27 May Tone up with Toyah | Upper body strength
As you may know, surfing challenges your strength, power, speed, endurance, fluidity and flexibility. It’s the ultimate work-out! To be able to become a better surfer we need to keep up our physical state!
So we’ve teamed up with fitness enthusiast Toyah Marshall who will be creating some easy ‘do it at home’ workouts to help you tone up, improve your surfing and avoid faffing around with any equipment whatsoever! They can also be tailored for everyone, so get involved!
This month we are focusing on Upper Body Strength!
UPPER BODY STRENGTH
by Toyah Marshal
Let’s be honest. For most of us winter means less surfing. Whether it be fewer sessions because of the darker evenings or shorter sessions because it’s damn cold, we don’t all get as much water time as we would like. As a result, it’s easy to get frustrated and worry all that progress made before winter hit is going to go out of the window but that doesn’t have to be the case.
Land-based training is just as important to your surf fitness as water-based training is. Even the pros spend their time between sessions training so why shouldn’t you? Even if I spend a few weeks out of the water, my training keeps me strong and if anything, I have found my surfing has improved as a result of training alone.
Each month I’m going to go through a series of exercises that you can use to keep yourself surf fit or to improve your surf fitness.
One of the most essential things a surfer needs to have is upper body strength to pop up and paddle. For us girls upper body strength is usually a problem area that most will neglect in the gym. The usual reason I hear is that because they surf, they don’t need to work those muscles. Wrong! If anything, training upper body is just as important if not more so if you surf.Below I am going to take you through some basic bodyweight exercises you can do anywhere that will help build your upper body strength.
Before you begin here are some safety tips:
– Do these exercises on a mat, carpet or padded floor
– Make sure you warm up beforehand and stretch afterwards
– Start slow and do the adapted moves if you need to
– Do not do these if you are pregnant or recently had a baby without GP clearance.
Do the following exercises for 10-12 repetitions each then move on to the next one. Rest for 15
seconds between each exercise. Do a total of 4 rounds of all the exercises.
Narrow push up
This mimics the pop up position so is a great exercise if you are struggling to really push yourself up!
This is basically like downward -dog. You want to stand with your feet wider than hip width apart then walk your hands out in front of you until you are in this position. Your hands should be wider than shoulder width apart.
These are good for upper body but also core strength.
Your hips should be steady and still so if you find yourself swaying move your feet wider apart to stabilise yourself. Keep this movement slow and steady. This can also be done on your knees if you need to build up strength.
Hand-release Push Ups
Again, these are great as they mimic an aspect of the pop up.
If you cannot do a full body push up you can do these on your knees.
Tricep Push up
Time to give those triceps a bit of attention.
Lying on your front extend your arms out in front of you, hands together in a diving position. Feet are together. From here lift your legs and upper body off the floor as you pull arms back tucking your elbows into your ribs and squeeze your shoulder blades together.
Return to the start lowering your legs and upper body before repeating.
And there you have it! Do the above exercises for 10-12 repetitions each then move on to the next one. Rest for 15 seconds between each exercise. Do a total of 4 rounds of all the exercises.
You can even do these moves whilst watching the TV!