrain do you usually ski?  At what speed?  

Do you tend to stick to groomers, go to the woods for fresh, ski anything, bumps and crud, what?

How do you handle heavy spring slop?

What skis are you on?  

Current weight, and weight 5/6 years ago?

How do your feet fit in your boots now?


Edited by LiquidFeet - 10/19/16 at 3:16pm
post #5 of 20

You will likely need an equipment update. Stiffer boots, higher performance skis....a bit more crank on bindings....

 

If you're still pretty fit and athletic your skiing should remain fine as long as the gear is up to snuff.

 

If you not a do it yourselfer no reason not to make friends with your trusted LSS for advice. 

 

You'll need to disclose more detail on a forum to get much specific help here.

 

Might check in with our dawgcatching for a detailed gear review....village bike and ski in Oregon or on the web as an option if you don't have a trusted LSS

post #6 of 20

I think there will be increased stress on your legs as your body weight has increased.

post #7 of 20

speaking as someone that has 25# of extra padding, I fatigue quicker, I have a harder time breathing at altitude. I seldom have issues with my knees, but my thighs and core are sore at the end of the day.

 

unfortunately, losing the wt is not near as easy as gaining it. I give you snaps for thinking it's a long process.

post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by hrstrat57 View Post
 

You will likely need an equipment update. Stiffer boots, higher performance skis....a bit more crank on bindings....

 

If you're still pretty fit and athletic your skiing should remain fine as long as the gear is up to snuff.

 

If you not a do it yourselfer no reason not to make friends with your trusted LSS for advice. 

 

You'll need to disclose more detail on a forum to get much specific help here.

 

Might check in with our dawgcatching for a detailed gear review....village bike and ski in Oregon or on the web as an option if you don't have a trusted LSS


LSS = ?

 

I think of Least Squares Straight Line or Lean Six Sigma, but I don't think that's what you mean. ;)

post #9 of 20

As others have said, less stress on your body and better endurance as you lose weight.  Your legs will be better able to do their job as your shock absorbers if they're handling less weight with the same amount of muscle strength.  Additionally, your range of motion improves.

 

I've always struggled with my weight, I know where you're coming from.  With 2 kids under the age of 5, and both my wife and I working full time, including some nights and weekends, it's hard to find time for yourself, and easy to make unhealthy food decisions for the sake of convenience.  I'm still working to recover from the last few years.  I've lost 27lbs since last February and still have another 16 to go to reach my target.  I made some lifestyle changes that I felt would be easier to maintain.  Mainly, eating more fresh foods, cutting out a lot of the unhealthy snacking I was doing, drinking more seltzer (because it's more appealing than water to me), and less beer and couch time.  I didn't undertake any rigorous exercise routine, but instead made choices like keeping up on my yard work more, playing outside with the kids more, or going out to the garage and doing my woodworking for an hour or so at night before I sat down in front of the TV.

 

One of the motivators I used was setting a goal to go from a 2X ski shell to an XL, and I'll be ordering my new shell in the next few days.  You can find a shirt or two in your closet that you really like, but aren't comfortable with how it fits.  Make that a milestone.  Or, make your goal to go down a notch in your belt.  It's more fun to pick milestones that you can realize on the way, than focusing on the final number.  I've found, so far, that setting a goal at an achievable 5lb loss at a time keeps me more motivated than a goal that is 15 or 20 pounds away.  I haven't set a timeline, I feel like if I did, I would either work at an unmaintainable pace and gain it back, or would not meet the deadline and feel bad about it.  If you know you're a few pounds away from that goal, that seems to have been enough motivation to get there.

post #10 of 20

For weight loss motivation:

 

1) Your chances of being injured or injuring someone else in a fall are increased.  You weigh more, thus your falls/collisions will have more impact energy... unless you slow down to compensate.

2) Your chances of falling are likely higher, since you will fatigue faster... unless you end your days early.

3) If you are out of shape, your recovery time from an injury will take longer than if you were in shape.

4) If your BMI > 30, you have a higher chance of an earlier death compared to "normal" (BMI 18.5-24.9) and "overweight" (BMI 25-30) people.

5) Sleeping at altitude will be more difficult (and thus 1 and 2 above are more likely)

post #11 of 20

As your weight goes up it takes a higher DIN setting to prevent unwanted releases, but your bones and ligaments haven't gotten any stronger so you're more likely to be injured at the higher setting.

post #12 of 20

Edit- Oldgoat beat me to it in a much more concise manner

 

CM- If you are able to ski regularly (or use skiing as motivation to work out), you might find it helps with the weight loss. Quite a few skiers I know, including some of the heavier ones, tend to lose weight during the ski season.

 

Good points so far. Not to be a downer, but the only serious injury I have had a client suffer with me was a heavier woman. She had never skied before and blew her ACL on her 3rd day with me and I do think the extra weight was a factor. Generally speaking she had good balance, not falling at all the first 2 days. Day 3 was perfect with blue bird skies and and she was having a great time exploring the mountain when she took her first fall on a green run. She did not injure herself on the initial fall, but one of her skis did come off. While standing with her downhill ski properly across the hill and attempting to put her uphill ski back on, she lost her balance, fell and blew her ACL on the downhill knee when the ski did not come off. Maybe this would have happened to a lighter person, but the higher DIN suggested for a heavier skier and/or the stress on her knee from the extra weight may have been a factor.

 

Most heavier skiers I'vs seen have NOT injured themselves, so I hope my story helps motivate you rather than deter you. Best of luck!

post #13 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 


LSS = ?

 

I think of Least Squares Straight Line or Lean Six Sigma, but I don't think that's what you mean. ;)

 

LSS is Local Ski Shop.

 

Don't know what I said here to cause so much concern and upset and need for moderation....won't comment further that's for sure.

 

Go right again and delete my post and all reference to it including this one.

 

Y'all have a nice winter..... 

post #14 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by hrstrat57 View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
 


LSS = ?

 

I think of Least Squares Straight Line or Lean Six Sigma, but I don't think that's what you mean. ;)

 

LSS is Local Ski Shop.

 

Don't know what I said here to cause so much concern and upset and need for moderation....won't comment further that's for sure.

 

Go right again and delete my post and all reference to it including this one.

 

Y'all have a nice winter..... 


I was just asking to help out newbies because I hadn't seen that acronym before.

post #15 of 20

Skiing should be a dance with gravity, but when you gain weight you turn it into more of a fight. Momentum becomes a real foe.  It takes more effort to do everything from putting on your boots, walking to the lift, and particularly slowing yourself down and getting up when you fall.  Might need some stiffer skis if yours start to chatter or wash out when you push them.  The best thing you can do is keep skiing.  It'll only get easier.

post #16 of 20

FIFY  :D

Quote:

Originally Posted by mudfoot View Post
 

Skiing should be a dance with gravity, but when you gain weight you turn it into a more powerful dance(more of a fight). Momentum becomes a real (foe) friend.  While I it takes more effort to do everything from putting on your boots, walking to the lift, and particularly slowing yourself down and getting up when you fall, it's easier to bend your skis into a sharper turn.  Might need some stiffer skis if yours start to chatter or wash out when you push them.  The best thing you can do is keep skiing.  It'll only get easier.

post #17 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by LiquidFeet View Post
 

What terrain do you usually ski?  At what speed?  

Do you tend to stick to groomers, go to the woods for fresh, ski anything, bumps and crud, what?

How do you handle heavy spring slop?

What skis are you on?  

Current weight, and weight 5/6 years ago?

How do your feet fit in your boots now?


The reason I asked these questions was because the OP asked what the effects might be of becoming significantly overweight since last skiing.

 
Originally Posted by Crystal Mtn View Post
 

I have unfortunately gained weight over the last 6 years, due to stress with family, children, and long work weeks. I have started to work out at the gym and am hoping that I will be able to lose the weight over the next 6 years instead of gaining any more.
For motivation, what are some of the effects of being significantly overweight on skiing? How might my performance suffer this year as compared to 5 years ago when I weighed much less?

 

Momentum will be different if the skier tends to ski fast, or on steep groomers.  There will be a lot more momentum at apex in each turn, and it will need to be managed effectively. (Thus the questions about terrain and speed.)

 

Being able to manage the extra momentum in each turn depends on the skier's technique.  If the skier pivots the skis fast at the top of the turn, then braces, managing the extra force at apex is going to be difficult.  (Thus the question about how the OP handles spring slop; pivot and brace does not work well in spring slop, unless.... the skis are fat and rockered, thus the question about what skis the OP is on.)  

 

Current weight might factor into the need to get new skis if the current ones are too short or too narrow and the OP is able to ski fresh untracked most of the time (thus the question about weight).

 

And of course, there's the obligatory question about boot fit.  If the skier is in boots too large, doing anything with higher forces in play will present dramatic new problems.  We've had a discussion here about feet getting bigger with weight gain.  If the feet have enlarged and the boots used to be too large but now fit, that could be a positive factor resulting from the weight gain (thus the question about current boot fit).


Edited by LiquidFeet - 10/19/16 at 3:28pm
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 

Sigh. Yes, as another poster said it well, my weight gain has been, in large part, a result of the stress and complexity of raising children, a working spouse, and many business trips resulting in too much eating out.


​Hopefully I can shift into weight loss mode soon, and start losing the weight that I've gained. I'm starting today but I know it'll be baby steps at first.

post #19 of 20
Baby steps are often the best steps! While you have gained, it's likely the ligaments & muscles are not where it's coming from.

Give yourself the best chance by continuing with some agility drills. Start off slow, such as how many toe raises can you do in 15 seconds while standing. Start this three times a day and be consistent. After a week or two add in how many squats you can do and 15 seconds. This will also teach you positional sense about your new body habitus.

With two kids myself, it is not easy. However, skiing is worth it
post #20 of 20

I am a big guy, so that is a factor, but over a similar time span as you, I went from 225 lbs to 270 lbs, to 250 lbs, and now back to 225 lbs. At the heavier weight I had a little less stamina. How good a shape I was in was the most important factor. As for my skiing, I learned to keep my edges really sharp, I had to pop off a ski to get back up after a fall, and I could glide faster and smash through moguls instead of popping of them. Actually, mogul skiing is where I felt the weight the most. I couldn't fly through them anymore, the up weighting was a lot more tiring. Don't be discouraged, skiing is not that physically demanding that you won't want to do it anymore, at least it wasn't  for me. i did have to pace myself a bit more, and avoided getting seriously airborne anymore (I avoided jumps). I adopted a more conservative style. Last season I weighed 245 and felt great skiing. I was pretty strong  and in good condition. This season I am at 225 and not as strong. It will be interesting to see how I feel on skis. I don't think it will be drastic, since I am such a Clyde. I will say that I dropped at least two waist sizes and my ski  pants won't be tight anymore.

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