Windsurfing: perform better when you're over 40 | Photo: NeilPryde

The oblique muscles are important for spine health and core stability and strength. Health promoter and windsurfer Henrik Beyer shows us an effective exercise for over 40 windsurfers.

Age-related loss of muscle mass, strength and functionality is natural part of the ageing process and it's commonly called "sarcopenia".

"Sarcopenia" generally appears after 30 or 40 years of age depending on gender and other known and unknown factors. Research shows that physical inactivity is a contributing factor to "sarcopenia".

"Windsurfers who are not 39 years old, thereof not immortal anymore, should take special care of the core muscles to inhibit loss of muscle mass and strength and to prevent windsurfing injuries," says Henrik Beyer, author of "Health & Fitness for Windsurfing."

"The oblique muscles are important not to forget in an exercise program, and any over 40 windsurfers who would like to perform better on the water or recover from potential back injury can benefit from doing this exercise," adds Beyer.

Professional windsurfers know the importance of having a strong core, to avoid injury and to increase the ability to maneuver difficult situations when sailing.

Try the "Cable Oblique Twist". There are a few ways of doing this exercise. Adjust the cable pulley to hip or shoulder height. Grasp the stirrup firmly by interlocking your fingers.

Keep your arms straight or just slightly bent. Grasp the stirrup enough away that you can feel a comfortable stretch in your oblique muscles. Slowly twist your torso, and hold for one second at the end of the movement and before carefully returning to the starting position.

Repeat on the other side. This exercise does not have to involve a significant movement or a lot of weight to hit those important oblique muscles. Repeat the exercise between 10-15 times, three sets on each side.

How do you warm-up before a windsurfing session?