Water Skiing training

     There are a variety of training methods that would be applicable and beneficial to water-skiing, which would improve the general and local muscular endurance and flexibility and provide the means to ski effectively. Balance training would be something less beneficial to water-skiing training methods as the balance required to water-ski is perhaps most effectively learnt during water-skiing. General fitness is also important for the sake of motivation/the desire to continue.

     The main consideration in water-skiing apart from the level of skill and technique that must be acquired is local muscular endurance. It is very tiring standing for long periods of time suspended by your own strength to a 20-metre rope connected to a fast moving boat and it is therefore important to develop local muscular endurance in the muscle groups that are used.

     Specifically in the arms and shoulders it is the wrist extensors, the biceps, triceps and deltoid muscles that must be pre-conditioned in order to cope sufficiently with their extensive use. If water-skiing technique is correct then the legs are often quite relaxed, however retaining the correct posture for long periods during water-skiing will tire the skier out quite quickly. The main muscles used in the legs during skiing are the quadriceps, the hamstrings, soleus, tibialis anterior and gastrocnemius. Chest and back muscles such as trapezius, latissimus dorsi and the pectorals are important because their conditioning allows for a continuous correct posture.

     An acceptable training method to improve endurance and strength in the arms and back would be a regime of push-ups, because “push-ups test the muscular endurance of the pectorals, triceps, biceps, deltoid, trapezius and latissimus dorsi” (C. Jamison, 1997, “Vitality: VCE Physical Education”). For the legs, distance running is recommended because running incorporates every muscle in the legs and also improves general endurance and raises fitness levels.

     Flexibility is a desired trait in any sport because it reduces the risk of injury and prepares the body for physical activity. In water-skiing it is important in case of an accident on skis and if done before skiing would allow for a longer and, conditions allowing, a more enjoyable session. Flexibility of synovial joints in the arms and legs is important to some degree, however it is general flexibility that allows for competent skiing.

Information cited from my lab report on water skiing, and the textbook "Vitality".

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