5 Reasons why Surfing is One of the Best Ways to Stay in Shape
When summertime finally comes and the beach season starts, there is probably nothing better to do than to grab your suntan lotion and hit the nearest coast. But did you know that you needn’t search for a gym when vacationing or enjoying the summer vibes at a coastal town? That’s right, surfing is one of the best ways to get total-body fit nowadays, and if you haven’t tried it already, then now’s the time to hit the waves! Here are five excellent reasons why surfing is one of the best workouts and why you should become a surfer yourself.
Develop total body strength
Strength is a relative concept, so it’s important to keep in mind that there are many ways to develop total-body strength outside of your typical gym environment. When it comes to surfing, strength gain is a natural byproduct of a variety of static and dynamic muscle contractions that happen during each and every second you’re on the board.
From the swimming portion when you’re just paddling your way out to sea, to the moment you transition to a standing position and work on your balance and core stability and strength, all the way to those complex movements you have to perform while riding the waves – your body will take quite a beating! And you can bet that it feels amazing.
Lose fat and tone up
This type of dynamic exercise ties directly into the concepts of weight loss and muscle gain. Through continuous time under tension as you’re surfing the waters, your body will be in a constant state of caloric expenditure – kind of like a lengthy cardio session. But fat loss is just a single piece of the surfing puzzle.
Surfing involves a great deal of continuous muscle contraction, making it one of the best workout routines to tone up and build lean muscle mass. Depending on your skillset, you might be able to target almost every muscle group in your body. That said, your lower body such as your glutes, quads, hamstrings, and calves will be targeted predominantly. You will also develop those beach-ready abs while working on your stability.
Develop core strength and stability
The core is one of those muscle groups that never rests during surfing, as you’re constantly engaging your abdominals to stay rigid yet agile, grounded yet mobile, able to react to the slightest shift in the speed, direction, and height of the waves. When your core is constantly engaged, you are effectively working on your stability on the board as well.
This doesn’t mean that it gets any easier, just that you’re getting better. That said, if you want to get the most out of your workout, you need to stay safe and use the right type of equipment. This is why innovative makers such as Ocean and Earth specialize in creating boards, leashes, and accessories that help surfers stay safe on the water without sacrificing performance. Waxing your board is pretty important in this regard, as you’ll want to have a firm grip with your feet so that you can let your core do the work.
Work on your reflexes and coordination
Speaking of the importance of gear when it comes to your performance on the board, using the right surfboard for your level of experience will be the key to developing your reflexes and total-body coordination as well. That doesn’t mean that you can’t rent any board you like, but it does mean that the right board will help you make progress faster until one day you include Fido in the entire thing too!
When you’re out there, your body will be challenged to constantly shift positions with the waves, and you will need to balance with your entire body to stay upright. This helps to improve your reflexes and decision-making time, as well as total-body coordination.
Build mobility and flexibility
And lastly, surfing is a great way to improve whole-body mobility and flexibility. Through the dynamic stretching and warm-ups you’ll be doing prior to hitting the waves, as well as the awkward positions you’ll have to put your body in to prevent yourself from falling off the board, you will inevitably mobilize your joints and make them flexible enough to make every transition a breeze.
Of all the fun ways to stay in shape, surfing takes the proverbial cake when summertime finally comes. With these fitness benefits in mind, go ahead and make the ocean your gym this summer and build the body you deserve by riding the waves.