January 28, 2022

If you’re reading this right now yo­u’re probably a water skier. If that’s the truth, then chances are that you also have an interest in getting better on the water. But, wait… The water is getting colder. The tournaments are over. The boat is winterized. It’s off-season. So, what are you going to do until it’s time to rip again? What are your plans to continue improving in the off-season?


First, let’s define the off-season and what its main purpose is.


Off-season is the most underrated and overlooked season of the year. It’s the time which provides the greatest opportunity to recalibrate your approach to next season. Being the best athlete you can be, means taking time to recover physically, mentally and emotionally but that is far from meaning the entire winter is actually taken “off”. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.


Here are six main things you can do this off-season to make your 2021 your best season yet:

1. Improve joint mobility and stability:  Water Skiers are notoriously missing shoulder, hip and ankle range of motion. These deficiencies can not only impair performance but can also lead to injury. This should be addressed year-round, but here are 3 mobility tools to start today:

2. Improve Strength and Power:  It’s no secret that being strong and powerful in relation to your weight is beneficial on the ski. Performing functional movements as opposed to isolated movements will give you the most athletic bang for your buck. Keep reps in the 1-5 range in order to work strength and power and not gain mass. Here are 3 movements we suggest including in your program:

3. Improve Metabolic Conditioning:  Metabolic conditioning, in its most basic sense, means sports specific training. Skiers spend around 16-22 seconds working and 1min + resting. Training your body metabolically for this type of output is critical to your success. More of this specificity is done in the pre-season, but hitting it in the off-season is beneficial as well to start priming the body. This doesn’t mean that going for longer, slower aerobic session is bad. Do those too if it fits in your schedule in the off-season, but try not to make them the primary focus. Below are 3 types of metabolic training workouts to try.

  • Sprints (rower, running, biking, etc) 8 x :15 effort/:45rest

4.  Move in different ways:   We are all passionate about waterskiing and some of you may have the ability to ski year-round. But, that doesn’t mean you should. There’s no one prescription for the amount of time to take off, however we recommend giving your body a couple months of little to no skiing on the water. Instead, challenge your athleticism with different sports/activities that interest you.

5.  Practice and sharpen your mindset:   It’s been said that skiing is 90%mental. We know that improving your capacity to control your state of mind will improve consistency, safety and get you more PBs. Here are 3 practices you can implement in your off-season:

·   Practice breath work regularly (ie: 10 x 6 second inhale, 4 sec hold, 8 sec exhale)

·   Self-video analysis and critiquing

·   Develop and strengthen a visualization practice: We can’t overstate the importance of this for peak performance on the water. But, remember it’s the off-season so let’s keep this playful and simple.     

Here are 2 different approaches to visualization to start trying:

  • Real time:  For this approach, we recommend you find a comfortable place to sit, close your eyes, and take a few deep breaths. Visualize (and attempt to feel the sensations of) putting your ski gear on, your feet in your bindings, jumping in the water, your deep water start, and then step by step through your set. Basically, visualize every aspect of a real set and try to do it in real time. Don’t worry about making mistakes, those will happen. Just try to keep the tempo of your set going in your head, and simply move through any mistakes or sticking points to continue to the next moment, or buoy. The more you practice this, the better you will get. 
  • Slow-motion:  For this approach, you can either sit or you can stand and physically walk through the course as you work through this practice. Pick a pass that you want to really FEEL in detail. Start at the gate pull-out, and allow yourself to ski this pass in slow motion. Don’t take it too slowly, and try not to “rewind”or “re-do” something in your head, but do allow yourself the time to ski it how you want to ski it. Really try to make the mind-body connection as you move through this pass...by sensing what each portion of the course would feel like, as you are negotiating it. 

6.  Understand how to Fuel your Body:  Doing all the work in the gym and on the water, but not thinking about what you’re putting into your body is doing yourself a disservice. One thing to keep in mind, we are all different and our energy requirements are different. Listening to your body is the most important thing. The off-season is a good time to play around with what works best for you, when performance is not on the line. Here are 5 main things to start today:

·   Remove all processed foods and refined sugar

·   Drink adequate amount of water (minimum recommendation is 1/2 body weight in ounce daily)

·   Eat REAL food (quality protein, healthy fats, fresh produce)

·   Reduce or eliminate alcohol consumption

·   Slowdown, enjoy your food in a calm/appreciate state

There is no one right way to train. In fact, if you have a coach that tells you it’s their way or the highway, run! There are some fundamental concept that apply to making your program fit your needs, but, ultimately, the program you enjoy and follow will be better than a perfect program that you don’t do.

Our program, the FlowPointMethod, is a year-long, holistic approach to waterskiing. Led by coaches,Marcus Brown (pro-skier, engineer and visionary) and Jenny LaBaw (strength and conditioning coach, functional nutritionist and elite athlete). We take into account on-water training, off-water training, mindset, nutrition and life style that all play important parts in an athlete’s overall success. We have put together a combined 40 years of experience in our respective disciplines to take the guesswork out and provide you with a step-by-step plan to improve not only on the water, but in life.

FlowPoint Method isn’t just a program, it’s a skier’s way of life. We invite you to check it out, give it a trial, or just dive right in. We promise you, you won’t regret it. If our path doesn’t seem right for you, no hard feelings, that's why we have a 14-day Free Trial! Remember, the best program is the one that resonates with you....ultimately it needs to be something that you will make into a habit. It should fit your values, your goals, your accessibility and your availability. We’re here to answer any questions you have and wish you the best in your off-season training!

~ Jenny & Marcus

If you have any Questions, please Reach Out! We'd be happy to answer them for you!

ALSO, if you aren't sure about FPM but want to go somewhere to Start your season off on the right foot, take a look at our CAMPS this spring and summer, out here in Sunny California!

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