Off-Season With U.S. Ski & Snowboard
As a very successful competition season comes to an end, U.S. Ski & Snowboard athletes take to the off-season, each with their own unique programs. In a three-part series, we caught up with Olympian and X Games freeski gold medalist Maggie Voisin (Whitefish, Mont.) and teammates Toby Miller (Mammoth Lakes, Calif.) and Hailey Langland (San Clemente, Calif.) from the U.S. Snowboard Pro Team to find out how they will mentally and physically regroup for the season to come. Whether battling back from injuries, an inevitable part of performing at the highest level of action sports, or tackling hobbies that are simply impossible to participate in when traveling across the world to compete, every rider has a different outlook on what is the most beneficial approach to their time off snow.
First up, it’s Maggie Voisin who takes us through her plans for the summer ahead.
U.S. Freeski Pro Team – Maggie Voisin
Voisin had a strong 2018-19 season collecting both X Games and Dew Tour podiums. In addition, after spending three weeks on the airbag in Park City in summer 2018, Maggie brought her left side double cork 1260 to elite level competition. If that wasn’t impressive enough, Voisin also reached these milestones without a functional ACL.
“I recently had my left ACL repaired,” said Voisin. “It’s pretty crazy because I had no idea that I was skiing without an ACL. There wasn’t really a specific crash that I can think back to where I would have really hurt my knee, but not knowing, and then finding out the news, it definitely took me by surprise, but I’m all about trying to find the positive, even in bad situations. Injuries are a part of the sport and that’s just the name of the game sometimes. However, I am looking forward to working hard this summer so I can be back on my skis stronger than ever next season!”
By no means is Voisin planning on just “winging” her recovery. With detailed and customized plans from the U.S. Ski & Snowboard medical and training staff, she has a solid plan to get back in competition shape.
“My workouts vary from a mix of plyos, weight lifting, circuits, and cardio,” she said. “I love seeing results in the gym, but it’s refreshing to mix it up too. Outside of the gym I do a lot of pilates as well, which I absolutely love. It’s a different approach to keeping myself strong without lifting heavy weights. It’s a fun challenge for the mind and body, plus it really keeps my whole body feeling absolutely amazing.”
As Maggie mentioned, it’s critical that recovery takes place both inside and outside the gym. Fortunately, she has a strong support system, in particular with her father, that keeps her on track both mentally and physically.
“My dad is the one who gave me my love for the mountains and no matter what season it is, I am drawn to finding new adventures or mountains to climb,” Voisin reflected. “Our days are usually pretty long and by the time we get back to the car, my legs feel ten times heavier than when we started. Although my body is exhausted after climbing, usually for ten-plus hours, I wouldn't trade that feeling of being in the mountains for anything in the world. Every time I go out it’s always a challenge, but I discover something new within myself and around me every time. The outdoors, as they say, are truly the best medicine and every adventure reminds me to stay true to what makes my heart happy.”
Recovering from a busy competition season, in particular, one throughout which Maggie carried such a major injury, is no easy task, but there are often people in your life that make most challenges bearable. These people are called family and Voisin embraces this sentiment from the bottom of her heart.
“I try to spend most of my summer back home in Montana with my family and close friends. Going home has always been the best way for me to reset after a long season.”
However, Maggie Voisin is a professional athlete, an Olympian, an elite level competitor, so completely unplugging is not a reality for the young star. The cell phone will continue to ring, her email inbox will continually fill, and delivering on sponsorship obligations is a must for a pro athlete. However, these responsibilities can also create great experiences and unique opportunities for someone like Maggie.
“Sometimes I’ll have sponsor obligations to take care of in the summer months and those are always fun, said Voisin. “Last summer I went on a trip to Australia with one of my sponsors and we were getting video and photo content for the company. It feels more like fun than ‘work’.”
Be sure to follow Voisin’s journey of recovery on social media (see accounts below). Although her main focus will be the rehab of her ACL, her adventurous and genuine personality always make for a great follow on social. Whether she’s outside, volunteering for a good cause, or putting in time in the gym, Voisin will be staying busy!
“My main focus this summer will be on my rehab so I can get back on my skis stronger than ever. I’ll be posting a lot of updates on my knee so if you want to check out how I’m progressing definitely follow along on my social media. When I’m not focused on my knee I plan on going on quite a few adventures. Although I won’t be hiking any big peaks this summer, I will be doing a lot of camping, boating, a little bit of traveling, and just getting outside as much as I possibly can. I’m working on figuring out a beach trip or two as well - I’m looking forward to a trip like that and I’ll certainly be posting a lot of fun content. I just bought my first real camera and I’m super excited to play around and learn a thing or two about photography. Hopefully, I can pick up some skills pretty quick so I can start posting some interesting shots! I’m also passionate about giving back in some way or another and while I have all this time off my skis, I want to utilize that time to volunteer.”
That’s our insight into what one of U.S. Ski & Snowboard’s premiere athletes will be up to this summer. Stay tuned for more of the same from Toby Miller and Hailey Langland, and if you aren’t already following Maggie, make sure you do so now by taking a look at the links below.