7 Cross Training Tips for Peak Surfing Performance
IMPROVE YOUR SURF FITNESS
We all want to be able to ride the waves like a true champion. When you first begin surfing, no matter the age, you are both excited and motivated to take on this new challenge. As many will attest though, despite any amount of youthful confidence in your earliest lessons, many are shocked to discover that the challenge of being the next pro surfing great, is indeed greater than they anticipated.
Not to be discouraged though, many new and experienced boarders will simply bounce back up and give it another go. There are several exercises and tips you can incorporate though if you really want to maximize your ability and potential on the board. Here are 7 of the best to improve your surf fitness:
Many may recommend snowboarding here, and whilst practicing another board sport is an excellent way to prepare for the open water, skiing just adds that extra dynamic of having your feet move more freely. This is something which absolutely helps to improve your focus, and given the unpredictability of the waves on occasion, we feel like I is a similar match for that of the mountain and the obstacles which it presents.
Working on your skiing will help you focus on a variety of areas which are considered essential in surfing too. These include knowing where your feet are positioned and how to direct them at all times. Besides this great footwork training, you will also get accustomed to dealing with the reality of falling down but getting right back up again. This is something which is likely no more perfect to prepare you for the life beyond the TV glamour of learning to surf, which undoubtedly will involve many horizontal moments.
It seems like an obvious selection, but as a reminder to some who may have overlooked it, swimming is the most important skill which any surfer must possess. It is after all a water sport, and you will indeed find yourself in the ocean on more occasions than you may expect. This is key through all stages of your surfing development. As you start to become more accomplished, sure you become a better surfer, being a top quality swimmer suddenly becomes all the more important.
The added advantage with bringing top notch swimming skills to the water add is that you will have the confidence in swimming so that you do not fear falling from the board. This can be a key tool in helping you overcome challenges when learning. As any surfer will tell you, the water often feels like their second home, this is particularly useful at times when you feel challenged by boarding techniques.
Another board sport which many surfers gravitate toward and vice versa. Skateboarding is ideal from both a theoretical and practical viewpoint when you are learning to surf. It helps you identify the best boards that suit your style. FinBin is an awesome resource for choosing your surfboard, but skating really gets you in the groove in terms of identifying what you need and prefer.
As a more experienced surfer, it is not always possible to get on the water, that could be due to poor conditions or a variety of other reasons. Skateboarding is perfect for keeping your skills honed and on point when you can’t make it to the surf. Achieving your potential really requires constant practice and keeping those skills sharp at all times. This is one of the primary reasons you will find many of the world’s top surfers at your nearest skate park on the off-season.
This next training technique is a bit of a curve ball for many. Dancing can have a number of benefits to see you reach peak performance on the board. How is that possible? – Movement. This movement and most importantly coordination with your partner in dancing, can easily transfer across onto the board. Knowing where your feet are positioned at all times is vital when boarding and dancing.
Timing, movement and coordination are all vital parts of both activities, therefore it actually makes perfect sense that the best surfers in the world should spend some time on the dancefloor perfecting their moves. That said, if you have two left feet on the dancefloor, don’t worry too much. There are many other methods you can use to reach peak performance in surfing as we have outlined.
This is a broader concept, but staying upright on a surfboard requires a lot of core strength. Not only that, but getting back up on to your board and keeping your balance are all centered on the core of the body. Therefore, anything you can do to boost your core strength will result in positive results in the swell.
Luckily for us, many of the exercises mentioned here are also fundamentally based around improving your core strength, so in many cases these activities come with multiple benefits to help you get the best out of your surfing potential.
What better way to boost that core strength we just mentioned than engaging in one of the trending exercises of the moment. CrossFit training will absolutely help boost your core strength and that of the rest of your muscle groups whilst also promoting and improving agility. There is so much crossover here which can help you with your surfing performance that most top guides nowadays would actively encourage registering yourself with a CrossFit program.
Naturally, this strength and agility will help you on the board, but it should also serve to boost your self confidence in that beach body too! This is something which cannot be underestimated when boarding and getting the most out of your performance. Having the ability and confidence to test yourself and not be afraid of failure is absolutely vital.
When we talk about movement, agility, and flexibility, we absolutely must give a mention to calisthenics. This makes us focus on all of those areas and boosts a number of the areas which we have already discussed. This attention to bodily movements and the amazing boost which some of the workouts will give you raw core strength is vital if you want to take to the waves and be the best that you can be.
A final key area where calisthenics proves invaluable to surfers is focus. Focus and clarity of the mind may be one of the single most important attributes a surfer possesses. Having the ability to focus on themselves and the challenges they face, without distraction. This is something relevant to any professional sport and particularly surfing. That is a primary reason why you will see many top surfers and athletes in general now engaging in more and more calisthenics training. Try This Beginner’s Calisthenics Workout ( opens a new window)
Of course, much of a really elite level surfer’s skill comes from a profound level of natural ability. Desire and motivation to reach those challenging goals are also vital. Having the right type of equipment too. What we have outlined though is that through training, in any area, there are multiple ways in which you can improve your own performance and skill level.
Working hard and training hard is a vital element in any sport or profession, surfing is no different. With multiple options to choose from, there is no excuse not to engage and derive some benefit from any of the activities mentioned which can ultimately translate to you improving your surfing skills regardless of your level.