Paul Frediani's Sports Athletics
The Surfer's BSB Bungee SwissBall Workout
Paul Frediani's Surf Flex - Surf Long. Surf Strong.
Paul Frediani's Surf Flex - Surf Long. Surf Strong.

One rarely sees a surfer in a gym. Why would you? Why would anyone exercise in a sterile and artificial atmosphere when you can get your workout in one of the most beautiful and scenic environments in the world? Unfortunately, a surfer is at the mercy of the ocean's conditions - swells, tides and winds. These can keep a surfer dry for weeks waiting for the next surfing session. Staying in top shape physically during lulls in the swell can be a challenge. Not doing so will not only hinder a surfer's performance but increase the potential for injuries.

The surfer's workout is done entirely with a bungee and swissball. If you're going to play in an unstable environment, doesn't it make sense to train on one? The BSB workout will simulate the movements of the three basic elements of a surf session. The paddle out (chest, shoulders and back), the pop up (chest, abs, back, hip flexors), and surfing (legs and core). It challenges a surfer's endurance and strength, all the while engaging the neuromuscular system (balance) and core musculature (hips, abs, butt and back). An added benefit to the BSB workout is that weighing less than a laptop, a surfer can take a bungee and swissball with them on their travels.

A surfer can choose a surfboard in a variety of shapes and sizes. For the sake of simplicity let's say there are two types of boards, longboards and shortboards. A longboard (at least 3 feet taller than a surfer's height) has greater buoyancy, making it easier to paddle and catch waves. It 's also more stable, so it's easier to learn on. A longboarder maneuvers the board with long sweeping turns, and can walk up and down the board to fine tune its trim and speed. Hanging ten, nose riding, bottom turns, drop knee backside turns, cheater fives, are a few known maneuvers known in the longboarder's lexicon.

Shortboards vary in length from several inches below or above a surfer's height. Shortboards are harder to paddle. The takeoff or catching the wave is done at a later stage of the wave development. It places the surfer in a more critical position of a breaking wave. A shortboarder maintains their feet in a set position on the board, creating speed by carving turns up and down the face of the wave. Shortboarders get radical with maneuvers known as catching air, off the lip, floaters and 360's.

Although the styles are very different, physical demands are required for both. Incorporating the surfer's (BSB) workout will help surfers avoid muscle atrophy by stimulating the muscles used in a surf session, and increase the amount of power generated, and needed in an unstable environment. It will also strengthen opposing muscle groups helping to avoid overuse injuries from constant paddling and developing strength in deep segmental muscles of the spine, required for stabilization and functional movements. Because the only thing that bums out a surfer more than poor surfing conditions, is having good surfing conditions but being injured, or not physically prepared to surf.

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