The Surfer's Full-Body Strength Workout

Whether you're a surfer or you just want to train like one, you can build explosiveness and endurance through the surfer's workout.

Today's surfers aren't beach bums who hang out in the water all day. They're pure athletes who train hard to stand out in one of the toughest sports on the planet. Like all great athletes, modern surfers spend serious time in the weight room. Whether you're a surfer or just want to train like one, add these four goals to your training regimen to get your body ready for the pounding surf.

Great surfing moments are made in just a few short seconds of explosive action. Give yourself the best chance to catch the biggest waves and pull off the maneuvers that impress judges and sponsors by focusing on explosive strength training. Instead of jogging long distances, sprint up hills. Instead of trying to build massive biceps, focus on quick, strong movements like Squat Jumps and Box Jumps. Start your training with these exercises:

Don't miss the wave of your life because you couldn't paddle back out to the breakers quickly enough; focus on endurance training to stay fresh in the water longer. Any surfer can work hard for the first few minutes of a competition, but champions are able to push through until the end. Build endurance through:

Core Strength
While core strength is crucial for any athlete, it's especially important for surfers, who rely on their core to stay balanced and pull off tricky maneuvers. You'll develop core stability naturally by performing lifts on your feet, but work on developing core strength specifically through:

While you're developing your body in the weight room, make sure you get 100 percent from it during competition through proper nutrition. Running your body on an empty tank will cause it to shut down, and the ocean is an extremely dangerous place to lose control. The following articles contain great tips for proper athlete nutrition:

As a surfer, don't be afraid to hit the weight room. If you've only trained in water, you'll be surprised by the difference a solid strength and conditioning program can make.


Shelton Stevens is a member of the strength staff at the University of Southern Mississippi. Prior to joining USM, he was the head strength coach at Nova Southeastern University (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.). He has also worked under LSU strength coach Tommy Moffitt, helping to train the Tigers' nationally-ranked football team and their 2009 national champion baseball team. During his career, he has worked with four national champions, seven conference champions and 12 All-Americans. He is CSCCa, SCCC, USAW, NSCA and RSCC certified, and he holds a bachelor's degree in exercise science and a master's degree in athletic administration.

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