The resorts are quieter, seasonnaires have less work stress and more time to ski and board, the sun is out and we all want to take advantage of the last month or two before the snow disappears. It’s natural to feel more relaxed during spring riding; but let’s not forget the risks!
Our bodies are tired
This one applies particularly for those of us sticking around for seasons (often making up the bulk of those left in resorts for spring skiing). We’re at the tail end of a wild few months.
While our ski fitness might have improved, we’ve burned the candle HARD through the winter and there’s no avoiding all those extra catchups and end of season parties that continue popping up as the season draws to an end. This means further reduced sleep and hangovers on top of our already accumulated fatigue.
How about pizza, fries and microwavable meals? (Sorry mum). It’s not only our lack of sleep and crazy work hours that can affect our energy levels. We’ve all been guilty of eating out when we’re too worn out to cook, buying cheap or even going vego when we’re too poor to lash out on that juicy steak.
More often than not, we just can’t be bothered making the snowy trek to the supermarket. Instead, we opt for a tin of beans or some other sub-par concoction from the remnants of our pantries.
The energy draining effect of lack of sleep, stress, poor diet and wild partying can certainly take its’ toll on our technique and concentration out on the hill.
Avalanches still happen
Just because there isn’t lots of fresh snow doesn’t mean it can’t still slide. Has anyone noticed all the extra avalanche stories lately? Be super cautious of off piste skiing (and sometimes even on piste), particularly on sunny faces and in the afternoons as the heat melts through the snow loosening unstable layers. These slides can be as deep as the dirt underneath so stay safe, do your research and don’t get too comfortable!
Bluebird Park laps
With a lack of fresh powder, groomer laps can get old quick and a lot of us find ourselves heading to the park to mix it up. As soon as we add metal rails and boxes or big jumps into the mix injuries are bound to increase. We get competitive with out mates, or have a couple of beers at lunch then head back out with that extra liquid confidence. Know when to call it quits, and remember never call “last run”!
Après, season enders, and one too many benders
Holidays and ski seasons are a great time to enjoy a few extra guilt free drinks. I can’t count the number of times we’ve sipped fireball on the chairlift, or headed back out after a couple of jugs at lunch time. As much as we tell ourselves that we’re all good, there is a definite slowing of reaction time which works strongly against our boosted confidence and sudden urge to show off. Still haven’t caught your attention? How about copping an expensive medical bill at the end of your season?
As a physio with experience working multiple ski seasons around the world and dealing with endless insurance claims, I can almost guarantee that all policies will exclude cover if we injure ourselves while under the influence. Make sure you double check the fine print on your travel insurance.
At the end of the day Spring skiing and boarding is still loaded with fun and endless advantages compared to the rat race of peak season. A few apreś is unavoidable – and who’d want to miss out anyway?! Just don’t forget to keep these points in mind to save yourself an expensive bill or early end to your season.