There’s no denying that surfers are in terrific shape. Incredible shape. They wear the fruits of their labors. And they perform at incredible levels as a result of their hard training while surfing. Their skill is honed continuously with full body workouts in the water. The full body stimulation of surfing rivals all other sports, without a doubt. But even surfers can improve their stamina, endurance, and overall ability to execute the moves in their sport. And the tool they can employ to outperform their former self is one you’ve probably already heard of: CrossFit!
That’s right. The very challenging, flexible, exciting and often addictive training style of CrossFit is being used by top surfers to push their power, balance, and paddling endurance to new levels. This style of training is of particular interest to surfers that cannot surf on a daily basis, due to work, family, or school obligations. Hit the #WOD (workout of the day) at the #BOX (CrossFit training center) on your off-days, then enjoy the added benefits when you hit the water on the weekend. Are you ready to dive in?
First off, starting at the basics… the ocean is full of unknowns. CrossFit training is perfect for adapting to this. The full body workouts which target your core and extremities with movements such as squat, deadlift and pressing will turn your body into a machine capable of moving upwards through the water no matter how tired you are, and what position you may find yourself in, following an unfortunate wipeout. Bounce back to the surface with the strength, stamina and body control that only CrossFit training can deliver.
Now, let’s attack the positions. Attaining the surf zone position is difficult for many… but it’s a breeze for those who have used burpees on a regular basis. Look at the mechanics of each – they’re practically identical! Dive bombers are also useful – look at the way they completely match the smooth and aligned movements seen by surfers who are ducking beneath a wave. Paddling, paddling, paddling? Hours spent doing pull-ups will sure make that movement easier, with the new added back strength and muscular endurance this exercise has provided.
Conditioning is the #1 key for survival, skill and success in surfing. Spend six months knocking out the workout of the day and look at how much further, faster, and longer you can surf. Your hours on the waves will double, and you’ll perform better while doing so! As mentioned previously, your ability to remain above the water is directly related to your stamina – which CrossFit can greatly improve.
Remember that diet also plays a key role in improving your surfing skill and ability. Many surfers underachieve on the water because they aren’t giving their body the nutritional tools needed to excel. Eating a diet rich in protein (lean chicken, whey protein, Mahi-mahi or grouper), carbohydrates (fruits & vegetables, rice, pasta and beans) and fats (egg yolks, almonds, and fish oil) will give your body the tools needed for hard training and fast recovery in the water, and at the #BOX when you’re building up your body to perform better in the water. Surf’s Up!