Article by Dustin Bouwhuis
The art of paddle board balance training is by no means an easy one. Granted the shape of a paddle board is designed to make it more stable on the water than a surf board, but balancing on one is a task that provides a great work out. Whether on still water or not, the combined skill of staying upright on the board and propelling the board through the water with your paddle makes for a low impact while physically strenuous exercise. There are a few reasons why balancing training on a paddle board makes for such a great workout..
• It’s naturalThink about all of the other ways you can be on top on the water and propelling yourself forward at the same time. Most of them require a motor, and all of that sound and exhaust seriously takes a way from the peace and harmony that being out on the water would otherwise provide. There is something very relaxing about being so close to the water, almost feeling like you’re walking on top of it. Once you’re out there it starts to feel so natural that you hardly realize you’re getting an amazing core workout.
• Injury RehabWhat makes stand up paddle boarding so good for rehabilitating injuries is the balance training aspect and that all of the movements involved are so smooth and they go through a full range of motion. The fluid motions of your body while you’re on the board provide a perfect environment for strengthening and conditioning your muscles. Another thing that helps is that you are forced to continuously adjust your body position to stay balanced on the board. This strengthens all of the small stabilizer muscles in your body that are so important to support your bones and posture, and speed your recovery from injury. There is also no doubt that being outside and on the water gives you a mental boost, and anyone who was dealt with an injury knows that staying positive and motivated is a big part of the recovery process.
• The Fun FactorOnce you get good paddle board balance, it’s just really fun to be out on the water. Let’s be honest, there are a lot of ways to workout that can feel like you’re working out. I mean, they feel like work. When you’re out on the paddle board you don’t even feel like you’re working out, but you’re getting a cross training effect that hammers your whole body really hard. If you haven’t tried it you’ll be very surprised at just how much you use your muscles while you’re out there. Chances are you won’t feel it until later since you’ll be having so much fun that it will feel way more like playing than like some kind of serious workout. How cool is that?
If you have some kind of injury, or you’re looking for a new way to get a full body workout, you should give stand up paddle boarding a try. All you need to get started is a board and a paddle. Hope to see you out there.
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