Surfing Athlete Warmup Drills
You gotta get your body moving. Most surfers spend most of their time behind desks, in front of computers, or in front of the TV… sedentary bodies don’t cooperate with surfing. So before you head out for a wave, spend 2minutes doing some actually beneficial warmup drills to loosen tight tissue, get joints moving, bring up the heart rate, and not be that overweight dude just doing an arm swing or too. Give this a go before your training as well, no matter the sport… it’s a darn good warmup.
While there could be any number of drills that work for a good warm-up, there’s a few specifics you’re looking to accomplish with mobility drills. We want to loosen up commonly restricted joints or tissues, increase blood flow, excite the nervous system, activate stabiliser muscles, and prepare your body for a surf. We all know that the initial paddle out can be a total evil bitch at times, so spend a few minutes getting your body primed to move. Shoulders, thoracic spine, core, hips, calves. That’s what we want to “prime”, and get the body prepared for the dynamics of surfing (balance, power, endurance, flexibility, strength). Again, a few arm swings aren’t going to cut it… but I do like arm swings, it just needs to be more extensive.
Spiderman Stretch with Rotations
This works on overall mobility of the hips and spine. Get Loose!
Most people are familiar with this, and the picture below is actually from what I call an Inch-worm, which includes more movement, but the yoga downward dog is a good one. I like it more for the upper body shoulder girdle activation than for the hamstring flexibility. When you do these, really focus on pressing through the base of the palms of the hands and try to elongate all the way from ribs to hands. You can do a pushup in between each rep. Think of this as warmup up your upper body for duck dives.
This is working on hip flexibility, single leg balance activation, and upper body flexibility. Work on getting the shoulders vertical. Also rotate to both sides, then lunge back up to the feet together position. Then repeat on the other side. You can also work on side bends (elevate the arms then lean the upper body to one side to stretch the lateral line / obliques.
Top 3 Surfing Athlete Warmup Drills
Bang out about 6 reps of each of those movements. I generally do them in the order that I’ve put them. And then you can do your arm swings. Seriously, do some arm swings. A bit of extra effort in loosening up the shoulder girdle and getting more movement into the upper body is a good thing before paddling out. Here’s a post and vid I did a while back going one a few of these and some extras… check it out!!! Stay Loose Man – Surf Warmup
If you’ve got some specific pain issues or limitations, then you may want to add, or take away from these 3 drills. If you want a bit more insight into full mobility drill circuits, and easy do-it-yourself soft tissue work that will help to increase your overall flexibility and joint durability (getting and staying out of pain), check out my Surf Training Success Program