Surf Exercise: Single Leg Training


Any well designed surf training programs or surf exercise programs must include some single leg work. As a surfer, this is paramount to becoming exceptionally strong, developing core stability, training foot/ankle strength, and keeping your knees in good shape.

I was working with a client this week who’s been dealing with some knee issues that have been messing up her surfing. The knee has been giving her some pain issues, but the problem is coming from her foot. WHAT!!! Yep, her knee problem is coming from a weak foot and ankle.

Your knee is basically a slave to the foot/ankle, and the hip. When those parts of your body are out of whack, the knee is going to suffer. When a knee suffers, knees hurt, and painful knees are going to severely impact your surfing…. in a bad way.

I put her on some basic foot and hip strengthening, as well as some beginner single leg work. The following video shows a few examples of beginner and progressed single leg work.


  • dynamically strong and stable foot and ankle complex – helps keeps your knees healthy and have faster reaction times to wave changes
  • full body core integration – the core is more than your abs, and single leg training forces you to develop a well integrated core structure to keep your joints and back strong, stable, and powerful
  • develops strength of the hip muscles, which will also help you to keep an injury free back and knees
  • trains balance… obviously this helps us surfers. Think about how many dynamic positions your surfboard is placed while on the wave face. Your legs are working independently, so train them independently.
  • Strengthens the small stabilizer muscles of your leg and back, which will allow you to surf more powerfully


Maintain stable foot and knees. Don’t allow knee to wobble. Do not collapse arch of foot.

When developing more balance and stability, go higher reps, 20-30, or just go for time, 1-2minutes

When developing strength or power, go with a bit heavier weight, and lower reps, around 8-14.

Remember, use perfect form, don’t teach your body to move inefficiently. Train your body to move well, so watch the form in the video and mimic it.

More good stuff to read and rad exercises Surfers Single Leg Training  and Surf Workouts – Dynamic Lunges

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  • Leg exercises are good to strengthen legs and to enjoy the waves and create more waves. As we know surfing needs a lot of power and stamina so, it is very necessary to  do proper exercises before surfing. It would be better if you start your surfing fitness training before one month of surfing trip. get more information about leg exercise here: http://www.totalsurfingfitness.com/leg-exercises-for-surfing/
  • […] Stronger Legs Stronger Surfing – Single Leg Work […]

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