Strength and balance

Many of the following exercises can be done in a very small area, even indoors while watching the telly, so can be used all of the time to supplement other training.


Exercise 1: Modified press-ups


Everyone knows the conventional press-up, which is still a good exercise. In this version, however, which works the triceps more than the pecadillos, the arms are held close to and in line with the body. A variation of this is to use two chairs and dip between them.












                                                                       Press-ups                                                                       Dips

Exercise 2: Sit-ups


Again a slightly modified version of the conventional sit up, this is designed to exercise all of the stomach muscles. Start with ten repetitions with the legs upright, followed by ten with the legs bent, then ten conventional sit-ups. This works very well if you have one of those rocking stomach exercisers.










                                                               (1)                                               (2)                                                          (3)

Exercise 3: Balance (1)


From a physiotherapy supplier, a balance ball (looking much like half a ball with a platform on top) can be bought quite cheaply and used to improve balance.











                                            Before                                                        During                                                     After

Exercise 4: Balance (2)


Using a small piece of wood the same thickness as a ski and about one foot long to provide stability, use this to balance on as though on skis. It is harder with your eyes shut.











                                        Before                                                            During                                                                     After

Exercise 5: Back strength


An easy one this. Simply lie on your stomach with you hands behind your head and pull trunk and legs upwards. Continue until teatime.









                                               During                                                                                                                           After

Exercise 6: Quadricep strength



In this exercise, you simply 'sit' against a wall, with knees bent at about 90o, for about one minute, stand up and shake the legs off for about 15 seconds, and start again.











                             Before                                      During                                                            Rest                                               Repeat



It used to be said that you had to be able to 'sit' for 5 minutes if you wanted to get into the Swedish Biathlon team. I don't believe this, because I used to be able to do it for 5 minutes and I never got into the Swedish team, with is a great shame because I also know the Swedish Chemist Shop story:



                Customer: Good morning, I would like to buy a deodorant.

                Chemist: Certainly Sir, ball or aerosol?

                Customer: No, I want it for under my arm!



Alright, alright, I know that this is a very old joke, but it does not harm to repeat it.


Exercise 7: Bounding


An excellent exercise for increasing leg strength and speed. On a slight slope, simply bound repeatedly forward, aiming to get as much height as distance but nonetheless using an action which bears at least a partial resemblance to skiing. As a variation for skating, bound more sideways than forwards. Try to bound from a flat foot, rather than from the toes.













                                                                      During                                                                                      After

Exercise 8: Sprints


Always a good one to get the heart and lungs working, and to build strength and speed in the legs. Any time of sprint between about 1/2 minute and 5 minutes is okay, although the shorter the sprint, the shorter should be the rest between each. If you're training with a few friends, introduce a fun element into it by racing each other.














                                                       Before                                             During                                          After

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