Skateboarding: it helps you become a better surfer | Photo: Shutterstock

As strange as it may sound, there are several activities you can do off the waves that will enhance your surfer skills. Here are ten practical daily actions for your busy life.

Sometimes, surfing seems to be heading in the opposite direction of our lives, and we simply don't have enough time to put a wetsuit on.

But don't despair. You can still become a better surfer out of the water, when the ocean's flat or we're landlocked somewhere in the world, hundreds of miles away from our favorite surf break.

The rule applies to all surfers, even non-competitive weekend warriors.

So, whether you're trying to read the waves better, pop up faster, improve your bottom-turn, complete a roundhouse cutback or land an aerial maneuver, there's always room for improvement in our surfing lives.

Surfers, in general, believe there's always a challenge waiting for them every time they paddle out. So, it's time to hit the ground running, on terra firma.

Make no mistake: the following actions will have a positive in your surfing, as long as you implement them on a long-term basis.

Sleep Well

Adults need between seven and nine hours of sleep each night to restore the muscular, nervous, skeletal, immune, respiratory, digestive, endocrine and cardiovascular systems.

It's been proved that people who sleep well and have adopted healthy sleep patterns increase their physical performance over time, and stay fit for extended periods.

Professional athletes have already embraced carefully designed sleeping programs because their coaches know that sleep efficiency is directly connected to performance patterns and behaviors.

On the other hand, let's not forget that sleep deprivation kills. So, get some rest, and make it a priority.

Surfing: go for a swim to improve your paddling power | Photo: Shutterstock

Go For A Swim

Swimming has been widely considered the most complete sport in the world.

From a surfing perspective, there's a lot to take out of a good swim. Not only it will build your lung capacity, but it will also improve your paddling power.

Regular swimming also improves your confidence in the water and will help you face tough wipeouts and dangerous hold downs.

Swimming will prepare your body and mind for the winter season like no other activity, too.

Drink More Water

Water is the best energy drink in the world. But it also tastes good - any time, anywhere.

Drinking two liters of water per day will protect your body against water pollution, diseases, and extreme temperatures.

But water heals, too. It maintains the balance of body fluids, controls calories, powers muscles, improves the quality of your skin, helps digestion, prevents cramps, and even helps in decision-making.

Keep a bottle of water near you all the time, and you won't regret it.

Surfing: staying hydrated prevents cramps | Photo: Shutterstock

Ride a Skateboard

Skateboarding came after surfing, but the four-wheeled surfboard can do wonders for your wave riding skills.

And you don't even need to hit the half pipe or perform complicated tricks.

Just get a longboard skateboard and cruise across a surface free of obstacles. By carving your skate, you'll be improving your bottom-turn, and overall balance on a surfboard.

If you feel confident enough, try a few kick turns or go for the ollie.

Eat Healthy

If there's a maxim that applies to all humans is that "we are what we eat."

A surfer needs energy to paddle, duck dive, pop up, and adjust the body to the constant mutations of the waves.

But if you're about to hit the lineup, play it safe. Forget beers, wine, fried foods, and energy drinks.

Make sure to include fruits, water, vegetables, nuts, and red fruits in your light pre-surf meal.

Surfing: improve your skills out of the water | Photo: Shutterstock

Go Running

Not everyone likes to run. But the truth is that the aerobic exercise will have a positive impact on your surfing.

Running activates the muscles, burns unwanted calories, strengthens the heart and bones, lowers the blood pressure, and activates 50 percent of the lungs that are often unused.

A 30-minute running or jogging session, twice a week, will definitely improve your paddling power and lower body mechanics.

Don't Smoke, Stop Smoking

Smoking should be considered the antonym of surfing. You will never be a good surfer if you're a smoker.

Tobacco damages the lungs and makes breathing more difficult.

For each cigarette you smoke, you're inhaling around 4,000 chemicals.

So, if you've never smoked, stay away from cigs. If you're a regular smoker, make a choice: either surf or die slowly.

Surfing: protect your lungs, stay away from cigarettes | Photo: Shutterstock

Practice Your Breath Hold

The idea is not to break records and hold your breath for more than 20 minutes.

But you can easily adopt a few simple breathing exercises and improve your breath hold for, let's say, a couple of minutes.

The goal is to be able to manage the oxygen available in your lungs, and increase the tank's capacity so that two-wave hold-downs won't put you in an uncomfortable situation.

Meditate

A meditative state of mind is not only good for your wellness but will also help you deal with common surf-related situations like crowded lineups, snaking, big waves and life-threatening hold-downs.

Meditation has become a regular practice among pro surfers, and it even helps deal with low back pain.

If you seek to build your concentration, focus, and attention to the elements that surround you, then meditation is certainly a helpful tool.

Mind Surf

Mind surfing is an intellectual exercise that puts the surfers in a specific real-life situation.

Believe or not, through mind surfing, you can actually perform a sharper cutback, a deeper tube ride, a faster take-off, or a fully-completed re-entry.

Mental practice transforms ideas into images, and then into real life actions.

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