Blowing up an inflatable paddle board is a great workout. Paddling out on the water is good exercise. So why not take it up a notch? You can do a yoga workout, or you can surf on your board – bigger waves means more muscles worked!
But why not just a simple HIIT or Bootcamp like workout for you on your board?
Easy Exercises to do on your Paddle Board
Some of the best simple exercises that we work into our daily fitness routines are amplified and great for doing on a paddle board.
Planks and Push Ups are two of the most popular. The board is long enough for you to lay down on so these are easily accomplished. Pushing up onto your arms for a plank is hard on land, holding in your core muscles to stay tight.
Now especially while you are trying to stay on a paddle board that may be wobbling on the waves or in the wind.
This will lead to you keeping that core even tighter and holding your entire body tight as well.
A push up is also a great addition, keeping your legs and core tight and trying to push up with your arms in the waves is tricky.
Sit ups can be super simple on the board. You pick a steady spot in the middle, lay down with your knees-up and then you just sit.
This exercise has more points of contact for your body than planks or push-ups, which makes it’s a little easier.
You can also do crunches, where you don’t sit up all the way. Or even sit like you’re in boat pose from yoga, and reach each hand from side to side. This one can even be done with a little weight if you were willing to bring one out on the water!
Next up we can do some lunges, which take a lot of balance on land but even more on the board. Standing tall near the back of the board and then putting one leg out forward and bending into a lunge. You can also stand at the front of the board and do backward lunges.
Mountain climbers can be a fun way to keep your core engaged and heart rate up. You wanna make sure you’re in the center line of the board. And when you pick up your feet to bring them to your chest, you don’t rock your body too much to one side.
These exercises can be a little more tricky, you have to make sure you keep your arms in contact with the board and you core so tight.
are an ultimate full body, keep your heart rate up, kick butt workout. They are even more challenging on the board! I have noticed that my form for burpees has gotten so much better since doing them on my paddle board. Because I am focusing so much on keeping my entire body tight so I do not fall in that my form is incomparable to the past.
So much of these simple workouts are building core, and this is so important for paddle boarding. When you paddle you want to keep your core engaged at all times.
The more you are able to use your core power muscles instead of your arms the longer you will be able to paddle for.
This is a workout some people forget about when they are out on a flotation device. If you have the ability to leave your board for a little and come back to it great. This is a perfect time to swim ahead to a destination and then come back to your board. If it is a hot day this is a great way to cool down in between sets of burpees and push-ups.
It can also be a workout on it’s own, sometimes I will keep one foot or one hand on the paddle board and swim with it. Or if I feel like want to go some distance, with a little resistance, you can put your ankle strap on while you swim. Keeping your board attached to your leg while you paddle and kick adds the weight and resistance of your board to that swim.
This is obviously not something I advise to people who are not avid swimmers. And even if you are, swimming out in any open water – you should always wear your life jacket! Safety first.
High Intensity Paddle
One great way to get your heart rate going is to paddle like an alligator is chasing you! If you can dig deep, get your paddle in the water and stroke back and forth between sides really fast, one you will be speeding down the water which is awesome.
But more importantly you will be burning more calories. The faster you can paddle and for the longer you are able to do it the more muscle work you are doing and therefore burning those extra calories.
I like to do a 5-minute high intense paddle then a 5-minute regular paddle – then build up from there. It can be really hard at first to keep paddling that fast for a long time.
It is a lot like walking fast or even running, you are building up to that marathon. People who train for paddle board races can tell you all about this and how fun it can be.
You can burn about twice as many calories while you paddle fast than you can burn at a brisk walk. I would surely rather be paddling personally than out on a walk. So why not burn those calories while I have fun on my board.
Stretching on the SUP
Lastly after you have finished a high intensity paddle or HIIT workout out on your board you want to make sure you stretch. You can do almost any of the same stretches you would do sitting on land. Any of the ones you may do standing could be a little more challenging but good to keep those muscles working.
Remember to Relax
Make sure to relax and enjoy yourself before or after your workout. Take some leisure time to just sit on your board and feel the waves.
A good workout is important, but always remember this is a fun activity too! Something to get your mind off your busy life and be one with nature.
Now go and get out on the water!