Surfing fitness and paddling are one and the same as being able to swim. The benefits of being able to swim, especially ocean swim are numerous.
Anyone who surfs knows that paddling endurance is essential, arm, shoulder, core and basic overall strength and flexibility. We spend more time paddling than we do actually surfing on a wave. Plus, all leashes can break at some point so being a strong swimmer is crucial, especially if you are heading out into bigger waves.
Swimming requires plenty of stamina but surfers require stamina plus short bursts of energy and strength for paddle power to get out the back and onto waves. Because of this, surfers need something different from just traditional swim training if you want to build up stamina to continue paddling for wave after wave. Ideal training for surfing is swimming laps in a pool but you need some variation with drills. The best surfers in the world are all excellent swimmers. Get some good goggles and hit the pool and imagine yourself at the backline on a big day without a board. Designing your swim programs to help your surfing makes it easier to get motivated to jump in the pool and train.
Due to the physical nature of surfing, pool training usually involves some kind of breath work to improve lung capacity, cardiovascular health, which also helps in keeping calm through wipeouts. Yoga training also helps the body make efficient use of oxygen, as well.
Swimmers and surfers use essentially the same muscles for propulsion but for different purposes and in slightly different ways. Freestyle swimming involves pulling the body through the water, keeping the body line long and straight while rotating the torso and kicking with the legs for more propulsion.
Paddling a surfboard is similar to freestyle swimming with regard to the 'pulling' part of the stroke. Like swimming, the powerful muscles of the lats, back, arms and core are constantly engaged to paddle while keeping the body on the board and the head up.
If you want an individual swim program to help improve and enhance your surfing fitness and breath control
contact me to discuss.