Snowboarding is an intense sport that leaves your muscles sore and tight, making you injury prone. If you’re planning to ride the next day, it’s super important you know how to recover!
Here’s how to recover after snowboarding:
- Stretch muscles to reduce tightness and repair damage.
- Heat therapy to relax your muscles.
- Cold therapy to reduce muscle inflammation.
- Stay hydrated to avoid muscle cramps.
- Massage to release muscle tension.
- Foam roller to relieve muscle knots.
- Compression wraps to recover during sleep.
- Eat bananas to heal muscle damage.
- Sleep well to repair your muscles.
Let’s dive into more detail about how to recover after snowboarding. I have loads of tips, so you’d better keep reading!
1. Stretch Muscles To Reduce Tightness and Repair Damage
Stretching can make a massive difference after snowboarding. The idea is to reduce muscle tightness and repair damage. As your muscles relax, they become flexible and less sore, making movement easier.
According to the National Library of Medicine, Stretching different body parts improves blood circulation. The increased blood flow to the muscles minimizes pain and speeds up muscle recovery.
Here are some stretching exercises you can do at home:
- Child’s pose
- Spinal twist
- Hamstring stretch
- Cobra stretch
- Shoulder rolls
- Piriformis stretch
- Quad stretch
Check out the best stretches for snowboarding for more detail.
2. Heat Therapy to Relax Your Muscles
Heat therapy increases blood circulation and oxygen supply to your muscles, reducing soreness and pain.
You can use a hot tub, jacuzzi, or sauna. You might also consider adding Epsom salt to your hot bath. According to Cleveland Clinic, Epsom salt speeds recovery by reducing muscle soreness and inflammation.
Still, if you don’t have access to such facilities, a warm shower will also help.
You can also find many products in the market that are excellent for heat therapy. These are:
- Heating pads – you can spread your heating pad and lie down on it. It is an excellent way for you and your sore muscles to relax. You can find the best one in my article here.
- Heat packs
- Gel packs
- Heat wraps
It’s important to note, however, that you shouldn’t go for heat therapy immediately after snowboarding. It can increase muscle swelling, worsening the situation.
Many snowboarders prefer stretching or cold therapy before using heat for muscle healing.
3. Cold Therapy to Reduce Muscle Inflammation
Cold therapy is not the most comfortable way of recovering, but many snowboarders would choose an ice bath over heat therapy.
As the name suggests, you use ice baths, cold compresses, or cold showers to treat muscle soreness. Unlike heat therapy, cold therapy reduces circulation to decrease muscle inflammation, soreness, and pain.
Avoid using cold therapy if you have the following health conditions:
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular problems
- Poor circulation
4. Stay Hydrated to Avoid Muscle Cramps
From skin to muscles, every part of our body benefits from proper hydration, but how does it help after snowboarding?
Snowboarding makes your muscles sore and tight, and dehydration can cause cramping of these muscles. One of the best ways to avoid cramping is drinking water while riding.
Here’s some of the best ways to carry water while snowboarding.
Hydration also prevents electrolyte depletion. Electrolytes are the minerals that regulate the amount of water in your body to avoid muscle contraction. A good fluid intake replenishes electrolytes, speeding up muscle repair.
5. Massage to Release Muscle Tension
Who can say no to a good massage, especially after your body goes through something like snowboarding!
A good massage helps you and your muscles to relax. It improves circulation and oxygen supply to your muscles, reducing soreness and muscle tightness.
However, you must look for a trained and certified masseuse who knows how to work the muscles. Remember, a bad massage hurts more than it heals!
6. Foam Roller to Relieve Muscle Knots
Foam rollers can release muscle tightness and knots. It can even help you work the areas you cannot reach while stretching.
Here is an effective way to use your foam roller:
- Start by rolling your whole body over the foam roller so that your blood flow to the muscles improves.
- After this, you can target specific body parts and muscles to reduce soreness and improve muscle performance.
A foam roller is an excellent thing to have in your luggage when you set out for a physically challenging adventure.
If you don’t want to carry a roller in your luggage, you can create one by rolling a towel or a bed sheet. Even a cold-water bottle can serve as a roller.
7. Compression Wraps to Recover During Sleep
Use a compression wrap to cover the body part that feels sore.
The wrap puts pressure on your sore or injured area, reducing swelling and pain. It also raises the temperature of the body, improving circulation.
Overall, this helps to soothe sore muscles and joints. You can even keep the wrap on overnight if needed.
Compression wraps can help you with:
- Swollen muscles
- Muscle strains
- Ankle sprains
Wraps are incredibly cheap and easy to carry.
8. Eat Bananas to Heal Muscle Damage
Bananas are full of nutrients that promote muscle recovery. That is why you see many athletes munch on a banana during their water breaks. They replenish your glycogen levels, which repairs muscle damage.
Bananas are also rich in potassium, another nutrient essential for proper muscle function.
9. Sleep Well to Repair Your Muscles
Sleep helps as it gives your muscles time to repair. A good night’s sleep lets you rest and improves your energy levels.
However, you shouldn’t go to bed without stretching or taking cold therapy.
A long sleep without stretching, hot/cold therapies, compression wraps, etc., could have an adverse effect. You may wake up with extremely sore and painful muscles, which may take longer to repair.
To avoid this, you must do something to loosen up your muscles and reduce inflammation before you go to bed.
Like any extreme workout, snowboarding damages your muscles and leaves them sore.
Before you set out on your snowboard, take some time to learn how to recover after snowboarding.
Some of the most frequently used tips include:
- Cold therapy
- Heat therapy
Another great idea is wearing a pair of crash pants (see my review of the Rippl crash pants here). These can reduce bruising and muscle stiffness.
Keep in mind that you don’t have to follow all the tips I listed. Even just a few could do the trick.
In the end, these tips can help to repair muscle damage and keep you in shape.
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