ZHS-Interview: Sport-Tips for the Winter


How to stay healthy during the cold winter season? Degreed sport scientist Tobias Borucker gives answers and advice on the topic sports during winter.

How does a perfect sports programe for the winter look like?
Doing as much sports during the winter as in the summer time would be ideal. I recommend to invest 30 minutes three times a week. It does not have to be high performance sport. A good mix of easy endurance sport and strength training is totally fine. An additional coordination training makes sense in the winter. This helps to be secure with both feet on icy ground. Exercises can range from one leg stand while brushing your teeth to specific vibration training under qualified supervision

Many people have problems motivating themselves. How can you manage going outside when it is below cero?
It is all about the motivation! Maybe it helps not training alone but together with friends or the partner. Then you have a steady motivation. It also helps to set fix dates or to visit courses with set times. However, fun shall always be paramount.

What has to be considered when doing sports outside with temperatures below cero and snow?
In many cases it already helps to reduce practice time in order to prevent hypothermia. As soon as you are freezing, go back home. Furthermore, it is important to breathe through your nose in order to avoid a quick dehydration of the mucous membranes. Be aware of the right footwear when the ground is frozen. Cool-down exercises like stretching should be done inside

What else, besides exercise, is important to stay healthy during the winter time?
Nutrition plays a big role since the immune system is often groggy in the cold season. Sufficient intake of vitamins is therefore essential. Adequate fluid intake is important as the mucous membranes dry out quickly due to the low humidity and the warm air from the heating. Shock ventilation and to not turn the heating above 22° is recommended. Even if it sounds banal, you should especially take care of hygiene. Washing the hands regularly and throwing away tissues after usage is a must as they are the perfect surroundings for viruses and bacteria.

How to behave when having a cold?
No sports! Especially no endurance training. The cold has to be cured completely. Afterwards start slowly with physical pressure with low intensity. Sauna should be avoided as well to not enhance the cold.

Any other tips to turn the cold season into an active season?
What I can recommend for the winter: take your sports equipment with you to work and go directly after work to the gym, a course or to the swim. Once you are sitting on your sofa, you mostly do not pull yourself together anymore. Furthermore, sports helps to relax and in fact to sleep better.