1. For Surfers: Yoga
We’ve said it before, and we say it again. Surfing and yoga go hand-in-hand. Vigorous yoga classes help develop the core and upper-body strength to help prevent the nagging lower back pain common in active surfers. Slower-paced classes will help get some of the creaks out of surfers’ shoulders and alleviate back injuries that may already exist.
Yoga also helps calm the mind by drawing attention to breathing patterns, which aids in stress and fear management when dealing with hectic conditions out in the water.
2. For Climbers: Stand-Up Paddleboarding
SUP is popular because it feels like walking on water and it’s an intense workout. For climbers who need to build or preserve core and upper-body strength, SUP can do that, as well as work the creaks out of the shoulders and back.
On top of that, the isometric strengthening of the legs in order to keep balance while paddling is super-helpful for climbing, since being able to hold a still, sometimes-awkward leg position without locking up is important. As an added plus, SUP is a nice change of scenery for climbers.
3. For Yogis: Freestyle Swimming
One of the main emphases of yoga is on deep breathing. Same goes for swimming, particularly when performing laps. When swimming freestyle, the inhalations followed by holding and the deep exhalations help to increase lung capacity, creating more effective yoga practices.
Additionally, the overall workout swimming provides helps build endurance for a typical 90-minute yoga class as well as strengthening for harder poses in more advanced classes.
4. For Cyclists: Cross-Country Skiing
The fluid forward motion of cross-country skiing both mimics the action of cycling and provides an intensive cardiovascular workout. It also helps strengthen the precise muscles cycling targets, such as the glutes, quads and core muscles, but with the added bonus of adding some upper body action, which cycling lacks, thus balancing out the body a bit more.
For those without access to terrain suitable for skiing, high-intensity workouts on an elliptical machine can provide similar benefits.
5. For Runners: Rowing
One of the most intense overall workouts out there if done correctly, indoor or outdoor rowing can help strengthen runners’ ankles, quads, calves, and backs without pounding against pavement. In addition to helping keep up endurance, the upper body strength involved in rowing is a big plus to help balance out runners’ bottom-strong bodies.
Generally, 500 meters of rowing (more easily measured on indoor rowing machines) can substitute for 400 meters of running.
6. For Skiers: In-line Skating
In addition to core strength, skiers need to keep the ability to balance using the smallest muscles and tendons in the legs and ankles, which is how in-line skating can be immensely beneficial.
By training on a slightly inclined terrain, skiers can mimic being on ski slopes, thus preserving their lateral leg and hip movements for when they actually do get back on the slopes. Poles can also be used to help preserve upper body strength and keep the cross-training reminiscent of skiing.
For you free divers out there, check out some exercises that will help improve your skills on mSports.