Surfing is both one of the most enjoyable and physically demanding sports in the world. It requires a wide range of physical and mental qualities in order to paddle out and perform on a board.
There’s a wide range of areas that need to be addressed to optimise your surfing, prevent injury and perform at your highest level.
Whether you’re a beginner, experienced surfer, 15 years old or 80 years old or simply planning your next surf trip, Pilates may help you to keep enjoying surfing for the rest of your life.
Here are our top 5 benefits to adding Pilates to your regular exercise routine.
- STRENGTH: Swimming, paddling, and surfing in the dynamic aquatic environment requires muscular strength. However, repetitive movements over time can create imbalances and weaknesses in the body. A Pilates routine is focused on targeting core stability and control, which means that you can strengthen deper stabilising muscles and engage in your surfing activities with more energy, strength and power.
- BALANCE: By adding specific Pilates balance exercises to your exercise routine, you may notice this skill translates rapidly to improved balance on the board. Balance is a fundamental skill that tends to deteriorate with age; however, regular balance practice will be beneficial for catching waves with greater ease and better technique.
- FLEXIBILITY: Tight, restricted muscles from surfing can lead to faulty movement patterns. Tight fascia can lead to postural changes, and create a cycle of symptoms and pain. Adding a Pilates stretching program and self myofascial release component to your daily routine can make a big difference to your recovery time after surfing.
- AGILITY: Pilates exercises can improve reflexes, coordination and spatial awareness. A flow on effect of these important benefits is increased mobility and agility in and out of the water. Being able to adapt to the ocean environment requires quick decision making skills and the balance between supple muscles and strength.
- ENDURANCE: Surfing can be a strenuous activity, and as water creates extra resistance, this can lead to fatigue. Pilates can help to counterbalance this as it encourages focus and concentration. It is often referred to as a “mindful movement ” for this reason. By practicing “working smarter, not harder”, this ability to move more efficiently translates well to movement in the water, ensuring that your endurance increases, and you can enjoy surfing for longer periods of time.
For more information about how Pilates may help boost your Surfing experience, and for a specific Surf Pilates exercise program, make sure you don’t miss our workshop in April.