The Towel Stretch

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and John Atkins

Even though your lower legs are protected by your ski boots, you still need to keep them flexible for strong skiing. Do the Towel Stretch to improve your control, agility and balance-and also to help avoid injury.

How To Do It Sit on the floor and place a towel under the ball of your foot, holding the towel with both hands. Keeping your leg extended in front of you and your heel on the floor, gently pull the towel toward you until you feel a comfortable stretch. Hold for 15 seconds and switch legs. Do three repetitions with each leg.

What It Does The Towel Stretch loosens the Achilles tendon, heel, calf and ankle.

Topper Hagerman and John Atkins, sports medicine consultants and former U.S. Ski Team trainers, run Topper Sportsmedicine in Vail, Colo. Have afitness question? E-mail Topper and John at thagerman@skinet.com.