The 2nd part from our UK SUP fitness expert Lucy McCormick. In this article Lucy looks at why Stand Up Paddleboarding is such good fitness and how you can achieve a good all round body workout. If you missed Lucy’s Part – 1 SUP Yoga click here.
Part – 2 SUP Fitness
Why SUP Fitness?
Stand Up Paddle (SUP) fitness is already massive in the States and is set to be a sure fire hit in the UK. The question is.. why choose a Stand Up Paddleboard to help improve your health and fitness when there are so many ways, along with a huge range of equipment readily available to do so?
Stand Up Paddleboarding is known for being extremely versatile, appealing to a wide range of people from all walks of life. The health and fitness benefits of this sport are much talked about and SUPing is known to assist the body in increasing strength in both the upper and lower body, improving muscle tone, help build core strength and create body awareness. For the mind and soul SUPing can provide relaxation and is a very effective de-stressor!
BUT do keep in mind the benefits that you receive will very much depend on how you use your board, and how much effort you put in. Meaning that if your goal is to have a 6 pack and bulging biceps or a svelte summer body you’re going to have to put the effort in.
Each discipline of Stand up Paddleboarding, whether it’s racing, surfing, down winders or cruising, will work the body slightly differently thus placing different demands on your body. Whatever your discipline Stand Up Paddleboarding can offer an all over body work out as it engages your entire body from your head to your toes – there are so many ways to improve your fitness and health from this awesome sport!
“What’s great about SUP fitness is that you’re out on the water, at one with the ocean (or lake!), taking part in a watersport that has a massive amount of benefits to everyone”
Whether you are a top end athlete looking to improve your sporting performance or a newbie looking for a different challenge or a new way to work out, SUP has it all and can offer something to everyone.
How to get paddling fit…
To get the most out of your paddling and to achieve an effective all over workout a good paddle technique is of upmost importance. As we paddle to move the board forward through the water we rotate our hips and shoulders to enable us to place the paddle vertically. As the stroke develops we recoil are hips, release the paddle and repeat the process. All this whilst standing on an unstable platform, meaning our whole body from head to toe is working hard to keep our body balanced and paddling!
The video below by SUP Coach Sam Ross is a great example of how to paddle effectively using your core, thus achieving a core workout.
SUP Fitness Classes
Another way to get a great workout is by using the SUP to act as a balance trainer, creating a wobbly surface to carry out exercises on, and therefore having to work harder to perform each move. From a simple squat to a hard core push up the options are endless and performing the exercises on the water make it all the more interesting!
The key to keeping fit with a SUP is to put the effort in. As much as a gentle paddle will have some benefit, if you want to use it as a training tool and reap the benefits Stand Up Paddleboarding can offer, you need to push yourself and develop a training programme suitable to your goals. So why not choose a SUP event, set your goal, and use a SUP to get fit! It’s much more fun than the gym on a sunny day!
In the next article Lucy will be talking about – How to get a cardio SUP workout. For more information about Lucy and her fitness programs check out the Lagoonfitness.co.uk website and the Lagoon fitness facebook page.
Lucy is a Brighton-born watersports and fitness enthusiast who has a broad experience of stand up paddle boarding, windsurfing, wakeboarding and snowboarding. Lucy has always loved sports, taking part in lots of school sporting events from a young age. She qualified as a fitness instructor after leaving school, and soon discovered watersports. Lucy first learned to windsurf at Lagoon Watersports, before completing her instructor course out in Greece. Since then she has worked both in the UK and abroad teaching windsurfing, and has also spent a couple of years in the French Alps snowboarding.
In 2008 Lucy began working at Lagoon Watersports, which is where she developed a passion for SUPing – surfing, racing and cruising. Lucy helped set up Lagoon Fitness, a branch of Lagoon Watersports – promoting Stand Up Paddling in Brighton and offering SUP fitness classes. This has been a great success and in Lucy’s words, “is due to get even bigger and better this year!!”
Lucy is super passionate about SUP and particularly the benefits of SUP yoga.
“I soon realised the benefits that SUPing brings, for both your mind and body, as well as being loads of fun.” – Lucy McCormick