Training Exercises For Standup Paddlers

standup paddle exercisesLike every sport, if you want to max­i­mize your abil­i­ties in standup pad­dle board­ing, it helps to per­form the right exer­cis­es and con­di­tion your body to suc­ceed. Good core strength is a neces­si­ty to become a com­peti­tor in the sport, along with some pret­ty buff arms and back mus­cles. Here are a few exer­cis­es to try if you want to up your game on your next outing.

Bal­ance Pushups
Much like in surf­ing, to SUP you have to be able to bal­ance your­self on the board whether you’re stand­ing, get­ting ready to pop up or try­ing to pull your­self back on after a spill. Bal­ance pushups are a great way to learn how to steady your­self effectively.

Begin by plac­ing a weight­ed bar across a bal­ance board or bosu ball then get your body down in the pushup posi­tion. With your hands grip­ping the bar just past where the ball or board ends, push your­self up and low­er back down in slow, con­trolled motions. Always remem­ber to keep your arms at a nat­ur­al 90-degree angle.

The Pad­dle Squat
The pad­dle squat is a vari­a­tion of the nor­mal squat but with a pad­dle instead of a bar­bell and weights. It’s allows you to use the same amount of weight you’ll need to be accus­tomed to out on the water, though you can also do this in the gym with weights if you pre­fer to make more gains. Stand with your legs slight­ly wider than shoul­der width with the pad­dle held above your head with both hands. Per­form a squat, count­ing to three on the way down and the way back up.

As you per­form your sets, slow­ly move your legs apart and push your arms clos­er togeth­er to increase the dif­fi­cul­ty. If you’re real­ly feel­ing bold, you can try this one while stand­ing atop a bosu ball to increase the difficulty.

The Plank
The plank is one of the great­est exer­cis­es for devel­op­ing core strength no mat­ter what sport you’re train­ing for, but it’s espe­cial­ly great for SUP. Start in the nor­mal plank posi­tion with your fore­arms and elbows on the floor, palms fac­ing each oth­er and your thumbs up. Engage your core by keep­ing your body as flat and par­al­lel to the ground as pos­si­ble, bal­anc­ing on your fore­arms and toes. Try to hold this posi­tion for at least two minutes.

For a lit­tle vari­a­tion, go up and down from your under­arms to your hands, one at a time, and keep this up for anoth­er two min­utes. You can also brink the plank up onto your side if you feel up to it.

Swiss ISO Twist
While pad­dling, your body will rotate as you change your pad­dle from side to side, so mim­ic­k­ing this move­ment in the gym is a great way to increase strength and endurance while on the board. You’ll need resis­tance cables and a Swiss ball to per­form this exercise.

Strad­dle the ball while fac­ing per­pen­dic­u­lar to the resis­tance cables. Grab the cables with both hands and pull them to the oth­er side of your body, while try­ing not to rotate your hips. After your set, switch sides on the ball and pull in the oppo­site direction.