Apr
14

Surf Conditioning is Important for Progress

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When I teach students to surf in Oceanside lessons, those in better fitness progress much faster. Surfing is not an easy sport. It requires strength, stamina, athletic ability,DSCF0802 and fitness. Lacking anyone of these conditions will impede progress.

Of course, if you surf every day you will probably take care of all 4. A friend who recently started surfing weighed 290 pounds when he came from Arizona. After changing his diet and often surfing for two to three hours, he lost 60 pounds.

When I began or when I have lulls in surfing activity, the first thing I have to build is my paddling stamina. When you are tired from paddling, your day is done. I see my students get tired and start missing their pop ups. That is the direct result of the subtle fatigue that results from paddling. More dangerous is when they get lackadaisical in handling their board and the waves, which is  what I really watch for.

Even when I am surfing often, my conditioning becomes narrow in scope. If I try to run a few blocks, I don’t really have the running stamina. I like to cross train. I ride my road bike often for one or two hours. I find I bring recovery stamina and endurance to my surfing. I also stretch each morning and loosen my hamstrings, gluteus muscles and lower back.

Smooth pop ups are like the golfer who hits the long ball and only hears the light click of the club hitting the ball. Surfing is most fun when the pop ups are automatic. Even if you do not get to surf often, you can practice 5 pop ups a day in your living room and greatly improve your performance when you return to the water. You maintain the flexibility, muscle development,  and muscle memory you need in the water.

Surfing is better enjoyed if you consider it a profession rather than an avocation.

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