Surf Longer Surf Stronger

Stay Warm. Stay Surfing with Ellakai Surf Supplements

We’ve all been in those situations choosing between a spring suit or a full suit. Or we are too focused on how good the waves are and forget to think about bringing that wetsuit jacket or wetsuit. Although there are many places in the world where surfers never have to worry about getting cold, there is a large population of surfers who don’t have that luxury. Most surf spots around the world have water temperatures that fluctuate throughout the different seasons of the year. For example, California surfers know first hand of the rising water temps entering the summer season with a sudden drop back to 60 degrees with a day or two. Why is staying warm so important? Any average surfer will answer with comfort and survival. Every surfer has seen that mad man in their local line up who surfs in  boardshorts  in frigid waters and seems to stay warm for an hour or two. But for most of us we need to stay warm so we can surf longer and better. So here are the facts about why we need to stay warm while we surf:

 

  • When you get cold your body naturally starts pumping blood away from your skin and into the core of your body. So your body does not pump blood into your muscles for muscle contractions as much as when you’re warm and comfortable. So technically you’re not as strong, powerful, or as fast when you’re cold.
  • Again, slower weaker muscles. When you get cold, your body starts recruiting more fast twitch muscle fibers in situations where slow twitch muscle fibers handle the workload. Slow twitch muscle fibers have long endurance capabilities. Fast twitch muscle fibers are used to make up for muscle deficiency which results in lactic acid build up and oxygen depletion.
  • Even if you surf through the cold temperatures, you burn through energy sources faster.Your metabolism speeds up and you body starts burning glucose in order to maintain body temperature. You will feel weak and fatigued sooner into your surf session.
  • You will run out of breathe faster. Cold body temperatures put more strain on your heart. The heart is working hard to pump blood through your body. This results in a lower aerobic capacity.
  • Increased risk for pulled muscles. When muscles are cold they are less “stretchy” and are slower to react to environment forces.

 

So if we want better chances at having a good surf session or performing well in a contest we need to be prepared to keep ourselves warm. Here are precautions we can take in order to make sure we are always warmed up and ready to shred:

 

  •  Start warm. Make sure your starting body temperature is nice and warm. If we are already cold before we paddle out, the higher chances we will get cold out in the water. Dress warm on your way to go surf and have a nice warm beverage.
  • Consider all environmental factors. Wind, air temperature, wave consistency, set wave consistency, humidity, surf session length.
  • Warm up. Doing some warm up stretches and movements can raise your body temperature and get your blood pumping before paddling out.
  • Prepare for the coldest. Even though you trunked it for an hour yesterday doesn’t mean it’s going to be the same today. It could be windier or less consistent today. Or the water temp may have dropped a few degrees unexpectedly. Bring a wetsuit jacket, spring suit, full suit, or booties with you just in case the air or water is colder than expected.