Words and Video by Tehillah McGuiness
Flexibility is definitely a component of our surf training that is very often overlooked. You can do this flexibility routine anywhere, and it caters to all levels.
Why do we need to stretch and focus on flexibility?
Think of it this way, our muscles and in effect, our skeletal system are placed under a large amount of stress while surfing. As well as during training sessions, and this stress causes little ‘roadblocks’ in our muscles which stop our body from performing at their best. It also causes stress to be shifted to surrounding areas which can lead to the dreaded ‘I’ word – Injury.
I have been on the receiving end of injuries before due to overtraining and these lead to chronic tendonitis in both my knees. Which left me unable to walk correctly for a while and intern caused a host of knock-on joint and muscular issues as I was not able to move properly or stretch.
Think of your body as a car ( a nice car) that you are proud of and want to keep in excellent condition. After each day of running around – surfing, training or worse – sitting in front of the computer for long periods of time (we are all guilty of this) your ‘car’ needs to be ‘refueled’ and restored back to an aligned and rested condition for the next day. Set aside a few minutes a day to do this as this will have a huge impact on how you will feel the next time you hit the water.
If you have not done any flexibility or Yoga for a long time or maybe even ever, start slow and never push your body past the point of discomfort.
Breathe! Remember to breath constantly throughout and imagine breathing oxygen into the areas that feel tight when you are holding the various positions.
If a particular movement is causing you a lot of discomforts, stop doing it and move on to the next one.
Put your phones away and just spend a few minutes on yourself. Your body and mind will thank you for it.