Surf Your Way Buff

Because exercise sometimes can be as fun as catching a wave.

There is nothing sweeter than catching a great wave. If only it could suffice for your exercise for the day. Good news: it can! Though you have to first take the immense amount of time to master surfing before you will be able to truly consider it exercise, surfing can give you a pretty good workout.

Here’s a glimpse at what muscles you can strengthen while hanging 10.

Upper Body

The first step to surfing is to get to the waves. To do this, you’re going to have to get your hands in the water and dig deep to push yourself to the site of the best surf. While you’re in the process of getting to the waves, your upper body is taxed substantially. Your arms, back, and shoulders are all called upon to get to the hot spot, and if you’re not in good shape, simply getting to the waves can be an exhausting activity. Once you’re in good shape, this process will help you stay there.

Lower Body

Once you get to the waves, only half the battle is over. You now have to continue using your upper body strength to pull yourself into the wave and at just the right moment, you have to explode into a standing position. Though your arms will do much of the work, your legs are just as important. And once you’re up, your legs will get a great workout, as they are responsible for keeping you upright in the often-rough waves.


Having a strong core is essential for surfing. If you don’t have one yet, surfing will help you get there, as your core is constantly off balance. In fact, your body is forced to balance and rebalance itself the entire time you’re out on your board. Whether you’re paddling out to find a good spot, pushing it to get into the big wave, riding a world-record wave, or simply sitting upright on your board to check out the scenery or watch a pal catch a wave, your core will be worked the entire time.

Get Surf Strong

Want to be as ready as possible the next time you hit the waves? Try these exercises out to increase your strength in a way that will improve your chances of riding the big one like a pro.
Medicine Ball Coil and Jump: Holding a medicine ball overhead with your arms fully extended, stand with your feet approximately shoulder-width apart. Slightly bend your knees and then jump as high as you can, lifting your knees toward your chest as high as possible. When you land, do so softly, and then jump 14 more times. Repeat this set three times.

Dumbbell Shoulder Rotation: Grab a five-pound dumbbell in your right and left hand, as you stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Bend your knees slightly and raise your arms to either side until they reach shoulder level. Then, move your hands in a circular motion in a steady and controlled manner. After 20 circles, perform 20 more circles in the opposite direction.

Push-Ups on the Ball: Place your hands on the top of an exercise ball. Keep your hands about chest-width apart, but not so far that they’ll slide off the ball. Straighten your upper body and legs until you are in push-up position. Slowly perform 15 push-ups, being careful to maintain proper balance throughout. Repeat three times.

Remember, surfing can be a good form of exercise, but you won’t be able to surf properly if you don’t already have the strength in place to do it right. So be sure to spend plenty of time in the gym before heading for the great, wet outdoors. This will not only help you stay strong in the surf, but will also keep you from developing only one side of your body, which can happen if surfing is your only form of exercise.

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