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Surf Fitness and Surf Lesson Preparation

A little preparation will really help you to get the most from your lessons, especially if you are having more than one lesson in close succession. Surfing is a physical activity encorporating many aspects of fitness.

Have a browse through. You don’t have to become a superhuman, but increasing your fitness level just a little bit, can make all the difference.

Ask any surfer what good training for surfing is and most will say “Surfing”! There are very few who are able to be in the water everyday the waves are good. Even these lucky ones will participate in other forms of training, to maintain a good level of fitness and make the most out of any water time available. There is nothing worse than finally getting good surf and being tired after a short time, due to being not fit enough.

Hopefully these recommendations will give you a good idea of what cross training is needed, to stay for for surfing. Whether a complete beginner or expert surfer, the following elements of fitness should be considered, when putting together a programme:

• Cardiovascular Endurance – the heart’s ability to deliver blood to working muscles and their ability to use it (paddling a surfboard long distances).

• Local Muscle Endurance – a single muscle’s ability to perform sustained work (paddling).

• Strength Endurance – a muscle’s ability to perform a maximum contracture time after time (Duck diving, executing multiple manoeuvres on a wave).

• Flexibility – the ability to achieve an extended range of motion without being impeded by excess tissue.

• Balance – the ability to control the body’s position while moving.

• Strength – the extent to which muscles can exert force by contracting against resistance.

• Power – the ability to exert maximum muscular contraction instantly in an explosive burst of movements, (executing manoeuvres, power paddling).

• Agility – the ability to perform a series of explosive power movements in rapid succession in opposing directions (executing manoeuvres).

• Co-ordination – the ability to integrate the above listed components so that effective movements are achieved.

Use the below menu for program examples. Remember these are full program, start much smaller with a plan that is managable for you. As

time goes by and your fitness level increases, you can then expand upon the activities.

Other vital advice.

GET HYDRATED! Drink plenty of fluid at least an hour beofre commencing any exercise, including surfing. Your muscles are much more effective at

  transporting oxygen to muscle tissues when properly hydrated, increasing performance, battling fatigue and helping to reduce the likelyhood of injury.

•  A good warm up is vital to maximising your performance and reducing the risk of injury. There is lots of information out there, but a good dynamic cardio

   warm up, covering the whole body is a good idea. 10-15 minutes.

• A good warm down is also very important. Slow down the activity towards the end of your session. Finish with a good stretching routine (Yoga is great).

  This helps your muscles get rid of lactic acid and lengthens the muscle. Speeding up recovery time and increasing flexibility.

• Eat something within 30 minutes of finishing. Your body will still be working for a good while after you finish. It is important to replace the energy used, aid

  recovery. Drink some more to keep you hydrated. You will de-hydrate in the sea, even in winter!