Can I Ski While Pregnant?

Alexandra Powell Allred's picture

QUESTION

Dear Fitness Expert,
I just recently found out I'm pregnant. My family has been planning a Christmas vaction trip to Colorado to go skiing. Can I ski? I will be 8/9 weeks pregnant. I'm a very cautious skier on blues. Could I do easy green slopes or is it to dangerous? Do you have to fall hard to miscarry? We usually ski twice a year for a week. I have been running the past 8 months -- 12 miles a week and aerobics the past 2 years.

ANSWER

Nope, nope, nope. My skiing little friend, if you have read any of my material, you may know that I am a firm believer in the power of the pregnant momma. I trained for the US bobsled team while pregnant. However, I never got IN the bobsled. There are several no-no's in sports for pregnant athletes/moms. Scuba, horseback riding and skiing are tops on the list. Scuba is obvious and in a class by itself but many moms argue they are in condition for horseback riding and/or skiing. These sports have outside factors -- like bobsledding -- that have nothing to do with your level of athleticism.

May I remind you of the two most recent (high-profile) skiing accidents with the Kennedy family and Sen. Sonny Bono. Both were accomplished skiers -- both lost control on the slopes and were killed. In the case of a weekend-warrior skier with plans on staying on the bunny slopes, you are still in great risk of being plowed over by novice skiers. If you were cross-country skiing, I would be more enthusiastic. As long as you remain properly hydrated and do not get too hot while skiing, this is a safe, reasonable exercise. As for skiing on the slopes, the risk is just too great.I know this is disappointing news to you and I applaud you for being in excellent condition (Keep it up!) but steer clear of the slopes. Again, the risk is too great and will not be worth it to you should something go awry.

-- Alex