With many of us stuck at home most of the day, it's hard to find the motivation to get outside and go for a daily walk. It's easy to get stuck in a rut and stay at home, especially when it's raining. Lots of you too are landlocked many miles away from surf and the sea, so we thought we'd come up with some alternative ways you can exercise and prepare for your summer shredding sessions, while also feeling closer to the ocean.
1.Watch a web cam while working out.
Cornwall's beaches are peppered with webcams. Almost every surf break in the county has a webcam focused on it and are updating 24/7. If you're missing your favourite break or just want to watch some other lucky buggers catching your waves, check out if your top spot has a webcam. Magic Seaweed is a good place to start, and if you don't mind the adverts you can watch the surf for free. Porthtowan, Gwithian, Praa, Portreath, Perranporth, Fistral and even Polzeath surf can be viewed from the comfort of your home.
2.Swim in a river/lake
The health benefits of being around water are widely known and now scientifically proven. In fact, being in or near water environments may lead to relaxation, improved social interactions, better brain health, enhanced physical activity, and relief from stress, according to emerging research. Of course jumping in your nearest lake or river without the proper preparation would be stupid and very dangerous actually. However once you have found someone to join you and researched safe locations and kit, plunging into the cool waters daily will really boost your mood and your mind health.
3.Get a Balance board
Balance boards are a great way to work on building strength in your core, back, and shoulders, can help correct your posture, reducing back pain, neck pain, pain in weight bearing joints, as well as other health effects. Using a balance board is a great way to build up postural muscle strength and will do wonders for your surfing. The stronger you are the gnarlier you'll be. You can pick one up for about £60 and there are some great YouTube tutorials covering all the basics. As you get better you'll be able to perfect some tricks and show off to your mates.
4.Play a sea soundscape while meditating
If you're anything like us, it's not just the look and feel of the water, but also the sound which we love. The ocean's echoes change with the tide and swell and its constant rhythm is hypnotic. Why not combine the sound of the sea into your relax time? Ocean sounds can be found on YouTube and are a great soundtrack to your yoga, meditation or bedtime routine. Just close your eyes, listen to the lapping of the waves and imagine you're enjoying a lazy sunny day in a quiet Cornish cove.
5.Take an ice bath
The ocean in the winter is cold. There's no two ways about it. However, cold water swimming and indeed ice baths are proven to boost your immune system and improve your brain health. If you live near a sea and you take the necessary precautions, a daily cold water swim in your boardies or bikini will do wonders for your mood and wellbeing. Wim Hof has been doing it for years. You don't need to be living near a sheltered harbour to enjoy the benefits of a cold swim, all you need is a wheelie bin, or your bathtub. Simply fill your bath, or wheelie bin with cold water and bags of ice and plunge yourself into the waters for as long as you can manage. Focus on your breathing and steady your breath. After a few weeks you will really start to feel the benefits. If you don't believe us, give it a go!
6.Work on your upper body strength
Day to day our legs do most of the work and it's easy to forget how important our upper body strength is. Our arms, especially in surfing are our propellers and so keeping them in top condition, along with our backs and shoulders will be key to making sure we're ready to get out back in the summer and autumn. A pull-up bar is a cheap and simple way to build strength in your biceps, shoulders and back. They are cheap and easy to install, all you need is a doorway. No room for excuses.