VANCOUVER, Canada - Most people jump on a Stand Up Paddle (SUP) to reap the benefits of being outside in nature, getting their heart rate up and having fun. I know that’s why I started! Just being out on the water is a huge part of the allure of Stand Up Paddling, but what if I told you there is also a big gain to your core simply by standing on your SUP?! By simply balancing on the water and paddling through the water and waves, Stand Up Paddle Boarding is a huge core workout. To get a bit more into this we have to learn a touch about our core muscles.
What is core, and how does it work? Basically, your ‘core’ is made up of 4 muscles:
- Rectus Abdomens (RA)
- Internal Obliques
- External Obliques and your
- Transverse Abdominus (TA)
Each muscle works in different ways on your board and can make for a great core workout routine!
Kate Watson demonstrates different core exercises on her Paiwen SUP. | Photos Courtesy: Kate Watson
Your RA is the big outer muscle or your six pack which flexes your spine, so as you lean forward to power a stroke out, you’re working your RA -- it’s like doing a very subtle ab curl over and over. Your Obliques are in charge of twisting or rotation of the spine, so making sure your switching sides for paddling, say three strokes, then switch sides, three strokes then switch… you get the picture! This will work both sets of oblique muscles and you’ll be feeling the burn if you dig in with your arms and power from your centre! Last but definitely not least is your TA. This is basically like your stability and deepest core muscle. Just simply by standing on your board in a neutral pelvis it is going to give you a good advantage at activating your deep TA muscle.
All of these muscles actively working together can make a significant difference in not only how you look and feel, but also in your speed and grace on your board. So jump to it, ditch the inside workout, and jump on your SUP for an outside adventure packed with fresh air, nature and a whole lot of core!
To see more SUP Tips, click HERE.