Thinking about hittin’ the waves and learning how to surf? Or maybe you already do surf but want to get in better shape so you can improve your surfing? Surfing is a physically demanding sport that requires your whole body to work. The bigger the waves get the more your body has to work. Yes you don’t have to be in shape to surf, but then you can just consider it a hobby. For those who live to ride waves, peak physical condition is a must. Surfing fitness starts with compound movements that work multiple joints. If you want to be in physical shape to surf, isolation movements are not going to cut it.You have to work the whole body. As with every other physical activity in life the big four exercises are a must in surf fitness.
For those of you who do not know what the big four exercises are, they are the bench press, deadlight, military press, and squat. These are the most basic of lifting exercises and will build the strong body you need to surf. Essential to surfing is the core. I really hope the first thoughts in your head are not ones of thousands of crunches. This is NOT the way you build a strong core. That’s the way you hurt your back. It is important that you build your core as a whole, not in isolation. Medicine balls, cables, exercise bands, and stability balls are excellent tools for high quality core surf training.
The next part of surf fitness that is a must, is balance. Some of my favourite balance drills are single leg balance drills such as hopping, closed eye balance while standing on a pillow, or upper body rotations; single leg balance with upper body medicine ball tosses; single leg cable push or pulls; and exercises on top of a balance board or indo board. These are just some of the basic fitness exercises you need for surfing. Get the basics down first and watch your surfing improve every time you go out.
Please find a brief video below outlining the training for a basic pop up movement